An animal-loving bride did away with flowers for her wedding and instead had her bridal party carry adorable ‘puppquets’.
Florida-native Andee Ondina, 32, is the General Manager of a Bayside Pet Resort in Sarasota and formerly worked in an animal shelter. When it came time for her wedding to Tina Krasinski, 33, she knew exactly the kind of message she wanted to promote.
Wearing miniature flower crowns, the 10 impossibly cute five-week-old puppies carried by the bridal party had been saved from a kill shelter.
Animal lover: Florida bride Andee Ondina loves animals so much she wanted to involve them in her big day, opted for bridesmaids to carry puppies instead of bouquets
Bridesmaids: Each member of the all-female bridal party carried a five-week-old rescue puppy wearing a miniature flower crown
Bride: Andee’s bride Tina, pictured in waistcoat, pets one of the adorable pups
The couple said their vows at Wishing Well Barn, a cattle ranch-meets-rustic wedding venue, on Monday in Plant City, Florida.
‘So my bridesmaids will be holding adoptable puppies with wooden flower collars. ‘Puppquets’, I’m calling them,’ Andee told station KDVR.
‘We wanted to make sure we brought some awareness to shelter animals. We are so passionate about adopting versus shopping,’ she added.
Andee held her own dog, Mr Boog Dinkleton, while her bridesmaids got acquainted with their new friends.
Tina’s daughter Carter, three, helped out on the day not only as flower girl, but as a puppy wrangler of sorts.
Puppquets: Andee said she needed 10 puppies and as fate would had it, there were 10 puppies in this newly-rescued litter
Pastels: Members of the bridal party wore various pastel-hued dresses
Kiss: Andee showers one of the pups with kisses before she walked down the aisle
The only mishap? One of the bridesmaids did get peed on during the ceremony.
Andee told Insider: ‘I used to work in a shelter and I’ve had the unfortunate job of saying to a dog, ‘You have to move on to the next shelter and I hope someone gets you.’
‘And I turn my mind off in case they don’t (get adopted). It’s so near and dear to my heart,’ she said.
The five-week-old puppies and their mother were pulled from a kill-shelter in Georgia and taken to Nate’s Honor Animal Rescue in Florida.
‘They just so happened to have a dog who had given birth to 10 puppies, which is just the number we needed,’ she said. ‘It was very serendipitous.’
Guests: The guests at the wedding were encouraged to consider adopting the puppies, with two already stating their interest at giving them forever homes
Puppers: The sweet little pups will remain in their foster home, Nate’s Honor Animal Rescue, until they are eight-weeks-old
Homes: Dari Oglesby, Executive Director of Nate’s Honor Animal Rescue, agreed Andee and Tina’s approach was a great way to raise awareness
‘There are so many animals out there being euthanized. There is a need to get the awareness out there, and what a great venue other than a wedding to showcase puppies,’ agreed Dari Oglesby, Executive Director of Nate’s Honor Animal Rescue.
Dari says the puppies will spend a few more weeks with their mother, but wedding guests were encouraged to fill out adoption paperwork for the puppies.
‘Make vows to your puppy,’ Andee said, adding that she and Tina will be adopting one.
Two other guests have already claimed the puppies, who will be put up for adoption at the end of the month when they are eight-weeks-old.
‘What I was hoping to achieve was to show how many cute animals are waiting in shelters and waiting for someone to save them. You shouldn’t be buying puppies when there are so many waiting for homes,’ Andee said, thrilled with the outcome.