'I'm an Edinburgh wedding dog chaperone – I make £2.5k-a-month looking after pooches on people’s big days'

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“It’s a dream job.”

Meet the wedding dog chaperone who makes £2.5k-a-month by being a pooch plus one on couples' big day.

Olivia Thompson, 24, walked dogs for extra cash during her lunch break before going travelling in November last year.

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When she came back she was figuring out what she wanted to do and discovered being around dogs made her happiest and she had an obsession with weddings.

Combining the two she launched her dog chaperone business - the Dog Lady - and has now attending four weddings as a pup's plus one – even walking a pup up the aisle.

Olivia is on hand to walk the dog beforehand, help with capturing pet photos and provide care for the dog during the wedding day.

She charges around £350 for the day and customises her service for each bride and groom.

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Olivia makes up to £2.5k-a-month and is already getting bookings for next year.

Olivia, from Edinburgh, said: “I’m obsessed with anything to do with a wedding.

“Everyone you trust to look after your dog is at the wedding.

“That’s where I come in.

“It’s a dream job.”

Olivia was working as an admin assistant before and she started up her dog walking business in June 2021 – spending her lunch breaks walking pets.

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She quit her job in November 2022 to travel South East Asia and Australia and decided she wanted to get into event management when she returned in March 2023.

Olivia said: “I always wanted to be a wedding planner.

“But I found it really hard to get a job in that industry without experience.”

Olivia managed to secure a job as an event sales assistant at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh and got an insight into the weddings they held there.

She worked there for three weeks before deciding to quit and start up her dog chaperone business – realising she could combine her two passions.

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Olivia said: “At the botanical gardens you could have dogs there. I thought 'who is looking after the dogs?'.

“I realised the dogs make me the happiest.

Olivia Thompson / SWNS

“I love weddings.”

Olivia launched in June 2023, starting up her dog walking on the side to keep money rolling in, and has attended four weddings so far – making around £300 for each day.

Olivia has a meet up with the bride and groom and their pooch before the day and finds out what they need from her.

She said: “I always meet the client before the wedding day - to find out anything I need to know and see the behaviour.

“It’s kind of custom to the bride or groom.

“Lots of people book me for the photographs.

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“Some people don’t want the dogs at the ceremony - sometimes they want them after.

“A lot of people find it important to have their dog in their photographs.”

Olivia even walked up the aisle in one wedding with a dog in hand.

She said: “I felt nervous, and it wasn’t even my wedding.

“That was my first wedding where they wanted her for the ceremony.

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"Every single dog has been well behaved so far. I'm dreading the day they are not."

Olivia has already got booking for next year and even 2026.

She said: “I love seeing the different venues.

“I love to see the wedding dress.”

Olivia Thompson / SWNS

She and her partner, Conor, 29, an electrician, have just got their own 10-week-old puppy together – Ginny, a Hungarian Vizsla.

Olivia hopes she will be part of her own wedding day – when the time comes.

She said: “I think she’ll be the ring bearer.

“I have visions of her coming down the aisle with the bridesmaid or maid of honour.

“This is if Conor decides to pop the question.”

Olivia is “proud” of her success and has proved doubters wrong.

She said: “A lot of people doubted me.

“I’m proud of myself for going for it.”

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