Sometime back, Jaipur was host to a lavish mass wedding ceremony. Grooms arrived in specially-made buggies, and the menu included specially-baked dog biscuits.
Woof! You read right, it was a day when dogs took the plunge. From gifts and grand buffets to priests, it was the perfect setting for the 18 canines. The star couple at the gathering was a handsome Neapolitan Mastiff and a German Labrador.
There were also Naughty, a three-year-old black and brown Spitz, and Laila, a three-year-old Pomeranian. “I liked the idea of having a ceremony and it was a unique experience. The wedding was beautiful,” said Nikki Rahi, from Mumbai, Naughty’s owner.
Making such weddings possible is Jaipur-based Viren Sharma of International Dog Bazaar, the club that hosts the ceremonies.
“Most of the marriages are inter-caste — or should we say inter-breed!” said Sankalp Sharma, Viren’s brother.
“The ceremony is an expression of affection of owners for their dogs. Of course, it is not practical for the dogs to go back and live together. The purpose is to mate."
Gurgaon-based Harsh Satyarthi, the owner of a St Bernard and a Lhasa Apso, loves the idea of getting her dogs married. “Next time there is a wedding, I will show up. I plan to get them snazzy haircuts.”
Viren also ran a website called dogshaadi.com where dog-owners and dogs could find suitable partners. “It’s not always possible to find partners who have a similar passion for dogs. The portal was an attempt to bring dog-lovers together.”
Special get-togethers and Valentines Day parties are also organised for dog-owners, where alliances are fixed and owners can ask for the bride’s paw.