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Good afternoon fellow dog lovers,

I am a new member located in New Jersey and a newbie to the world of pets. I have never had a pet ever before - though my wife always had a pet when growing up. We have a 8 year old daughter and are looking to get her a puppy companion ASAP. We really like how beautiful and friendly golden retrievers are - so I am looking for advice on adopting a golden retriever from a reputable breeder- essentially tips on the entire process. What are some websites that I can search for reputable breeders in the tri-state area(NJ, NY and CT) and PA to locate a healthy puppy - and what are some red flags that I should be looking out for? Is greenfieldpuppies.com a good resource ? I have seen some postings on that site from some breeders in PA who have been cited for animal cruelty and for running puppy mills so am really concerned on how to go about this search. Would you recommend the AKC marketplace? What would be a reasonable price to pay for a golden retriever puppy? I have read some existing posts on this forum about avoiding breeders who have had a lot of litters since the dogs could end up having allergies and hip problems - and to search for breeders who run tests on parents to score hips and elbows to assess dysplasia risk and eye tests. What are some good places to start and if you could please suggest some ways to find out if breeders have had a lot of litters/have done these tests - are there standard breeder licenses/testing certificates in the US?

Thank you so much for reading my request. All your advice is much appreciated. Be well and have a nice weekend!
 

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Greenfield Puppies is a puppy mill, and you will find information on it if you Google it. Don't buy from them. There are many complaints about them online, and you can tell from their website that this is not a reputable golden breeder, but a breeder of "designer" mixed breeds and others, ...in other words, a puppy mill.

Since this is your first, I highly recommend that you contact Golden Retriever rescues in your area, and get your dog from one of them. This way, you can get an older dog, already house trained, and the foster person will be able to tell you about the personality of the dog specifically. If you are intent on a puppy, rescues get them as well sometimes, but be aware that raising a Golden puppy can be hair raising, as they are very active and tend not to grow up fast. I love goldens, don't get me wrong. but they often are hell on earth as puppies.

Having never had a pet, and your wife only having had them as a kid, I seriously suggest that you do not get a puppy, but rather a dog who is a year or two old and you can know what kind of personality they have.

Also, with a rescue you are giving a home to a dog who is already here, and who really needs a good home, rather than supporting the breeding of more dogs when there are already so many in shelters and rescues.
 

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Good afternoon fellow dog lovers,

I am a new member located in New Jersey and a newbie to the world of pets. I have never had a pet ever before - though my wife always had a pet when growing up. We have a 8 year old daughter and are looking to get her a puppy companion ASAP. We really like how beautiful and friendly golden retrievers are - so I am looking for advice on adopting a golden retriever from a reputable breeder- essentially tips on the entire process. What are some websites that I can search for reputable breeders in the tri-state area(NJ, NY and CT) and PA to locate a healthy puppy - and what are some red flags that I should be looking out for? Is greenfieldpuppies.com a good resource ? I have seen some postings on that site from some breeders in PA who have been cited for animal cruelty and for running puppy mills so am really concerned on how to go about this search. Would you recommend the AKC marketplace? What would be a reasonable price to pay for a golden retriever puppy? I have read some existing posts on this forum about avoiding breeders who have had a lot of litters since the dogs could end up having allergies and hip problems - and to search for breeders who run tests on parents to score hips and elbows to assess dysplasia risk and eye tests. What are some good places to start and if you could please suggest some ways to find out if breeders have had a lot of litters/have done these tests - are there standard breeder licenses/testing certificates in the US?

Thank you so much for reading my request. All your advice is much appreciated. Be well and have a nice weekend!
Hi. Welcome to the forum. :)

I've just had a quick look at the website, and I wouldn't touch them with a ten foot barge pole. They're either a puppy mill(s) or their they're puppy flippers -, middle men who take puppies from the breeders, and sell them on. Given the sheer number of puppies available, I actually suspect they are flippers.

Either way, ethical, reputable breeders don't have anywhere near that number of puppies for sale - ever! They're committed to their breed(s) and will usually restrict themselves to one breed about which they're passionate. Their breeding stock are members of their family, and the breed only to better the breed - which means they prove their dogs in some way -, working trials or the show ring, for example.

They also do extensive health tests (tests - not checks - there's a very important difference). These tests cost hundreds of dollars upwards, and involve x-rays and blood tests from specialists - not simply the nearest vet that's ran a hand over the dog, counted their paws, checked the dog's pulse and confirmed the dogs has reproductive organs. If the results of those tests are unfavourable, they don't breed from the dogs.

They put equal amount of care and attention into selecting the right mate for their dogs - looking for a mate that "compliments" their dogs in some way. These breeders don't have "accidental" pregnancies and they don't usually produce crosses.

Such breeders are therefore few and far between, and in high demand. They often have waiting lists, so that their puppies are all but sold before they're even on the ground.

Puppy mills are the exact opposite. The dogs are kept in cages, often in the dark, and the only time they see humans is when it's time for them to be mated, and when they take their puppies away (and they're taken far, far too young - 6 weeks or less, usually :( ). The bitches and studs are never health tested - in fact, they'd be lucky to see a vet at all, and they're put with which ever mate is closest. The puppies are often sick and many die before their first birthday.

So. Always see the mother with the puppies. If they try to say she's out on a walk or at the vet - walk away. Many puppy mills are becoming wise to this, so they may pull in any bitch and try to pass her off as the mother.

If they don't mention health tests - ask about them (but an ethical breeder will want to shout about the results from the rooftops - otherwise, they wouldn't have bred from their dogs).

Be prepared to answer questions. The ethical breeder is interested in you, your lifestyle, work commitments, environment, dwelling, etc.

Be prepared to wait. A well bred puppy is worth waiting for.


Finally - turn your thoughts upside down. You want a GR puppy because they're "beautiful and friendly" (badly bred ones may have temperament issues).

But what can you offer the dog in terms of exercise (physical and mental), grooming, play time, training?
Do you have a secure yard?
How often will the dog be left alone per week?
Are there any deal breakers?
 

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Hi. Welcome to the forum. :)


Finally - turn your thoughts upside down. You want a GR puppy because they're "beautiful and friendly" (badly bred ones may have temperament issues).

But what can you offer the dog in terms of exercise (physical and mental), grooming, play time, training?
Do you have a secure yard?
How often will the dog be left alone per week?
Are there any deal breakers?
I will add to that question list:

How much time do you want to spend every single day doing dog things with the dog?
Are you eager to learn about good ways of training the dog? (any dog of any age will need training in order to learn the rules of your family and home)
What activities do you see yourself wanting to do with the dog?
What do you plan to do with the dog when you go on vacation?

You don't have to answer these questions for me, but it's a good idea to answer them for yourself. Getting a dog is a commitment of anywhere from 10 to 15 years, and all of that time the dog needs to have a good home. You may be people who will make a great home for a dog! I am only saying.....question yourself and have long family discussions about this. It's not something to go into lightly.

I will also mention that if beautiful and friendly are your main criteria, you can find many beautiful and friendly mixed breed dogs in local shelters and mixed-breed rescue groups. There's no particular reason you need to have a purebred dog.
 

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Just a thought about Goldens. I have owned many dogs in 25+ years and I strongly advise against getting a Golden as your first dog. Mine is about 2 yrs old now, and she has been a job and a half. it took ages to teach her manners, and she has a mind of her own.
Goldens are known for being hard to handle puppies, and mine was no exception. Imagine a land shark with super sharp teeth. Let's just say that I bled a lot as she grew up. Goldens are also very smart, which can make things worse for a new owner. Believe it or not, they are quite capable of outsmarting humans and are not shy about it either.

Goldens are also known for having MAJOR health issues unfortunately; including heart problems, Hip Dysplasia, eye problems, cancer and lots more. They are also very prolific shedders. Mine will out shed my long haired Mini Aussie with ease.
She was a gift from friends across the country who owned both healthy parents and drove her out to me. Even after doing my "homework", I was not prepared for what I had let myself in for! After all, I had raised numerous other breeds with hardly a problem.

With that said, she is now an absolute pleasure and is a great dog. So far she is very healthy as are her parents. I am happy that I put up with her puppyhood, but looking back, and knowing what I learned, I would not have accepted her.
I had puppy remorse for months after the cuteness factor wore off; and mind you. I was an experienced dog owner!

Before her arrival here:
250537


Dog Vertebrate Dog breed Blue Toy


On the road:

250540

This was taken last year, after she was fully grown

Dog Wood Carnivore Liver Fawn
 

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I agree with everything said above.

I also wholeheartedly agree with the recommendation to adopt a dog from a rescue or shelter. Puppies are cute and adorable - but they also need a ton of work to turn them into those nice friendly calm dogs you see. Housetraining, socialization, obedience, etc - you will be doing this all from scratch.

It's great to have an idea of a breed or look that interests you, but a good rescue/shelter person can take that and what you want in a dog and what you can give the dog and make a close to perfect match. I have been redirected from the dog/puppy I thought I wanted several times and the dog/puppy I ended up with has always been a great match.

You mention you want the puppy as a companion for your daughter "asap". Is there a specific reason for the rush? If she has anxiety or is on the autism spectrum, etc, a puppy may be too much for her - they don't follow rules well. Puppies can actually make dealing with life more difficult not better.

Also, as mentioned, puppies go through biting stages. If your daughter is on the timid side, this could cause her to withdraw from the puppy. If she has health issues, a puppy might be too much for her to handle on a daily basis.

An older more settled dog can provide more comfort and a rescue dog is often sooo grateful to have been saved that they bond with you far more than a puppy will. They can provide a sense of security for your daughter.

Just some things to consider depending on your reason for wanting a puppy asap.

Also goldens are very friendly dogs. They like everyone. As such, they don't become "my dog" as much as "the dog". Other breeds and mixes will bond more closely to one person. Shepherds are notorious for this - they pick their person out of the family and that is who they want to be with always. So consider what you want in that way. Do you want the dog to be your daughter's dog and be dedicated to her. Or do you want the dog to be the family dog and happily settle down with whoever's around. Or do you want something inbetween.

Last thought is your daughter's age. At 8, you have several years before she likely becomes focused on her social life. But what happens with the dog when she reaches that point where she'd rather hang out with her friends than with her dog. Are you and your wife willing to take on the primary caregiver role? When she doesn't want to take the dog to walk or play, are you willing and able to do that? I always tell prospective pet owners that no matter how much you expect the child to do the daily care for the dog, 98% of the time, that daily care WILL end up on the parents plate. If you are not willing or able to accept that responsibility do not get the pet. You will become resentful of the animal and the animal will become a burden not a joy.
 
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I will add to that question list:

How much time do you want to spend every single day doing dog things with the dog?
Are you eager to learn about good ways of training the dog? (any dog of any age will need training in order to learn the rules of your family and home)
What activities do you see yourself wanting to do with the dog?
What do you plan to do with the dog when you go on vacation?

You don't have to answer these questions for me, but it's a good idea to answer them for yourself. Getting a dog is a commitment of anywhere from 10 to 15 years, and all of that time the dog needs to have a good home. You may be people who will make a great home for a dog! I am only saying.....question yourself and have long family discussions about this. It's not something to go into lightly.

I will also mention that if beautiful and friendly are your main criteria, you can find many beautiful and friendly mixed breed dogs in local shelters and mixed-breed rescue groups. There's no particular reason you need to have a purebred dog.
Thank you. It was late here (although not quite "bedtime") and I was struggling to keep my eyes open. :)

You mention you want the puppy as a companion for your daughter "asap
Yes. I also want to touch on this. If you want a dog " asap" don't get a dog - and certainly don't get a dog for your daughter.

Many people put more thought and do more research into getting their next car, than they do when considering whether or not to add a sentient being with a lifespan of 12-15 years to their family. Wanting a dog asap is a major red flag. It shows you haven't thought it through.

Getting a dog (or indeed any pet) for children is generally a bad idea for this very reason. They want it, and they want it now - but when that cute little adorable puppy turns into a landshark that bites whatever limb they can get hold of, when that cute adorable puppy chews up their favourite toys and books, when that cute little adorable puppy still needs walks in the middle of winter, in torrential rain or blizzards, the novelty wears off, and guess who's left holding the leash? ;). Guess who's the one picking up after pup? Getting up in the middle of the night to get the puppy to the toilet?

So if you're getting a dog for your daughter - don't. Only consider getting a dog for you and your wife -, because you want it. Because you want the commitment.

Because it's not your daughter who'll be looking after the dog. :)
 

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Welcome to the Dog Forum!

I might suggest doing more research on reputable breeders in your area and inquiring whether they might have an adult Golden Retriever that has either retired from breeding or which they have decided not to breed. You might end up with a lovely adult dog that way.

My next-door neighbor absolutely loved Golden Retrievers. She had two wonderful dogs that gave her much companionship until they passed. After the first one passed away of old age, she purchased a puppy. That puppy ended up being too much for her to handle and she exchanged the puppy with the breeder for an adult dog. That dog became her heart dog. When he passed away, she was heartbroken and bought another puppy. Once again, she very much regretted getting another puppy and wished that she had instead gotten a more settled adult dog.

Puppies can be an incredible amount of work. We get many, many new members who impulsively bought or adopted a puppy and came down with a bad case of the "puppy blues."

We're all dog lovers here, and I expect that you will soon have a family dog. There is nothing more special than that. Mainly, I would advise you to take your time, do some research on both breeders and puppy/ dog care, and be open to either adopting or purchasing an adult dog.
 

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I did a little digging. Guess where the puppies advertised on greenfieldpuppies.com come from? They all come from Amish puppy mills. Awful, terrible places. Run as fast as you can.


@agk21 - It's a good thing you're doing some research.
 
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