The Meaning Behind Dogust: The Universal Birthday for Shelter Dogs

by Hannah Roundy

Happy Dogust! Sundays is celebrating National Dog Month this August by sharing adoption events across the US.

So, What is Dogust?

Many dog parents call the eighth month of the year ‘Dogust’ because it’s National Dog Month and includes the Universal Birthday for Shelter Dogs on August 1st. This special day was made to honor the pups in our lives who were adopted or rescued.

An adopted dog's birthdate can be a bit murky since rescues or shelters may not know a pup’s exact backstory. Dogust events were created to ensure that every dog gets a birthday, even if it's not their real one. 

So, on August 1st, spoil your dog with a new toy, treats or a big box of Sundays for their Dogust birthday bash. If you’re already booked on August 1st, never fear as there are plenty of other holidays you and your dog can look forward to in Dogust:

  • August 4th - Assistance Dog Day
  • August 5th - Work Like a Dog Day
  • August 10th - Spoil Your Dog Day
  • August 15th - National Check the Chip Day
  • August 23rd - International Blind Dog Day
  • August 26th - National Dog Day

The best way to celebrate all that rescue dogs offer us? Support the organizations that help vulnerable pups find safe, loving homes. Check out our list of Dogust adoption events across the U.S. and show these groups some love. You might even end up adding to your own pack! 

Pacific / Southwest Dogust Events 


Bark (& Meow) Around The Block

Saturday, August 26th, 10am-4pm

2700 Ninth St. 

Berkeley, CA 94710

Live music? Check. Tasty food bites and beverages? Double check. Dogs and cats available for adoption from all over the Bay Area? We’re there. A chance to not just adopt a new pal but also connect with local rescues about how you can help in DOGust and beyond, Bark (& Meow) Around The Block is basically Coachella if our furry friends were in charge of the planning committee.

LA Animal Services DOGust Events

Saturday, August 19th and Sunday, August 20th (reduced fee adoption event) & 

Saturday, August 26th and Sunday, August 27th (Clear the Shelters

Multiple Locations throughout Los Angeles County, hours vary based on location

Los Angeles Animal Services has an active (and regularly updated!) events calendar that is a great resource for prospective pet parents in the LA area. Their reduced fee adoption weekends occur on a regular basis, but their Clear The Shelters event the last weekend in August will see all adoption fees waived.

Adoption meet-and-greet at Petco - Santee

Saturday, August 19th, 11am-1pm

9745 Mission Gorge Rd

Santee, CA 92071

The San Diego Humane Society works through a number of highly engaged area rescue groups (like the incredible Frosted Faces Foundation!) to place and care for adoptable pets. There are recurring, smaller adoption meet and greet events at local Petco locations - which has the added benefit of letting you gear up with your new best pal!


Street Dog Hero at Garden Home Dugout

Saturday, August 19th, 1pm-4 pm

7380 SW Garden Home Rd.

Portland, OR 97223

Adorable adoptable dogs meet delicious food and drink at this southwest Portland adoption event sponsored by rescue group Street Dog Hero. SDH takes in pups in need of a home from around the world and supports adopters to make sure their home is an SDH pup’s forever spot.  


Pups in the Plaza

Saturday, August 5th, 11am-2pm

PAWSH Park Place 

5870 E. Broadway Boulevard 

Tucson, AZ 85711

Pups in the Plaza takes place the first Saturday of the month at Park Place Mall in Tuscon. If you decide to make one (or more) of the adoptable dogs part of your family, you’ll recieve 25% off all PAWSH merchandise the day you take your new pup home!

Mountain Time Dogust Events 



Saturday, August 19th, 10am - 3pm

Caras Park

Missoula, MT 59802

For 17 years, PetFest has been a festival-style event to promote pet adoption, platform local shelters and rescue groups, and highlight local businesses and services focused on pet care. You gotta love an event that can balance an educational focus on responsible pet ownership with lighthearted fun like a Weiner Dog Dash!


Paws & Pals

Saturday, August 19, 9am-11am

Cheyenne Animal Shelter

800 Southwest Dr. 

Cheyenne, WY 82007

While not, strictly speaking, a DOGust ‘adoption event’ this collaboration between the Cheyenne Animal Shelter and the Cheyenne Running Club is a chance for active humans to meet active, adoptable pups and run / walk together. It’s heartwarming fun - in more ways than one!

Midwest Dogust Events 


PAWS Chicago Angels With Tails Adoption Event

Sunday, August 20th, 12pm - 4pm

Roscoe Village

Chicago, IL 60618

Taking place in Chicago’s charming “village within the city” area of Roscoe Village, PAWS Chicago will have adoptable pets on hand so you can meet and socialize out in the real world. A heads up that the standard PAWS Chicago adoption process applies, so check their website for forms and info in advance!


Adoption Saturday with The Rescue Project

Saturday, August 19th, 11am - 1pm

Bar K Kansas City

501 Berkely Parkway

Kansas City, MO 64120

It’s a bar, it’s a fully-staffed dog park, it’s Kansas City’s Bar K! Dogs adopted during this DOGust event will not only get a new human pal, but also a one year membership to Bar K. That means a whole year of joyful, responsibly supervised play for humans and pups alike!


Clear The Shelters 2023

Saturday, August 26th, 12pm - 4pm

Humane Society of Greater Dayton 

1661 Nicholas Rd. 

Dayton, OH 45417

For their Clear The Shelters event, the Humane Society of Greater Dayton is offering a “name your own price” adoption event, allowing prospective pet parents up to 50% off regular adoption fees. Adoption forms can be filled out either online in advance or at the shelter.

Mid-Atlantic Dogust Events


Dog Day of Summer

Saturday, August 20th, 11am-4pm

107 Levering Street 

Philadelphia, PA 19127

This celebration of all things dog takes place along Manayunk’s Main Street corridor and will feature pup-focused specials at many local businesses, adoptable friends through local rescue Saved Me, a dog agility course, a dog photobooth, and even paw readings from a local dog medium. A summer must if you are in the Philly area! 


Wico Street Beer Co Adoption Party

Sunday, August 6th, 12pm-2pm

100 Wicomico St.

Baltimore, MD 21230

The Baltimore Humane Society maintains a super active calendar of events, including this casual hang at a local brewery taproom with some adorable adoptables. Bonus: It’s a great chance to learn more about volunteer opportunities with BHS and other ways they need community support.

Washington, D.C. / DMV Area

Dog Adoption Fair

Saturday, August 12th & Saturday, August 26th, 1pm-3pm

Weber’s Pet Supermarket

11135 Lee Hwy.

Fairfax, VA 22030

The SPCA of Northern Virginia holds regular adoption fair events across NOVA, and these two weekends at Weber’s Pet Supermarket in Fairfax are a mainstay of their adoption outreach work. SPCA NOVA asks that potential adopters complete a ‘Meet Your Match’ form before the event but welcomes anyone interested in meeting adoptable pups or interested in supporting their efforts. 

Northeast Dogust Events 

NYC Area

ASPCA at RiseBoro Farmer's Market

Saturday, August 12th, 11am-3pm

Knickerbocker Ave between Starr St & Suydam St

Bushwick, Brooklyn 11237

We gotta be honest: NYC’s mobile adoption game is STRONG. Between the ASPCA and Animal Care Centers of NYC’s mobile adoption events, potential pet parents have a number of ways to meet a new furry friend (or support those working to make those connections).

New York State

Capital District Humane Association Adoption Clinics

Saturday, August 5th, Saturday, August 12th, and Saturday, August 26th, 10am-12pm

PetsMart in Latham Farms

609 Troy Schenectady Rd

Latham, NY

The Capital District Humane Association makes it easy to meet the next furry member of your family at one of their regular adoption clinics at area PetsMart locations.

New Hampshire

Happy GOTCHA Day Pet Adoption Event

Saturday, August 5th, 11am-4pm

New Hampshire Humane Society

1305 Meredith Center Rd.

Laconia, NH 03246

The New Hampshire Humane Society goes hard for a theme and we love them for it! This birthday-themed adoption event will give potential adopters a chance to meet available pets at their fun, welcoming (beautifully woodsy) facility.


Clear The Shelters

Animal Rescue League of Boston 

August 1-31st

Boston, Brewster / Cape Cod, and Dedham locations, hours vary

ARL’s Animal Care & Adoption Centers are all-in for Clear The Shelters this August. Facilities will have special events throughout the month, but you can stop in at the Boston, Brewster / Cape Cod, and Dedham locations to meet adoptable pals or make a donation in support of ARL’s work in the region.

Southern Dogust Events 


Summer Lovin’ Pet Adoption Event

Saturday, August 12th, 8am - 8pm

3400 NE 53rd Ave. 

Gainesville, FL 32609-2015

The UF Student Chapter of the Association of Shelter Veterinarians is partnering with Alachua County Animal Resources and the Wagmore Foundation to attempt a noble and ambitious goal - 100 adoptions in one day. All fees will be waived and adopted pets will get a free package of vet services including flea treatments and vaccines.


Houston SPCA Clear The Shelters Event

Saturday, August 26th, 11am - 6pm

Campus for All Animals

7007 Old Katy Road

Houston, TX 77024

Sometimes getting older can feel lonely, which is why the Houston SPCA is focusing their Clear The Shelters event on connecting community elders with a furry companion. Seniors 60+ will receive up to $50 off pet adoption fees and there will be free activities and giveaways throughout the day.

SPCA of Dallas Clear The Shelters Event

Friday, August 25th - Sunday, August 27th, 12pm - 6pm

SPCA of Texas Dallas Animal Care Center / Ellis County Animal Care Center

2400 Lone Star Dr.

Dallas, TX 75212

Throughout the month of August, adoption fees at the SPCA of Texas Dallas Animal Care Center are only $25. If you venture there between Friday, August 25th and Sunday, August 27th, however, all adoption fees will be waived for their Clear The Shelters event. Who doesn’t love that?

Puppies and Pét-Nat at Wanderlust Wine Co.

Saturday, August 5th, 11am-1pm

1601 Barton Springs Rd.

Austin, TX 78704

Would you rather spend a Saturday morning sipping on mimosas and coffee or cuddling adoptable puppies? The Austin Humane Society doesn’t think you should have to choose! This event lets attendees get up close and personal with dogs looking for their forever homes and 10% of sales will be donated back to AHS. It’s a win-win-win!

National Dogust Events

Clear The Shelters

Don’t see a listed resource in your community? Clear The Shelters is a national initiative of local NBCUniversal and Telemundo affiliates to - you guessed it - clear local animal shelters during the month of August. Since 2015, Clear The Shelters has helped more than 860,000 (!) pets find new homes. Their handy interactive map of Clear The Shelters locations will help you locate a shelter or rescue in your area eager to match you with a forever fur friend, with many participating sites covering some (or all) adoption fees during August to help make the decision that much easier! 

Dog Adoption Stories

Many Sundays team members have interesting pet stories, but Jeremy and Victoria have a special pup family. 
Jeremy and Victoria McDonald are a Sundays power couple because they are married and both work on our customer experience team! They live in Tennessee with their pups and have been together for 19 years. The McDonalds love horror movies, Halloween, music and nature. Victoria’s dad raises, rescues and rehabs exotic lizards and tarantulas–so even after Sundays work hours are done, they are helping other animals stay happy and healthy.
Their dog adoption stories begin in 2014 with Byron and Lydia. The puppies were found outside a friend’s house, cuddling against each other for warmth due to the freezing temperatures. Jeremy and Victoria’s friend posted a picture of the siblings asking if anyone wanted to adopt them. Even though they had just moved into a new house and were not planning to adopt, they knew Byron and Lydia were meant to be. 
“After work we went over to our friend’s business and there in a box were two tiny pups,” Victoria explained. “Lydia looked up at me so I had to pick her up first. She instantly fell asleep on my shoulder. We both knew we couldn’t leave without them.”

Age: 8
Likes: Pretending to be a “big baby”, burrowing under the covers, learning new tricks, being with his mom
Dislikes: When his mom & dad are anxious 

lydia.jpg 75.1 KB
Age: 8
Likes: Taking care of people, giving kisses, stealing & hoarding shoes, 
Dislikes: Going to the vet and not getting attention

In 2016, Baxter and Piggy were adopted by the McDonalds. Baxter is the older of the two pups and is described by Victoria as a “gentle giant”. He is the largest of all the dogs in the house, but he still loves to cuddle. 
Piggy has crystal blue eyes and is snuggly just like Baxter! He got his name because when he’s excited he makes oinking noises. 
Both Piggy and Baxter have a thyroid disease, which means they need extra love and care. Baxter has a more severe case that requires him to be on medications since he’s extremely prone to ear, skin, and eye infections. Victoria and Jeremy switched Baxter’s diet to Sundays to alleviate some of his symptoms. 
“Our vet was shocked with how much he has improved since his last visit, she asked what we were doing differently,” she explained. “We told her about Sundays and we truly believe it’s the reason for his improvement.” 

Age: 6
Likes: Jumping on furniture, getting kisses on his head, anything apple or cinnamon flavored
Dislikes: Eating anything other than Sundays

Age: 6
Likes: Blue blankets, blue toys, snuggles, giving “human kisses”
Dislikes: Loud noises and being afraid
Victoria’s brother serves in the military and is currently deployed in Romania, so they took in his pup, Recon. He is an Italian Greyhound mix and has been living with the McDonalds for a little over 4 years. Recon is obsessed with his monthly Barkbox and gives a “baroo” sound when it arrives. 

Age: 9
Likes: Toys, toys, and more toys!
Dislikes: Toys that rip apart too easily 
Sephora belongs to Victoria’s brother, but she spends several hours a day at Jeremy and Victoria’s house, so she is part of the family. She is a Mountain Cur Mix who is best friends with Piggy. Sephora is often called “Snorfler” because she makes snorfle noises when she is eating or excited. 

Age: 4
Likes: Playing with piggy, being sassy and snorfling
Dislikes: Being told what to do

Want to share your dog adoption stories? Post your pet stories and tag us on Instagram @SundaysForDogs!
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