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Aristocrat offers
dog as best man at same-sex weddings

Aristocrat offers
dog as best man at same-sex weddings

An eccentric aristocrat is offering his rich and famous dog Jasper--who "is a bit gay"--to act as "best man" at same-sex weddings at his country estate.

"He is the perfect best man," Benjamin Slade said of his cross-bred canine. "He will not be making any embarrassing speeches, he hoovers up all the leftover food, and he is castrated."

Jasper, a black cross between a Labrador and a Doberman, has already been in the news for inheriting a hefty bequest from Slade's former mother-in-law, which has swelled to a trust fund of $290,000.

He has been dubbed the country's richest hound with tabloids lapping up his tale of "wags to riches."

Slade, who has been trying to drum up business for weddings at his 13th-century country estate, Maunsel House, decided that Jasper could be a particular attraction to the gay community since the government legalized same-sex civil unions last year.

"He is a bit gay," Sir Benjamin said. "He would act as the perfect best man in what is a gay-friendly house."

So Slade is promoting Jasper's services on wedding Web sites aimed at same-sex couples.

The pair are even planning to travel up to London for a gay wedding fair to drum up business, although Slade says Jasper would be available for straight couples too.

"Whatever they want, he is there for them. Maybe he will be better as a bridesmaid." (Paul Majendie, Reuters U.K.)

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