Vol 6 No 2

Spring 2004

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Happy News

Letters to GRRI

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Letters to GRRI


Dear GRRI,

Thought I'd just give you all an update.  Tawny is really starting to come out of her shell.  She used to hide when she saw the leash but now comes running over.  And she used to pull and try to run home if she saw another person (she is REALLY strong for her size) but doesn't do that anymore either.  She also doesn't shake with fear.

Now when we meet someone she just casually hides behind Mommy.  She may go sniff the new person and let herself be petted.  I have two neighbors that have really been trying to gain her trust.  And now she'll actually go up and greet them!

I try to take her with me whenever I can.  We were sitting outside this weekend with some friends and an old neighbor of ours stopped by.  Tawny was sitting between my friend Patty and I (Patty has worked hard to befriend Tawny).  He started petting her and we told him her story and he couldn't understand why I felt the need to [adopt her rather than just foster her]  - she was so calm and friendly.  Patty laughed and explained this is the new "extrovert" Tawny. LOL! 

My vet fell in love with her.  I took her last week for her pre-spay exam.  She was good in the waiting room - she'd be great on a plane. She just curled up under my chair out of sight!  She did greet the other dogs when we came in - but when she was under the chair she would occasionally growl.   


It seems when she had bloodwork done in Jan she was a little anemic (they didn't tell me that - said everything was fine)  We re-did her bloodwork and she is still al ittle anemic. So now she's on vitamins.  Also one of the other parameters came back indicating she may have parasites   At the time of the spay they'll also remove that lump on her side (which has gotten smaller)  and will remove her one bad tooth.

I asked her how old she thinks she is.  The shelter papers say 3 years.  She thinks she is probably older than that - but her teeth are in such bad shape it's hard to say.  She puts her between 4 and 6.  On the good side - she says her hips are great (surprise!)  She says there is a lot of muscle there.  I was worried because she always lies like a frog with her legs straight out.  She says that's good - that means there's no pain.  Who knew?!  Her spay is scheduled for May 18. 

Well, I guess that about covers it.  I can't wait for you all to meet her!  She is so small and pretty!  Oh, and remember the dangly teats?  Well, they're still big - but her fur has grown in so well you don't even see them anymore!

Terry Veiga

Dear Terry -- Poor Tawny really needed a special home that could shower her with love and give her time to heal.  Its wonderful to hear how far she's come!!


Dear GRRI,

We have been trying to get a picture of Lucky carrying around his "blanky" for months.  He is extremely camera shy.  As you can see by the look on his face he is not too pleased that we got him to look straight into the camera.  That's my hand on his collar.  Despite his look he really is the most affectionate Golden we have ever had.  His birthaveersarry (day we adopted him) is on August 1.  It will be two years this August.  Thank you GRRI-NJ!

Sylvia & Phil Mogerman

Dear Sylvia & Phil -- Too funny!  Lucky has the sad sack look down pat!


Dear GRRI,

Bailey is doing really well.  He's pretty much completely housebroken, very rarely has an accident.  Still fights with Austin -- usually over toys.  But they get along better also.  Bailey likes to tease.  He'll pick up a toy and show it to Austin so Austin will chase him.  They must do 20 laps around the house. Wheezer, the cat,has spent most of the time upstairs. He's still intimidated by Bailey. Lately he's getting the courage to come down stairs more often.  He gives Bailey a good swat in the nose if he comes on too strong. Bailey  will usually walk away.  Bailey's gained some weight, probably about 10 - 15 pounds. He looks really good. He's not too heavy. I'm taking him to the vet for the first time on Saturday for a check up.  He is the strongest dog I've ever had. We've let him come up on the couches, as long as he doesn't get too crazy.  He does like his afternoon naps. Sometimes on a quiet afternoon,  when none of the kids are around you can find him and Austin  stretched out on each end of the couch.  I want to get a picture but by the time I get the camera  they get up.  He still sleeps in his crate.  I don't have complete confidence to trust him  unattended yet. His curiosity still gets him in trouble at times. He doesn't seem to mind. He rarely even barks when we put him in. He's still a thief -- mostly for attention. Seems like he displays more affection each day. Like you guys said, he does test our patience at times, but we really enjoy  having him.

Thanks for the note.

Please feel free to contact me whenever you'd like.
Jimmy Conley

Jimmy -- So happy to hear you're enjoying Bailey and all his antics!


Dear GRRI,

Abby is such a "Love". She sleeps on my bed every night and follows me around wherever I go. She has charmed the whole family including her new brother and sister. She loves her backyard but really prefers to be around people.  My bowling partners presented me with about 8 stuffed animals for Abby. She tears some apart but seems to spare others. Sometimes she hogs all the toys and will carry 3 or 4 around at a time, will have to try and capture that on film.

I have taken her to the park and out in the car.  I have a feeling that getting into a car was not a positive experience for her  in her past life. When we took her home from your house she huddled in the back in a tight little ball. Now she goes out in the car, and looks out the window and seems to be happy.  I try to take her and Rusty out often in the car so she can adjust to the car and adjust to being with Rusty as well.

She is quite obedient, will come when called and sit and lie down on command. She just loves the raw meat but I try to monitor her feeding as I don't want her to get heavier. She runs around the yard and likes to go out on a leash for a walk around the block.... I take her and Rusty about twice a day. Daisy is not fun to walk so I leave her in the fenced in yard which she loves anyway. Daisy could care less about going in the car or walking on the leash. Her job is to bark at the squirrels and to intimidate the deer.

When I get more pictures I will pass them on to you.

Barb Doll

Dear Barb -- Sounds like Abby has you wrapped around her little paw, just the way it ought to be!


Dear GRRI,

We are sending this e-mail in regards to our dog Lacey.  We adopted  Lacey through GRRI on October 14, 2003.  She was 11 1/2 years old and given up for adoption from her family who just didn't have time for her.  What a loss for them, and such a tremendous gain for us.  

Lacey will celebrate her 12th birthday this coming Saturday, March 6, 2004.  She has thrived so much since we have had her.  The joy. love and companionship that she has given us is endless.  Though we never intended to adopt an older dog, the day we met her at the Golden Retriever Show back in October, we new we wanted to give her a home.  

We thank our lucky stars everyday that we were there when Carolyn and Allie (her foster family) showed up.  We truly believe that it was meant to be for us to adopt Lacey.  It seemed like all the pieces fell into place so easily, even her adjustment in her new home.  All of the negatives that her previous owners said have never come to pass.  She has had full run of our home after only 3 days with us.  Has never destroyed anything, nor does she chew.  For a 12 year old dog she still has alot of spunk in her to play, run and jump.  She has come to be the love of our life.  

Attached is a photo to share with GRRI. Also in celebrating Laceys' 12th birthday we will be sending a donation In Honor of Chester to the Joann Smith Special Help Fund.  Thank you again for letting Lacey come live with us.


Christine & John Meyer, and of course Lacey

Dear Lacey -- Happy Birthday!!!!!!!!!


Golden Friends,

Brittney (my 2003 rescued golden from GRRI-NJ) and I saw your article about Chester and his illness.  We are forwarding some money for his care. How sad., but it is wonderful that  Chester is in with such  a great group of people who  have empathy and love which Goldens have in abundance.  Britty now has a  cleaned up basement for her tennis balls to bounce off  - besides outdoors.  She  also likes sleeping on the couch.  Brittany is "woof-derful!

Joyce Schurzky & Britty"

Dear Joyce -- Thanks so much for giving a wonderful home to Britty, and for your generous donation to help Chester and other special needs GRRI Goldens!


Dear GRRI,

I have been following Chet's story on the web site, and I just have to  let you all know that miracles happen everyday!!  I think it is just wonderful that Mary Jane was able to open her heart up for him to come flying into. He doesn't know that his prognosis is dim, and he shouldn't be treated that way, which he is not!!  I love to read stories of people who aren't afraid of what might happen, and only think about the now and the present!!  Too many times people worry about what might happen, and they loose precious time that they will never get back.  Chet is loving life to the fullest no matter what his Doctors say, when it is his time he will go, and Mary Jane and GRRI-NJ can feel wonderful in that they helped him have a great full life no matter how long or short it was!!  More people should be able to do that!!  Please Please keep the updates coming!!  And also Please Please don't be scared to take in special needs dogs, they will always find a home, I have faith that their is a family for each special needs dog out their!!

Pam & Polar Patton
Visit us at

Dear Pam -- We couldn't agree more!


Dear GRRI,

Greetings to all our fellow rescuers.  Sophie, who we adopted as a puppy in August of 2002 is doing so well.  I  think sometimes she is a human because she speaks  to us and seems to understand  so many words and phrases.  It's incredible. She is the gentlest of Goldens and she is a wonderful younger sister to Max who will be 12 in April this year.   On  a recent visit to the vet, he said she is very healthy and  has a great disposition.  He did say too that she was very attached to me; like a child would be when they go to the pediatrician.  Thanks so much for  allowing her to  be part of our family.  She gives us all so much love that we try to give back to her in so many ways but we could never repay her for the incredible warmth she adds to our family. I will send a new picture next week.

Robin & Herman Sklarin

Dear Robin & Herman -- Hugs to Sophie.  We look forward to the picture!


Dear GRRI,

My husband and I wanted to thank you for the opportunity to adopt Cooper.   He has already brought us more joy than you can imagine.  We knew when we chose a Golden that we'd be getting a great dog, but he's exceeded all of our expectations.  We are considering training him as a therapy dog because it would be selfish to keep him all to ourselves!

We adopted Cooper in August from a family who clearly loved him but could no longer care for him.  He was a little matted but after a good grooming his beautiful self began to show through.  When we got him he weighed about 120 pounds and wasn't very active for obvious reasons, but he has since slimed down to nearly 100 pounds and we are amazed by his new-found energy.   The pictures attached are from December when we found out how much he loved the snow!

He is getting used to his new surroundings, although the hardwood floor  that connects our den to our kitchen/living room is the bane of his existence.  He's been a little better since we put a carpet runner in the  hallway, but he's still sometimes reluctant to navigate the treacherous floor without some coaxing.

His great behavior and his wonderful temperament constantly amaze us.  When we are gone during the day he just lays on his bed and waits for us to come home, and once we get home he doesn't leave our side.  More than anything in the world (even food!) he just wants to be loved.  We can't remember  what we did without him.

Thanks again for providing this service and for all of the hard work performed by your volunteers and foster families.

Valerie & Sean Mahon

Dear Valerie & Sean -- We can tell Cooper has found a fabulous home.  If only the GRRI newsletter editor could find the pictures you sent ... Could you resend them??



Let me introduce myself. My name is Dublin James and I just moved to Brunswick NY from NC. My mom (2 legged) and I have been following your story since we  moved and we would like to wish you a Happy Birthday and thank you for putting a smile on our faces and reminding us how good life really is.

I look forward to all your updates and keep you and your terrific family in  my prayers.   Thank you for all you do for us.


Dublin James, Labrador of Brunswick, and Sarah Carter

Dear Dublin James & Sarah -- Thanks so much for birthday greetings for Chester, and for your very kind donation as well!


Dear GRRI,

Hi... my name is Pat Bean and a year ago, my mom and I adopted Chrissie (you know her as Crystal or Crystal Bella) has been a wonderful year with Chrissie - she is truly the perfect dog for us!!

To thank you for all that your organization did to help, I promised myself that every year on the anniversary of our adoption, I would send you a donation...well, the good news is that the check is in the mail - seriously, the not so good news is that I forgot to send a note along with it - oops!...anyhow, just so you know, for the rest of Chrissie's life, I will be sending an annual donation in the form of $1/day for every day that we're together... (since this is a leap year, the amount of the check is $366)

When I submitted our application last year, I explained our circumstances, that we had to put our previous Golden to sleep a few months before, and that soon after, my mom had a stroke. as a result, I needed a smaller, calmer dog (Barney's nickname was Saddam and he weighed 120 lbs)...all of the volunteers assured me that they would keep this in mind, and not to worry, they would find a good fit for us....well, they did way more than that...from the first time we met, Chrissie was a joy...while she has some strange idiosyncracies, there isn't anything that we'd change, except maybe her barking when she gets excited (she's very loud for such a petite little girl!)

Chrissie sleeps in my bed (usually in the center), and my mom cooks a little something for her almost daily, because the dog food seems so bland...and she goes almost everywhere with us ... she's visited my 88 year old Aunt and Uncle in Virginia twice with a third visit scheduled for later this spring, and we're all headed to the beach in Hilton Head SC next week for the second time (the drive takes about 14 hours each way - I vowed never to drive it - but we don't want to leave herself behind, so I drive)...I'll try to take some pictures of Chrissie's spring vacation to send along soon and hope that you have another picnic scheduled so we can plan to attend (we've been practicing for the kissing contest)...

Thank you again for your good work ... Theresa and Mary Jane were both fabulous with us last year...while I  would love to volunteer, by my mom threatens that I'd be homeless if we have more than 1 dog at a time, (Mom is 81) so the best I can do for now is send you some financial support... I  know that you'll put it to good use ...

Pat Bean

Dear Pat -- Thank you so much for your generosity!


Dear Lilli (GRRI Volunteer),

Things here are fine.  With this awful weather I thought I would stay in  today and catch up on my emails and say hello to a few friends. I was thinking it's been almost a year since we brought Max home to live with us, and we are very happy we did.    He is a great dog.   He still has the devil in him at times but we love him anyway.    He gets along great with Shelby and it's fun to watch them play together.      At first Shelby was a little afraid of him, he comes on strong, and is strong, but she has learned to handle him very well.   She gets him by the scruff of the neck or his tail  and gets him down on the ground to wrestle.    She is also a very fast runner and sometimes he can't catch her and gives up in frustration.    But they do have fun together and I'm happy about that.  Max is the kind of dog that needs a companion.   Some dogs don't need that but I could see right from the beginning that he needed something to keep him busy.  I can't wait for the nice weather so we can go to the dog park to play with some other dogs or even just for a different place to run around at.  Even a walk in the park because they do get bored with the same old yard play.    I'm so tired of this cold, wet, snowy weather.      Tim and I have been talking about moving to Arizona where the kids are.    He has one more year and then will retire.   He doesn't think he wants to shovel any more snow and I sure don't, so this summer we'll go out and look around at some areas we are interested in.    I hope Max and Shelby will like the warmer weather or should I say hot weather. 

Well, I'm off to do some housework.   This is the kind of day where there is not much else to do.     Take care and I'll keep in touch.    Hope you can make it to PA this summer to see Max and meet Shelby.

Sandy Coffey

Dear Sandy -- Great to hear from you. Now that spring has sprung, we hope both you and Max are enjoying the nicer weather!


Dear GRRI,

I just received GRRI's newsletter, and it reminded me of our wonderful Cody, who we adopted through GRRI a few years ago, due to my hounding of [GRRI volunteer] Eileen McFadden via too many e-mails .... Cody was the sweetest, most wonderful dog I have ever known, and even though he was with us a very short time before he passed away, he touched our lives considerably, and we miss him dearly.

I don't think i ever really thanked Eileen and GRRI for giving us the opportunity to love Cody, and I especially want to thank Eileen for the  sympathy card she sent after Cody passed away.

Thank you for all that you do and the difference you make in our lives and the lives of these wonderful animals.

Very truly yours,
Kathy Harris

Dear Kathy -- Thank you so much for your lovely note! 


Dear GRRI,

Good morning My name is Pam Strickland, and I had the blessing and the honor of fostering  a special boy just like Chet.  Though Chipper is now romping cancer-free at the Rainbow Bridge, his love and legacy lice on.

I can tell just by looking at Chet's picture how special he is and while his foster parents will, no doubt, have a tough road ahead of them, I can tell you from personal experience that giving him a loving home is something they will cherish for the rest of their lives.

I wish my contribution could be more, but for now this will have to do. If you would be kind enough to accept this in loving memory of Chipper, I would be most appreciative.

I truly feel that the world is more special because of my special little boy, and it is my hope that this small gift will help enrich Chet's life while he's still with us here.

With golden best wishes,
Pam Strictland and my Goldens, Maggie and Gracie

Dear Pam -- Your note and donation are very much appreciated.  Thank you so much!!!


Dear GRRI,

Thanks all of you for your part in making Beau (Bo) a part of my life, Bob for inspecting my home, Pat for her intake work, and Karen for fostering Beau until my return from Iceland last June.

In a conversation with Pat she once requested that I send in photos to the newsletter.  She indicated that feedback of any kind is one of the rewards of the workthat you all do.

The studio portrait photo, taken in January of this year, shows Beau in all his splendor.

Warm regards,
Dr. Laurence Sterne

Dear Dr. Sterne -- What a great photo! 


Good People of Golden Rescue,

It's been just over a year since Sammy joined our family. He's a lovely, almost 10-yr old rescue Golden. I can't tell you how much we enjoy his company.

My 8-yr old daughter Summer and her friends put on a play yesterday in order to raise money for Golden Re-Triever Rescue. I'm proud to send you the enclosed check for $75.  We hope this will help find a home for another gentlemanly Golden like our Sammy.

Thanks for all you do,

Suzanne Moreland

Dear Suzanne -- Please let Summer know how genuinely touched all of us are by what she and her friends did to raise money for GRRI Goldens.  Thank you!!


Dear GRRI,

Hi, I'm a volunteer foster mom with GRreat Dog Rescue out of Tennessee. Stephanie & Doug Glazer were incredibly generous in helping two wonderful girls, Sally (a lemon Beagle), and Stella (an unbelievable Weimeraner), make their way to their forever homes (the Glazers did the home visits for these two adoptions). We're all soooo thankful for their support. To show my personal support, I am sending this gift to GRRI-NJ in their name.

I have two Goldens of my own, one of whom was a rescue so respect and appreciate your efforts to rescue Golden Retrievers. If you ever expand to the Massachusetts area, or need anything in this part of the world, please let me know! I'm more than happy to "pay it forward."

Kindest regards,
Kathy Rogers


Dear Kathy -- Thank you!


Dear GRRI,

It is with a heavy heart as I read that Chester had to be helped to the bridge!!  He got to have his last months with his foster family who I know loved him dearly, and all the other people that heard about his story and fell in love with him.  Thank you GRRI-NJ for being able to take him into the program and find a place for him, that is what a rescue organization is able to do.  Thanks to his foster family for being able to know that your heart will be  broken, but being able to go ahead and let him into your lives.  You all will be much better people for it, he has touched all of us in a way that words will do no justice for.  I hope that others can find it in their hearts to let some other needy Golden into their home, remember the golden doesn't know that he or she is sick and only wants someone to love them and take care of them!!  Thank you all who were involved in Chester's placement and all the extra care that he got, he appreciated it.  Never ever be afraid to love, we all must live for today as life is short!!

Pam & Polar Patton
Visit us at

Pam -- Chester truly was a lesson in how to live life. He's greatly missed ...


Dear GRRI,

Since Sunday, March 28th, we have been the very delighted new "parents" of  Meg, a young, female Golden, who, until that day, had been in the excellent foster care of GRRI volunteers, Robin and Brad Slamp.  I am writing you today to compliment GRR not only for its caring and professional handling of our application but also for having members like Robin and Brad, who demonstrated thoughtfulness, dedication and knowledge beyond all hope and expectation.

From the moment I first spoke with Robin, I knew I was in the hands of  informed and committed volunteers. We had long conversations, both by phone and  email, and when we finally met, Robin and Brad created the perfect environment for our introduction to Meg.  Their goal of placing Meg in the right home was clear, and their sensitive attention to Meg's continuing progress shaped Meg into the lovely family member she is today.

Robin and I maintained our connection after Meg joined our home, and I couldn't be more grateful.  I needed Robin's guidance, and she was there for me always.  She shared the benefits of her experience and provided kind (and much needed) suggestions, reading materials, and endless encouragement. In reflection, what might have been a difficult transition was crafted, by Robin, into one of life's real pleasures.

And now....simply put...Meg is family. Our adoration is mutual, and we couldn't be happier!

In closing, we very much admire your work and would like to make a donation to the GRRI organization.  Our check # 27 in the amount of $500 is enclosed, and we hope it will help GRRI continue its mission.

Barbara Borckhardt

Dear Barbara -- We couldn't be more delighted that Meg has found a forever home with your family.  And we are so grateful for our volunteers ... thank you for singing their praises with your note and your very generous donation!! 


Dear GRRI,

Here are some pitures of "our" girl Maggie. She fits into our family very well -- you can teach an old girl new tricks!

Maggie has adjusted to our schedule and routines. We are giving her Deramaxx to relieve any discomfort in her paw. She runs and plays with Stanley & Gideon. Along with some extra sets of chippys (squirrels from the Hide a Squirrel) we purchased a fawn gentle leader and matching leash Thanks for the advice. 

See you in September,
Olivia & Bill Bergner

Olivia & Bill -- So glad to hear how well things are going with Maggie!


Dear GRRI,

I have been keeping up with the progress of Chester.  I am so terribly sorry about his passing.    Your rescue took him and put him  into the care of loving and wonderful foster parents.  You made his last few months wonderful, and for that I thank you ever so much.  (Thank goodness for email because if I had to say this I would be crying and would not be able to go on.)  

God bless all of you and thank you.  (Thank you also for the wonderful care you give all the Goldens).

Meryl Weiss & Her Golden Girl, Alex

Dear Meryl -- Thanks for your very kind note!


Dear GRRI,

I just want to take an opportunity to thank all of you for your wonderful support for Chester  and for Sig and me as his happy foster parents.  For the 'birthday gifts, and the care packages and the emails of support, thank you all.  To Eileen and Linda [GRRI Volunteers] for taking him to see Dr. Paul, thank you.  Without that, we would not have been peaceful in making the final decision.  To Linda, for the wonderful picture tribute of that beautiful spring day, and especially for being with him as he crossed, thank you so much.  And, finally, thanks to all of the Board for your advice and support.  You were wonderful.

Chester was such a wonderfully joyful dog....ever happy and full of an enthusiastic love of life. I know he enjoyed his days with us and I am so grateful that he didn't have to suffer much discomfort.  Since I had to be in school on his final morning, I spent some special time with him before I left.  He LOVED to carry things:  gloves, hats, shoes and toys....whatever he could come up with.  That morning he was nosing around on a chair in the family room and I thought he was going to take the throw pillow.  I was surprised.  He was very well mannered and never bothered furniture.  Instead, it turned out that his leash was there from his visit to Dr. Steckler the day before.  He got it and carried it, head high and proud, as in Linda's wonderful picture of him, to the kitchen to Sig.  The bleeding had stopped temporarily and he was completely himself.  He will be missed so much!

After I left, Sig told me that the profuse bleeding began again.  Something as simple as getting a drink of water would start it, and once begun, it was uncontrollable.  We know the decision was the right one for Chester. 

Mary Jane

Dear Mary Jane & Sig -- Thank you for giving yourselves to Chester the way you did.  We know he loved you as much as you loved him.