Treat yourself to a Golden
PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING BEFORE SUBMITTING YOUR APPLICATION
IS A RESCUE GOLDEN FOR ME ?
It is a fact that over 95% of the dogs taken into Rescue have either been neglected, or abused.
The cycle starts from puppy-hood. A warm, fuzzy Golden Retriever puppy is difficult to resist. There is nothing quite as adorable as a Golden Retriever puppy. But, like any puppy, they quickly grow into dogs. Gone, all too rapidly, is the adorable snuggly puppy; replaced by an adolescent chewing machine, who requires tons of attention, exercise, consistent training, and socialization.
When the once adorable 'Fuzzy' is left unattended and eats the sofa, Fuzzy gets relegated to the yard, either loose or chained. 'Fuzzy' becomes bored, and continues to wreak havoc, or repeatedly escapes in search of human companionship and stimulation. Generally the owner becomes frustrated, and either surrenders the dog to rescue, or doesn't bother to pick it up, for the 4th time, from the pound. In extreme cases, 'Fuzzy' is beaten to "break" the bad behavior. So starts a life of neglect and/or abuse. The lucky ones find their way to Rescue, and the chance at new homes and new lives with abundant love and attention. The unlucky ones, are often un-necessarily euthanized or abandoned.
Goldens are, by nature, people pleasers. Praise and consistent training, can turn most any neglected or abused Golden into a loving, well mannered companion. Adopting a neglected or abused Golden can be a daunting task, one that requires patience, fortitude, and above all; love, understanding and consistency. While our foster homes begin the rehabilitation process, the adoptive family must be willing to make a serious commitment to continue their efforts.
Changing unacceptable behaviors, can be a long term process. Like all of us, each dog is a distinct individual. Some are confident, and adjust quickly to their new lives, others lack confidence, and take longer to adjust. Whatever their background, rescued Goldens share a common bond: uncertainty. Whether surrendered due to the death of an owner, or given up because they are no longer wanted, most have been removed from the only home they have ever known; placed in foster care, then moved once again, to what we all hope, is their "forever" home. The transition can be difficult, but given time, and love, rescued Goldens bond to their new families more strongly than some dogs, properly raised from puppy-hood. Love, patience, and a true desire to help these dogs adjust is all it takes. There is nothing quite like watching a tentative, shy or phobic Golden, blossom into a self-confident, loving, well mannered companion.
The volunteers of GRRRR Midwest are always available and willing to help our adoptive families through any adjustment problems. Some of the problem behaviors an adoptive family may encounter are:
Anxiety: Characterized by inappropriate eliminations indoors, chewing, and restlessness (pacing and panting). Simple steps to behavior modification are usually effective, and in extreme cases, inexpensive medication, and adequate adjustment time, generally resolve most cases of adjustment anxiety. In cases where medication is necessary it can usually be discontinued gradually as the dog becomes secure in it's new environment. Medication should only be considered in extreme situations, and only when prescribed by a Veterinarian. Unless the dog comes to rescue with anxiety issues, this problem is usually temporary, and with proper guidance can be resolved in a matter of weeks.
Digging, barking, and escaping confinement: Resolved with time, patience, and consistent affection. In these cases we strongly recommend formal, positive reinforcement, obedience training. Obedience training provides structure, and again, consistency. Digging, barking and escaping, are common symptoms of boredom. Dogs are by nature pack animals, and require companionship. Please note the Goldens in our program MUST be considered "family members".Please do not submit an application if you plan to leave your dog outdoors at all times or to 'store' your dog in a basement or garage. The majority of the dogs who have come to us, are with us because they have not fared well in this same situation. It is inadvisable to leave an adopted dog in a yard unattended while you are away from home, as it is not unusual for the dog to escape in an effort to "find" it's new family. While "crating" is an excellent training tool, confinement to a crate or kennel for long periods of time may result in undesirable behaviors when the dog is released from confinement. If you are unfamiliar with "crate training", please feel free to discuss this with the dog's foster family.
Cowering and submissive urination: Cowering is not necessarily an indicator of past abuse.
Some dogs are, simply, very submissive by nature. It takes time to earn trust; have patience. Submissive urination, is generally easy to correct by simply not fussing over the dog when arriving home. Make homecoming a matter of fact event, and ignore exuberant greeting behavior for 15 to 20 minutes. Obedience training also tends to relieve submissive urination.
Please remember, all rescue dogs come with "baggage". Perfect dogs rarely come to Rescue. With love and patience a rescued Golden can and will become a very special companion. When provided with love, training, and a "family" environment, rescued Goldens form strong emotional attachments to their adoptive families.
Most problem behaviors in Rescued Goldens resolve themselves within 1 to 3 weeks. Patience, consistent attention, affection and training are the keys to helping an adopted Golden adjust. Our foster families take great pride in the work they do with the dogs in their care. Behaviors that an experienced foster home may find unremarkable, may be more than an adoptive family wishes to deal with. Our foster families will always be open and honest when discussing their foster dog's behaviors. To us, you are not simply purchasing a dog, but adopting a life-long companion.
If you are rarely at home, and do not have a lot of time to spend with your dog, a Golden Retriever is not the dog for you. You may wish to consider breeds less demanding and more independent, such as Huskies, Malamutes, Australian Shepherds, Chesapeake Bay Retrievers, Setters or Chows.
If you are looking for a protective dog a Golden Retriever is not for you.
Most Goldens will help a burglar carry out your belongings. The Goldens' happy-go-lucky, gregarious nature, make them wonderful family pets, not watchdog material.
If you are fastidious about your home, a Golden may not be for you. Goldens shed year round with seasonal "coat blows" in Spring and Fall. A roll in a mud puddle and a nap on a soft warm sofa is a Golden's idea of bliss.
Health Issues: Over and indiscriminate breeding have created health issues that you should be aware of. Goldens have a propensity for Hip Dysplasia, Cataracts, Subvalvular Aortic Stenosis (heart problems), various forms of Cancer, Seizure disorders, and Hypothyroidism.
All of the Goldens available through GRRRR Midwest have been spay/neutered( if old enough), immunized for Rabies, DHLPP, and Bordatella. All are on Heartworm preventative. In cases where we suspect Dysplasia we may ask our vets to do X-rays.
Senior Goldens, or those suspected of hypothyroid condition have had full body function blood work panels. While we do our best to fully disclose any known health issues or concerns to prospective adopters, not all health problems are readily apparent while the dog is in foster care.
The above information is in no way intended to dissuade anyone from adopting a Golden Retriever. There are many young and adult dogs in desperate need of loving homes. This information is provided so that you may make an informed decision regarding adoption.
Adopting a puppy or an adult dog should be given careful consideration. Our first, and only priority, is placing our dogs in homes willing to provide the life-long love and care that they deserve. Properly cared for Goldens return the love they receive ten-fold. If you are seeking a loyal, constant companion a Golden IS the dog for you.
We thank you for taking the time to read the above information. Click Here to submit an on-line application. If you would rather print and mail an application, please click application. You must be 21 years of age and able to sign a legally binding contract to adopt.
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© Golden Recovery - Retrieving Retrievers Rescue (GRRRR) Midwest