With an increase in popularity of outdoor weddings and more and more venues open to the idea of dog friendly weddings, there is no reason why this very special member of your family cannot be part of your wedding day.
We are without doubt a nation of dog lovers in the United Kingdom. I also love all creatures great and small, but with a particular love of dogs, my two boys are called Bobi Bear and Monty.
Bobi is a rescue dog from Romania, he loves cuddles, frankfurters and a good snooze on our king-sized bed! Monty loves other dogs, his ‘own bed’ (!) and has a particular passion for tennis balls.
Dog Friendly Weddings
I got married just over 13 years ago at the wonderful Whatley Manor in Wiltshire. Our beloved Miniature Schnauzer Maxwell was not only made to feel extremely welcome by all the team at the hotel, but he was also very much part of our special day.
Very sadly, Maxwell is no longer with us, but I will always hold those memories close to my heart that he was able to be there, he even made a cheeky trip to the hotel kitchens without us realising!
Here are some top tips and ideas on how to include your four-legged bestie into your wedding day and ensure your dog friendly weddings are a huge success.
Wedding Dog Chaperone
There are some absolutely wonderful companies available who will look after and chaperone your dog on the day in order that you can fully relax knowing your special friend is being looked after.
Three companies in particular are:-
‘Bow Wow Wow’ – www.bowwowvow.co.uk
‘Precious Pet Weddings’ – www.precious-pets.wedding
‘Short Legs Dog Care’ – www.shortlegsdogcare.co.uk
These three companies really do go above and beyond in terms of ensuring that your dog is looked after before, during and after the wedding if required.
Services include a wedding chaperone, pet taxi, pet sitting and special walkies on the day to name but a few.
Dog friendly wedding venues
More and more venues are becoming dog friendly, and it is always worth a call to see if they will accommodate your dog even if it is not directly advertised on their website.
Dog friendly wedding venues and hotels really go above and beyond in terms of accommodating your furry friend during your wedding day. If you are planning on staying at the venue you will often find that they will also provide dogs beds, water bowls, treats and poop bags as well, so one less thing for you to think about!
Here are a list of some of the dog friendly wedding venues in the South-West of England.
Cowley Manor – www.cowleymanor.com
Old Bell Hotel – www.oldbellhotel.co.uk
Park Weddings Bath – www.heritageparkweddings.co.uk
Pennard House – www.pennardhouse.com
The Royal Crescent Bath – www.royalcrescent.co.uk
Wellington Barn – www.wellingtonbarn.co.uk
Whatley Manor – www.whatleymanor.com
Dog Friendly Weddings – Dog of Honour
Even if you do hire a dog chaperone for the day you may want your dog to be included in the ceremony. If you choose a Celebrant-led ceremony your Celebrant should be very accommodating to the role that your dog might play on the day.
This could be the best man, ring bearer, flower girl or you may just want them to be part of the ceremony, whatever is best for the temperament and welfare of your dog at your dog friendly wedding.
Other ideas to include your dog on your wedding day
If your dog cannot be part of your day, you want to make some form of tribute to them. This could include pictures of them at the venue, this could be in the form of dog-inspired place cards or dog photo table numbers. You may also want to add a picture of them to your cake topper!
If you are having a large wedding, you may also want to let your guests know in advance that your dog will be part of the day.
One final and very special idea is to take a first wedding walk together with your special furry friend as a family once you have said ‘I do.’