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My Dog Served As My Wedding Witness

And yours can too (in 23 states). Here’s how.

by Sean Zucker
June 15, 2022
Happy Wedding Couple Holding Dog
Leah Flores / Stocksy
The letter "W" from the Wildest logo

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Hey bud, it’s me — the light of your life — your dog. I was honored, though not entirely surprised, to be chosen as your official wedding witness. Can you think of anyone more qualified? I’ve seen you at your highs and lows. (Thank god the Bumble days are behind us; but let’s be honest, I’m probably the one who sealed the deal.) Sure, coming home to you is nice, but coming home to my happy dance? Game changer. After all the relationship milestones we’ve been through together, it only seems appropriate that I’m here for this one. 

The untrained observer might ponder, can a dog really serve as a wedding witness? And to that I answer, throw me a bone. Despite our unique bond — and my stellar attributes — I was far from the first four-legged superior being to be enlisted with the task of bearing witness to vows. Twenty-three states have already legalized the process, as well as Washington, D.C. Who knew bills got passed there? Even my first and third favorite celebrities, Chelsea Peretti and Jordan Peele, recruited their pup for the duties (my second fav is Air Bud — RIP). 

Here are the twenty-three states that know what’s up: Alabama, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, and West Virginia — plus Washington, D.C.

In these states, all that’s required is a signature confirming the ceremony — but a pawprint is also acceptable (and, honestly, should be encouraged). As more people begin to explore the extraordinary idea of involving pets in their wedding ceremonies, having them as witnesses can make for a solid addition. Just please don’t come at me about dogs as flower girls because that is so far below our pay and cuteness-grade it’s insulting. 

Look, should I have been in the actual wedding party? Absolutely. But I am okay to settle for the responsibility of witness. So I will summarize what would have been my tear-jerking masterpiece of a best pet speech here: Cheers to the newlyweds, I wish you nothing but a lifetime of happiness and love. And if it doesn’t work out — two Christmases!

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Sean Zucker

Sean Zucker

Sean Zucker is a writer whose work has been featured in Points In Case, The Daily Drunk, Posty, and WellWell. He has an adopted Pit Bull named Banshee whose work has been featured on the kitchen floor and whose behavioral issues rival his own.