The big day was a success! Milkshake did absolutely wonderful and everyone loved him! He looked very handsome in his bow tie and black leash and collar. As we walked down the halls of the W Hotel and through the crowd of the cocktail hour, all I heard was "there's Milkshake!". I was honestly shocked at how well behaved he was - he managed himself very well through the crowds, posed for the pictures, and most importantly, walked down the aisle perfectly! I'll give you a run down of the events of the day. First though, I have to say that Milkshake definitely knew something was going on. He had been off all week - a little more anxious, a little more barking, and just generally a little less obedient! He stayed at my house the night before the wedding, and by the time we got up in the morning to go the park you could tell that he was definitely feeling the stress of the big day, if you know what I mean.... His breakfast came out almost as fast as it came in....
We spent a couple hours at the dog park in the morning with my dogs, Bailey and Bambi, and his best friend, Chip (another Chocolate lab). We ran and played all the way down to the water, where Milkshake and I had an intense game of fetch going on in the lake. Swimming is the best way to tire him out! As we were leaving the water Milkshake was sure to roll in the mud and wood chips - little did he know he had a bath coming anyways. After we left the park, we stopped at Petapoluza, where I gave him a bath and made sure he was looking his best for the big day!
On the way down to the hotel, I realized we had somewhat of a problem on our hands. As many dog owners can relate to, Milkshake was letting me know how nervous he was by passing some horrible gas. It's one thing when you're in the car and you can roll down the window, but this wasn't going to be an option for long, as we were only a couple blocks from the hotel. Luckily, once we got there, we were invited into the grooms dressing room where a little dog fart wasn't too offensive. Milkshake was happy to see his parents and I think that put him at ease a little - we were all grateful.
Next up were pictures! Milkshake was in a series of different pictures, bride and groom, full wedding party, groom and flower girl, etc.... the excellent photographer, Ken from Azzura, had me position Milkshake in the picture, and then I used a treat to get his attention. He has a great sit-stay, so I was able to back up behind the photographer, holding the treat above the camera, and it worked perfectly! I think Ken was able to get some really great pictures. During the full wedding party picture, it was pretty chaotic trying to get everyone in place, and adding a dog in the mix was not easy. Luckily, we were able to get him just in place, and the treat trick worked long enough to get a few amazing pictures - with his ears perked up, and a couple where he had his tongue hanging out a little too. So precious!
Shortly after pictures, it was our big moment, the walk down the aisle. I had a few major "what-if" scenarios going through my head. What if he freaks out and tries to relieve himself in the aisle (considering his digestive system throughout the day, this was a valid concern, I believe). What if he gets so excited to see his parents at the end of the aisle he bolts and pulls me flat on my face in the process? Luckily, neither of these happened. Not even close. When it was our time, Milkshake pranced down the aisle, right by my side, on a loose leash even. When we got up to the front, we stood off to the side, and he laid down and slept most of the ceremony. It wasn't until when Ben and Lori were giving their vows did he perk up and start crying. I think he was happy for them :)
After the ceremony we did a few laps through the cocktail hour, where he was showered with affection and praise for his wonderful performance. By the end of all of this, he was worn out! He retreated to the dressing room to chew on his new bully stick for a little bit, and then we went home!
The wedding was beautiful, almost as beautiful as the bride. The ceremony was fun and everything seemed to go very smoothly. I hope Ben and Lori had exactly the wedding they imagined! It was truly a success story to having a dog in a wedding! Good job Milkshake!!!