“They showed us a video of her and we knew we had to adopt her,” said Del Pozo, 21, who lives in Woodbridge, Virginia. “We both looked at each other like, ‘This is it. She’s the one.’”
An employee told them to return two days later, on October 28, to adopt the puppy at the grand opening of the shelter’s new branch in Lorton, Virginia.
If they arrived promptly at 11 a.m. when the shelter opened, they were told, they would be first in line to adopt the puppy, Del Pozo said. Otherwise, there was no guarantee that they would be able to get Daisy.
He and Mast quickly realized they had a problem. They would get married that day at the same time.
There was no doubt what they had to do, he said.
The couple, who met two years ago in the Marine Corps, decided to bring their wedding vows forward.
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“Instead of getting married at 11, we asked everyone if they would mind if the ceremony was moved to 9 a.m.,” Mast, 22, said.
They had planned a civil ceremony in front of a dozen family members and no one, including the officiant, had a problem changing the time, she said.
“Everyone was very supportive and told us, ‘It’s your special day, it’s your wedding and we’ll be there whenever you want,” Mast said. “We couldn’t wait to adopt our new puppy.”
On the morning of October 28, she and Del Pozo got up early to get dressed for the wedding (a simple white dress for her and a black suit with a blue bow tie for him) and headed to the home of a civil marriage celebrant in Fairfax. County to exchange their vows.
“We were excited to get married and also to adopt Daisy,” Del Pozo said.
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As soon as they finished saying their “I do,” they ran to the animal shelter in Lorton in their wedding attire.
“We arrived around 9:45 and were the first in line when the doors opened,” Del Pozo said.
When a shelter worker went to pick up Daisy and take her inside, “we were both shocked by how cute she was,” he said. “When I grabbed her, she started loving us and we knew that was how it was meant to be.”
Mast said she was immediately captivated by the puppy’s velvety black face and playful nature.
“I didn’t expect it to be so small either,” she said. “We both thought she was perfect.”
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Daisy arrived at the animal shelter in mid-October after she was found wandering the streets of Fairfax County, said Rebecca Cavedon, communications manager for the Fairfax County Animal Shelter Department.
“She spent some time in a foster home while our customer service team worked to see if there was a family looking for her,” she said. “When no one came forward for Daisy, she was made available for adoption on October 28.”
Cavedon said she was delighted to learn that a pair of newlyweds had stepped forward to adopt the stray pup.
“It was a special moment to witness this young family grow one by one and see Daisy immediately shower them with kisses,” he said.
Mast said she and Del Pozo became best friends after meeting in the Marine Corps, and their friendship soon turned into something more serious.
“Each of us lived in the [Quantico] base at that time, and we finally realized that we were attracted to each other,” he said.
Del Pozo proposed on October 7 while they were walking in Great Falls, Virginia, Mast added.
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“It was our first time there and he found the perfect view of the water on this beautiful fall day to invite me,” she said. “We decided we would have a small civil ceremony the same month and then continue over the next two years with a larger ceremony.”
She and Del Pozo have always loved dogs, she said, so they decided to adopt one before their wedding. They first shared their story about adopting Daisy on People.
After the couple completed the paperwork to make the adoption official, they moved on to the day’s other official procedure, joining family members for a reception that included hors d’oeuvres and vanilla wedding cake.
They also introduced Daisy to her parents and siblings at the festivities.
“Everyone is so happy we were able to add her to our family on our special day,” said Mast, who now plans to stop by Regan Del Pozo. “Everyone thought she was very sweet.”
At some point, she and Del Pozo hope to go on their honeymoon, but for now they’re content to walk their new puppy and teach him to play fetch, she said.
Daisy is learning to be housebroken and has taken over the couple’s apartment, they said. She loves to snuggle with them in bed at night, Del Pozo added.
“She’s smart, adorable and super dumb,” he said. “She’s definitely our favorite wedding gift.”