by Ash Moore, WPICC, Owner and Lead Coordinator at Black Dog Weddings
WPIC Founders Danielle and Tracey have taught us that Millennials are a generation of consumers who focus on unique experience-driven purchases and the statistics don’t lie. In 2022, a poll in the UK indicated that nearly two-thirds of dog owners would want to get their dogs involved in their wedding day festivities! Millennials and Gen Z are willing to spend more on their pets, including services like dog grooming and dog care.
Both millennials and Gen Z have shown an increasing interest in pet ownership, with dogs being one of the most popular choices. According to the American Pet Products Association (APPA), approximately 67% of U.S. households, including many young adults, owned a pet in 2020.
So what does this mean for Wedding Planners? As a trusted voice coordinating, guiding, and designing your clients’ wedding day, you might also be asked to source or provide a reputable dog care professional to incorporate the client’s dog into the day. Enter, the Wedding Dog Attendant.
At base, a Wedding Dog Attendant is a dog care professional who understands the complexities of a wedding day (timelines, vendor needs, wedding ceremony flow to name a few) and is able to tend to the client dog’s needs with constant attention and supervision while also assisting with ensuring the pup looks fresh for the camera and ready to strut their stuff down the aisle at the wedding ceremony.
How do you find a reputable Wedding Dog Attendant? Google and reaching out on Facebook community pages is a great way to start. When you obtain a few leads, reach out to these businesses and ask about their credentials, whether are they insured, and Pet CPR and FirstAid trained. Additionally, ask if they offer in-person meet and greets with the couple and their dog to ensure that all parties are comfortable ahead of the wedding day. Wedding Dog Attendants love to chat about weddings just as much as you do! Discuss various weddings that they have worked at, specific venues, and their service offerings. Some Wedding Dog Attendants provide additional services like renting wedding dog attire, and transportation for the client’s pup to and from the venue, others might offer overnight dog care at home while the couple dances the night away at the reception.
What’s it like working with a Wedding Dog Attendant? For legal reasons and insurance purposes, Wedding Dog Attendants want to speak directly with the couple and book with the couple and a great Wedding Dog Attendant will loop you in on the communication and timeline for the client’s pup well in advance of the wedding day. In your initial meeting with a potential Dog Attendant referral, ask the Wedding Dog Attendant what their client journey is like and their preferred method of communication, then trust their knowledge and expertise. Much like you, they do not do last-minute bookings.
Over the years, it has been our experience that couples contact us for Wedding Dog Attendant services one year in advance, or after they have confirmed their dog-friendly wedding venue or booked their photographer. With this much notice, it allows us to understand the wedding vision and fully comprehend the dog’s specific care needs. This information further helps us to prepare for potential unexpected situations that may arise by assessing the dog’s level of comfort and overall energy and shifting accordingly to suit the flow of the wedding day. Even on the wedding day, a Wedding Dog Attendant will strategically introduce the client’s dog to the wedding environment, managing any potential stressors or excitement.
By considering these factors when looking for and providing referrals for a Wedding Dog Attendant, wedding planners can help ensure a smooth and joyful experience for the dog-loving couple and their pup on their wedding day. Happy planning!
Style shoot coordination: Ash, Black Dog Weddings | Wedding Dog Attendant: Black Dog Weddings | Venue: River Valley Golf & Tube | Photographer team: Sweet & Wild Photography & Hodgins Photography | Videography: Brubacher Films | Florals: Lyric Flowers | Rentals: Intimate Backyard Events | Hair: Cassidy, Wisp Hair Artistry | Bride Attire: Once Upon A Time Weddings | Groom Attire: Collins Formal Wear | Human Models: Amanda Gunning & Josh Gunning | Dog Model: Benson Binning
Ash Moore, WPICC
Ash Moore is the lead wedding attendant, owner, and director of Belly Rubs at Black Dog Weddings. Proudly serving dog-loving couples in Ontario since 2019, Ash obtained her WPIC certification in 2018. Using knowledge obtained from the WPIC online certification course in addition to working as a wedding assistant and referring to her own wedding day experience she has developed Black Dog Weddings to provide engaged dog-loving couples with peace of mind knowing their beloved dog is in good hands on their wedding day. Black Dog Weddings provides Pet CPR + First Aid-ready Wedding Dog Attendants and a supportive approach for dog owners and fellow wedding professionals leading up to and on the couples’ big day.