If you’ve been around for awhile, you’ll know that I am a dog person through and through. As a full-time wedding and elopement photographer, I hear time and time again from couples that they want to include their pup, but they’re not sure how. Whether your dog is anxious, energetic, or shy, there’s still a way to have your sweet fur baby there with you on the biggest day(s) of your life. Here are a few ways to include your dog in your photos. From your engagement photos, to your wedding or elopement, these tips are sure to leave you with a smile on your face for years to come.
One of the most popular ways to include your dog in your wedding is through engagement photos. This is an especially great option if your dog is anxious around large crowds or unfamiliar people. Some of the best ways to ensure your sweet pup is comfortable during the photos would be to choose a good location. No matter what kind of dog you have, remember that no 2 are the same. What works for 1, may not work for another.
If your dog is more on the anxious side, choose a location where your dog can get all the jitters out. State parks, trails, and even some nature centers are great options.If your dog is more on the social side, head to your favorite dog beach, downtown for coffee, or hit up your favorite hiking trail.
Including your dog in your engagement photos allows you to not only get some sweet pictures together, but you’re able to proudly display the photos at your wedding.
I love when my couples choose to include their pup in their wedding. I definitely think this option is best for dogs that do well in crowds and don’t easily become anxious. Your dog can be the best man, a bridesmaid, walk the bride down the aisle, be the ring bearer or flower girl, etc. There are so many options for including your dog in your ceremony.
Pro tip: if your dog is walking down the aisle on its own, have some treats leading to the alter so your dog doesn’t get distracted by guests.
Depending on where you’re eloping, it can either be really easy to include your dog, or a little difficult. Believe it or not, but some national parks do not allow dogs on their trails. One of the best resources I’ve found for pet-friendly National Parks is HERE (National Park Foundation). Please note: Rocky Mountain NP, Big Bend NP, and Zion NP do not allow dogs on any trails or campgrounds.
Don’t let that deter you, though, babe! If you have your heart set on eloping in a national park and including your pup, the best way is finding some rad views just outside of the park. (And that’s always why you hire me to help you find those rad views 😉).
I can’t wait to see how you include your dog in your photos. And if you’re still Searching for even more wedding and elopement tips, I’d love to chat here. Let’s deam about your big day together! As always, let’s be friends on the ‘Gram (@sierrabrookphotography).