From It’s a Bride’s Life, “Puppy Love”…..

Puppy Love

Posted on November 8, 2012 by  Miss Elegant Bride   //   Comment

Whoever thought up the phrase “man’s best friend” really meant to say “bride’s best friend” since more than ever, couples are incorporating their puppies into their big day!  I mean, if you think about it…who better to be by your side, than the one who normally – is – by your side?  I am in love with these adorable photos of brides with their furry friends!















































Can Bulldogs fly? Well, if they could The Pooky Professor will get them their Wings!

1. My fiance and I can’t wait to have our wedding and include Sparky and Rocco.  How can you help  us?
I have unique wedding services for Dogs. I am a dog trainer in northern New Jersey, and I teach dogs whatever it takes to have them be included in weddings. I train your dogs to walk nicely (on or off leash ) down the aisle.  I will transport your best friend to and from the wedding, as well as provide pet sitting services after the ceremony. I can help you design outfits and/or costumes for Sparky for the wedding, and I can also help the photographer get that perfect shot, and much, much more!! 
The Pooky Professor 
Dog & Puppy Training Services
Lynne M. Petermann
163 E. Main St. Suite 109
Little Falls, NJ 07424
(973) 444-5880
Visit our Website
Follow us on Facebook

“Man’s Best Friends” – Gorgeous ‘Dog in Wedding’ Pictures from Elizabeth Anne Designs

Reposted from Elizabeth Anne Designs

Man’s Best Friend

I recently crossed over from bride to wife and have how caught the wedding bug! I love to gather new or fun ideas in hopes of inspiring future brides. My husband and I have a home in the Lehigh Valley area of Pennsylvania where we live with our dog, Nala.

I hope you’re ready for another post of cuteness overload! We’re loving doggies this week, and helping Chicago rescue One Tail at a Time win $25,000. So we thought we would throw in some puppy wedding inspiration with bow ties, ribbons, floral collars, and even capes to make your pooches camera-ready for some fantastic wedding photos!

{bow tie pug photo by Dottie Photography via Love and Lavender}

{Benfield Photography via Style Me Pretty}

{We Heart Photography via Style Me Pretty; Sharyn Peavy via Style Me Pretty}

{Rae Leytham via Style Me Pretty}

{Hillary Maybery via Style Me Pretty}

{Amanda Thiessen Photography via Style Me Pretty}

{Altura Studio via Style Me Pretty}

{Michael Norwood Photography via Style Me Pretty; Thayer Photo via Merriment Events}

{EE Photography and Amanda Marie Portraits via Style Me Pretty}

More Great Dog in Wedding Pictures from Elizabeth Anne Designs …

National Puppy Day

Posted 03/23/2011 by Christen in good things, photography \ 21 comments

I recently crossed over from bride to wife and have how caught the wedding bug! I love to gather new or fun ideas in hopes of inspiring future brides. My husband and I have a home in the Lehigh Valley area of Pennsylvania where we live with our dog, Nala (see picture at end of post)

Hi everyone!  It’s Christen here, back with some puppy inspiration for your wedding.  According to my pet insurance newsletter, today is National Puppy Day! What better way to celebrate it than with some photos of man’s best friend celebrating his people’s big day right along with them?

{Groomspuppy photo by Amelia Lyon via La Belle Bride}

{Dachshunds photo by John Solana Photography via Style Me Pretty}

{Great Dane photo by Davina Plus Daniel via Style Me Pretty}


{Vizsla photos by Erin Hearts Court}


{French Bulldog Bridal Party photos by Simply Bloom via La Belle Bride}

{Bulldog bride and groom photo by Joe Mikos Photographers via Snippet & Ink}

{Puppy photos by Jen Curtis Photography via The Wedding Chicks}

{Boston Terrier photo by Jenny Ebert Photography via Mr Boddington}

Pretty puppy collars! These flowers are enough to make any bride jealous.

{Flowerdog photo by Celeste Duran via The Wedding Chicks; Puppy ring bearer photo by Jenna Walker via Elizabeth Anne Designs}

{Lab photo by Cedar House Photography via Style Me Pretty; Rhodesian photo by Steven Steinhardt via Style Me Pretty}

{Charlie! photo by Jessica Claire from Ami’s Vow Renewal}

And one more…always nice to come home and cuddle up with loved ones after a long day! Me and Nala after our wedding.

{Photo by my sister}

Yappily Ever After !!


Originally posted in Women’s Voices for Change 

Yappily Ever After


Photo: Morgan Yang

Photo: Morgan Yang

  By     July 16, 2011

How do you feel about dogs being part of a wedding ceremony?  If you’re a dog person,  you’re probably thinking, “Great idea!” If you aren’t, it’s apparently like suggesting that aardvarks or squirrels be included in the wedding party. A likely response is, “Why on earth would anyone want to do that?“ From personal experience, I can tell you why.

 My son and his beloved are crazy about Jack, their Bichon Frise,so when they told me they were engaged, I joked, “I can’t wait to see Jack in a tux!” Little did I know that the kids wouldn’t dream of getting married without including not only Jack, but Jack’s “Uncle” Max, the Bichon belonging to the bride’s parents. Both dogs, wearing tuxes, would be part of the ceremony. Max, the older and better behaved of the two, would be the ring bearer. Jack would be the “flower dog.”

Photo: Morgan Yang

 When my son told me that Jack and Max would be members of the wedding party, I thought it quirky but adorable something that would make the ceremony uniquely theirs. My ex, who was footing the bill for the otherwise traditional shindig (and who is not a dog person), was less enthusiastic at first, but soon came around. He loves the kids enough to want to give them exactly the wedding they wanted. 

Telling folks that your son’s wedding will include four-legged participants is a litmus test for discovering how they feel about companion animals. People who see their own pets as “family” were charmed and delighted. “Wonderful!“ they enthused. “Tell me all about it.“  But people who don’t much care for dogs were repulsed. “That‘s  weird,” was not an unusual response.  I was also told that including Jack and Max was “offensive,” “disrespectful” and “ridiculous.”  

 When I told one friend that the kids were not only planning on a canine-inclusive ceremony but also planned to have a dog-themed wedding cake, she joked, “Better put plenty of nuts on it!“ As far as she was concerned, including the dogs at all, let alone putting them on the cake, was just a nutty an idea. Luckily, we’re not that close so she wasn’t invited. I hoped the nobody who WAS invited would be dismayed or repulsed by the sight of two beloved dogs in formal attire trotting down the aisle.

But what if they were? Tom and Amy love those dogs and it’s their wedding. The ceremony should reflect who they are as a couple (dog lovers!) and what matters to them (Living happily ever after — with Bichons!) and not be about the comfort level of my friends. 

Sure, a canine-inclusive ceremony used to be unheard of, but things are changing. Google “dogs in weddings” and you’ll find dozens of photos. Bulldogs in tuxes. Poodles in veils. Labradoodles wearing garlands of flowers. A beaming bride carrying an impeccably groomed Yorkie down the aisle in a small white basket.

Photo: Morgan Yang

The way I saw it, meeting the challenge of pulling off a wedding that included Jack and Max would bode well for Tom and Amy’s ability to meet the many challenges of married life. A wedding ceremony that ran smoothly despite the presence of two lively dogs would be a small miracle. But so is any loving, enduring marriage. And what mother doesn’t want that for her kids?

 “Are the dogs well-behaved?” one dog-savvy friend asked me.

 “One of them is,” I told her. Max, the older dog, is a perfect gentleman. Jack, the younger dog, is more mischievous. She laughed. “Well, it should be memorable.” 

And so it was.

Unique, memorable and joyful.

As mother of the groom and “grandmother” of the flower dog, I had the time of my life.

An Interview with Celia

Vow-wow-wow is very pleased to present one of our own, our Co-Founder and President, Celia Milton, in a very engaging interview reposted from Sage Wedding Pros …. 

Insider to Insider: Celia Milton, Wedding Officiant

Friday, July 16, 2010

What do I like best about Celia Milton?  She is REALLY funny.  And, given
that she is a wedding officiant, I think that is the best trait.  I can only
imagine how comedic, warm and personable her wedding ceremonies must be!  So
much emphasis is put on the wedding reception in our industry.  But, I am still
a firm believer that the ceremony is the most important part.  This is where the
magic happens: a couple makes the simple promise to love each other forever.
And, how lucky to be able to guide a couple through this pivotal point in their
lives!  Celia, you really do have the best job in the world!

Celia Milton
North Haledon, NJ

Established 2005

Why did you start your business?

I owned an upscale, catering company for almost 18 years (OUCH! THAT HURT!) , and as much as I loved it, I began to doubt my ongoing enthusiasm for digging guacamole out of the delivery van’s dashboard for the rest of my professional life. I needed to figure out what to do next. Having been a business owner and entrepreneur for that long, I was completely unemployable as an underling of any type.

So, I went to seminary in NYC, graduated with my Masters’, but soon realized that I wasn’t really cut out to be a parish minister with an unruly ’flock’, never ending administrative tasks and the politics inherent in any corporate situation.

I took a long hard look at my limited array of saleable skills; I love to write; I love to talk, I love to make people laugh in situations that are not typically thought of as funny. What else would I do except become a wedding officiant? It’s the perfect job, and I get to wear black, which is very slimming.

All kidding aside, I felt that ‘non-traditional” couples (gay and lesbian couples, couples with mixed religious traditions or no spiritual traditions) had no one to turn to for ceremonies that were important, joyous, and welcoming. The public declaration of a union is always a significant cultural, social and often political act, and should be treated with great care and creativity. Every
wedding should be a gift from the couple to each other, but also to their larger community. And I get to wear black, which is very slimming….I believe I mentioned that.

What book (business or soul-searching) do you recommend to new business owners? Why?

Purple Cow and Free Prize Inside, both by Seth Godin, who is a marketing genius. (Actually, anything by Seth.) He suggests audacity, authenticity and uniqueness as the biggest factors for business success. To paraphrase his philosophy ; don’t offer something for everyone; offer the ultimate “everything” to someone. Stand out. Be different. Be unique; your potential clients are
craving a singular experience that validates their style, taste, and personality. They will pay for that experience. We’re not all driving Kia’s are we? Nope…some of us are driving Jaguars.

I also love Raving Fans, by Ken Blanchard; same basic philosophy…..our potential clients are so used to getting mediocre service from lackluster vendors that it is almost embarrassingly easy to stand out. All it takes is a singular commitment to impeccable, startling, and sometimes wacky customer service.

The Four Hour Workweek by Tim Ferris, which isn’t exactly what you might think, but a great read with some totally inspiring messages for anyone looking to become an entrepreneur. One of his exercises involves literally writing down every expense you have in a month. Add it up. Get rid of the stuff you really don’t need, (like 100.00 ,monthly cable bill to watch
reruns of Gilligan’s Island and Die Hard II). When you really see what it costs you to live, (which is less than you think, in most cases…) your entrepreneurial dreams won’t seem so impossible to fulfill.

Soul searching? Hmmm……Frankly, I think we are compelled to search our souls by inspirations we might never expect, though Anne Lamott (Bird by Bird, Traveling Mercies, Plan B, Grace Eventually ) is a pretty reliable source of inspiration, both spiritually and for the craft of writing.

Do you have any cool goal-setting tips to share with us?

You know, I’m really not a fastidious goal setter; I think that sometimes, being too focused on what number, how many dollars, what measurable progress we’ve made can stifle our openness to the next big surprise the universe has in
store for us. This is not to say that we should set the bar comfortably low for ourselves; “To Do” lists that include “Get Up” , “Take Shower”, “Feed Sparky”… those list probably won’t get us anywhere except fully dressed with a happy dog. But, at the risk of being very, very corny; life IS about the journey, not just the destination. And every interesting person, every successful professional I
know has walked a crooked path full of delightful detours.

Okay, a tip. Do something everyday. Do something that will get you closer to where you want to be, even if it’s a really little something. And do the ugliest something first, before you answer your email, go to the gym, any of the things
you do to procrastinate. Make the unpleasant phone call or the cold call; do the icky task. Call the people who you think will tell you ‘no’ ; then that anxiety is over….the worst that can happen, the saying of “no” has happened: you can move on to the person who will say ‘yes‘.

What do you find to be the biggest challenge as a business owner?

HA HA HA…. That would be actually “being a business owner”! Almost every single wedding pro I know got into the “wedding business” (an unfortunate and vaguely mercenary term), because they love doing makeup, they love baking
cupcakes, they love making balloon animals, whatever. The problem is that someone has to be the adult and send out the invoices, return the calls, pay the phone bill, or we don’t have the opportunity to do what we love. My solution to that is to make all the ‘business’ stuff as fun as possible, from the little stuff , (like colored staples and confetti printed email stationery) to the big
stuff. (My contract is the funniest contract that my couples will sign in the process of planning their wedding. The details are highly confidential, but I do have a “Dunk Tank” clause. It’s a wedding, not a memorial service. It should be fun all along the way.)

If you were starting your business all over again, what would you have done differently?

Not a thing, honestly. I think we’d all like to have more capitol and more clients from day one, but running lean is a good thing. It teaches us what we really need; it makes us depend on our creativity, and it keeps us from getting lazy.

Thundershirts – an interesting way to help calm dog anxiety, reactions to loud noises…

Thundershirt: a tool to help calm dog anxiety and phobias

Janet Tobiassen Crosby, DVM 

By Janet Tobiassen Crosby, DVM
Veterinary Medicine Guide

The Bottom Line

The idea seems almost too simple to work; that a constant gentle pressure “hug” could calm an anxious pet’s nervous system. Based in part by the work of Temple Grandin, the Thundershirt serves this purpose for pets who are afraid of loud noises and other anxiety-based behaviors. It is an easy, relatively low-cost, and drug-free product to try out on pets who suffer from loud noises. My own dog slept through fireworks wearing it, so I will definitely continue to use the Thundershirt as needed for anxious times.


  • Drug-free help for anxious and stressed dogs.
  • The Thundershirt is well constructed – good fit and adjustability for size.
  • 100% money back guarantee.
  • This company “gives back” to help other dogs in need.
  • Great training and before-and-after videos on their site.


  • Velcro closures collect a lot of hair, but are necessary for snug fit.
  • Might be warm on a hot day, but could be soaked in water to keep dog cool.



  • A snug-fitting garment used to calm dogs who are anxious about loud noises, visitors, car rides, and more.
  • An easy, drug-free way to help reduce stress and anxiety in your dog.
  • The Thundershirt web site has many helpful training and before-and-after videos about using this product.



Guide Review – Thundershirt: a tool to help calm dog anxiety and phobias

This product is based in part on the work by Temple Grandin, noted author, Doctor of Animal Science, and professor at Colorado State University. The thought is that gentle pressure provided by this shirt calms the nervous system. Does it work? I tried it on my own dog Sophie, who suffers from loud noise phobias.
We adopted Sophie as a 6 month old dog from the shelter. Sophie is now 8 years old. Noise phobias – fear of thunder, fireworks, gun shots – have been something we have dealt with from the start, intensifying as she has gotten older.
Last year, I was ready for the 4th of July. We tried out the DAP collar, and had amazing results. My previously noise-phobic dog was now sleeping through thunderstorms after wearing one collar for 30 days. It was so effective that I was unable to fully evaluate the Thundershirt, but did create a photo gallery of Sophie wearing the Thundershirt.
In fact, the DAP collar worked so well over the ensuing months that I became complacent. We headed into this year’s fireworks season unprepared. The fireworks seemed even crazier this year. I did not have a DAP collar. Sophie became upset, pacing, panting, whining, wanting to hide in the closet. I forgot I had the Thundershirt and made a makeshift one. I think it helped.
Then, on the next night, I remembered the Thundershirt and put it on Sophie. It fits perfectly in all the right places. It is well-constructed and snug without being too tight to cause discomfort. She laid down right away. That was a great first step. Then it was time for bed, fireworks still going on (ugh). I left the Thundershirt on Sophie. She fell asleep, which meant I could, too. The real test was at 5am. We awoke to a continual bam-bam-bam. More fireworks. I wasn’t sure at first though, because there was Sophie, sound asleep. This is not typical for her. In a situation like this, she would be nudging me awake, whining and pacing. She was slumbering away. Whew.
This is an encouraging test of the Thundershirt that I was unable to do last year, and I would recommend this product to those pets who suffer from loud noise phobias and other anxiety-based problems, either alone (mild cases) or in conjunction with other therapies.
Click for:      Thundershirt web site
Disclosure: Review samples were provided by the manufacturer. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.

Mojo and Jocomo leading the Pack, witnesses to Beautiful Dogs being included in Beautiful Weddings!

Vow-wow-wow is very pleased to introduce the newest addition to our roster of amazing Wedding Pro’s. Lois Heckman is a Celebrant, based in the beautiful Pocono Mountains of Pennslyvania, and we very pleased to have her with us!  

 From Lois’s website:  

Becoming a celebrant has been one of the greatest joys of my life. I honor all philosophies, beliefs and traditions – secular, spiritual, religious and interfaith. I will create a wonderful and unique ceremony that respects and reflects your values, your style, and your life.”


1. My fiance and I can’t wait to have our wedding and include Sparky and Rocco. How can you help us? 

I will work with you to find the perfect fit for your pups! The most popular idea is having the dogs as ring bearers and/or flower-dogs, and I’ve done this successfully many times. But we might come up with other ideas based on your interests, ideas and personalities. Perhaps you’d like to give them a treat during the ceremony to show your marriage will not diminish your support and love of them, but only increase it! Maybe they have a trick that could be featured. The possibilities are endless! Let’s talk.

2. Tell us about your business. 

I have been a very active celebrant, and a graduate of the Celebrant Foundation, since 2005, and have officiated hundreds of unique weddings for today’s diverse couples here in the Pocono Mountains of PA. In 2010 my husband built me a gorgeous ceremony site on our large property in Saylorsburg, PA that we call Harmony Gardens. Since we love dogs there was never any doubt – it would of course be a dog-friendly wedding site.

3. How do you accommodate dogs and their owners?

You’re welcome to bring your dogs for your ceremony whether they are involved or not in the actual ceremony. We don’t offer any special accommodations, but our property is set back from any roads and is quite safe. Our own dogs are dog friendly, too!

4. Do you have a great dog/wedding story?

I loved the interracial couple who had one black and one white dog, had them dressed in contrasting tuxedos for their ceremony, and featured them so beautifully. They played up the black and white theme with love and good humor!  It was fun and a great photo op!

5. Tell us about YOUR dogs!

We have two English Springer Spaniels, Mojo and Jocomo. Mojo is an active guy, he’s so smart and tuned into everything. Jocomo would rather lay in a bed all day, he’s just a big old love dog. They are not only our best friends, but best friends to one another.

Great Picture of Mojo & Jocomo!!

Lois Heckman Celebrant

Saylorsburg, PA

in the foothills of the Pocono Mountains – 1 ½ hours from New York City and 1 ½ hours from Philadelphia, 45 minutes from Allentown and Scranton





P.S. Lois and her husband have created a beautiful, intimate outdoor ceremony site, Harmony Gardens, at their home. Check it out, this could be just perfect for you!  Read about this here:

A Dog, A Dog! My Kingdom for A Dog! (with apologies to Wm.Shakespeare and Richard III) … Kingdom Wedding Photographers turns your Wedding into amazing visual Memories!

 Vow-wow-wow is very excited to introduce you to our newest Wedding Professional, Kingdom Wedding Photography by Kat. 

Take a look at the fabulous pictures Kat that has shared with us here, and please go visit her website and blog to see more of her beautiful work.

I thought I’d let Kat speak for herself, in describing her style of Wedding photography:

From Kat’s Blog:

“Want really, really gorgeous wedding photos? Here’s how: My style is highly photojournalistic. I am not the kind of wedding photographer who asks the wedding party to “stop and smile” during the processional. When a couple chooses me to shoot their wedding, they do so because they’re excited that I’ll be there to capture their wedding day with all its emotions and all the gorgeous details they picked…I don’t direct. I don’t interrupt. I don’t pose. I capture moments. Real moments of happiness, joy and fun. So please, tell your family to just ignore me.” 

The  Interview 

1. Tell us about your business.

After living and working in Los Angeles and Boston for years, we moved to Vermont some 5 years ago and I started focusing on fun, relaxed and modern wedding and portrait photography with a big focus on outdoor weddings. Dogs and cats (and the occasional horse)

play a huge part in my couple’s lives ,and I incorporate them in our sessions whenever possible. I’m incredibly lucky to be working with couples who are so cool and so much fun to be around. 

2. How do you accommodate dogs and their owners?

All Engagement & Portrait sessions are done on location so your critters are on their home turf. I bring plenty of time so there is no rush, we can play around and create images that are truly you. No stress, no pressure, just pure fun.  

3. How do I go about including Sparky & Rocco in our wedding photos?

It completely depends on Sparky & Rocco. Some dogs are just so obedient that they make the rest of us jealous. They are perfectly fine posing with the wedding party and your parents. Other dogs, my own included, have more of a mind of their own and (depending on your dog(s)’ obedience level), would be happiest waiting with a designated handler until we finish the more formal portraits. Afterwards, we can grab Sparky & Rocco and take them for a more casual photo session where you can be yourselves, taking him/her for a walk, playing with them, kissing, snuggling, and hugging them, and, of course, taking great photos in the process! 

4. Do you have a great dog/wedding story?

There are so many, it’s hard to pick just one. My favorite dog of all time is probably Duke (the black lab you see in the photos). He was the ring bearer during the ceremony, posed patiently for all the portraits and didn’t even chase after the chickens at the reception site. I was so impressed. Come to think of it, all my couple’s dogs or cats have been as relaxed as the couples themselves. 

5. Tell us about YOUR dogs!

Daisy & Jake. I love them to pieces and we’re pretty much inseparable. Daisy is my opinioned lady with more love & loyalty than humanly possible – every time I come back from a wedding, she’ll be sitting right by the door waiting … now if you knew how attached she is to her TempurPedic, you’d be tremendously impressed. 😉 Jake is the best boy there is. An absolute morning person. If he could talk, the first words out of his mouth each and every morning would be “Hello there and what a wonderful morning this is – it is so awesome to wake up next to you.” All while wagging his tail a million miles an hour. We also have two cats, Marvin & Grover, who couldn’t be any more different if they tried. One is a very vocal cuddle bug, whereas the other one is a daring stunt-kitten.




Kingdom Wedding Photography
Albany, Vermont
phone: (802) 755-6366

“Lonely Teardrops” … Never! Just send the most wonderful Wedding Invitations with Tear Drop Weddings!

Vow-wow-wow is very pleased to introduce you to Tear Drop Weddings. We thought we might wax on about Tear Drop Wedding’s wonderful, whimsical Invitation Designs, but sometimes it’s just better to let them bark for themselves, ya know? So here ya go….


From Tear Drop Weddings:

“We are the invitation company known in the wedding industry as “the people with the very unique, whimsical designs. When designing our invitations, we think of the “real” bride and groom. We transform a blank sheet of paper into an original piece of artwork that tells the love story of that unique couple.”

Option 1: We love nothing more than adding the personal touch of including your beloved doggy into your invitations. It adds personality and humour to your invitations that your guest’s will never forget! You have two options of adding poochy into your design. We do have pre-designed doggies that we offer in our TearDrop Closet. These are templated doggie illustrations that you can add into your invitation as an added customization option. It only costs an additional $5 to add your poochy into the design! You can click the following link to view all of our offered doggies: 

Option 2:  If we don’t have the breed of your doggy, we can illustrate a custom picture of your doggy. All you have to do is send in your photo and we will illustrate your poochy. This option is a little more expensive as it is totally customized to you. The cost is $60.

2. We are the invitation company known in the wedding industry as “the people with the very unique, whimsical designs.” Holly Hatam, Founder of TearDrop, started creating invitations when her friend Melissa pleaded and begged her to design her wedding

 invitations. After countless, enjoyable hours of watching Melissa beg like a baby, Holly agreed to the challenge! The response Holly got from her design brought a warm, fuzzy feeling in her tummy…and from that day on she constantly had a craving for paper! 

When designing our invitations, we think of the “real” bride and groom. We transform a blank sheet of paper into an original piece of artwork that tells the love story of that unique couple.

We offer so many customization options that no two invitation will ever be the same. You are able to change the colour of your invite, font style, wording and of course we customize the character head illustrations to look like the bride and groom! 




TearDrop Weddings

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Contact: Holly Hatam 



T: 416.710.7432
F: 647.435.0738

Follow us on Twitter! 

Become a fan on Facebook!

Mia’s Closet full of Wedding Accessories for Sparky to flaunt on your Momentous Day!


Vow-wow-wow is very pleased to feature the talents of  Carrie Jenkins of Mia’s Closet, who creates charming custom canine accessories, just for your best pooch’s shining moment alongside you on your Wedding Day!



Question 1: My fiance and I can’t wait to have our wedding and include Sparky and Rocco. How can you help us?

I’ve been creating custom accessories for couples who want to include their dogs in their wedding ceremony for about 4 years. From a simple bow tie that matches the bridesmaid’s colors or the groom’s tux to elaborate outfits to match the bridesmaid’s dresses. I’ve also created dresses to match the flower girl. I work with couples that couldn’t possibly think of having such an important life event without including their best friends!

Question 2: Tell us about your business.

I’ve been creating pet apparel and accessories since 2004. I started with a small shop in a local mall then switched to selling wholesale to pet boutiques around the world. In 2006 I opened  Mia’s Closet to be able to do more custom creating, as well as to support a local rescue group by donating a % of the proceeds from this shop.

Question 3:  How do you accommodate dogs and their owners?

Every bridal couple and wedding is unique. I’m very open to suggestions, and try very hard to match colors and styles to suit the needs of the couple and their pup.

Question 4:  Do you have a great dog/wedding story?

My favorite customer was a mother of the bride that contacted me to create a dress for her daughter’s Spaniel. We worked together to come up with a design that complimented the flower girl’s dress. I found out after all the details were finished and the dress was shipped that the bride had no idea mom had done this. I was very nervous about the outcome but it ended up that the bride was thrilled! 

Question 5. Tell us about YOUR dogs!

We recently lost our Doxie,Douglas, he was 15 and we miss him very much.
We have a Boxer girl, Dakota, who is the love of my life! She’s now 10 years old, which is senior for a Boxer, and doesn’t get around as well anymore but she makes me laugh everyday! Penelope is my grand dog and she is a CKC Spaniel that you see throughout my shop. We plan to adopt again in the near future.





 Mia’s Closet

Carrie Jenkins








The Canine Constitutional – While you’re getting married, who’s walking the pooch? (A variation on a theme)

The Canine Constitutional

While you’re at work, who’s walking the pooch?

reprinted from:

Sep 17, 2009 |

Unless you’re extraordinarily abstracted or unobservant, you’ve probably noticed that our Hudson River communities are packed with dogs. Mutts or Westminsters, they’re tagged and leashed and walking with their “handlers.”

That’s right. That attentive human petting and scolding, talking doggie talk and dispensing treats could very well be a pro.

If a dog walker is doing a good job, you probably won’t see anything like the picture on this page. We set it up with All Wagging Tails owners Heather Gaida and Rebecca Alison because we thought it would be a cute shot. But any reputable dog walker will tell you that eight is too many.

Photo by Rebecca Alison

Heather started the Hoboken company in the spring of 2007. While working in corporate America and going to school to study elementary education, someone else was walking Heather’s dog. “I wanted to do her job,” Heather says, “out in the fresh air, working with animals, being able to walk my dog all day.” Heather’s dog is a Kerry blue terrier named Blue.

Rebecca was one of Heather’s first customers—she has a 90-pound lab/shepherd mix named Cooper—and soon became a partner, for many of the same reasons Heather went into the business.

ON A BEAUTIFUL SUNNY DAY we meet at the ferry slip in North Hoboken for the shoot. Rebecca is the photographer, Heather the dog walker, and they bring a helper. While we’re unloading the dogs from Heather’s SUV, one fairly large one back flips out the door, while a very tiny one makes a break for it. I commit one of the cardinal sins of human behavior—running after it.

Heather says that’s a sure way the dog will keep running. Better to stand your ground. “We know that dog, and he will follow us anywhere.”

Dogs are increasingly seen as family members. “The pet used to be chained outside in the dog house in the freezing cold,” says Heather. “Over time the family realized what a dog has to offer to your life. As this was happening, more services became available. The average person works 15 hours a day in the city and couldn’t have a dog, but now they know someone good is caring for the animal, and they can come home to the pet they love.”

If you own a dog, you know that the most important traits in a dog walker are trust and integrity. You wouldn’t leave your kid with a dodgy individual, and the same goes for the dog. “People trust us to go into their homes,” Heather says. “We feel we provide an honest service.”

“BOTH HEATHER AND I ARE ANIMAL LOVERS,” Rebecca says. “I volunteer for the Liberty Humane Society, and have two cats, and I used to have an iguana, bearded dragon, and birds, and Heather had a bird. Through having animals you instinctively learn what to do and anticipate how they will react. Both of us wanted to be vets. I shadowed a vet during a neutering surgery and volunteered for a groomer, and Heather used to bathe some of our clients. When you see and deal with so many different types of dogs, each one has a different personality.”

“I like them all,” Rebecca says. “Every dog has its own quirks. I have a passion for terriers. They’re very curious. They stick their nose into everything. They’re different from labs, which are eager to please. A terrier will test you. You’ll tell it to do something, and it will go ‘hmm. Do I want to do that?’”

The company has built up quite a caseload of human clients. “We screen their dogs to see how they interact with other dogs,” Rebecca says. “It’s important for dogs to live healthy in society in a city environment. You have to be really careful about a dog’s temperament.”

The women say there are two types of dog walkers—those who belong to pet sitting associations, and independents. Those who belong to associations are creditable and in it for the long haul, Rebecca says. With independents you may or may not get high-quality service. “There are some individuals who want to make a quick buck when they have three or four months between jobs,” Heather says.

All Wagging Tails strives for consistency and longevity. “Dogs get attached,” Heather says. “We want the pet and the owner to be comfortable.”

Kate Rounds

All Wagging Tails   (201) 446-1559

Your Dog was your Ringbearer, now you’re leaving this morning on your Honeymoon! Without Sparky?? Spoil him by booking him one of the finest Animal Inns anywhere!!

The Morris Animal Inn

Vow-wow-wow is thrilled to present one of the  finest Animal Inns in the country, right here in our backyard in New Jersey. The Morris Animal Inn  in Morristown, New Jersey is the most luxurious pet resort a pet owner could ask for. They will customize day care and overnight packages for you and your special Dog. The Inn has comfortable and secure pet suites for both canines and  felines, and you will rest easy and enjoy  your Honeymoon away more, knowing that both the latest in pet care technology and twenty-four hour security are protecting your pet during his stay. Please click through on any of  the  Morris Animal Inn links you will find below. Call Jackie – book your Ringbearing Dog’s own  honeymoon today – and  please be sure to  tell her that Morris Animal Inn’s fans at Vow-wow-wow sent you!


1. My fiance and I can’t wait to have our wedding and include Sparky and Rocco. How can you help us?

As cat and dog aficionados, we understand the need and want to include your pets in all aspects of your life. If that includes Fifi as your maid of honor, Fido as the ring bearer, and a separate cake made out of milk bones at your wedding, we’re all for it! We also understand that not everyone else is as cat and dog friendly as we are. Don’t let un-pet-friendly hotels cramp your honeymoon style! Morris Animal Inn gives you the peace of mind to travel wherever your newly-wed hearts desire while we pamper and care for your loving pets in our state of the art boarding, grooming, and daycare facility. 

2. Tell us about your business.

Morris Animal Inn is a luxury pet resort and spa that has been leading the way in boarding, grooming, and daycare for over 50 years. Family owned and operated, the Morris family is pleased to have successfully passed the business down through four generations of animal lovers and care-takers. The Morris family connection to the dog world expands to the arena of dog showing and handling with an award-winning legacy that includes a Best in Show award from the Westminster Kennel Club! Walter and Marianne Morris, current owners of Morris Animal Inn, have proudly carried on the legacy and taught their daughters, Joanne and Patricia, the ins and outs of owning a thriving pet care facility. With pet care as a natural part of her upbringing, Vice President Joanne Morris now offers leadership to the more than 50 employees who provide tender loving care to each furry footed friend who steps through our welcoming doors. 

3. How do you accommodate dogs and their owners?

As a state of the art pet care facility, we offer luxurious lodging options, a variety of engaging activities and value packages for owners to select from. Our accommodations vary from cozy spaces for small breeds to large suites that accommodate our giant guests. Each dog has a sleeping area and a private space for eliminations. Any manner of activities can be added to your pets’ stay from extra business walks to daily swim sessions in our tropical themed aqua center. The Inn’s flexible hours make pick-up and drop off convenient for you and your pet. As caring doggie parents, we know you want to stay up-to-date on your pet’s stay while you’re away, so we gladly provide detailed updates for Fido on everything from their mood to their appetite! Our caring and knowledgeable staff recognizes that every pet is different, so customized lodging, care and activities schedules are always accommodated when possible.   

Morris Animal Inn does everything in its power to ensure the safety and protection of your pet. We have smoke and fire detectors, lightning protection, 24 hour camera surveillance, and back-up generators in the event of a power failure. Around the clock sanitation keeps our accommodations spotless and kills germs. Every night after the staff leaves, the owner himself walks the entire building to check on each and every pet. A resident on the premises provides an additional level of protection, helping you sleep easy during your time away.  

The safety, comfort and happiness of your beloved pet are our top priorities.  



5. Tell us about YOUR dogs!

We have too many wonderful dogs to mention here !!!


Morris Animal Inn

Jackie Morales,   Marketing Manager

Jackie joined Morris Animal Inn as Marketing Coordinator in early 2010, and now serves as Marketing Manager. The emphasis of her role is communicating the wonderful services, offerings, news and events of the Inn to our clients and to the public. Jackie received her B.A. in Communication from Rutgers University, her M.S. in Tourism Management and Marketing from New York University, and previously worked in legal marketing. A passionate animal lover and traveler, Jackie is always in search of innovative hospitality offerings to make Morris Animal Inn the most luxurious getaway a pet can experience! Jackie has volunteered with Tri-Boro Animal Welfare and the St. Hubert’s Long Branch animal shelter


Phone:   973-539-0377 ext. 46

website :

P.S. !!!!!!

Don’t forget the charity  fundraiser “Pooches in Pink”, coming up soon  at the  Morris Animal Inn  on May 4th. The Pink-Themed Puppy Prom on May 4 Will Aid Susan G. Komen For The Cure and Cancer Patients. Click HERE to read  our post, and link to the  “Pooches in Pink” website.

Check out our NEW Tail Waggin’ Links Page!!

 Tail Waggin’ Links  (Click Here!)

We’ve decided that there are so many worthwhile and heartfelt projects out there, that we wanted to share some of them with you! Please take a few minutes out of your very busy days, and see how some very creative, committed, and caring people spend their time and energy.

The causes they feature are ” just right”,  and need our support. If you can help with your $, please do! If you can pass the links along to your friends, or post it on Facebook or Twitter, that helps in a BIG way too!!

Thanks so much…

Your dedicated “PACK” from Vow-wow-wow

Celia, Michael, and Gary  …. oh yeah and Sophie too! (Sorry Soph, don’t bite me again k? lol)

P.S. If you know of any worthwhile links, that we should feature on our Tail Waggin’ Links Page.. please write us at, with all the needed info.. we will be happy to add them to our links 🙂  – Gary

Tail Waggin’ Links  (Click Here!)

Carolyn Scott Photography “Vow-wow-wow’s” your Wedding and your Pups, in brilliant fashion!

Vow-wow-wow is very pleased to present, the work of Raleigh, NC Photographer Carolyn Scott. Carolyn has a wonderful eye for capturing the spontaneity of the moment, in your Wedding, and with your Dog! Please click through and visit Carolyn’s Website and Blog, and see some truly exceptional photography!  Enjoy! It’s a Dog’s Life! – Gary


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1. “My fiance and I can’t wait to have our wedding and include Sparky and Rocco.  How can you help us?”

I’m a wedding and pet photographer full time, so we’ve got all your bases covered for a pet-inclusive wedding! I typically encourage couples to bring their dogs with them on engagement shoots, especially if the pups are involved in the wedding. This helps by not only keeping the couple relaxed, but it helps the photographer get to know the couple and build rapport with the dogs. By the time the wedding rolls around, everyone feels comfortable – including Sparky and Rocco. 🙂 I am a very plan-oriented person and help my couples develop a photography time line for their wedding day. If dogs are involved, we need to know who will have the dogs when, and when the dogs will be in what specific photograph. This keeps the stress off the couple and the focus on the wedding

2. Tell us about your business. 
Carolyn Scott Photography was founded in 2008 and went full time in the beginning of 2010. I’m Carolyn, the main photographer, and my husband Geoff handles our website, second shoots, and assists when necessary. We’re located in Raleigh, North Carolina but travel frequently (this year we’re headed to Texas, Chicago, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and coast-to-coast in NC for weddings!). We love what we do and really feel like we’ve found a niche for ourselves photographing fun, offbeat weddings. I’ve always loved photographing pets as much as weddings and have really made it a point recently to market myself towards the pet community. I’ve received an overwhelming response of support and love and am now booking a ton of pet portraits. Pets are just as important as any other family member, and the sessions always make me smile seeing those little spoiled dogs and cats!
3. How do you accommodate dogs and their owners?
The furry children of the couple are always welcome in the wedding and in all portrait sessions. Pets are part of the family and I treat them as such. I always hold pre-event and pre-session consultations to make sure that there is a plan for the dogs (sometimes the couple wants the dogs in all pictures, some only a few, so we need to find out where the dogs will be during the time spent without them). I also encourage clients to keep plenty of treats and the dogs’ favorite toys on hand to create a happy, relaxed atmosphere.   
4. Do you have a great dog/wedding story?
I’ve photographed a wedding where there were two young flower girls who walked the couple’s two dogs down the aisle. The flower girls were wearing angel wings, and so were the dogs. 🙂 It made everyone smile!
5. Tell us about YOUR dogs!
I’m going to go against the grain here and announce that I have two cats! 🙂 Although they’re kind of like dogs as they frequently chase their tails in a circle and drink out of the toilet. 😦 Their names are Buckles and Dolfy. They’re both rescues from a shelter.



Carolyn and Geoff

Raleigh, NC Area and Destination Weddings.
Phone: (919) 807-1763.




Daylight Savings Time at last! More sunlight and warmth to have your Dog at your Wedding Ceremony, your way !!

Reposted from
Pets At Weddings – Tips For Getting Your Dog, Cat or Even Horse Involved!

Date: July 14, 2006   Author: Emily

It’s all very well having butterflies or doves released at your wedding to symbolize the love, fidelity and union of your relationship, but is it really wise to include your own pets in your wedding day? Are you just asking for trouble by choosing to include your pet in such a momentous occasion?

The Popular Trend

Dogs in particular are becoming the new untraditional participants in wedding ceremonies. They are either being entrusted with roles such as ring bearers, bridesmaids, and groomsmen or are simply present during the ceremony to bear witness to their owner’s nuptials. This is probably because dogs are the most socially acceptable pet to be seen out and about with in public and also because they can be trained quite easily to perform at your wedding.

When Jane McBride walks down the aisle in Chicago this September she has handed the role of ring bearer to her Mufasa, an 85-pound Akita-shepherd mix. She has already chosen Mufasa’s wedding attire – a multicolored bow tie that will hold the wedding rings. Jane admitted to the Chicago Tribune that she would never consider leaving Mufasa at home on her wedding day.

One of the family!

According to  Mindy Weiss, a wedding planner based in Los Angeles, who has coordinated the happy occasion for numerous celebrities, says that “I find that about 30 percent of my weddings involve pets.” Many couples consider their pets to be part of their family or their best friends so it is only right that their pet should be given a starring role in their wedding day.

For their Californian wedding Myra and John Pugh had their 75-pound Akita-German shepherd mix dog Joy accompany a groomsman down the aisle sporting a collar of red roses and greenery. reports that Joy wagged her tail in approval as the couple made their wedding vows. Myra said “She is a huge part of our life. During the wedding, she didn’t bark once. I think she knew that this was serious stuff.” If you are an animal lover then including your pet in your wedding day is no different to inviting your family and friends.

Alice Moon-Fanelli, a certified applied animal behaviorist and assistant professor at Tufts University in North Grafton, Mass. says “Including pets is a statement of solidarity by the couple who mutually agree that the pet plays a major role in both of their lives.”

An increasing number of modern couples are treating their pets as children. Sheila Spitza, co-owner of Wet Nose Pet Spa in Geneva, Illinois says “Couples don’t have children, but they do have a dog, so it only makes sense that they would stand up in their wedding”.

According to Laura and Bob Mutsko who tied the knot at St. Bede’s Catholic Church in Mentor in 1999, had a traditional wedding ceremony but had their “only child” their 4 year old dog Murphy walk up the aisle with them and present their rings and sat amongst the congregation. “Several of the guests came just to see Murphy” Laura says.

Personally, I wanted to have photos taken with my dog on my wedding day and to spend some time with him on the morning of the wedding. This worked out perfectly and he looked very dapper in his tartan bow! Whilst everyone else rushed aroun d me in a mad panic on the morning of my wedding I chilled out in the sunshine outside with my dog – he totally kept me calm. It was the perfect way to start my wedding day!

You’re in good company!

Although it is not the norm for couples to include their dogs in their weddings, be assured that it is not just wacky dog lovers who are doing it. Celebrities are indulging in this new trend too!

♥ When Premiership footballer Ashley Cole and singer Cheryl Tweedy get married tomorrow at Highclere Castle in Berkshire their pet chihuahua Buster will be playing a part in their wedding. Cheryl’s Girls Aloud bridesmaids have bought Buster a wedding outfit with “Cheryl & Ashley” written on it in diamante.

♥ For her London wedding to Gavin Rossdale, singer Gwen Stefani was escorted down the aisle by her sheepdog Winston, who was decked out in a rose-covered collar and lead.

♥ Tori Spelling wanted her beloved pug Mimi Larue to look her best as she served as flower girl and ring bearer at Tori’s wedding, so she hired a special fashion designer to create her wedding outfit.

♥ Comedian and Hollywood star Adam Sandler had his dogs Matzoball (pulled down the aisle in a wagon) and Meatball at his Malibu wedding. Meatball was his “best dog” and was dressed in a tux with a yarmulke on his head.

Advantages of having your pet participate in your wedding day:

♥ I think it’s a lovely way to personalize your wedding day and to bring a smile to everyone’s faces. You don’t have to dress your pet in a tuxedo to raise a smile from your guests – the novelty of a pet being present at your wedding will be enough to make them smile.

♥  It makes your wedding less of a formal occasion and can lighten up the mood which is always a good thing. Weddings are not supposed to be somber affairs!

♥ If you do not have nieces, nephews or little ones to act as flower girls or page boys then a pet is a perfect alternative! In the same way they love to see a cute flower girl or page boy walking up the aisle, on the whole wedding guests do enjoy seeing a dog walk down the aisle – it brings a fun element to the wedding.

Get permission!

♥ The first thing to do if you plan to include your dog in your wedding party is to check with the officiant. Make it clear to them what your dog’s role in the wedding will be. Ensure that they are comfortable with this idea.

♥ You should also check with your ceremony and/or reception venue whether dogs are allowed. This is really important and you should not leave something like this to chance on the day – refusal to allow your dog entry to the venue because you have not received permission prior to the wedding would cause unnecessary upset on your special day. Ask in advance so that you can either plan to include your dog in the wedding or make alternative arrangements for his care on your wedding day.

Are they up to the job?

You must ask yourself if your dog is well-behaved enough to participate in your wedding. Be honest with yourself. Just as a cute dog will always be remembered on your wedding day, so too will a naughty unruly dog. You don’t want your wedding day to be spoiled by a ‘doggie disaster!’

Here are some points to consider:

♥ First and foremost think of your dog’s comfort. Will he be comfortable attending your wedding? Will he have to travel a long distance to get there? If the answer is he would be more comfortable at home, and if this is an option, then you should do what is best for your dog.

♥ You should assess how your dog reacts to large crowds and to noisy situations. Does it bother your dog? Do you think he would rather not be there? You know your dog so use your own judgment on this one.

♥ Does your dog have unpredictable behavior? Of course, like children, you cannot predict exactly how they are going to behave on the day of the wedding but if you have any doubts that the dog might get over-excited or aggressive it is best not to include them in your wedding ceremony.

♥ Is your dog well-trained? What is his obedience level? Does he respond to commands? A dog that has yet to master simple commands such as “sit” and “stay” might not be suitable to be included in your wedding. This is very important if you intend on giving them a role in the wedding where they are expected to follow orders (e.g. walk down aisle and wait patiently whilst you untie the rings from around his neck). Unless you are absolutely certain that your pet can be counted on to behave during your wedding ceremony then it might be better to have them participate in the wedding photos and leave it at that.

Wedding roles for your pet:

You should choose a role for your pet in your wedding which is appropriate to their temperament and behavior. A dog who is highly energetic will need to be kept on a leash throughout the wedding ceremony whereas a lapdog might be quite happy to be held by one of the wedding attendants/guests during the ceremony.

Here are some ideas for roles in your wedding for your pet:

♥ The popular choice is to have your dog bring the rings down the aisle on a satin pillow or in a small bag tied to his collar. have a really cute ring pillow which attaches to the collar with 2 Velcro fasteners. The pillow shown here is suitable for medium and large breed dogs but there are lots of smaller pillows available on the dog clothing stores listed below or on eBay. You could even make a pillow yourself.

♥ If your dog is really well trained he could carry the rings down the aisle in a pouch using his mouth – this is guaranteed to get gasps of delight from your wedding guests!

♥ How about having your pet accompany you to the altar. This might be a popular choice if the alternative for you or your partner is walking down the aisle alone.

♥ You could have your dog act as flower dog and carry flowers in his mouth or a basket of flowers if at all possible. Do make sure beforehand that they are not toxic to your dog and will not present a choking hazard to him.

♥ It is becoming popular nowadays for dogs to stand as maid-of-honor and best man. Have one of the other wedding attendants walk your dog down the aisle so that they can stand proudly next to you during the ceremony.

♥ Rather than carring a bouquet of flowers you could carry your dog (if he is small enough) down the aisle. Make sure that someone is willing to hold your dog during the ceremony though – you can’t exchange rings holding your pup!

♥ If your venue does not allow your pet to participate in your wedding then why not just have them included in your wedding photos. That is what I did as our wedding venue did not allow dogs. I had the best of both worlds as my dog got to have some fun meeting and greeting all the wedding guests in the gardens of the venue whilst the photos were being taken and then my bridesmaid’s mother kindly collected him and took care of him for the rest of the day, so I was able to relax knowing that he was being well taken care of!

♥ Do you own a pet which is small and quite patient? Would it be willing to sit in the arms of one of your wedding guests? If you think it would be safer and the pet would be more comfortable then keep them secured in their carrier during the ceremony.

♥ As mentioned, dogs are the traditional choice of pets at weddings but if you have a smaller, less social pets such as a hamster, lizard, guinea pig or even snake which you desperately want to bear witness to your nuptials perhaps you could place its cage nearby as you exchange vows or have one of the (willing) wedding guests hold it during the ceremony!

Tips for getting the best out of your pet on your wedding day:

♥ If it is paramount to you that your dog plays a key role in your wedding then, for his comfort, perhaps you could choose a dog-friendly venue for the ceremony and/or reception. The ideal venue would be outdoor such as a park, arboretum, beach or somebody’s garden in their backyard!

♥ A lot of dogs can’t handle the heat so if it is a hot day either reconsider having your dog in your wedding party or ensure that they are able to sit in the shade or (even better) an air-conditioned room during the ceremony or reception until the sun has gone down. Do make sure that your dog has access to fresh water if it is a hot day.♥

♥ Sometimes it is best to draft in professional help to look after your dog. After all which member of your bridal party is going to want to scoop your dog’s mess of the lawn during your wedding reception! Delegating the pet-handling task to a professional will alleviate unnecessary stress on you, your partner and your wedding guests. You should definitely consider hiring a pet coordinator or pet-sitter who will be responsible for dressing your dog on the morning of the wedding, transporting him to and from the reception, ensuring he gets fed, watered and takes toilet breaks and deals with any antisocial doggie behavior. The hire cost depends on how long you need the dog handler for.

♥ If possible make sure your dog is familiar with the ceremony and reception spaces so that they know how to sit comfortably there. It is a good idea to include your dog in the rehearsal so that your dog can get to know strangers he will encounter during the wedding as well as his new surroundings. This is also a great way of checking out, from your dog’s point of view, what possible hazards there could be for your dog on the wedding day, including toxic plants, swimming pools or other animals which might distract him during the wedding ceremony.

♥ If you intend on having your dog sit in the receiving line then practice beforehand so that he gets used this. The earlier you start this sort of training the better.

♥ If you are getting married out of town remember to make sure that you book accommodation for your dog at a pet-welcoming hotel.

♥ It is important that whoever is handling your dog on the day of the wedding (whether it is a professional or one of your bridal party) is aware of the timings of key events in the wedding ceremony and reception. They need to have time to walk your dog and make sure that he is well exercised and has used up some of his energy so that he can walk calmly down the aisle or sit patiently during the ceremony.

♥ Avoid giving your dog too much food or water immediately prior to and during the ceremony. This will help to prevent unwanted toileting accidents!

♥ It is important to ensure that whoever is walking the dog down the aisle is strong enough to control the dog. The last thing you want is your bridesmaid being dragged down the aisle on the end of a dog leash Indiana Jones-style!

♥ Make sure that your dog is not permitted to run around unsupervised, especially if there are children present at your wedding that your dog is unused to. Your dog might behave like an angel usually but if he is provoked by a child wielding a stick up his bottom you don’t know how he might react!

♥ Have a plan in place that if your dog becomes tired or antisocial he can be discreetly taken away from the wedding ceremony or reception and cared for – this is a good reason to employ a professional dog-sitter as your attendance is not going to want to miss out on the wedding because of your dog!

♥ You must be flexible if you are including your dog in your wedding ceremony. Anything can happen and you have to be prepared for that, to have measures put in place to deal with dog emergencies and be able to laugh it off!

♥ Never cause your dog any unnecessary stress. If you feel it is necessary bring their cage with them so that they can be locked up safely and comfortably if your wedding proves to be a bit too much for them.

♥ If you have a totally unpredictable dog but you really want them to participate in your wedding, have a parent or friend lead to the alter to deliver your wedding rings during the ceremony and then they can lead the dog away immediately before he has a chance to do anything mischievous!

Wedding attire for your pet:

To help your dog look the part for your wedding, outfit them for the occasion. Some ideas for doggie wedding attire are:

♥ A simple bow tie, bandana or ribbon around your pet’s neck to match the color theme of your wedding (my dog wore a tartan ribbon for my wedding photos – very simple but incredibly cute!).

♥ A new collar and leash that match your wedding colors.

♥ A dog tuxedo, formal dress or t-shirt with printed words on it. According to the owner of a dog wedding apparel store the bridesmaid’s gowns and ring-bearer tuxes are increasingly the best-selling items.

Personally I think that just the fact that your pet is attending your wedding will be cute enough for your guests so there is really nor a great need to dress them up in formal wedding attire. It is you decision though – do what you think is best for you and your beloved pet!

Unless you are absolutely certain that your pet can be counted on to behave during your wedding then it might be better to have them participate in the wedding photos and leave it at that.

Of course some dogs at weddings probably turn out to be better behaved than the human wedding guests! My opinion is that if your pet is important to you and your fiancé,  and you don’t mind sharing your spotlight with a four legged friend, then embrace the new trend and include them in your wedding – it is your special day and you don’t want to have any regrets!

Heartfelt Ministries delivers Wedding Ceremonies to honor You Two, and your Dog, on your Wedding Day!

 Vow-wow-wow proudly presents:


Heartfelt Ministries

Tell us about your business?

Heartfelt Ministries is a partnership of minds between Rev. Kelly and Rev. Zita, two animal lovers and wedding officiants.

The spark for Heartfelt Ministries started with Rev. Kelly’s own wedding in 1998. Kelly found that she had just two options; a church (with everything that entails), or a judge and a short, impersonal ceremony.  Neither suit their personalities.  

Their wedding day was fun and  intimate, but it was not exactly the wedding of their dreams. Years later, Kelly discovered The Universal Life Church and Universal Ministries, organizations which allowed her personal spirituality to blossom.  She was ordained and began her ministry in  2007. To her surprise, she performed over 25 weddings that first year.  By 2008, she realized that there was a tremendous need for her open, non judgmental ceremonies, so  Rev. Zita joined Heartfelt Ministries, adding another voice and point of view. 

Now  their lucky couples get their perfect weddings, from short and sweet to long and luxurious and everything in between. Their goal is to help  every couple’s wedding be THEIR wedding, specially those that include their furry family members! 

How do you accommodate dogs, and their owners?

Like every couple, these couples are individuals and have individual views on how their four footed children should be included in their wedding. Some couples have had their furry children take on the roles of flower girl and ring bearer by attaching pillows and baskets of (edible) flowers to their collars. Some couples have had their doggie friends escort them down the aisle. Some couples have had their weddings in their back yard just so their four footed companions can wander the yard and mingle with the guests. How a couple chooses to include their dogs is up to them, it is our job to find out how the couple wants to have their pooch in the wedding and do our best to honor that desire.

Do you have a great dog/wedding story?

Pink Poodles Rock!

Of course, although this one wasn’t planned to have the dog part of the ceremony.

It was 2009.  Rev. Kelly was marrying a couple in the bride’s parent’s back yard, chosen because the groom’s dog could be with them during  a four day celebration.  In addition to the groom’s dog, Snowball, (a beautiful, giant, pure white animal of unknown breed), the bride’s parents had two  small shelties.  Rev. Kelly recalls;

“On the Saturday of the wedding,  I arrive at the house and  was introduced to everyone including the dogs.  The bride’s father gives a great tour of the house and the yard, pointing out the ceremony site and describing the bride and groom’s vision for the day.

The ceremony is about to begin and all the plans are in place. The bride, and the groom  and I are in front of the a favorite family  tree, the guests are in the shade in chairs, and the dogs are lounging under the  shaded back deck. I get to the point in the ceremony where the couple is asked to join hands to say their vows.  Enter Snowball, who sits between me and the couple, staring at them. The groom says his vows; the bride says her vows.  Then then Snowball  does this barking, whining, growl thing.  He was  trying to speak, says his vows!

 Snowball puts his two cents worth on the end of the ring vows as well!  He stayed put during the rest of the ceremony, so on a whim, the couple was pronounced married as husband, wife, and dog!  The recessional started and the couple went out hand in hand followed by their loyal companion, Snowball. That is one of the stories that I love telling, just because it is cute. No one can resist cute stories with animals in them, especially dogs.

Tell us about YOUR dogs! Brag some, we love it!

Rev. Zita does not have a dog, she has a cat, or maybe we should say that a cat has her. Isn’t that joke that dogs have owners but cats have staff?

Colby the Lollie Bull!

I have  a dog, Colby, who is a Lollie Bull. (A Lollie Bull is a made up breed because it sounds more prestigious than a mutt.)  Colby is a 3 year old, male dog who is descendent of a full bred Border collie (the Ollie) father and a half Black Lab (the L) and half Pit Bull (the Bull) mother.  Rev. Kelly always notes that  Colby is just as unusual as his “breed.” Colby joined the family on her birthday, so the date he became one of us is easy to remember.

When we went to the farm, the owners opened up a kennel and about eight puppies came bounding towards them. My four year old son said,  “Mommy, I want all of them.” Convincing him that we only needed one dog was hard, but eventually he got the message and this little bundle of fur had a new home.

From the start Colby was a pretty good dog and fairly easy to train. Housebreaking was a breeze and the basic commands were understood almost immediately. The problem with Colby is that he loves people and forgets himself when people are around. Colby got his name as a compromise. My husband, oldest son, and I wanted to name him “Snickers” since he is brown and black and kind of looks like a Snickers bar when you bite into it.  My youngest, who is famous for his stubborn streak, wanted to call him “Cheese”. We convinced him that “Cheese” wouldn’t work because he (the son) loved to eat cheese and the dog fear for his life whenever he asked for some cheese. Instead we could call the dog Colby, which is a type of cheese but not something he’s ask for, so the dog would not live in fear of being eaten. (Plus,  when the dog needs a night potty run at 3 AM, “Colby” is much nicer to yell  than “Cheese”…)

Another of  Colby’s little quirks;  he thinks he is part cat and purrs. I know it is weird, but my dog purrs when he is being petted. It sounds like a growl but he loves having people pet him. I am not sure where he picked this up, but  we just figure  that Colby has decided it is nice to purr when he is being lavished with attention!

Heartfelt Ministries


~Serving Wisconsin and Northern Michigan~


Phone: 715-252-4309

Toll Free: 800-490-0221






Twitter:    @heartfeltrev


Woof! How to include your dog in your Wedding Ceremony!

Posted by Kelly from  From Tucson Bride and Groom ….

Originally posted Feb. 3, 2011

Many topics divide people when it comes to weddings…assigned or open seating, buffet or plated dinner, open or cash bar, in a place of worship or outside, you get the idea, but one topic that really seems to get under people’s skin is dogs at weddings.

Some think a wedding is no place for an animal (unless it’s the best man dancing up a storm) and some feel that dogs are family members who shouldn’t have to miss out on the fun.

Now that I have dogs and see how unruly they can be, I personally would not have dogs at my wedding, but only because they are just another piece of the wedding puzzle that needs to be coordinated. (Editor’s Note: Kelly’s objection, while certainly understandable, is exactly why we started Vow-wow-wow – to provide the information and Wedding Pro’s to make inviting Sparky a walk in the pun intended) 

Regardless, many couples are increasingly incorporating their furry babies into their special day, and that’s OK (hear my group therapy style acceptance?).

Dog lover and animal expert Heidi Ganahl, CEO and Founder of Camp Bow Wow and Home Buddies by Camp Bow Wow, offers some insight for those of you planning to include your pooches on your wedding day. Camp Bow Wow® is a premier doggy daycare and overnight camp that has grown to include over 100 Camps across North America so I am thinking she knows her stuff!

 Heidi weighs the pros and cons: The image of Fido walking down the aisle as a ring bearer is a memorable occasion for pet lovers. Before proceeding, it’s important to consider the pros and cons of having your pet at your wedding. Unfortunately, very few religious and indoor venues will allow dogs on location other than service animals. If you are open to an outdoor wedding, including your pet is more realistic.

Additionally, it is important to consider your pet’s personality. If you have a free-spirited animal, he may not abide to walk down the aisle on his own. Also, be cautious of guests with pet allergies; warn them in advance that your dog will be attending. However, the benefits are endless. Since proud pet owners consider their dog as part of the family, Fido’s attendance will add a special touch to your day.

How to Include Your Dog in Your Wedding Ceremony:

1. Training Day: Weeks, then days, before the wedding, take your pup to the location so that he is well acquainted with the area. Have him practice walking down the aisle and reward him with a treat.

 2. A Doggy Makeover: A fresh bath and a trip to the groomer is necessary the day before the wedding.

3. Dress Up Your Pup: Everyone in your wedding party will be dressed up and so should Fido! Consider buying a dog collar and leash that matches your bridesmaid dresses or a cute little bowtie to go with the groomsmen. This will make your wedding party more uniform.

4. Energizer Puppy: To avoid having an overly hyper dog at the wedding, take them to Camp Bow Wow to run, play and gets lots of energy out the days leading up to the wedding, or take your pet for a long walk or run before the ceremony, or hire Home Buddies by Camp BowWow to walk the dog and care for them before and after the wedding so you don’t have to stress about it.

5. Stage Fright: If your pet is nervous around strangers, limit his role and have him leave after the ceremony. If you have a friendly dog, then let him stay for the reception.

 6. Doggy Chaperone: Don’t leave your pet unattended. Designate someone as the dog’s sitter to make sure that he is taken out for bathroom breaks, or hire Home Buddies by Camp Bow Wow to take the responsibility on.

from Elle's Barkery

7. Doggy Buffet: Make sure your pet doesn’t sample human food and have dog food handy at the reception to ensure that he is well fed. Don’t forgot to have a bowl with fresh water!

8. Let Them Eat Cake: Since the wedding cake is strictly off limits, consider investing in a special cake from a dog bakery.

Brides, if you are going to include your dog in your wedding, just follow Heidi’s advice… for everyone’s sake!

Chatting Soon~Kelly

Spring Brides are in the air, if you try you can almost smell the Flowers! Meanwhile, check out the great photography from EMinDee Images!

Vow-wow-wow proudly presents another great Wedding Pro, Stephanie Hickerty of  Emindee Images in Florida… have a look! Stephanie’s work just speaks volumes about her dedication to her craft, and her passion for the ‘moments in time’ that she expertly captures for you with her lens. Go look at her website, check out her Blog. I am sure you will be as impressed as we were here at Vow-wow-wow, when we first saw her brilliant photography! – Gary
1. My fiance and I can’t wait to have our wedding and include Sparky and Rocco.  How can you help  us?
I love dogs…I have 2 myself.  I’ll be more than happy to photograph your dogs with you….and if you let me know what kind of dog(s) you belong to, I may carry a treat or three in my pocket!

2. Tell us about your business.
I’m a “passionate” wedding photographer.  I’m passionate about my couples and I’m passionate about my photography.  I love capturing those details, special moments, and emotions…all those things that will make you catch your breath when you look at your photos.  

3. How do you accommodate dogs and their owners?
I shoot them!  No not literally….just with my camera! lol  As a dog lover, I love to shoot owners interacting with their dogs. 🙂

4. Do you have a great dog/wedding story?
I shot one wedding where the dog wasn’t allowed to attend (he’s an undercover Homeland Security dog….shhhhh).  The bride & groom had someone drive almost an hour each way to pick up their dog and bring him to the venue so they could get some shots outside with their dog.  Their dog really loved his owner’s bouquet….the photo shoot turned into a game of keep away! lol  He did get his paws on it eventually and took a few bites of the flowers.  We were able to resurrect her bouquet a bit after he left.  The bride had a great sense of humor, thank goodness.

5. Tell us about YOUR dogs!
I just love my dogs!  They’re both rescue dogs.  Holly is the most wonderful, docile Golden Retriever/German Shepard mix and is now about 14 years old.  I rescued her from the animal shelter almost 9 years ago.  About 6 months after Holly joined our family, I got a call from a friend…who had a friend that needed to get rid of the dog he just rescued.  I offered to house the dog temporarily until I could find her a home.  Well….you know how those stories go.  I became the proud owner of Jesse, then a 4 year old)…a very hyper border collie that loves bubbles and frisbees.  And when those aren’t available, she’s more than willing to bring you any sock she can find in order to play fetch.  They are two total opposites…crazy hyper but sweet, and totally calm and even sweeter.  Yep, they’re my constant pals when I’m editing.  I’d take them on shoots, but Holly would drive everyone crazy trying to get petted, and Jesse would drive everyone crazy wanting to play! lol   







Stephanie Hickerty

“Passionate Photography”
… serving South Florida, The Florida Panhandle, and Destination Weddings



phone: 561-308-7984


Puppy love: More pets partake in even formal Weddings!

reprinted from:

    By Sharon L. Peters   Special for USA TODAY Updated 6/26/2009

Wedding attendants are going to the dogs.

Pet-loving couples are increasingly including their dogs (and other pets, to a much lesser degree) in the wedding parties of some very formal weddings — decking them out in silk and satin and including them in the receiving line, on the program and in the portraits.

“Many people think of their pets as family members, and they wouldn’t think of having a special day like this without that member,” says Celina Bojorquez, co-owner of Beverly Hills Mutt Club, purveyor of upscale accessories like doggie tuxedos ($70 and up) and couture dresses ($170 to $500).

The shop has outfitted canines for scores of  weddings in the last couple of years. Not all have been done up in full-dress regalia; some have merely donned accessories for a little special-day
elegance. Bojorquez has sold dog-besotted soon-to-weds silk ties and bow ties for their four-legged pals, satin bandanas, crystal leads and collars, and, in one case, a gold harness and leash to match the bride’s gold dress.

Though pets have long been part of casual weddings in  meadows, on mountaintops and at the seashore, their participation in chichi affairs at the most ornate churches and refined locales is a more recent phenomenon.

Increased numbers not withstanding, not everyone is completely enchanted with the notion of animals in the aisles or at the altar. Many locales prohibit them; many families and wedding planners discourage their participation.

Lynda Barness of I Do Wedding Consulting in Philadelphia always warns couples of the potential
perils — “animals are animals, and they can do animal things,” she says — and so far all her clients
have concluded that including pets in the wedding party isn’t necessary. “But as part of the portraits, that’s just fine.”

Her concerns range from potty issues to a dog acting up because it’s not used to being in a room with 300 people to the fact that “the bride and the room and others in the wedding party have
enough to tend to that day.” Also, “if a dog isn’t used to wearing a top hat, there may be issues.”

Beth Anstandig of Los Gatos, Calif., acknowledges there may be matters to work out but says having her own two border collies involved made her wedding day even more special. “The guests loved it,” she says. And she and her husband cherish the photos featuring the dogs — especially because both have since died. “We are so happy to be able to look back and remember them as they were on that day.”

He’s a loved one, too

“The family was a little skeptical,” Kaycee English says with a chuckle about the moment last year
when she announced that Bowser, the Australian shepherd pup she and John English had fallen for on, would be part of her fancy wedding. “Bowser had instantly become a family member.” They adopted him from Purrs and Pups Animal Rescue in Riverdale, N.J., weeks before their wedding day.

“The people I loved would be there, and there was no way Bowser wouldn’t be,” says English, of Freehold, N.J., who works for the Make-A-Wish  Foundation. So she bought Bowser a canine ring-bearer outfit, and he pulled off his wedding-day role without incident (dissolving a worried dad’s concern about crazy-dog potential and lost rings).

No pets? ‘Unimaginable’

Los Gatos, Calif., psychotherapist Beth Anstandig was something of a trendsetter when, five years ago, she informed her stunned parents that her beloved border collies, Levi, 11, and blue-eyed Frank, 9, would be attending her very fancy, very formal wedding.

The dogs had joined her on road trips, seen her through grad school, accompanied her to classes
when she was a teacher and “helped me grow up,” she says. It would have been “unimaginable” to have such an important day without them.

Her fiancé, Eric Killough, had grown to love the dogs, too. He joked that he intended to have an
“adoption ceremony” to formalize his relationship with them.

On the wedding day, a groomsman walked Levi and Frank down the aisle to the altar, and there they remained quietly throughout the vows. “They weren’t there because it was cute to have them there,” Anstandig says. “They were there because they belonged there. It would have felt incomplete without them.”

Speak now or forever hold your pooch

Jessica Sempek of Skokie, Ill., encountered some “naysayers who thought it was strange” when the topic of Emmie and Lady Bug being part of the ceremony arose during the planning of her elegant wedding to Scott Stewart last summer. But those voices were quickly silenced.

“We have two of the most amazing girls,” Sempek says. The couple adopted the two mixed-breed Kentucky-born rescues months apart from Heavenly Hearts Rescue of Southeastern Wisconsin.

When the couple — she works for the American Medical Association, he’s a hospice nurse —
exchanged vows, the two dogs were at the altar.  They were walked down the aisle on rhinestone leashes by the groom’s nephew.

Jason Crader Photography shares a story about a very special Wedding, of course with dogs too!

Vow-wow-wow is very pleased to present Jason Crader Photography from Little Rock, Arkansas. Our dog friendly colleague, Lisa Shoemake, an Arkansas Wedding Officiant, let us know about Jason, who photographed Misty and David’s Wedding.

Please take a few moments to read Jason’s post about this special Wedding. We think you will agree that THIS is what Weddings are all about, to be inclusive of all those you love and want to share your special day with. Misty and David went to extreme lengths to give that gift to their loved ones, and to themselves. We want to congratulate Misty and David, and wish them nothing but happiness in their life together.

Thank you for sharing Jason’s photography, and by extension, this emotional story with us, Lisa! We are happy to share Jason’s story of that special day with you. – Gary, Vow-wow-wow

From Jason Crader:

Last Sunday, I had the privilege of photographing Misty & David’s wedding at the Old Gin in Conway, AR. This is a very special couple who live in New York. Their original plans were to be married later this year in Puerto Rico where David’s family resides, but those plans had to change. Misty’s father, who lives in Arkansas, recently had a stroke which left him hospitalized. Misty and David decided to move the date up and bring the wedding to her father who cannot travel.

As many of you know, last Sunday was when Arkansas was hit by a big snow storm. Misty’s brothers had made arrangements to check their father out of the Little Rock hospital that he was in, so he could attend the ceremony. The only problem was that the doctors at the hospital didn’t want to release him due to the weather and his condition.

Misty’s family was at the hospital early Sunday morning to begin the procedures for checking him out. They were to have a nurse travel with them to the Old Gin in Conway to help make sure he was OK for the day. As they were waiting for the nurse to arrive, the snow began to fall. It snowed and snowed and snowed and the nurse was unable to make it to the hospital. Misty’s family was not going to let their father miss the ceremony and they were able to finally check him out of the hospital but then they had the snow to deal with.

The snow wasn’t a problem but the traffic between Little Rock and Conway was. The ceremony was originally to start at 3PM. Misty and David didn’t get married until after 7PM. Misty’s family got stuck on the interstate for close to 4 hours. They persevered though and made it.

It was the most emotional event I’ve ever witnessed at a wedding to see Misty’s father’s face and reaction when he saw her after having to wait all day to make it to her wedding. The stroke left her father wheelchair bound and mute but hopefully you’ll be able to tell by the images below how happy he was to see his daughter and soon to be son-in-law.

This was a very special wedding. If this is any indication of how great the 2011 wedding season is going to be for me then I am in for a wonderful ride this year. I was so honored to be part of this. Just seeing her dad’s reaction was worth all the trials that everyone had to endure that day. This is why I love being a wedding photographer. At the end of the night, her father motioned for me to come to him and he took my hand and pressed his face next to it to let me know how thankful he was. It was a great night that I will never forget.

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All of the vendors were AMAZING at this wedding. They all stayed well past their scheduled times to make sure Misty and David’s day was special and none of them complained. Many of them were in tears when Misty’s father finally entered the building.

  • Lisa Shoemake, Officiant  
  • Robinwood Bed and Breakfast – The couple and their families stayed at the Robinwood B&B in Little Rock, AR. This is where they also got ready for the wedding. Karen Ford, the innkeeper, was wonderful the whole time I was there. The couple had nothing but wondeful things to say about their stay at this bed and breakfast. Karen informed me that they also are able to accomodate smaller weddings inside the B&B. I was very impressed by everything from the interior decorations to the hospitatlity of Karen and Miriam.
  • Katy Wade of Salon Avatar in Little Rock did Misty’s hair and makeup. She was wonderful and very professional. She also made a house call on a Sunday which many stylists don’t do.
  • The Old Gin in Conway, was the venue site of the ceremony and reception. The staff onsite were all very helpful and understanding. It’s a nice small space for a wedding & reception.
  • Little Rock Entertainment Agency were the DJ’s for the event. I’ve worked with them in the past and they did another amazing job!

 Contact Us

Jason Crader Photography

Little Rock, Arkansas

Phone: 501.940.1370




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