Homeward Bound founder Jody Jones and Chelsea

Our Story

Homeward Bound Golden Retriever Rescue & Sanctuary was founded in the year 2000 based on a promise made to our founders’ beloved Golden, Chelsea. Since then, we saved more than 11,200 dog lives through comprehensive rescue and adoption programs.

Thanks to the vision and generosity of our founders, Jody and Mike Jones, we have carved out a peaceful haven from eight acres of the countryside where dogs can run, play, train, and be loved on their journeys to forever homes. Our facility provides refuge for dogs in immediate need. A robust foster program supplements our efforts so more can be saved. For those whose extreme age or health issues have rendered them unlikely to be adopted, they are welcome to live out their lives with us in sanctuary.

None of this would be possible without you – the hundreds of volunteers, supporters, adopters, fosters, and partners who truly are the heart of Homeward Bound.

We invite you to learn more about our programs and impact in our blog, newsletters, and 2022 Annual Report.

Homeward Bound vet providing care to a Golden Retriever

Mission Statement

Homeward Bound Golden Retriever Rescue & Sanctuary, Inc. is an all-volunteer organization that rescues and heals displaced, abandoned, and homeless Golden Retrievers and Golden mixes, regardless of age or health. Homeward Bound secures safe, loving homes through a comprehensive adoption program and also provides lifetime sanctuary for Goldens that cannot be adopted.

Homeward Bound also provides education on proper animal care and the benefits of, and need for, rescue and sanctuary. In the event of a disaster, Homeward Bound will provide assistance to other rescue groups and the families of dogs impacted by the disaster.

Homeward Bound will continue to serve as a model rescue organization, addressing animal welfare needs throughout California and neighboring states, and strives to be a national leader in rescue, sanctuary, and education.

Our sincere thanks to Homeward Bound supporters Bob Murphy and Carolyn Belz of Murphy Film Production, Inc.

for the incredible filming and production of this Homeward Bound video.

Homeward Bound foster with dog


Foster Program

Temporary and long-term foster play a critical role in extending our impact. Dogs and fosters are vetted and matched to ensure that each dog receives the support it needs to become ready for adoption. Homeward Bound provides the dog’s medical, food, and supply costs, while fosters provide selfless love. Each dog fostered makes room for new dogs to be rescued.

Golden Touch Program

The Golden Touch Program creates a senior-to-senior connection matching our “Golden Oldies” with retired persons at least 60 years of age, not working, and on a limited income. Through this waived adoption fee program, the senior dogs and humans find mutual benefit, relieving loneliness and providing emotional support at a point in life when it is needed most…for both.

Homeward Bound Sanctuary dog


Dogs typically deemed unadoptable due to extreme age or illness are offered sanctuary in our dedicated senior house and yard, Sugar Shack Acres. Truth be told, our amazing adopters routinely scoop them up. When illness and costly medical care is the only barrier to a forever home, Homeward Bound offers Permanent Foster, ensuring the dogs’ medical care for life.

Dog training at Homeward Bound Golden Retriever Rescue

Golden Rule Training

Homeward Bound supports in-program dogs with basic obedience, recall, and socialization to prepare them for adoption. Adoptive families and the general public can continue to enhance their handling skills and provide their dogs with critical ongoing socialization through classes offered by a certified trainer at the Adoption Center, strengthening the bond between dogs and their human families.

A woman sitting with her dog


Organizational Leadership

Judy Kent, President, guides a dedicated group of volunteer team leads in every aspect of our operation.

Board of Directors

Our volunteer Board Members bring diverse backgrounds and skills, providing expertise and oversight that strengthens our effort.

Audrey Farrington, Board Chair – Marketing and Communications Consultant
Scott Wolcott, Treasurer – President, Granite Construction, Retired
Eva Kwong, CFP, CIMA, Secretary – Managing Director, Head of Portfolio Implementation, Bank of America Private Bank, Palo Alto, CA
Jim Bakker, Board Member – IT Executive, Retired
Deb Haggerty, Board Member – Founding Member, Golden Retriever Club of America, National Rescue Committee and National Rescue Liaison
Judy Kent, Board Member – Finance and Marketing Executive, Retired
Jaclyn Powell, Board Member – Shareholder and Attorney, Smith, McDowell & Powell
Anna Schweissinger, Board Member – Senior Account Executive, Media Solutions
Dr. Tatia Taylor, Board Member – Engineering Chief, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Carolyn Unger, Board Member – Executive Manager, Insurance Underwriting, Retired

Annual Report Cover

2022 Annual Report

It felt like we climbed a mountain together in 2022. Four hundred dogs came through our doors, a 15% increase over our previous five-year average as we responded to overwhelming need: surrenders, overflowing shelters, and puppy mill survivors. The number challenged each of our all-volunteer teams to step up for the transport, care, training and assessment, medical care, and adoptions. Why would people toil in mud, sweat, and poo? In freezing rain and broiling sun? In organized chaos, clamoring and commotion, and sometimes heartbreak? For the love of dogs. Our 2022 Annual Report chronicles our programs, challenges, and milestones. Together, we have created an extraordinary place of safety and refuge for more than10,700 dogs on their journeys home.

Annual Report Cover


Find our quarterly newsletters below. Stay up to date with all our news by signing up for our e-newsletters through this link.