By adopting with GRRoW you are saving a dog’s life…
a dog that is an intellegent, emotional being
who deserves a long, happy life.
The rewards you and your dog get by building
your bond together will last forever.

Our Adoption Benefits

Thank you for your interest in adopting one of our rescued Goldens. By working with GRRoW you will automatically share in these built-in adoption benefits:

Through the years we’ve built an incredible matching system for our Goldens. We look at each of our foster dogs’ needs and compare them to ALL of the applying families’ lifestyles. We then look to find the Golden that best fits your lifestyle perfectly…and the match is created.

Before a Golden is allowed to be adopted, we go through a rigorous checklist of things needed to be taken care of for the dog, both mentally and physically. Only after several weeks of foster care, as well as a vet’s medical clearance, is a Golden allowed to be considered for adoption.

Our job does not stop when you walk out the door. We pride ourselves in the support, the training, and the advice we share with our owners all through the adoption process as well as after the adoption is complete. We are ALWAYS there for you and your Golden.

Adopting a GRRoW rescue Golden is an incredibly rewarding and such a positive experience as you bond with your adopted Golden. They will repay your kindness and patience in rebuilding their confidence with loyalty, fun, and above all…friendship.

Due to the large amount of current applicants, adoption applications are now closed.

The Adoption Process

Adoption applications are now closed.

Apply toAdopt

Our adoption application is lengthy, but it needs to be. We want to match the Golden to the right forever family, and that requires a lot of information.

We’ll learn about you, your family, your experience with dogs, and what type of dog would be a good fit with your family.

With so many families looking for dogs and so few dogs available, it can be a lengthy process. Thank you in advance for your patience.

Have a Home Visit

Your home visit can be done in-person or virtually.

The home visit allows for you to learn more about the GRROW adoption process from one of our home visit volunteers and
for us to learn more about you and your family’s needs.

We’ll likely bring one of our friendly Goldens along to help you learn more about the personality and energy levels that might be a match for you.

Wait for The RightMatch

Upon approval, you’ll be added to our adoption wait list. Our Adoption Team will review available dogs with your application details to see if there’s a good match. If there is, the foster home will be in touch for you to meet the dog.

The first dog you meet might not be your forever dog. If it isn’t, you’ll keep your spot on the wait list until we find the next potential match.

It’s a lifelong decision, so you and the foster home need to feel it’s the right match.

GRRoW reserves the right to cancel an adoption application or deny an adoption at any time during the application process.

Frequently Asked Questions

Good dog care can cost around $1,400 annually. This includes annual vet care, inoculations, parasite testing, monthly heartworm and flea preventative, quality dog food, toys, miscellaneous equipment, boarding/kennel fees, grooming, nail trimming, and other supplies. This does not include any injuries or illnesses the dog may incur.

It is not uncommon for goldens to have medical issues (hip dysplasia, arthritis, cancer, ear infections, skin and allergy problems, hypothyroidism, pigmentary uveitis etc.). These medical issues can add significantly to the financial expenditures of your family pet.

Golden Retrievers are generally very active dogs (especially when young) and will require significant daily exercise.

Goldens may jump and knock down children or the elderly. They also may pull on walks. A commitment to training is a must.

The life expectancy of a Golden is between 10-12 years.

A non-refundable fee of $40 is required with each adoption application.

Adoption fees are dependent on the dog’s age. Under one year old are $500, one through seven are $400 and eight and over are $200.

If you’ve adopted a senior dog from GRRoW in the past, you may adopt another senior dog from GRRoW for $100. For international dogs, there is an additional $250 transport fee.

To adopt a GRRoW dog, applicants must be at least 23 years of age.

Small children in the home makes an adoption through a rescue group more challenging. In fact, we normally recommend families wait until their children reach the age of 6 before they consider adopting a golden retriever, particularly if you have never owned a large dog.

We do consider applicants with children on a case-by-case basis, especially when the parents have a history of owning a large dog. If the parents have never owned a large dog we are going to review your application very carefully and normally recommend you wait until your children are older before bringing a large dog into your family.

We carefully consider the background of the dog we adopt to families with children. Some dogs come in as strays or from a shelter with little to no previous history. Many times when a dog is surrendered the previous owners are not forthcoming about the dog’s issues for fear we may not accept their dog into our rescue. We prefer to adopt dogs to families with children that are known to be good with them as they were either turned in by families with children, or their foster home experience strongly indicates they will be good with children.

If you are approved for adoption, you may have to wait a bit for a child-friendly dog to be matched with your family. We take care in screening both family and golden for the best possible match. We want our families and goldens to experience a lifetime of safe, happy and loving memories together.

Golden Retrievers in GRRoW’s care are fostered in volunteers’ homes. We do not have a kennel facility.

Our Adoption Coordinator will contact you.

This is entirely dependant on the needs of the dogs we have in foster care. It could take up to 24 months!

In order to start the adoption process through GRRoW, you must complete the online Application Form.  Once you have submitted this form, a volunteer will get in touch with you to go over the next steps in the adoption process.

We restrict our applications to the state of Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Exceptions can be made for special needs dogs for which GRRoW is having trouble finding the perfect home.

Invisible fences may NOT be used in lieu of a physical fence. Due to the past history of some our foster dogs, if it’s specified a fence is needed, it must be a physical fence. Please know this is for the safety of the dog, not a statement of a person’s dog handling abilities.



All dogs in GRRoW’s care have been examined by a veterinarian.

GRRoW does not guarantee the health of any of our dogs. All dogs are given a physical exam, vaccinations, a heartworm test, and are spayed or neutered prior to placement, if older than 9 months.

If a dog is not spayed or neutered prior to placement, due to medical reasons or age, it will be a condition of adoption to be completed within a specified amount of time. The procedure will be paid for by GRRoW.

All dogs in GRRoW’s care are examined by a veterinarian and have:

  • The following age appropriate vaccinations:
    • Distemper
    • Rabies
    • Bordetella
  • Wellness exam – Includes weight, temperature, a look at the dog from the tip of its nose to the tip of their tail, checking all of the body systems, looking in their mouth, eyes, ears, nose, listening to their heart and chest, feeling their abdomen, looking under their tail, and checking their skin.
  • Ears, Eyes & Skin – Any infections will be treated prior to adoption.
  • Fecal – Test for parasites (worms). If the fecal test is positive the dog will be treated prior to adoption.
  • Complete Blood Count (CBC) and Chemistry Panel – For all senior dogs ages 7+, all dogs prior to any surgery or spay/neuter.
  • Aspiration of any suspicious lumps – If aspirate results are of concern, further steps such as a lump removal & biopsy are done prior to adoption.
  • Thyroid Panel – Will be done if a thyroid issue is suspected based on symptoms or T4.
  • Snap 4Dx Test (for dogs 6 months or older) – This test checks for heartworm disease and tick-transmitted pathogens such as: ehrlichiosis, Lyme disease and anaplasmosis. If results are positive in any area, the dog will be treated prior to adoption.
  • Monthly heartworm preventative – If the dog is not heartworm positive.
  • Monthly flea & tick preventative
  • Microchip – For identification purposes, all GRRoW foster dogs are microchipped prior to adoption.