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Share the Love!

Each year, beginning on Valentine’s Day, a group of family foundations, businesses, and generous individuals comes together to build a Fund of Love.  Their donations stand ready to be matched during our spring fundraiser: Double the Gold Challenge.

Fund of Love and Double the Gold Challenge donations provide a large percentage of the funds needed to cover our medical expenses each year. They also help us support nearly 80 dogs with ongoing care in permanent foster or sanctuary with us at Homeward Bound.

Last year, Homeward Bound welcomed 573 dogs – a 43% increase over the prior year as young dogs adopted or purchased in the pandemic continued to be abandoned or surrendered. A soft puppy market also meant that breeders not only surrendered their unsold puppy “inventory” – they abandoned heavily pregnant dogs. Six litters were born at Homeward Bound and 37% of all intakes were under the age of one.

Because we are one of the few Golden rescues in the nation with a facility, we can welcome more dogs regardless of their age, health (or pregnancy status!) – dogs that might not otherwise be saved. Raising litters of puppies is extremely expensive in time and treasure. The average medical cost per mom and litter is approximately $8,000. Two of our moms required C-sections with hospitalization. One puppy spent four days in an incubator in the intensive care unit at UC Davis Veterinary Hospital. As well, many of our normal intakes arrive with untreated medical conditions. Veterinary expenses totaled $507,317- a 20.6% increase over the prior year owing to the significant increase in dogs while we were able to keep our per-dog cost lower than 2022.

With your support, we have been able to provide each dog with necessary care including ear surgeries, tumor removals, heartworm disease treatment, hundreds of spays and neuters, numerous orthopedic, obstruction, and miscellaneous surgeries, and countless treatments for various infections and illnesses. Among them were our mom dogs and their babes – our 2024 Fund of Love poster dogs. Thanks to you, we were able to meet all the dogs’ needs in 2023. We are asking for your help once again so we can continue our vital rescue efforts. We simply cannot do it without you.

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fund of love featured dog snickerdoodle

Meet the Moms

Sixty-seven puppies were born at Homeward Bound in 2023. Sixteen were born in the first week of 2024. Fourteen have been surrendered so far this year. To say we have been taxed is an understatement – with no sign of it letting up. In late 2023, we had four simultaneous litters in our care! Never have we experienced such a tsunami of expectant moms and puppies born at Homeward Bound.

Sasha was found abandoned by a neighborhood backyard breeder early in 2023. She was pregnant and had contracted kennel cough and pneumonia, requiring hospitalization. We were warned that the outcome for the puppies would not be good, and it wasn’t. She gave birth to 11 but over the course of a week, all but one was lost. Sasha and her closely bonded remaining pup were adopted together.

Aster came to us from the Ohio Puppy Mills in April. This beautiful girl was carrying more in her luggage than we suspected. When she went in for a spay appointment, we discovered she was pregnant. A month later, she went in for an emergency C-section giving birth to six beautiful babies. Aster’s experience inspired a new purchase for Homeward Bound: an ultrasound machine!

Autumn arrived in early fall. She too was an abandoned breeding dog in the Central Valley. In September, she gave birth to ten stunning babies with our already tired puppy team rising to the next challenge. And then came…Megan.

Puppy mill puppies

Megan is a near feral girl who probably never received any human socialization before she began being bred. Abandoned in the Central Valley, she took advantage of our new Puppy Palace’s unfinished status and hid herself under the building for three weeks. For her health and safety, we finally resorted to trapping her only to discover that she was heavily pregnant. With Autumn’s litter occupying the quarantine building, we moved Megan to the only secure place: our conference room. There, she raised six striking pups who thankfully never adopted their mom’s fearfulness.

Dani was part of a large rescue from a breeder who had gotten in way over his head. The Suisun 15 were used to living in an open space full of foxtails, and an open barn. Litters weren’t planned as much as they just happened. Our ultrasound machine confirmed that Dani was very much expecting. She gave birth in November in our finally completed Puppy Palace.

Enter Eve. Another pregnant mom dumped in the Central Valley. We took control of the quarantine unit once more and settled her in for another extended puppy stay. And then the call came. Joy had been pulled from a shelter. Pregnant, she had been sent to foster but not before she contracted kennel cough. Where to put her? Dani and Megan went off to foster so we merged their litters in the conference room (15 puppies!), Eve gave birth on New Year’s Day in the quarantine building, and Joy gave birth a week later in the Puppy Palace.

Puppy mill rescued dogs

If you’re having a hard time keeping up…imagine how we feel!

This year’s Fund of Love ambassadors are abandoned dog moms and their little ones, and the plight of all breeding dogs from disreputable breeders. Through education, advocacy, and opening our doors – we hope to begin to turn the tide on the practice of indiscriminate breeding and abandoned pregnant dogs.

Throughout this campaign, we will share their stories – and the stories of other dogs with significant medical needs. Dogs that many other rescues would turn away. We can say ‘yes’ to dogs because of the generous donations and huge hearts of people like you.


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Please Sponsor Our Fund of Love

Please join us in our mission to continue providing the best possible care and chance for a happy life for deserving dogs and puppies by helping us build our Fund of Love.

The minimum donation for this fund is $250. You can choose to donate a greater amount or endow the entire fund. Fund of Love provides the critical matching funds for our spring Double the Gold Challenge. 100% of the proceeds of both campaigns are dedicated to medical care for the hundreds of dogs and puppies we rescue each year and the ongoing support of nearly 80 dogs in permanent foster – so they can be home. The Fund of Love and Double the Gold Challenge provide a significant portion of our veterinary expenses each year.

To contribute to the Homeward Bound Fund of Love, you may use the following options:

To contribute securely online, click the Donate button below.

To contribute by mail with a check or credit card (Visa, Mastercard, Discover or American Express), click here to download our printable donation form. Mail the completed form, including credit card information if applicable, to:

Fund of Love
Homeward Bound Golden Retriever Rescue and Sanctuary, Inc.
7495 Natomas Road
Elverta, Ca 95626

On behalf of the Goldens that will benefit by your generosity, our heartfelt thanks.