We’ve seen the pictures, and thought to ourselves, “Cute! But… does Fluffy really need to be trotting down the aisle?”

Whether you’re a pooch loving person, or even the thought of including someone with four legs in your wedding party makes you lose your cool, here’s 8 things to consider.


1. Is your dog a Barkzilla?
Or cat. Or bird. Or anything that could throw an animal tantrum that would cause you stress. If your pet has a tendency to bark at traffic, strangers, or has issues staying in one place for more than a few minutes at a time, you may want to consider having them “sit and stay” this one out.


2. How long have you had this canine companion?
Pets are a huge part of our lives. Maybe they’ve been in the picture longer than your fiancé! New dogs can be unpredictable, but older ones could be that faithful friend you want to include in your special day.


3. Does your venue allow pets on the premise?
This is important. Make sure you contact your venue and get written confirmation that having domesticated (or exotic! Whatever floats your boat.) animals are OK at your ceremony and reception site. Of course, service dogs should be permissible, however, it’s always good to double check.


4. Do you have someone ready to take care of them before, during, and after?
No matter how much you love your pet, your wedding day is going to be busy! You likely won’t have time to let them out for a potty break. Be sure to designate someone, who doesn’t already have a lot on their plate.


5. Dogs do not use toilets.
Speaking of potty breaks, exactly where is that going to be for your pet? Does your venue allow animals? Is it an indoor or outdoor location? How long will your pet have to play a part in the ceremony and/or reception, and how long can they hold it?


6. Whose pet is it?
Fluffy may be bride’s best friend, but how does your fiance feel about incorporating them into the wedding? Is it their pet too? Communication is necessary for stress-free wedding planning. Talk to them about it sooner than later.


7. What role do they play?
In the words of Oscar from The Office, “If at any point you find yourself tying the ring to a dog’s collar, stop, and look at yourself.” Pets can be a sentimental, untraditional, or trendy inclusion in wedding pictures, but don’t rely on them to do something that requires more responsibility than what a child could handle.


8. If you do decide to let Rover join, could you even resist having these wedding pet-friendly accessories?