The bride and groom celebrated their wedding surrounded by their nearest and dearest – which included the couple’s nine dogs.
What happens when a dog trainer and a dog sitter tie the knot? The answer is a perfect wedding with paws that is guaranteed to attract a number of guests.
Paul and Annette Anthony from Pennsylvania have become the toast of TikTok’s dog-loving community after sharing a series of clips showing their nine adorable dogs playing an important role in their recent wedding. At the time of writing, they have been viewed more than five million times.
Although dogs are not traditionally associated with weddings, a recent survey of 2,000 dog owners, commissioned by Amazon Handmade and conducted by OnePoll, revealed that nearly two-thirds of respondents would involve their dogs.
The most popular roles for dogs on the big day were ring bearer (50 per cent), flower girl (17 per cent) and page boy (13 per cent), with nine per cent saying they would have a dog act as their best man.
“Mommy needs him”
Paul and Annette’s professions meant that they would always be around their dogs. Annette said Newsweek they have been “such a big part of our lives” and supported Annette through difficult times such as the loss of her father as well as Paul’s son Michael.
“They are our family and have seen us through our worst times,” he said. “So it’s only right that they’re there to share in our best times.”
Annette owns her own dog grooming business, while Paul is a former police officer and K9 handler specializing in training dogs in obedience, protection, service and therapy.
They first met six years ago when Annette came to Paul with her German Shepherd, Pesci. Pesci is Annette’s emotional support animal and accompanied her down the aisle. “I have severe anxiety and depression. The fact that he can sense when I’m having a bad day or panicking or feeling sad is why he’s my once-in-a-lifetime son,” she said.
During the ceremony, Pesci even broke ranks to comfort Annette, who began to cry as she said her vows. “He knew his mother needed him,” she said.
In 2018, Paul’s dog training took him to Russia, where his beloved pet Finnegan des Ombres Valeureux, or Finn for short, competed in the World Championships of Mondioring, a competitive dog training that tests the intelligence and natural abilities of dogs. as well as their handler’s ability to train the dog to perform difficult tasks without leash or collar.
Finn competed in more than 40 sporting dog events, winning 24 titles and setting several records.
Now 12 years old and enjoying retirement, Finn remains firmly at Paul’s side as a service dog, helping a former police officer who suffered from PTSD when USAir Flight 427 crashed in Hopewell Township, Pennsylvania. All 132 people were on board, the deadliest crash in Pennsylvania history.
Finn served as one of Paul’s best men and, according to Annette, was instrumental in his first marriage proposal. “Finn brought me a ring with a bandana that said ‘will you marry my dad?’
Pesci and Finn were joined by the couple’s seven other dogs on the big day, and a video shared on Paul’s TikTok account puptalkpgh captured the moment they were led down the aisle to take their rightful place at the center of the proceedings.
‘We Helped Our Holiday’
The dogs included Introdacqua des Loups du Lac, a two-year-old Belgian Malinois, and Archie, a seven-year-old chocolate Labrador rescued from a local shelter. “He was supposed to be euthanized,” Annette said. “Paul saved her and rehabilitated her.”
Then there’s La’ Mia Pippa Signorita, a four-year-old German Shepherd who is Pesci’s sister and serves as de facto mother to the couple’s two seven-month-old Belgian Malinois pups, Clyde the Real Slim Shady vom Enuk and Bumble. bee Bonnie and Skyfall.
Breeze, a four-year-old Belgian Malinois, and three-year-old Cricket of Braveheart, another three-year-old Belgian Malinois.
There would have been 10 if it hadn’t been for the sad death of seven-year-old Belgian Malinois D’Sonoffi, whom Annette remembers as “the happiest of all our dogs”.
All the dogs went to Annette’s pet salon the day before the wedding where they got a bath and a trim. An array of tuxedo bandanas were purchased for the boys, while the girls were decked out in beautiful ruffled collars.
While the idea of nine dogs walking around a wedding may seem chaotic to some, Paul and Annette’s pack of dogs behaved impeccably.
“They are all very well behaved and have adequate training behind them,” Annette said. “With the right people to help us on our big day and confidence in the behavior of our dogs. Keeping them in line was pretty easy.”
It was a day to remember and one that the happy couple wouldn’t change for the world. “All of our dogs, although different, came together and helped us celebrate the best day of our lives and did so with pride and joy,” she said.
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