ADOPTING A GRREAT GOLDEN RETRIEVER
We welcome your interest in adopting a rescued Golden Retriever. The satisfaction and love derived from giving a homeless dog a loving Forever Home is boundless, and we hope to provide you with the information that will enable you to successfully adopt a wonderful GRREAT dog. Before you take the next step, we hope you can answer “yes” to the question: Is a Golden Retriever the right dog for me and my family?
WE DO NOT ADOPT OUTSIDE OUR SERVICE AREA
- GRREAT is active in Maryland, the District of Columbia, parts of central and northern Virginia, Delaware, and parts of south central Pennsylvania and eastern West Virginia.
- If you live outside our area, you may find a Golden Retriever rescue through the National Rescue Committee.
HOW DO I APPLY TO ADOPT?
Click here for the GRREAT Adoption Application now! Please fill it out online, then print, sign, and mail it in. All adults in your household MUST sign and initial the application. We require original signatures, so please do NOT send the application electronically.
- The non-refundable application fee is $25.
|In Maryland, Pennsylvania and Delaware:
605 Old Herald Harbor Rd.
Crownsville, MD 21032-1401
|In Virginia, DC and West Virginia:
23 Mapledale Ave
Glen Burnie, MD 21061
Please allow us 4 to 5 weeks to process your application. Why does it take so long?
A home visit is required
- After your application has been reviewed, you will be contacted to schedule an appointment to visit your family. All family members and anyone else living in the home MUST be present for this home visit.
- We may contact your personal and/or veterinarian references as part of the approval process.
How long will an approved application stay active?
- An approved application will remain active for 6 months and can be re-activated, at 6 month intervals, for up to 2 years from the date of the original approval. After this time, a new application must be submitted.
ADOPTING A GRREAT DOG
Notification of available dogs and adoption days
- A list of available dogs is emailed to all approved applicants periodically throughout the month. The list gives a description of each dog and contact information for the dog’s foster home. We usually have 5 – 10 dogs of all ages available for adoption at any given time, but we seldom get puppies under 6 months of age. An interim list can be requested at any time by emailing the Adoption Coordinator.
- There is also an online list of Available Dogs, which represents some of the dogs that are available at any given time. This list is updated throughout the month and does not include foster home contact information.
- Adoption Days are scheduled periodically, and are listed in the GRREAT Calendar of Events.
- Multiple dogs are available for you to meet, but only pre-approved applicants are eligible to adopt at these events. Applications, which will be evaluated at a later time, may be submitted by members of the general public.
Finding the Right Dog
- When you contact a foster home about a particular dog, a telephone interview may be conducted, and then arrangements may be made for you to meet and discuss the dog in more detail.
- We suggest you look for a dog that matches your lifestyle and has the personality characteristics you desire, rather than limiting yourself to a particular gender and/or age.
- We evaluate the temperament, activity level, and needs of each dog to determine the most suitable type of adoptive home for the dog. Dogs are placed with the home that best meets the dog’s needs, NOT on a “first come, first served” basis.
- The final adoption decision is made by the foster home, based on GRREAT’s guidelines and the assessment of the needs of the dog in question.
- It is not possible to estimate how long it will take for you to find “just the right Golden,” but the broader the range you consider, the faster you will find a wonderful GRREAT dog.
Vaccinations and spay/neuter
- All GRREAT dogs are current on vaccinations, have had fecal and heartworm tests, and are on heartworm preventative.
- All GRREAT dogs are spayed or neutered before being made available for adoption.
- All dogs adopted from GRREAT must be microchipped.
- If not microchipped prior to adoption, arrangements must be made within three months to meet with an available GRREAT microchip volunteer, or the dog can be brought to an adoption day, to have this done.
- The adoption will not be considered final until this requirement is met.
- The microchip is permanently registered to GRREAT so please let us know if any of your contact information changes.
The adoption fee
- The adoption fee must be paid at the time of adoption.
- Fees are based on the age of the dog and help to offset the rising costs of medical care. Currently the average cost to Rescue a GRREAT dog is in excess of $1000.
- A portion of each Adoption Fee is tax deductible:
- Less than 4 years of age – $750 ($350 is tax deductible)
- 4 through 7 years of age – $600 ($250 is tax deductible)
- 8 years and older – $500 ($275 is tax deductible)
Formalized training for some dogs
- Some dogs may be required to attend a formalized obedience class within 4 weeks of being adopted.
- If obedience training is required, a $50.00 course deposit must be paid at the time of adoption.
- When the obedience course has been completed, please send your Certificate of Completion to GRREAT, PO Box 190, Merrifield, VA 22116. Please include the dog’s GRREAT ID number on the certificate. A refund of the deposit will be mailed to you.
OUR ONGOING SUPPORT FOR YOU AND YOUR GRREAT DOG
- We will contact you after your GRREAT dog has been adopted to ensure things are going smoothly with the new addition to your family.
- We encourage you to get in touch with us at any time if you have questions or concerns about your rescued Golden Retriever.
Before you make the commitment to adopt a Golden Retriever, we would like you to consider that owning a dog is a big responsibility and one that you should be prepared to honor for the life of the dog. The average life span of a Golden Retriever is 12-14 years. Goldens are large active dogs, weighing 60 to 90 pounds, and often display puppy-like behavior until they are 3 or more years old. They are active family dogs who need attention, exercise, and training throughout most of their lives, but they are intelligent loving dogs who respond well to direction. Goldens shed and require regular grooming.You should be prepared to care for the needs of your dog throughout his or her life. You can expect to pay an average of $1500 yearly to give your Golden the proper care. This does not include the cost of a serious medical problem. An advantage in choosing to adopt a rescued dog is that you can be matched to a dog that fits your family’s lifestyle, and some Goldens require much less attention than others. Many of our dogs are already well-trained and can easily transition to a new home. If you’re ready to adopt a GRREAT dog, the information on this page will guide you through the process. Click here to go to the first step in the adoption process.