Adopting a Golden

Over 1210 Dogs Rescued and Counting! 

For each dog welcomed into GoldHeart during 2018, the average cost per dog rescued exceeded $1,300, up from $800 in 2015, with the exception of 2016, when our expenses were at an all-time high, reaching close to $1,500 average cost per dog rescued.

The fee to adopt a dog from GH follows below. All GH dogs are spayed or neutered, up-to-date on vaccinations, micro-chipped, and on heartworm and flea preventative medications. All dogs under 12 months of age are adopted under a GoldHeart Puppy Contract.

  • $600 – under 12 months  – INCREASING TO $850, Effective 3/1/2023
  • $500 – 1 to 4 years              
  • $350 – 5 to 7 years – INCREASING TO $400, Effective 3/1/2023
  • $300 – 8 to 10 years
  • $150 – over 10 years

Note: Refundable deposits of $150 for training, may be required during the adoption process.

More Information

GoldHeart (GH) Adoption Process

We are a small all-volunteer rescue group, that takes in about 40 goldens and golden mixes per year, and approves around 150 new applications to adopt annually. Absent any major changes in a home, an application approval is generally good for two years from date of issuance.

GoldHeart routinely operates in parts of Maryland, south-central Pennsylvania, and Delaware.  Please visit GH Service Area  for a complete listing of the counties we serve.  If you live outside our area, you may find a Golden Retriever rescue through the National Rescue Committee.

As discussed in the video, GH strives to place all dogs we rescue in their forever homes. Since they have been through at least one prior home, we want their next permanent home to be their forever home and our success rate proves that our adoption process works. This process consists of six steps.

  1. Application – Complete and submit an Adoption Application with a $30 processing fee (see link above under More Information).
  2. Reference Checks – GH volunteers contact your veterinarian and personal references.
  3. Home Visit – A GH volunteer and one of their dogs will visit your home to conduct an interview of the family and determine if the home is a good match for the age and activity level requested in the adoption application. The GH volunteer then submits a home visit report to GH’s Adoption Application Coordinator.
  4. Approval – The GH Adoption Application Coordinator determines whether to approve the applicant, and then sends written notification of GH’s decision to the applicant, along with details covering applicable next steps. 
  5. Finding a Golden – If approved, watch the website to identify an Available Dog that will fit into your home and lifestyle. When a dog is ready for adoption, you will see a complete Looking for a Forever Home bio along with foster home contact information posted. You may then contact the foster family to express your interest.
  6. Adopting a GoldenIf you are selected, before you take your dog home, together with the GH foster home volunteer, you will complete adoption paperwork, and pay the donation fee and any refundable fees (e.g., for training). Our job does not end when the paperwork is done. Your dog’s foster parents and other GoldHeart representatives will continue to be available to you. We want to help you make the transition of your new fur kid as seamless as possible.

Note:  Please check your Spam/Junk email folder for communications from GoldHeart if you haven’t heard from us within 6 weeks of submitting your application.  We have no control over your Internet provider and how they block/filter incoming email. 

 Approved homes may also be interested in learning about our Foster-to-Adopt program.