Do you and your significant other have a puppy child that you’re thinking about incorporating in your wedding, but not sure how to make sure they’re included in a special way? We talked to a few of our associates and compiled some ideas/ feedback on their experience to hopefully help in your journey on including your furry loved one in your Big Day.

Let’s start with the beginning of any marriage—the proposal… or in our case, a puposal! Use your pup as a “prop” to ask your partner to spend the rest of your life with you. In the following picture, Oakley posed in Central Park to help his daddy during his special moment. I mean, how could anyone say no to that face?!

Once your partner says yes, you can include your pup in the pictures you post on social media to announce your engagement to family and friends. Or, as you start the planning process and have a date picked, include Rover on the save the dates you send via email or mail.

Next, you’ll need to determine if you want your dog to actually be apart of your Big Day and attend the ceremony and/or reception. But, be honest with yourself—is your best bud well-behaved enough to remain focused while walking down the aisle or to sit still at the alter without being distracted by the friendly faces in the crowd? If so, then obviously the first thing you’ll want to make sure of is that the venue you chose allows pets. An outdoor reception is a great idea in this instance! In addition, training classes or Doggy Bootcamp are great opportunities to make sure Buddy is up-to-date on all commands. It’s also been highly recommended to hire a dog-sitter for the day of your event. The sitter should be responsible for making sure your pup is at the location on time, taking him/her back home or to the hotel after he/she has fulfilled their duties at the ceremony, and then they will be in charge of caring for your fur-child for the rest of the day. It is important that Buddy listens to and is comfortable with the dog-sitter as well, so you’ll want to get them acquainted with each other well before wedding day.

Also, as you’re booking your vendors, like the entertainment, Photographer, and Officiant, we suggest you make sure they aren’t allergic or have any reservations against servicing the event with your pup in attendance. Once all of those logistics are figured out, then you can determine HOW to include your fur-child— do you want Daisy to be your Dog-of-Honor, Tux to be your Best Man, Kaia to be your Flower Dog, or Zeke to be the Ring Bearer? What role do you think your pup will best fulfill?

If you don’t think your pup is a good fit to attend the wedding, we have a few other ideas on how you can incorporate them. First, include them on the welcome sign so guests are greeted with their friendly face as they first walk into the reception. Or, include different pictures of them to designate which table your guest will be sitting at. Another option is to have your signature cocktail named after your pup. For example, offer “The Payton” made of Bourbon and coke or “The Mia Mule” made of vodka, ginger beer, and lime.

A fourth option at the reception is to include a cake topper of your dog—either a personalized replica or just a silhouette of a bride and groom with a dog or two (or four) sitting on the side of the two of you. Or, if you’re having your dog attend the reception, have a separate, pet-friendly cake for him/her to enjoy, too! In addition, if they’re attending the reception, one of our associates recommended attaching a GoPro to their back so that you can look back on the video and have another fun point-of-view of your reception aside from the pictures and video you get from the professionals. Or, another enjoyable idea is to include a picture of your dog as a prop so that guests can opt to include them in their pictures as they’re taking turns in the photo booth.

Overall, although your wedding day should be primarily focused on you and your significant other, we know that your fur-child is just as important. So, we hope these give you some good ideas when planning and organizing your Big Day and are open to receiving pictures of how you incorporated your pup on your wedding day!