Yankee Golden Retriever Rescue | Hudson, MA

Golden Retriever Lab Mix standing on a woodland trail wearing a white and black plaid bandana.

The mission of Yankee Golden Retriever Rescue (YGRR) is to provide exemplary medical care and permanent loving homes for Golden Retrievers in need. Each year hundreds of YGRR volunteers provide thousands of hours to support the rescue, their services, and the animals in their care.

The Riverview Property in Hudson MA

Yankee Golden Retriever Rescue was founded in 1985 by two members of the Yankee Golden Retriever Breed Club. Joan Puglia and Susan Foster saw a need and wanted to help, but the Breeder Club was not in a position to financially support a rescue. What else could they do but start their own rescue?!

The demand for Yanke Golden Retriever Rescue services grew over the years. They purchased the Riverview property in 1996. It became clear pretty quickly that they needed to expand the kennel facilities. Through the help of monetary donations and thousands of hours of volunteer labor, they were able to build the new rescue facilities. The state-of-the-art rescue, adoption, and education center is known as Riverview in Hudson MA.

The Riverview Facilities

Riverview provides an amazing shelter for Golden Retrievers. The Yankee Golden Retriever Rescue property has three main buildings and an in-ground swimming pool. Yes, you read that right! An in-ground swimming pool! The pool isn’t just a fun place for young and healthy Golden Retrievers. It provides fun exercise to rescues with orthopedic or weight problems.

Yellow Lab Mix by a pond wearing a green plaid bandana

The Mardi Bemis Perry Education and Training Center provides a 1,800-square-foot space. Perfect for exercising the dog in inclement weather and providing training and behavior modification. The center doubles as an event space as well. The Dr. and Mrs. Charles G. Colburn House is the administrative building. This building also serves as private accommodations for puppies, pregnant and nursing females, and other dogs who require special attention.

The Yankee Golden Retriever Rescue Shelter and Adoption Center

The Alfred and Joy Viola Shelter and Adoption Center is the main shelter building and where you as an adopter would meet your potential new family member. Each Golden Retriever gets a bed, toys, and lots of love no matter which part of the 4,800-square-foot center they live in! The shelter and adoption center provides 19 private and indoor runs with heated floors. There are 3 private indoor and outdoor runs for the medical isolation kennels. These runs have their own separate heating and cooling system. The senior Golden Retrievers, and those with medical needs, get their own more spacious runs. There are 11 larger-sized runs and an increased number of windows for natural light. Seniors and special needs dogs get extra soft bedding.

The Alfred and Joy Viola Shelter and Adoption Center has seven play yards that occupy multiple acres of the Riverview’s 21-acre property. The Yankee Golden Retriever Rescue’s outdoor play yards provide plenty of opportunities for the Goldens to play, exercise, and enjoy the fresh air. The center also provides its own grooming room with a special bathing tub for seniors and special needs Goldens.

The Home Simulation Room is where you will get to meet your new family member. It is here that staff get to know the dogs and give them individualized attention. Just like the attention they would receive in a home. It has tons of toys to play with and a comfy couch for the dog to lie on.

Adoption with Yankee Golden Retriever Rescue

Mixed Breed puppy

Yankee Golden Retriever Rescue started as a Golden Retriever-only rescue. They now take in a variety of dogs, including Labrador Retrievers and other mixed breeds. Over the years the number of Purebred Golden Retrievers in need of rescues has declined by around 70%. This is a great thing! But, Golden Retrievers, and Golden mixes, are in need from time to time. Sometimes there are even a few mixed breed puppies available, but pure-bred Golden Retriever puppies are rare in rescues or shelters. For a pure-bred puppy, there will be a long wait. Or you can check out local breeders.

YGRR places dogs based on their individual needs and personalities of the dog. The time it takes from start to finish for adoption varies with each individual household. Homes with children, other dogs, cats, or very specific requirements will take longer to find a compatible companion.

Eligibility Requirements

In order to adopt from Yankee Golden Retriever Rescue you will need to meet the following requirements:

  • Show an ability and commitment to providing proper care, exercise, and training for the lifetime of a large dog.
  • Be over 18 years of age.
  • If there are children in the home, they must be 6 years of age and over. They make no exceptions for new applicants.
  • Provide a fenced-in area large enough to safely exercise the dog. Fencing must be physical (not electronic or invisible) and at least four feet high.
    • Please note: YGRR does not consider electric, invisible, or underground fencing to be a physical fence. The majority of YGRR dogs are not good candidates for underground containment systems.
    • Please note: that if you intend to use electric fencing with a dog you adopt from YGRR they will not move forward with your application.
  • Applicants with no fencing whatsoever may request a fencing exemption. Appropriate dogs may be placed in homes with no fence.
  • Commit to keeping the YGRR dog inside only (dog doors must be secured to prevent access outdoors) when nobody is home.
  • If the YGRR dog has access to a swimming pool, the pool must have stairs to exit the pool and an ‘elephant proof’ cover that fits snugly to the pool edge.
  • The home must not provide daycare (human or canine) or be a residential facility (nursing home, assisted living facilities, etc).

YGRR Adoption Process

If you meet all of the above requirements you can begin the application process. First, you will fill out the application form and submit a non-refundable application fee. This fee helps cover the rescue’s expenses. More often than not, a dog’s adoption fee is less than the average expenses incurred to care for that dog. Yankee Golden Retriever Rescue will schedule a home visit with you once they process your application and review your eligibility.

Golden Retriever Lab Mix sitting on a wooden bridge wearing a green plaid bandana

After your home visit, you become an approved adopter. YGRR adds you to their email list to receive updates on available dogs. If they already have a dog that meets your criteria you can now express interest in that dog to YGRR. It is not first come, first served. The rescue reviews all approved adopter inquiries for a dog to find the best match. They will then schedule introductions. Please keep in mind that Yankee Golden Retriever Rescue cannot accommodate drop-ins. You can only schedule a visit to the shelter after you have an approved application. And lastly, you go home with your perfect match!

The Yankee Golden Retriever Rescue Store

Whether you already have a Golden Retriever, are in the process of finding your best match, or just love the breed, YGRR has merchandise for you! 100% of the proceeds go towards the care of the dogs at Riverview. They have a variety of items for you and to gift to someone who loves Goldens! Shirts, collars, decor, and more! Check out their store and snag something for someone you love today to help support a great rescue.

Featured Categories


Dog Parks