Getting married? Planning a big event? We bet you want to bring your fur-baby along for the fun—and we don’t blame you! Today, we’re collaborating with 828 Venues to bring you a pet-focused guide to all things weddings and events!
If you’re in San Diego, Seattle, Denver, Kansas City, Indianapolis, or Nashville, you’ll want to keep reading because 828 has venues in your city! 828 Venues are not only gorgeous (trust me, you’ll think so, too!), but they are also pet-friendly! Today, we’re interviewing the coordinators at each venue and getting all of their tips on including your pets in your special day!
Tell us about 828! Are your venues pet-friendly? Do you have a limit on how many pets we can bring?
Victoria from BRICK: 828 Venues are very much pet-friendly! We have welcomed all types of animals from dogs to farm animals…we’ve even had an elephant! We love giving our clients the options to incorporate their animals into the event, whether it’s for a flower dog or a cultural tradition; animals are always welcome! We do limit the number of pets to 2 (unless otherwise approved by your client concierge).
Candice from UNION: We encourage our clients to include their fur-children in their celebration! We have a limit of 2 domesticated animals permitted in the venue at one time. One of our brides is having her great dane in her ceremony (so cool!) and we’ve even met with a reindeer farm in Kansas City to hopefully do something festive over the holidays. Did you know that reindeer are considered domestic?!
Does your staff do anything to help day-of with our pets?
Sara from The 101: Aside from being huge pet lovers, our staff does not help with pets day-of. We do ask that there is a familiar person or nanny service in charge of your pet throughout the day. Once your fur-babies duties are done, you can either drop them off at a local doggy daycare or head home with their supervisor to rest and relax.
Why do couples include their pets in their wedding day?
Jill from SKYLIGHT: Pets play a huge role in the daily lives of their owners, so they are often considered children and family to them! With a wedding being such a monumental day, you wouldn’t want any family to miss out, and that includes your fur-baby! Aside from that, your pooch may have played an instrumental role in how you met your fiance, so it’s only fitting to have them included in your big day!
Kaitlynn from 14TENN: Pets are a significant part of your family! We wouldn’t want to leave them out! Getting married is a day our clients remember forever and we want to make sure their pup (or other furry friend) is part of this milestone in their lives.
What are some things we can do to prep our pup for our big day? When should we start getting them ready?
Victoria from BRICK: The best way to prep your pup is to have him/her groomed before the event and to have the florist decorate their leash with cute flowers or greenery!
Sara from The 101: Be sure to have your fur-baby thoroughly exercised the morning of! This is a great way to keep them a bit calmer with guests (usually).
Jill from SKYLIGHT: We always suggest bringing your pet to a Walk-Through Wednesday—an 828 Venue open doors night—to help familiarize them with your venue. This will help eliminate fear and anxiety when your big day rolls around!
Kaitlynn from 14TENN: You know your pup best, so we recommend giving them plenty of time to train and make sure they are well behaved on your big day. If they will be wearing any special outfits or carrying items, make sure they’re comfortable with the task and that you’ve tried everything on before the day of to familiarize them.
Candice from UNION: You’ll want to be sure you get your pet to their day-of handler (or person in charge) early enough in the day (or the night before), so that they have time to settle in and get comfortable with that individual (and comfortable away from you). Ideally, you’ll want to include your pet(s) in the rehearsal as well so they are familiar with what will be happening and the space they will be in.
Abby from INDUSTRY: I recommend taking the dog to the rehearsal and let them walk around to get used to the venue. It’s also helpful to have the person walking the dog down the aisle to walk the pup around a bit so they can get to know each other, too.
Hayley from BASH: Make sure they are well trained and well behaved to be able to handle the environment they will be in! If they do not normally handle large crowds or sitting still and staying quiet for periods of time, you may want to rethink how you will be including them or train them to be able to handle this situation well!
I LOVE our dog and would love to have them at our wedding, but this seems like it might be a little too much with everything going on. Do you have any advice for us?
Victoria from BRICK: You know your pet better than we do. If your pet gets anxiety around a lot of people, then I would suggest taking some photos with the dog and then placing them in a “comfortable” environment. Otherwise, bringing your pet during the ceremony is a great idea! Once the ceremony is over, I recommend finding a nanny to watch your doggy for the rest of the night!
Kaitlynn from 14TENN: We recommend having your pup with someone they know, and only have them at the wedding for as long as need be. We recommend having someone that is not at the wedding watch your pet, that way everyone is able to enjoy their night while your pet is being well taken of!
Candice from UNION: As much as you would love to include your pet, make sure you keep in mind that events are often crowded and loud—this can be overwhelming for any pet! If you know your pet doesn’t do well in crowds, is prone to barking at every little noise, or struggles with sensory overload from music and/or being touched a lot, you may want to consider only having them for the ceremony or for pre-wedding pictures away from the crowd.
Hayley from BASH: Of course you know your pet best and you do not want to have to worry all day! If you want them to celebrate with you, there are ways to do it in the way that is best for both of you! You know what is best for your pet, but if there is any worry or hesitation, there are a few ways to go about still including them in your day:
- Take them to training classes to prepare them
- Hire a professional care service for day-of to be able to tend to the animal’s needs
- Include them in smaller but still significant way (i.e. get ready with them or have them just in your photos but not in the actual festivities)
What should our dog(s) wear? Here is what the ladies suggest:
- Full-on “pup suit” or dress
- Cute bows
- “Suit shirts”
- Floral wreath
- Top hat
- The perfect leash with some flowers and greenery if your pup isn’t a fan of bow-ties or outfits
Should our pup stay for just the ceremony? Or the reception, too?
Jill from SKYLIGHT: We encourage you to include your pet for the ceremony, but require that you have arrangements made for your pooch afterwards. Receptions are too chaotic and make for a super long day for your pet. They’ll love you more if you let them go home and sleep. 🙂
Kaitlynn from 14TENN: Just the ceremony. Receptions are busy and can frighten your pup. The ceremony is calmer and has fewer distractions. Staying for the reception after the ceremony is a long day for your pet, and they would most likely be happier napping or playing at home or with a sitter after.
Abby from INDUSTRY: Pups should only stay for the ceremony and then be taken home or to another location off-site. Receptions are loud and often stressful for pets. We have a great dog nanny service we can recommend at INDUSTRY to not only care for your pet while at the venue, but also make sure the pet is well taken care of once the pup goes home. They can even make a video from the pet’s perspective of the wedding!
What items do I need to provide for my pet to enjoy the wedding, too? Here are some of the items the ladies suggest bringing:
- Doggie bed
- Water bowl
- Waste bags/litter box (if you’re bringing a kitty)
- Favorite toys
- Familiar faces/designated care taker
- Carrier or crate—something your pet feels safe in
- Brush/comb—so they look picture perfect
- Anxiety vest or other calming elements
What are some dog nanny service you suggest in your locations?
Has your pet been at your wedding or any other big event? If so, share some of your tips below! Have questions for the ladies of 828? Be sure to comment below or on our social posts as well!
Featured Image by Yellow Paddle Photography in Denver, CO!