More Topics Before You Buy

Puppies at Auctions and Raffles

A Sample Letter

The letter below explains quite clearly the position of the Golden Retriever Club of America and the American Kennel Club regarding the auctioning or raffling of dogs. This letter can be customized by Golden Retriever breeders to send in response to a request for them to donate a puppy, or by a local Golden Retriever club or individual wishing to educate an organization regarding auctions and puppies. It can be modified for use when a different breed, or any animal, is involved.

Dear ______________:

We understand your group is seeking to obtain a Golden Retriever puppy for fundraising purposes. We would like to share our serious concerns about this practice.

Year after year, Golden thousands of Golden Retrievers are surrendered to rescue programs, with the most common reasons being “no time for the dog” and “we didn’t know the puppy would be so large and so active.” Though a person might purchase a raffle ticket, often out of generosity, good will and impulse, the decision does not reflect the careful planning that we believe is necessary for responsible dog ownership. This decision should be arrived at after careful thought, research, and planning. It should also include an honest appraisal of one’s ability to care for, train, socialize and afford the expenses of such a family addition.

The American Kennel Club (AKC) position is that “auctions and raffles are not reasonable and appropriate methods to obtain or transfer dogs. Dogs sold at auctions, regardless of age, must be permanently identified by either readable tattoo or microchip prior to being sold at auction. Dogs sold at auction without the required identification will become ineligible for registration and shall be placed on permanent referral.” The Golden Retriever Club of America (GRCA) supports this position and considers providing a Golden Retriever to an auction or raffle a violation of its Code of Ethics.

Reputable and ethical breeders will not make a puppy available to you for the purpose your group has in mind. Certainly your group would not intend a person demonstrating the good will of supporting your fundraising to receive a puppy of questionable heredity, health, stability, and temperament, which is what you risk if you go to a breeder who is not ethical or reputable.

Therefore, we urge you to seek other fundraising items. Consider a certificate for a session of dog obedience classes with a respected local trainer, or a certificate for a package of dog grooming sessions.

Thank you for the support you may give to the value of carefully selected homes for all puppies, and especially for Golden Retrievers. We encourage you to contact us for further information about this wonderful breed.