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He watched as people filed past him and licked the hands that gave him a quick rub. Max sat quite happily on his master’s lap waiting for the next adventure to happen in his dog life. On his neck sat the two wedding rings tied securely to his brand new collar with a ribbon. Max was the doggy ring bearer at his master’s wedding.

The time came for his master to go inside, so Max was handed over to an aunty that grabbed the doggy quite tightly. Max felt a bit squashed, but he could still tolerate this. Together they sat on the church steps waiting for the bride.

Max jumped from auntie’s arms as the bride arrived and very happily greeted her at the wedding car. ‘Get the dog’, the bride shouted and the aunty grabbed Max by the hind leg. Soon he sat clutched under a sweaty arm as he watched the bride go into the church. Max calmed down again, waiting for the next exciting thing to happen. Inside voices rang out as his master made some promises.

The moment for the rings came. The aunty put max down at the church door. The same time two other dogs came rushing by – in full chase of something. This was as much as Max could handle and he took off in pursuit. The aunty again managed to grab his hind leg, but this time he had other plans, so he bit her.

Inside every one was looking to the back where Max and his handler were supposed to make an entrance, but the doorframe stayed empty. Finally, the groom went to see what was keeping Max. He was just in time to see the aunty driving off to hospital and no site of Max.

They walked the whole neighborhood for hours calling out Max’s name. They went home twice in case Max found his way there, but nothing. The police were called in. They were astounded to hear that a dog was loose in Geelong with a carat-sized diamond strapped to his neck. The search went on till dark, but nothing turned out.

Two days after the wedding, which used some borrowed rings, Max simply turned up home. He was clean and looked like he had just gotten up from an afternoon nap. Round his neck sat the new collar, but in place of the two rings that were supposed to be there, a small note was tied to his neck. The note simply said: Thank You.

Animals get used more often to form part of weddings. This puts quite a lot of strain on them should you not train them about what is going to happen, what they will do and most important, help them get familiar with the new place they will be performing at.

Just like a wedding rehearsal, animals will need a couple of run troughs as well. Keep them on a leash all the time, even if they are quite tame. Keep in mind that you will be practicing in a quiet place and on the day of the wedding, this place will be teaming with feet. Maybe it’s best to bring in your animal at the last minute and then immediately take him or her home again after they have done their bit.

The animal should also have a dedicated handler that will stay with them at all times. Bring along snacks to keep his belly full and water to keep those nerves under the hood.

Enjoy your animal friends and the special part they play at your wedding, but never expect them to act like an Oscar winner on the day.


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