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Where Our Goldens Come From: Most Goldens come to GRRI-NJ directly from owners who have chosen to give up their dogs up due to allergies, divorce, or death; or because they didn't give enough thought to the realities of Golden Retriever ownership and find themselves unprepared for the level of responsibility required. GRRI-NJ also occasionally helps Goldens that have been removed from abusive environments or that have been found as strays.  GRRI-NJ concentrates its efforts in New Jersey.

How Goldens Enter Our Program: Before ANY Golden can be accepted into the program, GRRI-NJ carefully evaluates the dog's temperament, reviews the dog's health status,  and arranges for necessary veterinary and foster care.  Once all of these steps have been completed, the acceptance process is complete and GRRI-NJ begins the process of matching the Golden with a suitable loving family.

Our Adoption Process:  The first step is to obtain a GRRI-NJ adoption application, which must be completed in full.  It includes important questions that GRRI-NJ uses to match a dog to your lifestyle and family routine.
PLEASE NOTE:  If you plan to purchase/adopt a dog, or have recently purchased or adopted a dog, GRRI has a 6-month waiting period which begins on the date when you brought your new dog home.  We will not place one of our Goldens into a home with a newly acquired pet.  This is so that your new member can become fully integrated into your family lifestyle.

Once your completed application and application fee has been received by GRRI-NJ, a GRRI-NJ volunteer will call you to review your adoption needs in detail. Some applicants are approved at this point, others are denied.  If your application review is approved, you will  be contacted by a GRRI-NJ volunteer who will arrange for your home visit.  Pending a favorable visit, your application will then be forwarded to our Adoption Coordinator.   If your application is selected for a particular dog,  you will be given the opportunity to meet the dog.  Since our volunteers are located throughout New Jersey as well as in neighboring states, this may mean a drive of up to 3 hours each way to meet a dog.

Please be advised that there is a waiting period to adopt that can vary widely depending on the needs of your family and those of our dogs.  That's because GRRI-NJ works to make the right match of dog and family; to find a Golden that fits your lifestyle, and that will be a cherished family member and companion for life.  Keep in mind that preferences such as age and gender can also lengthen the wait time.  Rest assured, however, that once your adoption application is approved, GRRI-NJ will contact you when a suitable match is found.

NOTE:  GRRI-NJ is currently accepting applications from residents of New Jersey, and Westchester and Rockland Counties ONLY.

Our Fees: GRRI-NJ is a self supporting -- and fully volunteer staffed -- non profit group. We receive no governmental funding or private sector endowments, and rely  on our own fundraising efforts, donations, and adoption fees to continue the work we do. The cost to GRRI-NJ to rescue just one healthy Golden can be well over $200. A complete physical, vaccinations, spays and neuters, and heartworm testing are the most common expenses. Many of our Goldens require even more substantial veterinary care and some require specialized professional training before placement to help them become better pets.  We work hard to keep administrative costs exceedingly low, but costs for postage, our hotline phone number, and insurance are unavoidable.

To partially cover these costs, GRRI-NJ has the following fees:

Non Refundable Adoption Application Fee: 

  • Submitted along with application, prior to application being processed.
  • $10 
  •  Payment of this fee does not guarantee that the application will be approved, nor does it guarantee that you will be given a dog by GRRI-NJ. 
  • The adoption application fee is not applied towards any adoption fee.

Non Refundable Adoption Fee:

  • Payable at time of adoption.
  • Puppies to 11 months:  $350
  • 1 year to 7 years:  $325
  • Seniors (8+):  $100
  • Pairs: $350
  • Special Needs: $100

Puppies and (rarely) adult dogs are sometimes placed intact due to health or other concerns that prevent altering before adoption.  In those instances, adopters must also remit a $100 Spay/Neuter Deposit which is refunded upon GRRI-NJ's receipt of documentary proof that the respective procedure has been performed.  Such proof must be submitted to GRRI-NJ within 30 days of adoption unless otherwise agreed  by GRRI -NJ in writing at the time of adoption.

NOTE:  Please be advised that GRRI-NJ only VERY RARELY has puppies available for adoption. The vast majority of the Goldens GRRI helps are adults.  For information about local breeder referral, please email GRRI-NJ.

Why Our Goldens Can't Be Bred: Golden Retrievers are now the second most popular breed in the US. One result of that popularity has been a major up-tick in genetic health and temperament problems due to careless breeding practices. Another result has been a steady increase in the number of Goldens being surrendered to shelters and rescue groups each year. The sad truth is, every year, THOUSANDS of pure bred Goldens become homeless across the country. For all these reasons, GRRI-NJ requires that all of our Goldens be spayed or neutered.

We Stand Behind Every Adoption: You can adopt from GRRI-NJ with confidence -- because we've already successfully placed hundreds of Goldens with new loving families. One reason for GRRI-NJ's exceptional success has been the careful screening process we employ every step of the way. Another is that if adopters ever have questions or problems -- or just want to brag about their GRRI-NJ Golden --we're just a phone call or an email  away.  We also want  every potential adopter to know that if a GRRI-NJ golden can no longer be kept by an adoptive family -- at any time, and for any reason -- GRRI-NJ not only WANTS the Golden to come back to GRRI-NJ, but REQUIRES that the Golden come back to GRRI-NJ. This is stipulated in the GRRI-NJ adoption contract, which we fully enforce. GRRI-NJ stands behind every Golden we place -- for the life of the dog!



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