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we're caitlin & luke,

a traveling husband & wife wedding photo & video team based in bloomington-normal, illinois, serving the midwest & beyond!

Welcome to the Caitlin & Luke Blog! We’re Caitlin & Luke, and we’re an IL wedding photo & video team based in Central Illinois! We hope you grab a coffee and enjoy browsing our latest weddings, resources for brides & photographers, and getting to know our little family- including our doodle pup, Oliver! We’re so happy you’re here! More about us ⟶





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How to Include Your Dog in Your Wedding Photos

January 11, 2019

Filed in: For Brides

How to include your dog in your wedding photos

So you’re getting married, and everyone know’s it’s just a given: you have to have photos with your dog on your wedding day. I say all the time that if we had had Oliver when we got married, we TOTALLY would have been sure to make time for some cute photos with him on our wedding day! I mean, I would have been all for him wearing a flower crown as a collar and walking down the aisle, but if you know Luke at all, you know there’s no way on earth that ever would have actually happened. 😉 Ha!!!

Our couples ask us ALL the time if it would be okay if they incorporated their dog into their Engagement session or their wedding portraits (read our tips for including your pup in your engagement session right here!), and our answer is ALWAYS yes! There are a few ways to make incorporating your pup into your wedding photos a breeze, and we’re excited to share those with you today. Here they are!

01. Make a plan & set expectations!

We can’t stress this one enough, friends! If photos with you pup is something that’s important to you for your wedding day, be sure to make a plan with your wedding photographer ahead of time! We create custom timelines for EACH of both our and our team members’ couples, and if we know our couples want portraits with their dog, we are able to tell them exactly the time this needs to happen so that we’re all prepared!

Real talk: It only takes about 5-10 minutes to grab some cute portraits with your pup, but we still need to make sure we build that into your timeline! 🙂 This brings us to our next tip:

02. Designate a helper!

We wholeheartedly believe that of all the times we’ve photographed portraits with our couples’ dogs, NONE would have happened without the help of a designated person whose job it was to bring the dog to the portrait location and then back home!

Using the timeline we create together, our couples are able to let their helper know exactly where and when to show up with their dog! This makes it a speedy part of the wedding day and then the dog can go back home and we can continue on with your timeline. Brides, DO NOT attempt this without a helper! You’ll thank us later!

03. Groom your pup!

We can’t stress this one enough… and here’s why: You will not want to be holding, petting and cuddling with a dirty dog in your gorgeous and expensive wedding gown, friend! 😉 Hopefully it doesn’t take much convincing for you to agree with us on this one! We always recommend that our couples have their pup bathed and groomed a day or two before the wedding. It would be no fun if these special portraits were ruined by muddy paws or a ton of dog hair, right?


Add something fun to this portrait time! Our very favorite is when our couples have a floral wreath to go around their pup’s neck (it looks like a gorgeous floral collar, if you will!), but there are so many gorgeous collars, leashes and simple additions for your pup that can MAKE this portrait time. Don’t be afraid to send us your ideas, and we’d love to give you our honest opinion!

Alright, friends- there you have it! These are our top tips for including your pup in your wedding photos!! We can’t wait to see how many of you decide to do this in 2019! Trust us… the small amount of coordinating it takes to make these photos happen is WORTH IT in the end. You will not regret taking just a few minutes to grab these once in a lifetime images with your furry family members!

Did you or will you bring your pup to your portrait time on your wedding day? We want to hear about it in the comments below!

Have the best day, friends! Xoxo,
Caitlin & Luke

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