Exchanging vows with a bark: ‘Wedding Dogs’

Wedding Dogs

After getting engaged, I was amazed by how many people asked one interesting question: was my dog going to walk with me down the aisle?

For some dog lovers, the idea of tying the knot without their four-legged friend is impossible. Whether their canine is standing in as “best dog” or simply soaking it in from the audience, our pups — our confidantes; our buddies — are members of the family. And they want in on the action.

Katie Preston Toepfer and Sam Stall penned Wedding Dogs: A Celebration of Holy Muttrimony — and it’s just as cute as you’d expect. A collection of photos from weddings across the country, each spread features photos of a canine collaborator along with the story of the wedding they attended. With the Humane Society estimating that approximately 78.2 million owned dogs take up residence in more than 39 percent of U.S. households, I’m surprised we don’t see more pups as ringbearers.

In the introduction, Toepfer writes, “For those who know the joy of being loved unconditionally, who know what it’s like to be greeted each day by a flurry of fur-spinning excitement, this book is for you. Whether or not your precious four-legged friend was a part of your wedding day, or even if you’re yet to tie the knot, I hope this book will be a source of laughter, joy, and inspiration.”

Though we don’t plan to include Rudy, my family’s beloved golden retriever, in our nuptials, Spencer and I often joke about how he would react to being coerced into walking down an aisle. Rudy has a mind of his own — and the lure of so many people around to throw him a ball would be too distracting. There’s really no telling what he would do.

And he was totally not interested in other dogs’ fifteen minutes of fame with this publication.

Rudy and book

In Wedding Dogs, some of my favorite spreads featured Lexi and Hayden, two Labrador retrievers who wore flowers around their necks, and a trio of pugs included on their owners’ wedding announcements (they were banned from the formal ceremony!). There are so many great photos, though, and the stories are equally precious. Written in vignettes, it’s the sort of book you can easily “ooh” and “ahh” over on a lazy afternoon, soaking up the gorgeous scenery and equally heartwarming pup stories.

So grab a glass of champagne and celebrate in spirit! These well-mannered pups — and their creative owners — deserve a toast.



Review copy provided by publisher in exchange for my honest discussion

12 thoughts on “Exchanging vows with a bark: ‘Wedding Dogs’

  1. I’m so going to have to go buy this book now. Adorable! And if I ever get married I would love my lab to walk me down the aisle but I am pretty sure I would end up on my face and he would end up in someone’s lap!


  2. I’ve seen this book reviewed before, and I’m tickled with the idea. If we would have gotten married locally (we went to Vegas) we totally would have had our Lab in our wedding. She was like our first baby. I’m not the least bit surprised that so many people have done this.


  3. AHH! Love.This is the best kind of eye candy right here. Beautiful weddings, adorable dogs, and probably some good looking men as well. We would have loved to have our dogs in the ceremony but they were in Texas when we were in Maryland. Possibly for the best though since we had three!


  4. My 2 pooches were part of my wedding day – they were beautifully present and attentive and now I also have professional pics of them 🙂


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