Whenever anyone asks me how old my little Wiley is, I always say, “The rescue folks told us they think he’s between two and four years old.”

That being said, I definitely remember the exact day and time we picked him up, the day he became our baby.

I didn’t know that “Gotcha Day” was a thing until PetSmart charities sent our Chihuahua mix a care package that included a toy that says “Adopt,” a festive glittery bowl, some streamers, and a “Pup-Pie” (here on Amazon) that looks like a doggy cake.

Snow the Shepherd Instagram
Snow the Shepherd Instagram

Since many rescue dog owners never find out the actual day of their dog’s birth or their exact age, “Gotcha” day is intended to celebrate the day your pup was adopted.

The first official Happy Gotcha Day celebration will kick off this weekend, Sept. 11-13, at 1,400 PetSmart stores hosting events throughout the U.S., Canada, and Puerto Rico.

Check Out These Inspiring Stories About Hero Pets!

Every day, 1,000 pets find a new home through PetSmart adoption centers nationwide.

“For adopted pets, confirming a birthday is tough, so we wanted to call out to these new pet parents with a special day, ‘Gotcha Day,’ to celebrate the moment they brought home their newest family member,” said Eran Cohen, executive vice president of customer experience at PetSmart.

With the weekend festivities, and Facebook outreach, they hope to find families to take in 15,000 homeless pets across the country–dogs and cats that may have no known birthdays but finally have a day to call their own.

Photos by Richard W. Rodriguez/AP Images for PetSmart

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