Clever Ways to Include Pets in Your Wedding

bride and groom outside with a dog on a leash
Audrey and Mike Morrison with their dog, Ricki, on their wedding day.

Our pets are our best friends; they love us without judgment, trust us implicitly and are the first to celebrate with us when anything big happens. So when you're planning your wedding — the biggest day of all — it's only natural you would want to include your best friend in the festivities.

But as difficult as it might be to find a dress that all the bridesmaids like or organize a seating chart that doesn't offend anyone, including your furry friend in your wedding can have its own challenges and difficulties. At the same time, though, having your pooch or kitty walk you down the aisle or pose for photos with the family can make your day even more memorable and special. It's all a matter of how you plan.

With This Pup, I Thee Wed

When Audrey Castagna and her fiancé, Mike, tied the knot, their 2-year-old Wheaten Terrier, Ricki, was an important part of their day. After all, Ricki had been part of their relationship from the beginning — literally: On Audrey's 30th birthday, Mike surprised her with an engagement ring and a puppy.

It seemed only natural then that Ricki should be included in every last detail of their wedding day. She got ready with the groom and groomsmen, and wore a tag on her collar that said “I Do” and a crown of flowers on her head. Ricki even posed for photos with the wedding party.

Even though Ricki couldn’t stay for the entire reception, she was there in spirit: The couple displayed a watercolor portrait of Ricki on the gift table and had an ice sculpture of her at the reception, and the bride's parents surprised them with a life-size photo cutout of the dog. “It started at the cake table," Audrey says, "but ended up being the hit of the dance floor and photo booth!”


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