Vol 4 No 3

Summer 2002

Front Page

Features in this Issue:

Another Puppy Mill Rescue ... and a Golden Bells Update!

GRRI's 2nd Annual Rescue Reunion

Pet Loss

Send Jagger to Orlando!

Happy News

Letters to GRRI

GRRI NEWS Archives

Letters to GRRI

Dear GRRI,

It seems hard to believe that we have had our beloved Brodie for almost two years now.  She has brought so much joy and pleasure to all the lives she touches.  She is a very gentle dog and very much a lady.  However, put a soccer ball in the yard and start kicking it around and it's every human and dog for themselves.  She's turned out to be a very skillful player, with the frisbee a close second.  My thanks for bringing this wonderful soul into my life.

God continue to bless all your heroic efforts,

Sr. Gloria

Dear Sr. Gloria, We couldn't be happier to hear how well things are going for you and Brodie!

Dear GRRI,

Leslie Crisanaz suggested that I send you an update on Pooh Bear, the dog that we adopted last April while on vacation in NJ.  He was almost five at the time he joined our family, and he has been nothing but a source of enjoyment for us all ever since.

Pooh joined our other two dogs, Chelsea 13 1/2 and Soki almost 9.  He was not great at playing with other dogs (i.e., did not know how) but he soon learned!  Chelsea is not able to play much as she has terrible arthritis, but Soki sure gives him a run for his money. 

Where we live, our house backs onto town forest with trails.  It took a while before we would venture out into the woods with Pooh because we wanted to make sure he would listen to us, but once we started, he has LOVED it!     We live on one acre and have a goodly portion of it fenced in so the dogs have great running area and we will be enlarging it later this spring.

My two grandsons, ages 4 and 2 live with us also, and Pooh gets right in the middle of the roughhousing that goes on here.  When the 2 year old is tired he gets his blanket and uses Pooh for a pillow!  The dog never minds at all!!  He tries to be a lap dog at almost 90 pounds and sleeps on someone's bed each night.  He has to be right next to you no matter what! He likes to snuggle.

Our 10+ months with Pooh have been a time of getting to know one another.  He has never been a problem and listens very well.  He gets a bit overzealous when guests arrive and can be such a nuisance, but we say "Visit me, visit our dogs".

I think one of the biggest difficulties was learning the commands he was used to before coming here.  I would try like the dickens to get him to "sit and give me paw" as our others do.  He would look at me like I had two heads.  Then one day I said "shake" and up came the paw!  Also, when handed a biscuit he would snatch it out of our hands, almost taking fingers with it.  I found that giving it to him in the palm of my hand was what he was used to.  Big difference there!  He is a terrible beggar (as is Soki) and knows to sit by the highchair for handouts!  He loves to ride in the car and is just an all-around PEOPLE dog!

If you ever hear from his previous owners, please thank them for us. He is a wonderful, delightful addition to our family and we all love him dearly.  They must miss him terribly.  I just can not imagine it.

Thank you for letting Pooh join our family here in NH.  I will try to update more often, as my daughter advises! 

Dale J. Grygutis

Dear Dale, We're so pleased to hear what a great dog Pooh is!  It sounds like he's made himself right at home!

Dear GRRI,

Hi! I just wanted to write and thank you again for Buddy. I've attached a picture of Buddy we took.


We feel very fortunate to have gotten Buddy.  We take him for several walks a day; he walks quite well on a leash and jumps up and down (my son said like a slinky) when he sees a squirrel or deer. He's a very friendly dog; when I get up and take him for his morning walk, he's always happy and raring to go. He's been perfectly house trained, which is wonderful.  He loves to chase a ball and bring it back.  He loves chewing on my hands (not too hard) and stretching out. He likes holding on to little things and not giving them up. My son has had me take him to PetSmart with Buddy where my son loves to show him off.  We've had him to the vet for his shots and tested for heartworm (he's on a monthly heartworm pill now); he has a Bridgewater dog license now. He's been a real joy!

Thanks again for taking care of him when he was ill and for calling us!

Ginger Siefring

Dear Ginger, Thank you for making Buddy such a full and happy part of your lives!  It's wonderful to hear how he's thriving!

Dear GRRI,

Enclosed is proof of "poor"  Andrew's operation - a very depressed fellow is he at the moment.

Andrew is really beautiful - very large - 92 pounds and not fat. The vet thinks he's a beautiful example of a Golden - he would have made a great 'field' dog instead of mommy's baby!  He sleeps on or by the side of my bed and we walk at least two miles a day besides his ball playing in the yard.

Andrew has brought great joy to our family and especially to me.  Thank you for giving us the opportunity to have him - and please donate the (neutering) refund to supporting your good works.

I would love to get the newsletter.  Something happened, probably forgot to send something in!

Again, many thanks for Andrew,

Jacqueline McMahon

Dear Jacqueline, Thanks so much for the donation ... and of course, we'll make sure you and Andrew get the newsletter from now on.  Please give Andrew a big hug from all of us.

Dear GRRI,

Mac continues to thrive.  We moved to NH full time last July and Mac has a lake to swim in and woods to explore.  He's doing really well and is a wonderful dog -- a great companion and joy to us.

We have a fabulous kennel here in Barrington that takes only Goldens -- its a full service facility offering grooming, training, breeding, etc.  Mac LOVES to go there-- it's his home away from home when we have to travel and can't take him.

Yankee Golden Retriever Rescue produces a calendar featuring Goldens they have placed, with a brief bio for each month, as a fund raiser.  Is that something GRRI could consider?

Keep up the good work!


Pat, Scott & Mac Nelson

Dear Pat & Scott, Mac must think that fabulous kennel is HIS vacation!  As for Yankee's calendar -- it's wonderful isn't it?  We'd love to do something similar in the future, and if we do, we'll be sure to let all our adopters know about it before hand.

Dear GRRI,

We have worked really hard with Dusty since he was a wild dog when he got here. 

We took a dog obedience class that ended up great because we learned a lot about dogs and Dusty learned his stuff.  It was tough sometimes, but we made it work.  Now with a 5 1/2-month-old baby, Dusty is his best friend and protector (even though as a mother I still don't trust him 100%).  He turned out to be a wonderful dog. 

Things that he used to do back then:  jump over people, bark at everyone, chew everything; and on top of that he didn't know how to behave, walk on a leash, be around people.  My God, he's a new dog now, he has mastered all the things above and beyond. If he doesn't remember something, its because we don't practice enough with him, not because of him.

He LOVES water and is an amazing swimmer, he flies in the air before he plunges into the water and he's very protective of us when we swim together. 

Only one problem area remains:  If he sees another dog, he HAS to go and say hello, ignoring our commands of No and Stay here or if he takes off he ignores our Come.  We've been working with treats but they are not as useful as I thought they were going to be.

Besides that, nothing else, he's our best friend, ALWAYS happy, ALWAYS in a good mood, never too harsh or too annoying.  We love him DEARLY!

Alejandra Menendez

Dear Alejandra, Obviously Dusty has come a LONG way!  Great work!  And you are 100% correct about the dog and the baby. Dogs and kids can be great friends, but parental supervision is critical.  All the best to you and your whole family.

Dear GRRI,

How time flies!  We can hardly believe that on June 15th it will be a year since we welcomed beautiful, smart, loving, gentle and funny 4-year-old Andy into our forever home, hearts and family.

His nicknames are Andy Dandy and Big A.  He previously lived outdoors in a pen, until his owners decided to proceed with landscaping plans that didn't include him.  Thank goodness that your wonderful rescue group intervened and helped him like you have done for so many other homeless orphans.  What a dedicated special group of people you are.  Because of your hard work dedication and love of Goldens, countless dogs get a much deserved 2nd chance at life, love and happiness.  All of you deserve a huge pat on the back and more!

From day one, Andy has been such a joy and is doing great!  We know that he loves us as much as we love and adore him.  Since his new mom is a home maker, he is a real momma's boy all day long.  However, in the evening he becomes a daddy's boy.  He also absolutely loves his canine brothers:  Teddy (Sheltie) 14 years old; Shadow (Golden) 12 years old; and Duffy (Sheltie) 9 years old.  He even likes our cats!  Like Andy, all of our pets were orphans before we adopted them.  It amazes us how well all of them get along.  Perhaps they all know that they have been granted a second chance.

Shortly after we adopted Andy, we discovered that he suffers from seizures.  Of course there was never any previous mention of them.  Was this another reason why he was given to your rescue?  We think so.  Is it possible that his former owners were unaware of his seizures?  This is very possible, since he lived a lonely, isolated life in a pen in a corner of their yard. 

We have had a complete blood profile done on him and everything was normal, so we haven't a clue as to what is causing his seizures.  Even though he has seizures, he is just like any other dog.  Like your typical Golden, he has that wonderful spirit and zest for life, along with the ability to love and that eagerness to please.  not to mention his Golden smile and forever wagging tail!  Who couldn't love a guy like thatt?  We recently started Andy on Immuno DMG Liquid to see if it helps control his seizures.

When we first visited Andy at his former home we immediately knew that he was very special and meant for us.  As soon as he was released from his pen, he ran to us, wagging his tail and jumped up at us, muddy feet and all!  Needless to say, it was love at first sight for all of us!  He continues to amaze us more each day and is such a clown!  He is perfect in every way!  He is everything we had hoped for and so much more!

On March 15th, we celebrated Andy's 5th birthday.  His favorite part of the party was when he and his canine brothers received a (plain) McDonald's double cheeseburger and Frosty paws frozen dog treat.  Enclosed is a picture of Andy wearing his birthday hat and scarf, along with other pictures.  We hope that everyone involved in your rescue group enjoys seeing them. 

Thanks again for reaching out to us, rescuing Andy and making him a part of our family.  You made a perfect match!  You also made our family complete!  Please take care & keep up the good work.

Love, The Ruperts

Dear Ray and Cheryl, First of all, thanks for your kind words about GRRI ... and the adorable birthday photo of Andy! 

You may be right that either deception by or ignorance of the surrendering owners kept Andy's seizure condition under wraps.

We rely on owners AND vet records for history (we obtain vet records whenever a dog is owner surrendered to us) as well as our own observations and examinations  -- and obviously, we had no indications that Andy had a seizure condition.

Of course, it's also possible that the first seizure you witnessed with Andy was his FIRST seizure.  Onset can happen at any age, and in most cases, the underlying cause is never known.  (In our next issue, we will have an article on seizures).

All the best with Andy, and please keep us posted on his health.

Dear GRRI,

Zoe is wearing her ID Tag # 02-019.  We're all starting to settle in.  Zoe has had a couple of baths and a few grooming sessions with us. She is really pretty, but her skin and coat appear a little dry so we've started her on some vitamins.

She has been to our vet and tested negative for heartworm, so we've started her on Frontline and Heartguard.  Her other vaccinations appear up-to-date according to her vet records.

Zoe is full of love and energy; but definitely needs some help with her manners; we're still working on "sit" and "down". Zoe and Atom, our Sheltie, are becoming friends.  Unfortunately, even though Zoe turns on all her "charms", the two cats aren't that interested in her friendship.

Zoe seems to like our backyard and has been "helping" us in our spring gardening. She does not seem to like water ...  go figure.

Zoe has met many of our neighbors, some friends and family and everyone says she's beautiful and very friendly.

Thank you for allowing us to give Zoe her forever home. We'll be in touch.

Laura & Walt Maraldo and our furry family

Dear Laura & Walt, It sounds like Zoe keeps you busy!  We'd love some pictures when you get a chance.

Dear GRRI friends,

Here's an updated picture of Tucker  Kelly, who has become a beloved member of our family since his November 2000 adoption.

I can't tell you how much love he has added to our family. Despite being told he was a small male, Tucker is the tallest golden I have ever seen!   He is taller than my 5' 7" frame when he makes a full, all-out smack attack.

He is still pretty active and very mischievous. He loves snatching things (pillows, papers, gloves, shoes) just to have you chase him, enjoys playing gladiator on the front lawn with all the neighborhood kids, and helps my son do his newspaper route by pulling his cart.  He's a regular down at the soccer field and loves chasing birds along the Staten Island waterfront.

Last summer he came with the family to the Outer Banks and had a ball. Not only was he a prince on the ride down, it was sheer joy watching him run free on the beach.

He has calmed down a little since his puppy days. He just turned 2 in May. Last year, my daughter, Devon, wrote a story for her third-grade class called "Tucker the Terrible."  It was about Tucker's knack for getting into trouble whether its eating Matt's science test, gobbling Jillian's lipstick or dragging Devon through the mud after his first glimpse of a flock of ducks.

We, of course, don't really think he's terrible. We think he's terrific and can't thank you enough for bringing him into our lives.

Judie Kelly

Dear Judie, Devon's story sounds absolutely priceless!  Thanks for giving Tucker such a great home.

Dear GRRI,

We received our "adoption package".  Thank you.  It has been great having Madison (we hated the name Precious) become a member of the family. It is as if she has been with us forever.  She is very trainable and eager to please.  The poor dog just needed some affection.  She is with us constantly (she loves car rides) and our work schedule allows her to have someone around most of the time.

Regarding her weight problem - she is doing great.  We are following the diet that Teri Stewart suggested and she is walking 2 miles a day besides her general increase in activity. When we took her to meet our vet she weighed 88 lbs. She should be to her target weight by the end of the summer.

I wanted to thank Eileen McFadden and everyone at GRRI for all the work you are doing for the Goldens. There is no other dog quite like these lovers.  Madison is at my side having her head petted the entire time I'm writing this note. I especially wanted to thank Teri Stewart for being the foster mom for her. She has a heart as big as Montana and any Golden that has the good fortune to be in her care should be happy.

I have enclosed two photos of Madison with Linda and I - notice her tongue - that is the "post walk - catch my breath" look.  Also enclosed is a donation to help GRRI continue your great work


Bill, Linda & Madison Hunter

Dear Bill & Linda, Madison looks SO happy!  Thanks so much for the donation, and we couldn't agree more about the volunteers you mentioned. Thanks for the kind words, and all the best with Madison.

Dear GRRI,

My sister and I can't believe we have had Jake almost a year.  It feels like we had him with us from puppyhood, he is so much part of our lives.

He is always at our sides, especially with my sister, Mary.  She works from home and Jake keeps her company, following her upstairs then down then up again until he gets too tired and just plops on the stairs in the middle.

Jake is such a good dog.  He lets us take care of his hot spots when he gets them; lets us take his bone out of his mouth when he's had enough; but when he gets a tissue, no way.  It's his!

Adopting Jake through GRRI has been such a wonderful experience.  We can't thank you enough!

Betty & Mary Croft

Dear Betty & Mary, It's like we always say ... we couldn't do this without YOU!  Thank YOU for giving Jake the wonderful home he deserves.

Dear GRRI,

It has been over a year now since we adopted Bristol and just wanted to give you an update.

It has been an interesting year; even though he had the training he was still a handful.  He had the energy of two dogs and he loved to play with the kids and everyone by pulling on there sleeves.  And then the poor kids and there friends they would always be a candidate for UNcontrollable humping.   Unfortunately it was with some adults too -- usually other dog owners.

The real problem was the way he tried to play; he was very forceful and Big as you know.  You could see in his eyes that he was caring a load of stress in his eyes.  Others might have thrown in the towel but thanks to our love of dogs and Norma's [Animal Communicator] help and calming techniques we kept trying.

Then slowly we could all see him becoming a little more calmer.  At night when we would be lying around watching TV he would turn into a mush.  A completely different side of Bristol came out; he just wanted to lay on the floor with whoever and give and get love.  Now we all have a handle on his personality and I think he understands us pretty well too.

He loves to go for rides in the car and my truck. We take him most of the time to the boys soccer practices where we walk the park and watch the team.  We took him to the beach for a walk last fall on a long lead since we didn't have him from a puppy we weren't sure how he would respond to the ocean.  That took about two minutes to find out before he ran right in.  Fortunately for the long lead otherwise he might have stayed in for a while.

He also love going to a local doggy park it is a large fenced area where dogs run and play. He sleeps real well on those nights.  We had a few Holidays parties with infants and children and he was fine.

Occasionally out of spite when we return we find that he was involved in a sporting event:  Counter surfing that he is quite good at because of his size.  This usually occurs on shopping day when there are more cakes, doughnuts and pies.  I guess he thinks he's helping us with our diets.  Now the stuff is placed on top of the refrigerator.

We are still working on the humping; seems to be worse in the spring but otherwise he is a great loving dog and we are glad that you brought us together.  Sorry it took so long to write. I will try to send pictures now that I have your email and I have a digital camera so it will be easier.

Thanks Again,
Bill & Frankie Hedges

Dear Bill & Frankie, Sometimes it's those handfuls that are the most rewarding.  We're so pleased to hear that Bristol has been making such progress, and we know he will only continue to get better and better under your care.

Dear GRRI,

Max and I wanted to write and say hello -- actually Max says hello from his bed (that used to be ours) while sleeping under the ceiling fan.

We have really exciting news -- Rob was offered a job back in our home state of North Carolina, and he accepted!

And, what's just as exciting, we found a great house in a great neighborhood -- with a FENCED IN YARD! :) :) :)!  A really really TALL fenced in yard, I should add!

I am so thrilled I can't stand it -- Max is going to love it!  He loves being outside, and now he'll be able to run around and explore a bit more freely (with Rob or I out there with him) -- though he will remain an inside dog of course.

The neighborhood also has great sidewalks all through it for our daily walks.  We had hoped to go back to NC eventually, and this opportunity came open a lot faster than we thought. But we figured, why not now?

We aren't closing on our new house until the sometime in August, and then I'll forward our new address, and pictures of Max in his new domain!

One other note -- Max has a new hobby; car rides! He just loves it, and now goes to the car every time we go outside.  He's so comfortable that he just lies down for half the trip, and wags his tail at everything outside the  other half of the trip.  A huge improvement -- even after having him for about two years.  It is amazing the strides dogs make -- after we think Max has already come so far, he always goes a little farther and melts our hearts every time!

Talk to you soon!!

Brandii, Rob, and Max Lacey
wuff wuff wuff wuff

Dear Brandii & Rob, When we think back on the dirty flea-bitten pooch we pulled out of a shelter, we smile over the image of Max snoozing on your bed under a ceiling fan all the more!  All the best with your move, and we're sure Max is going to love North Carolina as much as you do.

Dear GRRI,

I am sorry this [adoption follow up form] is so late in returning to you.  Please accept our apologies.  I have just retired after 26 1/2 years of teaching in South Brunswick Township and unfortunately, put aside many things while trying to vacate a classroom and clean out years of materials.

We cannot tell you how much we absolutely adore and love Prosper, our Golden who we adopted from you a year ago.  He has been the highlight of our life.  We wish that we could bring him again to the GRRI Reunion, but we will be on vacation.  Had we known earlier of the date of the reunion we definitely would have planned differently.

Anyway, thank you for all the hard work you do.  Now that my husband and I are retired, we will have some free time to do some volunteer work.  We would be happy to help in any way that we can work with GRRI.


Pat Hannigan

Dear Pat, Congratulations on your retirement from teaching! We're quite sure Prosper will enjoy having you around each day to spoil him a bit more. And of course, we'd LOVE to have you and your husband volunteer with us!

Greetings to all at GRRI-NJ,

Wow!  Do we feel lucky since adopting Beau last April.  He is a wonderful dog.   He enjoys playing fetch in the backyard with a favorite tennis ball and just hanging out with the family.  He has become quite attached to his "Dad" and has been dubbed "Michael's shadow" .  Now that summer is here, he seems content that everyone is not rushing out of the house first thing in the morning!

Beau has been very good in "training" his family not  to leave their shoes around the house as he enjoys taking them for his own use!    However, we still marvel at what a good disposition he has and what a wonderful new member he is to our family.   Stay tuned.

The Dripchak family (Anne, Michael, Marie & Meghan)

Dear Anne, Michael, Marie & Meghan, We look forward to your next installment of news and photos!