Pets To Have and To Hold

There is increasing interest among engaged couples on how to include their special companion in their wedding ceremony. For some couples, their pet has been through tough times and easy times with them and it is important they also share in their special day. Here are a few initial thoughts. As the couples I work with and I explore this area, I will offer regular updates to this blog.

To touch on some basics and to keep it playful, (one of the most important qualities of a pet), I will use some alliteration.

Pets at the Wedding


Yes, whether a cat, a dog, a bird or some other living thing, they all have personality. Is your pet shy or outgoing? Quiet or very active? One may be fine with going down the aisle, for another that may be too much. 


There are many ways a specially loved animal can be present on your wedding day. Of course physically present is hands (or paws) down the most obvious way of being present. But, there are other ways. I think of Bella, Julie and Anthony's third party in their dating, engagement and marriage. But Bella could not attend their wedding for many of the above reasons as well as her tendency to become overwhelmed in large crowds. But Bella made her presence known by being in two of the four photos on their Save the Date post card that arrived in everyone's mailbox a year earlier!


I know of two dogs who could not make it down the aisle due to last minute jitters. (we've all been there!) Their owners flexed and came up with a new plan. Cornelius, a pug, was gently carried by the Best Man, whom he knew. And Ralph, a mixed breed of eclectic ancestry, was escorted down a side aisle after the Bridal procession, standing quietly up front at the end of the line of bridesmaids.

Packing it up (conclusion)

So, there you have some initial thoughts. Just think through what you are asking of your pet from their point of view. Identify and balance what they can handle with what you would like their special role to be.

Rev Dan Callahan