Many couples envision their dream wedding venue as something grand, perhaps not typically a veterinary office. However, one couple opted for a unique location to ensure their cherished dog could be present for their special day.
Cat Kukla has always held a deep affection for her pet dog, Bear, and had envisioned him being a part of her wedding day since childhood.
“Growing up, I was not very ‘girly,’ and hadn’t ever dreamt of a wedding like most little girls did, but I had dreamed of Bear being a part of my wedding, in a little red wagon, since I could remember,” Cat shared with The Dodo.
After meeting her husband Jimmy in 2011, Bear continued to hold a significant place in both of their lives. As they prepared to exchange vows, they were determined to fulfill Cat’s lifelong dream of having Bear be a part of the ceremony.
However, at 17 years old, Bear had been facing health challenges, particularly kidney disease, and was hospitalized just before the scheduled wedding last month. Faced with the possibility of Bear not being able to attend, the couple made a touching decision.
“I asked Jimmy if he thought we should get married at the vet to ensure Bear would be there with us,” Cat explained. “His response was, ‘I’d marry you any day, any time.'”
The couple ultimately pledged their vows at the VCA Veterinary Emergency Service & Veterinary Specialty Center, where Bear was undergoing treatment. As per a post from the vet’s office, the ceremony took place in a waiting area, surrounded by family and friends.
Photographs shared by the vet’s office offer a glimpse of the heartwarming ceremony: Bear, still a bit drowsy from his medical treatments, reclines in a red wagon, fulfilling Cat’s longstanding dream. The back of the wagon bears the words “I loved her first.”
Images also capture Cat’s tattoo dedicated to Bear, reading “You’ll be with me wherever I go” above a paw print—a sentiment that rang true on her wedding day.
Fortunately, Bear was discharged from the vet’s office two days after the ceremony. The vet’s office happily reported that Bear was “home getting all the love and snuggles from his favorite (newlywed) people.”
This turn of events allowed the couple to proceed with their originally planned wedding ceremony, with Bear by their side, joined by their other canine companions.
The couple informed The Dodo that Bear’s health has unfortunately faced additional challenges, but they are committed to doing everything possible to improve his well-being. Despite his declining health, they noted that Bear seemed to brighten up on their wedding day.
“After the ceremony, Bear actually got up and walked around outside, which he hadn’t done in days, and he walked a lot!”
Our canine companions hold a special place in our hearts, and many individuals desire to have their beloved pets present on their significant day. We’re delighted that this couple was able to exchange vows with Bear by their side ❤️
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