by Photo courtesy of the Helen Woodward Animal Center

The Helen Woodward Animal Center celebrated all shelter dogs whose birthdays are unknown, including the 43 beagles rescued from a Virginia lab-testing breeding facility in late July. 

August 1, known as DOGust 1st, is the universal birthday for shelter dogs that was established in 2008 by the world’s largest no-kill animal rescue and adoption organization, North Shore Animal League of America. This “birthday” applies to dogs who don’t have an official record in place. 

Shelter workers can estimate a dog’s age, but they can never know precisely when they were born, and nobody wants to see a dog go without a birthday. The Helen Woodward Animal Center celebrated with pup cakes and presents, and adoptable dogs were treated to special attention and played with recently-donated toys. 

According to the Helen Woodward Animal Center in a news release, three of the 43 beagles rescued from the Virginia facility arrived at the center last Saturday, and officials believe it was the very first time they had been offered treats or played with a toy.

“These beagles have lived years inside of a kennel,” Helen Woodward Animal Center Animal Care Supervisor Jenny Bueche wrote in a news release. “No one has ever celebrated them or the beauty of their existence. We have had to guesstimate their ages based on dentals and exams. In many ways, these beagles represent exactly the type of forgotten canines that DOGust was created to honor.

Officials at the center said this week is an especially celebratory time since it marks the start of adoption appointments for rescued beagles. The Helen Woodward Center said it saw hundreds of people express interest in providing a home to the rescued beagles.

Potential adopters can learn more about special requirements and fill out an application form here.

To view all of the Center’s currently adoptable pets, visit

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *