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Found my Golden boy!
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
What are your thoughts on this?

I'm just wondering if we even have a chance. We have been turned down from rescues in the past because we have young children. (By the way that was when we were first looking for a cat) We found a wonderful group, Stony Brook University Cat Network who was willing to adopt 2 sister cats to us. Weve had them 3 years now and they have been a nice addition to our family.

Now were experiencing the same thing while looking for a Golden. My children are 8 1/2, 3 1/2 and 7 months. It would be 100X easier to go through a BYB, or any breeder for that matter. However, Id rather do the right thing and rescue a dog that needs a home. I know rescues are looking at the best interest of the dog and the family, but do they realize that families get steered in that direction because they say no without even meeting us? Goldens are supposed to be one of the best family dogs right? Wed even love an adult. It just stinks to think we dont really have a chance because we have young children as part of our family.

BTW We own our home on a fully fenced half acre on a culdesac and have vet references.
 

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Tracer, Rumor & Cady
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Goldens can be great family dogs, however they are sporting breed that requires exercise and training consisting of more then a fenced in yard. They can take a long to to mature physically and mentally. If not exercised and taught manners, they can be hell-raising, mischief-makers in a house.

It is a challenge to exercise dogs with a baby on your hip and a toddler bouncing about....especially if it is cold, snowing, raining.

IMHO the key is to have a partner that is as commited as you are to to run the dogs/take them to obedience classes or watch the kids while you do...

We got our first Golden when my kids were 8 and 10. The most trying time was when my kids started to become more involved with school activities....the kids demanded time that was usually spent exercising dogs. When the kids were each involved in sports all-year-round... It was a CRAZY-BUSY time.....with much of it spent divided.

Then there are financial resources....having a dog does suck money out of a family budget...
 

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Chester & Murphy's Mom
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I talked to a few rescues in the Maryland area in the last 2 years and because I do daycare in my home and watch very young children they made it sound like we didn't have a chance on getting a puppy. We could have been put on a list and if the right senior dog came along we would be considered. We wanted to do the puppy thing one more time...Maybe each rescue is different. It can't hurt to call, I wish you luck their are so many dogs that need homes. We might try again in a few years and this time adopt an older dog.
 

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Missing Selka So Much
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I have no idea about NY but here in Nebraska our rescue bases all decisions on each individual case. We do a home visit and interview each family (all members).
If it seems both parents aren't 100% committed to raising one of our dogs as a family member : it's a NO.
We also have many questions about all their plans for the dog, past history with dogs etc.
We are very picky but we do allow families with young children to adopt if they are serious. To be honest, people usually give themselves away with their expressions or answers if they aren't.

Personally we have had goldens since I got married in 1973. So all of our children were born and grew up with goldens. My grandchildren also have lived with a golden family member since they were born. Neither they nor I can imagine life without a golden in our family.

While working full time, raising three kids and caring for a home, we had two goldens , one of which had grand mal seizures usually in the middle of the night. It was alot of work and money but if you are as committed to your dog as you are to your kids, then you will do great.

I hope you find a much deserving golden family member. Good Luck!!!
 

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Welcome to the board. I'm originally from Long Island (Ronkonkoma). I also understand the concern but think it should be based on an individual basis. And it upsets me when they don't because many families that want to adopt an older dog end up buying a puppy instead and puppies are much harder to raise when you have kids.

If you are looking to adopt, I would go on www.petfinder.com - I believe under your search you can click on something saying that the cat/dog has to be good with kids. The dogs that come up in that search should be able to be adopted by families. Hope that helps and good luck with your search.

P.S. ALso, if you fall in love with a dog- it does not hurt to ask if they can change the rules for you. If you show you are serious and will take proper care of the dog, they might be willing to hear you out and let you adopt the dog.
 

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Premium Member
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I understand your frustration, but I just wanted to ask if you would look at the situation from the rescue's point of view.

We have dogs that have come to rescue because people didn't have time for them because they just had a baby, or they moved and "can't take the dog", or they have come from a shelter and we don't know their history - whether or not they are good very small children.

We try very hard to place dogs in new homes that won't repeat giving the dog up for any of those reasons. We have in the past tried to place dogs in homes with small children, only to have them returned because the adults didn't realize how much work adding a dog to the family is with small children.

On the other hand, case by case basis, we have placed dogs in homes with small children that have worked out fabulously. There is no cut and dried formula, when we interview the family we may see that the adults want the dog for themselves, not just so the kids have a dog.

It is a tremendous amount of work combining taking care of small children and taking care of a dog. I actually would encourage you to wait until your youngest child is at least 4, just because the burden on you will be easier.
 

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This is a tough one but I can see the issues on both sides here.

Have you tried dealing with New York Animal Care and Control (AC&C) and other city pounds? Are you willing to travel to other cities if their pounds have a golden? I don't know if they are more relaxed on the children rule but because of the high volume of dogs that come through you may have better luck. (A large poster at my city's pound reads "Children need pets".)

I volunteer at one of my city's pounds and I've seen some interesting adoption pairings. The only "return" I know of came from a pairing that on paper looked perfect (with no children involved). You might try calling the pounds or go and meet with them, let them know that you are looking for a golden and will watch the kids/dog like a hawk. At our shelter we don't get very many Goldens but when we do they go fast. If the staff knows you are looking they might call you right away before the dog is put on the adoption floor.

Start preparing your kids now on how to behave with dogs. No disturbing the dog while its eating, etc.

Helpful tips when filling in the application form:
Reason for wanting to adopt: Companion dog/family dog
Have the name/address of the vet you will be using. Vet references are a major plus but no worries if you don't have them.
Let them know that you are more than willing to go to obedience class should any problems arise.
Take your children to the pounds for visits or have them around dogs over the next little while so that they are used to seeing dogs and don't get overly-excited (Bless them, I know how excited they can get and rightly so) when you go in to fill out the application.
(Sorry for writing a novel here)
 

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I think it's best to go through a rescue or shelter (shelters might be a little more open to kids but I'm not sure) but if that really doesn't work, you could probably do a search for a golden retriever on the pets section of craigslist. I would not get a puppy on there or be extremely careful if you do b/c some might come from puppy mills but I'm sure you could find a great older dog there. Many families can't afford their pets right now and would happy to find a loving home for their dog without having to put it in a shelter or foster home in between.
 

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Found my Golden boy!
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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Thanks everyone! This forum is amazing! I definitely see the rescues side as well. I guess its a hard call. It would be nice though to be denied maybe at a home visit ~ after they watch the dog and children, check out the home etc. To just be told before you even put in an application if theres young children involved its a no go is upsetting. BTW, A few years back I actually got an award through Walmart for donating so many hours to my local SPCA in Cortland NY. I guess well just keep searching. Good things come to those who wait.

ETA: When it asked me why we wanted a dog I did put family companion/ stranger deterent. My husband works nights and I think Id feel much safer to have a dog alert me to noise...bark and scare away a stranger etc. A few months back I actually had a stranger come up to my door at night and jiggle the doorknob. I thought it was my husband coming home from work and pushed asid the curtain just to meet eyes with a strange man and he then ran away through the snow. I also had a very strange man drive down my culdesac the other day with about 30 antlers in this back window which was just creepy and he was staring at me. Even my husband back by the garage noticed. Ive just been creeped out. I dont need a guard dog, but would just feel safer having any dog in my home KWIM?
 

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I'm in South Florida, and I'm a member of Everglades Golden Retriever Rescue, Inc. I thought you might want to read what is directly from that group's web site: "Although Golden Retrievers have the reputation of being wonderful family dogs, young Goldens can often be too strong, too mouthy, or too exuberant for young children. Therefore, we do not adopt to families with children under the age of 3, and do not place puppies in home with children under 5. We rarely get dogs under one year of age into the program, however, we consider a dog up to three years old to be a “puppy” because of the energy level and enthusiasm of this breed."

If the rescue groups in your area have a website with their policies, look them up and see if they state what they are--if you lived in South Florida, your infant would be the concern, not your 3 1/2 year old.
 

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Momma to angel Cody
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Shelters and humane societies are usually more apt to adopt to folks with small children. I'm not sure that putting "stranger deterrent" on an application for a golden makes much sense since they're likely to invite the stranger in and show him where the silver's kept. I volunteer with a rescue organization and fully understand the no children under a certain age rule. Heck, my own grand-dogs wanted to run away from home when the grandchildren became mobile and would steal their toys or use them as a stepstool. People can be very quick to accuse an adopted dog of biting the kids when the dog simply took back a toy that a toddler had absconded with....happens all the time!
 

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I think you are just looking on the wrong places. We have two small children 5 and 3 years old and have never had any problems adopting a dog. Our City Shelter even lets us do a 1 week trial on a dog to see if he/she is the right fit before we commit. It works out great because we ended up getting a very snippy dog who was older and disliked the kids greatly. She would nip them when they got loud or started running around. fortunitly she was adopted by a family without kids after we took her back.
we now have another pup who is wonderful with the kids and we have no idea if she was raised with them or not.
I would keep looking, you might have to drive to get one but it will be well worth it in the end.
 

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Found my Golden boy!
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Discussion Starter #13
I'm not sure that putting "stranger deterrent" on an application for a golden makes much sense since they're likely to invite the stranger in and show him where the silver's kept.
Thats so funny! I hear you. I want an extremely friendly dog, but would also love a dog to bark when someones at the door, or jiggling the door knob KWIM? Something I might not notice while sleeping.

My dog growing up was so funny. She was a very friendly whippet. She would bark when someone was at the door but when someone would walk in the door that she didnt know shed run and dive under the couch. She would then come out a minute or so later.
 

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In my opinion, I would wait until your youngest child is at least five yrs old. We have a golden puppy.....and 3.5 yr old twins. While our dog will forever be a part of our family, it has been a seemingly neverending battle between the three of them. Even at 3, they are simply too young. Goldens are high energy and absolutely need at least an hour of good solid playing/exercise daily or they become much too "wild" indoors. Countless times I have had to bundle up the kids during a snowy, stormy day and take our puppy out for his daily walk or else face the consequence of an even more chaotic day.

Having children is enough work as it is, adding a puppy to that mix is chaos at the best of times. He steals their toys, trys to grab their snacks, gets too rough with them at times....the list can go one. Again, we love our puppy and are willing to stick this out. However if I had known that there would be absolutely NO peace in the house and no rest for the main caregiver to the three of them (me!!), I would have waited.

Aside from the chaos, there is also the fact that even at three it is hard for the kids to wrap their minds around the fact that he is an animal with feelings and not a teddy bear. I have to constantly vigilant in making sure that they are CLOSELY supervised with our puppy.

My advice is to wait. Enjoy your children while they are small and get a puppy when they are all old enough to handle it. Your house will be much much more peaceful for it! :)
 

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Tracer, Rumor & Cady
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Had to giggle a bit....
Recently I was in my kitchen wtih the dogs....in walked a perfect stranger!
No knocking...no ringing the bell....just up the steps and in the door!

All of the dogs rushed her at the door tails a-wagging sniffing her hands/legs/feet.....she looked at me with a panicked face and said.... "I think I have the wrong house!" To which I said "Yes you do!" LOLOLOLOL

Apparently it takes a PILE of Goldens to deter strangers!



Thanks everyone! This forum is amazing! I definitely see the rescues side as well. I guess its a hard call. It would be nice though to be denied maybe at a home visit ~ after they watch the dog and children, check out the home etc. To just be told before you even put in an application if theres young children involved its a no go is upsetting. BTW, A few years back I actually got an award through Walmart for donating so many hours to my local SPCA in Cortland NY. I guess well just keep searching. Good things come to those who wait.

ETA: When it asked me why we wanted a dog I did put family companion/ stranger deterent. My husband works nights and I think Id feel much safer to have a dog alert me to noise...bark and scare away a stranger etc. A few months back I actually had a stranger come up to my door at night and jiggle the doorknob. I thought it was my husband coming home from work and pushed asid the curtain just to meet eyes with a strange man and he then ran away through the snow. I also had a very strange man drive down my culdesac the other day with about 30 antlers in this back window which was just creepy and he was staring at me. Even my husband back by the garage noticed. Ive just been creeped out. I dont need a guard dog, but would just feel safer having any dog in my home KWIM?
 

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I had the same problem when I was looking. Breeders would not sell if your child was under 4, and rescues would not even talk to you if your children were under 7.

We ended up getting Brady 3 weeks after my youngest turned 4. We were experienced dog owners, but I can now see why these rules were in place. Goldens are very mouthy, and my kids were bitten to shreds by Brady, no matter how much training we went through, and even though we used gates and crates. Clothes were ripped. As puppies they are VERY busy, and keep the owners very busy (we currently have puppy #2). I can really see how an inexperienced owner could give up on a puppy and return it.

EDIT: Would I get Brady again with my kids that age - yes, because we think he is the best dog in the world (he is three), and I am more tolerant of certain behaviors than most people. He continued to play rough with my kids, until 3 months ago when we got another golden puppy. He is also my kids best friend.
 

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Had to giggle a bit....
Recently I was in my kitchen wtih the dogs....in walked a perfect stranger!
No knocking...no ringing the bell....just up the steps and in the door!

All of the dogs rushed her at the door tails a-wagging sniffing her hands/legs/feet.....she looked at me with a panicked face and said.... "I think I have the wrong house!" To which I said "Yes you do!" LOLOLOLOL

Apparently it takes a PILE of Goldens to deter strangers!
Mine would bark more at a leaf blowing across the yard, than a stranger entering the house.
 

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Grumpy Old Man
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What are your thoughts on this?

Now were experiencing the same thing while looking for a Golden. My children are 8 1/2, 3 1/2 and 7 months. It would be 100X easier to go through a BYB, or any breeder for that matter. However, Id rather do the right thing and rescue a dog that needs a home.
I think you may find that most reputable breeders wouldn't sell you a puppy at this time either.

Raising and training a pup requires a great deal of time every single day. You may have the best of intentions but with a toddler and a baby at home your available free time is next to nothing. Puppies don't train themselves and they are far far more demanding upon your time than a cat.
 

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As everyone else has said, Goldens are a very active breed and require a lot of time, attention, and training. Having a good sized fenced in yard isn't nearly enough. When a rescue sees a family with kids as young as yours, they are obviously going to have concerns regarding just how much time you and your family are really going to have for the dog. Dogs end up in rescues and shelters every day because people often don't realize just how much time and money is takes to have a dog, especially a large, active breed like a retriever.

When we were at our breeder's visiting our new puppy a few days ago, she got a phone call from a couple looking for a Golden pup. As soon as our breeder found out that the wife was pregnant and is due in the spring, plus they already had a 4-year-old child, she very quickly turned them down and I can totally understand why.
 

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I don't agree with this, and I understand why good breeders and rescues don't believe in placing dogs in families with young children, but it's exactly why one of my family members bought her Golden from a Pet Store. I don't know what the answer is. It worked out wonderfully for this person, the dog, and the family, but I know it did not work out for sire and dam. They don't get to live the good life.
 
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