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Hi all-
My family and I are beginning the process of looking for a golden retriever and would love some guidance in selecting a breeder. This will be my first time as a pet owner and I have done a decent amount of research but this is all new to me!
I have two kids, aged 7 and 8. We'd like a dog that is a great companion and will relax and snuggle with us as well as join us on long hikes and other outdoor adventures. My husband and I both work out of the house and the dog will need to be at home alone for 7 hours a day once he or she is a bit older - we will however have a dog walker come once per day to take the dog out for a walk in the middle of that stretch (more frequently early on). Health and temperament are our priorities.
We live in Western Massachusetts and are willing to drive for a few hours to get the right dog.
I am also wondering how likely it is that we will be able take home our puppy close to the time frame that we are hoping for. I have the month of August off of work and would love to get the dog in early August so that I could have some time to be home with it during the day before returning to work. Any input on how likely it is that I could do this, or advice on how to make it happen?
Thanks so much!
 

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If you have not already done so, this is a good place to begin.


Here is the club chapter more specific to your area, although you might want to also see what club services the Albany region, which you are close to.


If you find a breeder you are interested in there are a number of members on the Forum who can help you evaluate their dogs.

Also, might want to consider a golden rescue. If you are in western, MA Yankee Golden Retriever Rescue in Hudson, MA would be the place to go.
 

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If you have not already done so, this is a good place to begin.


If you find a breeder you are interested in there are a number of members on the Forum who can help you evaluate their dogs.

Also, might want to consider a golden rescue. If you are in western, MA Yankee Golden Retriever Rescue in Hudson, MA would be the place to go.
Thanks! I did contact the puppy referral volunteer at Yankee Golden Retriever Club but she told me that they do not share breeder names, only connect you once a litter is available, and that she could not give any guidance at this time since we don't want to take our puppy home until August. She also told me that if I call back in May for their guidance it'd be unlikely that I could take home a puppy within a few weeks of my desired date - would more likely be within a couple of months.
 

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^^^ Hmm... that seems like not the best advice. Most reputable breeders have litters that are spoken for well before the pups are born. I would definitely focus now on finding a good breeder, someone who does the core clearances and DNA testing, and reach out to see if they have a spring breeding planned. To come home early August, you would need the pup to be born early June, which means the dogs will be bred early April - that is SOON. And all of that is very loose - everything always depends on when the female comes into heat. Hopefully someone here can point you to a good breeder on the East Coast who might fit the bill.
 

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There are tons of great breeders in New England! Use the search function for this forum and search "New England breeders" or "Massachusetts breeders" etc. to get a good start on some breeders worth reaching out to. I do know of one great breeder in MA with plans for a couple of litters this year - I sent you a private message with her contact info.

If you struck out with contacting YGRC's breeder referral, you may want to try Connecticut River Valley Golden Retriever Club instead. I know many breeders in the western end of MA who belong to that club as well as to YGRC.

If the breeder(s) you contact don't have what you need, be sure to ask if they can refer you to anyone. A lot of breeders don't have an internet presence and the best way to find them is word of mouth.

Other ideas.... There are NUMEROUS all breed dog shows held at the Eastern States fairgrounds in West Springfield. If you can find out when those shows are and when the Goldens are "on," go and buy a show catalog which will list the contact information for the owners of any dogs that are showing. Sometimes you can talk to the dogs' handlers as well (just try to do it AFTER they show, since prior to showing they're likely to not be in a mindset to talk!). I sometimes get some good info just by chatting up the folks who are watching the Goldens ringside!

There is also a Golden Retriever specialty show in CT in June. Check Yankee Golden Retriever Club for the date (hopefully the website has or will have more info as the date gets closer). That show will be ALL Goldens, and likely many of the best Northeast breeders will have a presence there.

Good luck!
 

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We go to the shows at Springfield quite a bit. There are usually many great breeders there that you could meet and network with. If you are interested in going to a show to see the dogs and meet the breeders send me a PM! Off the top of my head in New England and New York:

Beau Geste Golden Retrievers
Stoneledge Golden Retrievers
EastShore Golden Retrievers
Sunkissed Golden Retrievers
Chestnut Golden Retrievers
Starrdust Golden Retrievers
Crangold Golden Retrievers
Goldensand Golden Retrievers
Kernow Golden Retrievers
 
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