In my own wedding last year, Sophie our energetic Australian Shepherd, and Hunter, our lovable rescue pup, joined us for a quick picture during cocktail hour! Our pups have been a huge part of our relationship and I knew that I wanted to incorporate them into our wedding day photographs!
Today, I wanted to share a few tips for including your dogs on your wedding day!
1) Designate Someone To Care for the Dogs Behind the Scenes: On your wedding day, your dog will need to be fed, given water, and walked while all of the festivities are going on! Things can be a bit chaotic behind the scenes, so be sure to designate a friend or family member (preferably outside of the bridal party) who can make sure that your pet is taken care of throughout the event.
2) Plenty of Pre-Shoot Exercise: Put simply: A tired dog is a very happy and photogenic dog! Be sure to give your dog plenty of exercise the morning of your wedding . A long walk or a few extra minutes of play can help your dog relax and feel at ease before a shoot and gets out some of their nervous energy!
3) Anticipate and Prepare for Possible “Uh-Oh” Scenarios: My dog Sophie is a frisbee dog and she absolutely loves to jump… With a lace gown and her sharp little puppy nails, one of my biggest worries included her jumping and accidentally tearing the dress or getting muddy paw prints on my train! Because we talked about these concerns in advance, we took special care to make sure that she was calm before bringing her out for pictures! Your dog is going to be excited to see you on your special day and knowing your pet’s personality may help you to foresee any “uh-oh” moments!
4) Stay Positive & Enjoy the Candid Moments: Dogs tend to pick up on their owner’s energy and if you’re nervous or agitated – your pet often translates those signals into it’s behavioral response! For example: If your dog isn’t behaving well during the photographs or things aren’t going as planned, remember to take a deep breath and stay positive! Dogs look to you for guidance and if you’re smiling and taking everything with a positive attitude, Fido will too!