You, Me and Bubba

by Dara Klatt

The rescue pup’s instinct for romance was spot on.

Amanda Thayer and Eric Heidenberger

Sept. 28, 2019 | Historic Rosemont Manor, Berryville, Va.

When Bubba, a rambunctious and sometimes mischievous one-and-a- half-year-old black Labrador/Pitbull mix first met Eric Heidenberger, his canine intuition sparked. His “mom,” Amanda Thayer, who rescued the pup at just eight weeks old, had recently started dating Heidenberger after meeting him at Shaw’s Tavern in the District (one of the restaurants that Heidenberger owns as partner of DC Restaurant Group).

A consequential question Thayer– a political communications strategist– asked this dark-haired potential love interest was whether he was a “dog person.” He responded correctly; that is, he responded enthusiastically in the affirmative.While just a puppy at the time, Bubba knew “this guy’s a keeper.” And so he inwardly considered, “Don’t screw anything up for mom, be a good boy.”

Full disclosure: this is how Thayer imagines their family-of-three love story began.“It was like Bubba knew instinctively that Eric was a really positive addition to our life,” she says. “[Bubba] witnessed how happy Eric made me … and loved having another human to throw him the ball!” Therefore, with his tail wagging and bright pink sloppy tongue primed, Bubba made the snap decision to accept Heidenberger as his “other person.” So, it made perfect sense that Bubba was present when Heidenberger proposed to Thayer. And it was certainly obvious that Bubba would be a substantial part of the wedding .What wasn’t quite expected however, was Bubba diving and doggie paddling into the fountain at Historic Rosemont on the wedding day. “Luckily, it was before any of the formal activities began, but it required a pretty hilarious extraction operation,”Thayer says.

Now living together in Dupont, Bubba and Heidenberger have their own special bond, like a “boys club.” This, Thayer adds, “makes me smile.”


Bride’s Dress: Emmy Mae, from Lovely Bride in Georgetown • Shoes: Sam Edelman • Groom’s Attire: Enzo • Custom Rings: Boone & Sons Jewelers • Flowers: Flowers Unlimited Designs & Boutique Band: Onyx, via Washington Talent • Event Planner: Michael Haymaker • Catering: Celebrations Catering • Dessert: Moe’s Donut Shop • Photographer: Sam Ellis Photography • Honeymoon Destination: – French Polynesia

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