Golden Retriever Rescue, Education and Training, Inc. (GRREAT) is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization dedicated to finding loving new homes for unwanted, stray, and abandoned Golden Retrievers. We serve Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, the District of Columbia, eastern West Virginia, and south central Pennsylvania, and are staffed solely by volunteers. GRREAT places approximately 100 Golden Retrievers each year. We also strive to educate the public about the characteristics of the Golden Retriever breed and the rewards of giving a home to a rescued dog.
The majority of GRREAT dogs are turned in to us by their previous owners, but we also work in conjunction with area shelters and local animal welfare organizations. Each dog that comes into GRREAT is placed into a volunteer foster home where the temperament, energy level, habits, and medical requirements of the dog are evaluated. This gives us the opportunity to select a permanent home for each dog that meets the dog’s individual needs. The dogs we rescue are spayed or neutered, updated on vaccinations, tested for heartworms and intestinal parasites, and started on heartworm/intestinal worm preventative.
GRREAT occasionally receives puppies that are less than one year of age, but many of our dogs are under the age of five. Young dogs like these are often given up because their owners are unprepared to live with a young Golden Retriever. Goldens are large, active dogs that often display puppy-like behavior until they are three or more years old. You can see detailed information about the dogs we have rescued at GRREAT Statistics. If you would like to adopt a puppy, please visit the puppy referral service of the Potomac Valley Golden Retriever Club, or read GRREAT’s recommendations on how to select a responsible breeder at Buying a Puppy.
GRREAT relies on donations from Golden Retriever lovers to cover the expenses incurred in treating our rescued dogs, many of whom come to us with medical needs requiring immediate and expensive attention. In addition to needing cash contributions, we can always make use of donated dog-related supplies. Your cash and non-cash donations to GRREAT are tax-deductible. If you would like to help with a contribution, please visit our Donation Center.
If you become a member of GRREAT you will receive our quarterly newsletter and invitations to our special events, which include our annual picnic, holiday party, and other fun activities. The dogs are invited to these events and they always show up! In the GRREAT News you’ll find stories about our rescued Goldens, and information about dog training, nutrition, upcoming activities, and other fun and informative topics. To become a GRREAT member, please visit the Membership Center.
We are able to continue helping our rescued dogs solely because of the dedication and support of our volunteers and contributors. We are always in need of dog lovers who have an hour or more to spend helping a Golden Retriever. The majority of our volunteers are not dog professionals, just dog-loving individuals and families who enjoy helping a furry friend. We also have many opportunities that do not involve handling dogs directly. If you would like to volunteer to help these wonderful Goldens, please visit Be a GRREAT Volunteer.
One of GRREAT’s goals is to educate the public about the Golden Retriever breed, training a dog, general responsibilities of dog ownership, and the rewards of adopting a rescued dog. We often have information tables at local pet fairs, dog shows, and special GRREAT events, which you may view at the GRREAT Calendar of Events.
As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, GRREAT is governed by the Board of Directors according to the principles documented in the Constitution and Bylaws of Golden Retriever Rescue, Education and Training, Inc. and the GRREAT Code of Conduct.
We hope you enjoy visiting our site, and learning about the GRREAT need for rescuing Golden Retrievers!