Right as Rayne events understands the love you have for your fur baby. In fact, many of our planners and coordinators have fur babies of their own! So we get it- of course you want to include them in your special day! We have worked with several furry clients and have some tips to share with you!
Know Your Dog
Every animal is different. It is very important to know how your dog will react in this specific setting. Some dogs are very calm and can roll with whatever the day throws at them, some dogs may need some extra attention so that they feel safe and comfortable. Keep in mind how many guests you will have at your wedding, what your venue is like, and how long your day will be. You never want to put your put baby or your guests in an uncomfortable position. So when you are pinterest-ing dogs at weddings, keep in mind that all dogs are different, and set realistic expectations for you and your dog!
Tell Your Vendors
It is always a good idea to give your vendors a heads up that there will be an animal at the wedding. Just in case someone has an allergy, and so that they can better plan their day! Most vendors will be thrilled to have a little fur baby running around, but on the off chance that they aren’t, it’s best to know ahead of time so that you can find another vendor.
Have a Doggy-Sitter
We HIGHLY recommend placing someone else on permanent dog sitting duty! (Not you or your future spouse! You should be focusing on each other and getting married!) This person will make sure that your dog is where they are suppose to be, behaving the way they are supposed to be, and making sure that they are comfortable and having fun! Make sure this person knows your dog, and your dog trusts this person. This person should carry some treats around (to encourage good behavior, and know where all the best places to take your dog to the bathroom when they need to go!
This goes hand in hand with knowing your dog, but you can decide to have your dog wear something special to distinguish them on your special day! Flowers, bandanas, or a sign around their neck all work great! We recommend doing a test run with these ahead of time so that you know if your dog will leave it alone or try to rip it off!
During the ceremony, you have several options to involve your fur baby. They can walk down the aisle with someone in your wedding party (preferably their doggy sitter) on a leash. Or I f you have a particularly talented dog, you could have your dog waiting at the end of the aisle and have someone call for them to run down the aisle to them! Once they get down the aisle you can choose to have them stand with you for the duration of the ceremony(or have someone hold them if your dog is small enough), or pass them off to someone who is sitting with the guests, or to one of your RARE coordinators. Again, know your dog and be realistic about what they can handle. We want you to focus on getting married, not worrying about your dogs behavior! After the ceremony you can choose the same options for having them walk back down the aisle.
Pose for Photos
We are sure that your Pinterest photo list is a mile long (who’s isn’t?! Lol) but make sure that you pick out some specific poses that you can to with your dog! Let your photographer know that will be working with an animal so that they have a heads up as well! Lots of photographers are very familiar with working with animals during weddings. If you have some time- practice these poses before the day of your wedding so that you know which poses are realistic and which aren’t. It always helps to have someone standing with the photographer (again- your doggy sitter) who has a toy or a treat to encourage them to look in the direction of the camera!
Have an Exit Plan
We also recommend having somewhere for your fur baby to go after the photos. They have had a long day already, and they deserve some much needed R&R. Now it’s time for you and your guests to eat and dance and mingle and even the most well-behaved dogs will find something to get in to to keep themselves entertained! It is best to have your doggy sitter run your dog back to your hotel room or your house during your cocktail hour so that you aren’t worried about them during the reception, and so that they can play, eat, and sleep to their hearts content!
You love your animal and there is a reason that you want them involved in your special day! Don't forget to have fun and enjoy the time you get to spend with them on your wedding day!
Have More Questions?
Ask your Right as Rayne Coordinator if you have any other questions about including your fur baby in your wedding. We love animals and are happy to help you in any way that we can!