I am most definitely an animal lover. In fact, my beloved black labrador is sitting under my desk as I'm typing thing. So, it should come as no surprise that I'm also a big fan of inviting your pet to be at your wedding.
Let's be honest, if you've got a pet of any shape or size, you love it. There's also the possibility that you might well love your pet more than some of your human relatives! Family relationships aside, if you share your life with an animal, the chance are you'd like it by your side when you wed. If you're nodding along right now, read on...
If you're pet is going to be on the guest list, you need to make sure that the venue you choose is pet friendly. Obviously, if you opt for a celebrant-led wedding ceremony, you can go for any location that you like. Fields, paddocks, woods and lakeside glades are all perfect for pets and for ceremonies.
Alternatively, there are still plenty of options if you'd prefer a barn, country estate or stately home. Wedding venue directories such as Coco Wedding Venues even allow you to search specifically for locations that welcome furry friends.
Then, work out how best to include your pet. Whilst we're all seen those super cute videos of dogs delivering rings on cue, be realistic about your pet's abilities. Most of us would be happy for them to simply be present throughout with barking at the wrong moment or eating their floral collar.
So, have a good thing about everything (or ask your celebrant for some advice!). You might like to walk in with your pet and then encourage/bribe it to sit with you or with someone it knows. Just remember, there's no right and wrong - every animal has its own personality so choose something that suits yours without expecting too much. A stressed pet is never a good thing.
As with all things wedding, have a contingency plan (and, maybe, someone standing by with poop bags!). Remember that being able to have you pet with you on your wedding day is a special and beautiful thing. Even if they do get the odd muddy paw mark on your outfit...