Even though the U.S. has seen a dramatic reduction in the annual number of
dogs and cats euthanized – rates are one-quarter to one-fifth of those in
decades past – an estimated 2.7 million still fail to be adopted every year.
Given that 25-40% of rescue dogs are purebred, the need for specific-breed
advocacy is vital. Championing the merits of a particular breed not only helps
the breed in question, it also boosts the perception of all breeds. This month’s
featured grant recipient has made significant inroads towards fighting canine
homelessness through their tireless advocacy on behalf of Golden Retrievers.
For over 20 years, Golden Retrievers In Need (GRIN) Rescue Service has been
providing care for abandoned purebreds in northeastern Ohio, western
Pennsylvania and nearby communities. The retrievers welcomed into GRIN’s
foster-care program come from a variety of situations – local shelters, wandering the streets, even from pet parents forced by financial hardship
to relinquish their dogs. Partnering with local veterinarians, team members
ensure that every intake receives a full medical work-up to assess and address
individual needs prior to final adoption. Since its inception in 1992, this
non-profit organization has a proven track-record for success, placing over
2,600 Goldens in loving homes.
The all-volunteer staff at GRIN has witnessed a wide scale of abuse and neglect
among the many dogs that have come into their care. They’ve helped canines make
recoveries that are nothing short of miraculous. In just the last year, they
admitted two Goldens who share an ideal target weight of 75 lbs. (based upon
their age, height and other factors), but their conditions at the time of their
rescues could not have been more different. Dakota, neglected and chronically
underfed to the point of starvation, weighed a mere 30 lbs. The other, named
Heath, was severely obese, topping out at 145 lbs. Without GRIN’s intervention,
these dogs likely would not have survived.
Recently, GRIN was asked to take guardianship of a special-needs puppy.
Described as ‘happy-go-lucky’ and ‘spunky’, Missy is a six-month-old Golden
Retriever. Gazing upon her beautiful face, you’d never guess that she was born
with a genetic defect.
The condition is referred to as an ‘ectopic ureter’, which means that her
kidneys and bladder were not naturally connected. One veterinary surgeon labeled
her situation as an ‘extremely complex abnormality’. Because both ureters were
emptying urine into her abdomen and reproductive system, she had zero ‘bladder
control’ because there was no bladder to control. All of her short life, Missy
has had to wear a diaper at all times.
Due to the severity of her condition, surgery was the only viable option for
improving her quality of life. Our financial assistance helped to cover some of
the costs of Missy’s operation a couple of weeks ago.
The surgery took a toll, as she experienced a post-operative infection. However,
after a few days in ICU, Missy bounced back and is now an active, happy pup with
a healthy appetite.
It will be at least another week before her doctors are able to gauge the
success of the procedure, but they’re encouraged with her resilience and spirit.
Even though it’s possible that this little Golden will need to undergo
additional treatments and therapies before she’s made completely whole, it’s
hard to imagine her receiving better care than that provided by this amazing
Until her medical issues are resolved, Missy’s adoption status will remain
on-hold. In the meantime, we will keep her in our thoughts, and hope that her
recovery is swift and lasting. If you would also like to keep track of this
sweet girl’s progress, you can go to grinrescue.org, where they’ll be providing
periodic updates about her condition.
At GRIN, every day presents the possibility of making a positive difference for
a special retriever. As we’ve just seen, they never pass up on a chance to make
an opportunity golden.
We thank you for helping us make this small step toward a better life possible
for this beautiful dog, as well as all the other steps we take to help animal
rescue groups across America. Your personal donations and continued business
make this and every grant possible.
This holiday season, any contribution you make will help to ensure that
deserving groups like GRIN continue to receive much-needed financial support. We
will be thrilled to receive a donation, in any amount.
Check back next month for another dose of uplifting news from our foundation!