Yeah, I know. You read that headline correctly – a woman who has given up on men has married her Yorkshire terrier Harry, with whom she credits getting her through some tough times.
For eight years and counting, Henry Frederick Stanley Morgan – a dog – and Wilhelmina Morgan Callaghan have enjoyed wedded bliss.
And as any household pet, Henry was has always been on hand for plenty of cuddles with his loyal support and companionship.
And not unlike any other marriage, Henry and Wilhelmina certainly have their ups and downs and their disagreements, but ‘king’ as she calls him, has certainly helped her through a few rocky patches in her life after she adopted him from a friend’s litter in 2008.
After reading online about how people had married their pets, she decided to give it a go, and eight years later the pair are still going strong.
They became dog and wife via a website, with Wilhelmina’s friend Rebecca Carter acting as a witness to the service.
And while it’s not legal for a person to wed their pet, Wilhelmina has a certificate to mark their spiritual union, and it is something she takes very seriously.
The Northern Ireland native explained: “Things have fallen apart somewhat since we married in 2009. I lost my job in a morgue, so was forced to become a freelance embalmer, there is not much money in that, and then my house flooded.
“But Henry has been great throughout – he is so loyal. I call him ‘Ri’ which means ‘King’ in ancient Gaelic, because he is like a king – my king.”
The trouble in paradise tends to arise when the ten other dogs she owns come into the mix!
“There is Merrick-Thor, Mercurius, Medeia, Celia, Madoc, Francesca, Bebe, Victor, Blodwen and Ludwig.
“We all get along – most of the time – but there can be arguments.”
But despite the tensions, it’s often Henry who comes forward to play the role of peace-maker.
“If a new dog enters the fold, Henry is the first to go over and say hello. There’s no ego, he is just so friendly.”
The couple even have ‘their song’. She adds: ‘When I sing it, he runs over. It’s called ‘Harry’s Song’ and it includes the lyrics, “Harry is my love. Harry is the one’.”
Wilhelmina also believes that there is no reason to believe that this relationship has a shelf-life, as she explained: “He’s been there for me more than any men have ever been.
“Unlike other marriages which fall apart, I know I’m with Henry for life. People may think I’m barking mad, but he’s perfect for me.”
Barking mad, get it?