The 12th day of the 12th month of the year 2012 was always likely to throw up some unexplained phenomena, but no one could have predicted what happened in one house in Rochdale – where Lucy the golden labrador gave birth to 12 black puppies.
What makes the event even more remarkable is that Lucy's owner, Rachel Foy, didn't even know her pet was pregnant, and had her booked in to be neutered.
An 18-month-old German shepherd called Jack has been identified as the most likely father, and Ms Foy is now advising all dog-owners to avoid making the same mistake as her and get their pet neutered as young as possible.
Caring for 12 puppies can be expensive, and requires a hefty investment in essentials such as dog food and dog chew toys, which is why owners must take all the necessary steps to avoid any unwanted litters.
Animal rescue and rehoming centres are traditionally flooded with discarded pets at this time of year, and are urging people to do the responsible thing and have their animals neutered.