From the President's desk

Golden retriever at desk in Oval OfficeGreetings to all of our members and supporters!

It’s hard to believe right now, but cooler days are on their way, and soon we’ll be back to long walks with our pups instead of swimming laps (or floating) in the pool.  Autumn means that we will be resuming both outdoor and indoor programs, so please read through this issue for details about upcoming events.  

We have much to be grateful for as we head into the final months of 2022.  We’ve rescued many Golden Retrievers with challenging medical conditions that required extensive and often costly treatment.  Thanks to our loyal and generous donors we were able to provide the care these dogs needed - and now they are living large in new forever homes from Flagstaff to Tucson!  When we kick off our Annual Fundraising Campaign in November (online this year) I hope you will help us to continue our important work by offering your support.

Now here comes the really big news ... next month we will kick off a full year of celebrating the 25th anniversary of the founding of our organization!  In October of 1998, Joyce Hubler witnessed first hand the abandonment and neglect of some Golden Retrievers at the hands of uncaring individuals.  She turned her despair into inspiration and action, and founded Rescue A Golden of Arizona, a non-profit dedicated to the “rescue, rehabilitation, and re-homing” of Golden Retrievers.  We will have events and programs to mark this milestone, even a special “limited edition” logo.  Read on for a first look below.

As always, I close with my profound thanks for everything you do to rescue, rehab, and re-home these precious animals ... all for the love of a Golden.

Kelly Cook ~ President


Newsworthy and Noteworthy

Golden retriever with glasses reading newspaper

All the Golden news that's fit to print!

Moving out ...

Three golden retriever puppiesOh Golden Nuggets, we hardly knew ye!  Before our very eyes you have grown into little bruisers and bruisettes, left your mom, and captured the hearts of your new forever families.  July 23rd was a highlight for many of us who have followed the pups’ progress as transport volunteers gathered in Anthem to greet foster mom Robin Fox and her trusty sidekick, Becky Wetzel.  They had seven of the puppies in tow (Little Trixie would hang with Robin for another week until her adopters were ready to receive her).  The puppies changed hands - and cars - and the fluffball delivery was under way.  The oohing and aahing could be heard from all directions as photos and videos of the pups arriving at their new homes quickly made their way to social media sites.  Pearl returned to her adopter, who had missed her terribly, and has now been spayed to ensure her years of motherhood are over.  Pearl was such a good momma, and Robin and Toby Fox could not have taken better care of these eight little charmers.  Heartfelt thanks from all of us to all of them.   


 and moving in ...

Our international rescue program is back in action as we welcomed four dogs from Mexico in early August.  Harry, Megan, Melody, and Gaspar arrived having survived a horrific array of abuses, neglect and abandonment.  Our placement, transport, and vet care teams wasted no time getting these precious animals into loving homes and arranging for prompt medical care.  And like beautiful flowers, these Goldens bloom where they’re planted!  They are healing, eating, sleeping, and experiencing the touch of human kindness.  

golden retriever in crate and after with smile
In other news, we are exploring our options for rescuing several Golden Retrievers from China who may be arriving at LAX within a few weeks.  We are working through the logistics now.  With respect to Turkey, it seems that going forward all dogs bound for the U.S. from Turkey will be routed to JFK airport in New York. This would require us to send a flight volunteer to JFK to receive the dogs after they are processed in the boarding facility there known as “ the Ark...” followed by a long flight to Phoenix also with a flight volunteer.  No one promised that international rescue would be easy, and it’s not!  More to come ...


SOUNDING THE ALARM: The Great Veterinarian Shortage of 2022

Vets with Golden RetrieverBy Scottie McGowan

How does it affect you and your pet?

COVID-19 wreaked havoc on human lives throughout the world.  Life quickly morphed into a new norm as we all changed and improvisd every day.  The impact on the already struggling veterinary profession has been profound.  Studies predict that by 2030, 75 million pets will be without access to care.  So ... what does this mean for you and your pet?

Veterinarian and vet tech numbers were already declining, with some clinics refusing new patients for several years before 2020.  When COVID-19 confined people to home, pet adoptions increased while the number of veterinarians nationwide decreased, resulting in a shortage of 7,000 veterinarians.  The 3,200 graduates from veterinary medicine schools each year are insufficient to replace the demand for care.  Arizona had 1,430 full-time veterinarians in 2020 (population 6,392,017) with 58% of Arizona households owning pets, 43% of which are dogs.  Two years later, these numbers have increased dramatically.  The pandemic forced veterinary clinics to drastically alter their operations, causing a significant decline in income.  Precautions like curbside appointments slowed everything down.  Increased supply costs, shipping delays, and a further loss of staff levied a high emotional price on veterinarians.   


Psst ... Heard Around the Dog Park

Golden retriever in sunglasses at park

Give us two minutes and we’ll give you a gaggle of quick hits, timely reminders, and fun facts!


25th anniversary RAGofAZ logo

• Turning Silver into Gold - Happy Anniversary to us!  Over the next twelve months, we will be observing a remarkable achievement - the founding of Rescue A Golden of Arizona in 1998.  Yes, 2023 will be the year of the Golden Retriever, for us anyway.  It is our silver anniversary, and that’s rather a big deal.  To commemorate this event, we proudly present our 25th Anniversary logo, which you will soon begin to see in place of our regular logo.  We have a lot of celebrating to do, so stay tuned for news about this very special upcoming year. 


golden retriever standing proudly in front of american flagWe know you’re tired of seeing election ads but here is one you won’t mind!   Annual elections for open seats on our Board of Directors are getting under way soon.  All dues-paying members are eligible to vote online, so keep your eyes peeled for email announcements giving you the “who, what, and how” on the election process.  And please plan to meet the Board at our Annual Meeting on November 12th.  

smiling golden retriever Lucy• Check out this beautiful photo of our 2023 Hearts of Gold calendar cover girl, Lucy!  And this calendar is chock full of other adorable Goldens and their inspiring stories of rescue.  We’ll notify you via e-blast and social media as soon as the calendars go on sale.  The holidays are coming and our calendar is the perfect stocking stuffer.  Many thanks to our dedicated Calendar Committee members for a job well done!

giving tree with decorations• Sneak peek - our Annual Fundraising Campaign is going digital!  You may recall receiving beautiful holiday cards in past campaigns, with themes such as “Silent Night ... Lonely Night” and “All Creatures Great and Small.”  But times are changing and so are we.  On November 14th we will launch “How To Save a Life,” our first ever online Annual Campaign.  We’ll be decorating “The Giving Tree” on our website in honor of some very special rescued Goldens.  We think you’ll love it.  Stay tuned for details.

Mark your Calendar

Dog holding calendarBecause you know you don't want to miss out!

SABHA Home and Garden Show - September 30th, October 1st and 2nd

Annual Meeting and Golden Retriever Swim Party - November 12th at the home of our President, Kelly Cook, in Gilbert (details to follow)

PACC 911 Adoptathon - December 3rd at All Saints Episcopal Church in Phoenix


Waiting at the Bridge

rainbow path going over bridgeGone from this earth but living on in our hearts ... 

View a memorial to the beloved Goldens that have recently journeyed to Rainbow Bridge.

Visit a loving remembrance of dogs that have gone to the Bridge previously.