golden retriever dog in the wedding party carrying a flower

Photo courtesy of Celine Sayuri Tagami

You love your dog, and he loves you, so why the heck shouldn’t you have your dog in the wedding? It’s the most important day of your life. And, after all, he or she may be the reason you and yours got together in the first place. It just makes sense. So, why is it that so many of us have a hard time inviting the family pet to participate in this joyous occasion? AND when everything is said and done and the three of you are looking for some fun, Tahoe South just happens to be pupperoni heaven.

couple with dog in the forest

Photo courtesy of Pexels.com

The answer is definitely not simple. There could be a long list of reasons not to include your dog in the wedding, from the basic “our venue won’t allow pets” to concerns over allergies among guests. But if neither of these things is an issue, we say GO FOR IT. Bring Fido or Fluffy along for the party, dress ’em up and have a ball. But, before you commit to bringing your fuzz-muzzled friend along, keep these few suggestions in mind. That way, you’re sure to have a doggone good time.
man and woman cuddling their dog

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1. Bath time!

Yep. He’ll probably hate the heck out of it, but be sure your four-legged critter gets a bath and a full makeover before the big day. You’ll want to get your guy to the groomer for a full mani/pedi, bath, shampoo, and all the fancy treatments. Just be sure he understands it’s just a normal part of being a dog in the wedding (then promise you won’t tell his buds).

2. Dress the Part

Find something cute for your pooch to wear—be it a bow tie collar, pint-sized suit jacket (for smaller pets, of course) or a little bling around the collar. Just make sure your dapper dude (or dudette) is ready to walk down the aisle in style.
bulldog wearing a top hat

Photo courtesy of Pixaby.com

3. Mind the Table

It’s completely acceptable to include your buddy at the ceremony if permitted, but beware of the reception. There may be some hidden allergy issues you’re not aware of or health code standards that forbid furry creatures from entering the dining room. No worries, there, though. Your planner or venue’s point of contact will make sure you’re in the know in advance.
bride posing with dog

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4. Assign a clean-up crew of one or two

Assign one or two pet-friendly attendants (preferably friends well-acquainted with your pet) to help keep things…ahem, tidy. You don’t want any little surprises lying around in the background (talk about giving new meaning to photo bomb). Zoinks.

5. Let them Play

Work with the venue to establish a pet corral—somewhere that your pet can relax and enjoy a doggy dinner buffet while still being part of the events. Ideally, this will be an outdoor location with grass and close access to the party. That way, folks can stop by to say hi, and you can keep an eye on your fur baby.
man holding chihuahua

Photo courtesy of Angelina Litvin

6. Have Fun!

Incorporate pet-themed items into your decor—everything from photos of the “family” displayed at the reception tables to dog-biscuit shaped treats and live gold fish centerpieces.
The bottom line, folks: Have a great time. This is your day, and if it turns out there are reasons like those mentioned above (allergies, state laws, venue rules) that keep Fido out of the party, you can still bring your four legged kiddos along for the fun, and have a ball during your down time.
All of our Tahoe South venues are more than happy to discuss the possibility of including your pooch in the festivities. Just head over to our home page, reach out to one of our knowledgeable partners, and get the ball rolling!