03/18/2012 at 12:00 PM EDT
Forty lucky officers of the 1st Battalion Irish Guards received shamrocks
from the Duchess of Cambridge
on St. Patrick's Day, but only one dog could say he was as lucky.
Not one to leave a dog behind, Kate pinned a sprig of green clover onto the collar of the battalion's regimental mascot, an Irish wolfhound named Conmael. The wolfhound, like the other 450 soldiers present at the annual parade, wore ceremonial scarlet, but unlike the rest, received a few affectionate pats on the cheek from the Duchess.
Six-year-old Conmael has been the mascot for the last four years, according to the U.K's Telegraph
"People saw him shake his collar, probably as a thank you," Conmael's handler, Oliver Vaughey, said.
Kate is a dog lover who recently brought home a black cocker spaniel puppy named Lupo
, and the 5-month-old dog is keeping her company while Prince William
is abroad on military duty.
"I've got a dog that's keeping me occupied," Kate said
earlier this month. "I'm getting a lot of me time with the dog."