Sunday, September 14, 2008

GRRR Reunion Picnic

Saturday was a beautiful warm day in the Rocky Mountains. The sky was the dark blue that fall brings to our land, an early snow made the mountain peaks glisten in the thin air. Early in the morning we drove to Boulder Reservoir where we helped set up tents and tables for the annual Golden Retriever Rescue of the Rockies Reunion Picnic, aka GRRRRP for those who like nonsensical abbreviations. GRRRRP sounds like a dog that is panting after swallowing too much water. Below is a very quiet and peaceful lakeside scene at 9:00 in the morning at Boulder Reservoir.
Below is the same scene, several hours later when 200-300 Golden Retrievers are in full romp. Oh, you don't know what “full romp” is? It is when the leashes are off and the humans are lined up in the food line so that we Golden's can do our own thing. Full Romp is when the lake is floating with tennis balls and over two hundred dogs are charging in after them. Full Romp is the most fun a Golden Retriever can have without, well, just without... We are all neutered and this is a family picnic.
At 1:30 all dogs were held on the shore, the water was filled with tennis balls, some had been marked for prizes. Then it was “release the hounds” and the chase was on to fetch the marked balls and win prizes.
Tables laden with food featured special dishes brought by everyone, with grilled brats supplied by GRRR to keep the humans well fed. A D.J. Played music to keep their minds off of the wet dogs spraying everyone in the tent with water when we shake next to the food tables. Dog hair is a condiment, right? Above and below; several humans tried to help, but they don't fetch very well. It's a special talent we Golden's have. Happiness is several hundred tennis balls, all at once.

Golden Retriever Rescue of the Rockies has been rescuing dogs for many years, we may rescue almost 400 this year alone. Thousands of Golden alumni owe their happiness, their health and their very lives to the hard work by the volunteers of GRRR who work to rescue, transport, foster and re-home dogs. . Donations to our medical fund to heal sick dogs has made a difference in so many lives. We even take in "Honorary Goldens" when a life is threatened or a dog is unwanted. Our annual reunion picnic is very important to all of us. We see the many friends we made when we fostered rescued dogs during the years. We can exchange stories on how we were rescued, tell each other about the many adventures we have had in the past year, celebrate our new homes, and mourn those special friends that we have lost in the past year.

The real story of GRRRRP is not the tables of food, it is not a lake filled with swimming dogs and a beach covered with running, playing, happy, wet dogs. The greatest story of GRRRRP is a celebration of over 1,000 dogs who have found new homes; rescued from chains in a lonely back yard, taken from kill shelters, rescued from families that took their dog to a vet to have it killed because it was too old to jog with them, or because a puppy chewed up a cushion in their million dollar home, all are true rescue stories. It is about hundreds of owners who brought their dogs from all over Colorado, Wyoming and New Mexico to celebrate the happiness that a rescued Golden Retriever can bring to a home, and the joy a home can bring to a lonely dog. Several people drove 1,000 miles so that an adopted dog can play with his friends and have a special day, the ultimate “Play Date” to celebrate life and newly found happiness.

New readers of my blog do not know that I have a very scary story. One year ago, when I was barely 6 months old my owner took me to the Vet's office where he was told I had a heart condition. He told them to "put him down". I had already received one injection when the supervisor came in, learned what was happening and stopped it, then called Golden Retriever Rescue of the Rockies. Within hours I was on my way to a new forever home. When GRRR turned me over to my new home, they said to "Give him the best life you can". That is what I am living, all because of a rescue organization that cared.

Note to GRRR; next time, try to get there a little sooner, that was very close, stress like that does not help my heart!

Below; Have you seen my dog? It was golden in color and it was wet!

One person looked at the madness on the beach, the running, splashing and playing dogs, the smiles on the human faces and said, “This is why we do what we do”. If you have ever wondered if you could make a difference in some one's life, just look at these rescued dogs play.

Thanks GRRR, it was a fantastic day for all of us rescue dogs, I hope the humans who attended had fun as well. It is all about people that make a difference in the lives of dogs and dogs that make a difference in the lives of the people who adopt them, forever. Visit us at

Below; Bella, my ugly step sister, and I share a quiet moment alone. Do you think my necktie makes me look dorky?
Below; I am tired, wet and ready to go home now daddy!Mogley G. Retriever


  1. Seeing all of those Goldens swimming with the tennis balls is a beautiful site! What an amazing organization and event :o)

  2. How absolutely wonderful!
    LOoks lik you had a great time MOgley! :)

  3. Wow, that looks PAWSOME!!!! Tennis balls everywhere yoo...I LOVE tennis balls. I wish our rescue reunions were filled with tennis balls.



  4. Mogley that last picture of you is absolutely adorable.

    I have never seen so many GOldens ever in my life! Those pictures are really neat. It sounds like you had a blast.

    And it sounds like GRRR is a wonderful organization. I plan to make a donation to them after reading about this.

    Benson and Gibson would have had great fun there with you, swimming, fetching and eating! What a great day!


  5. Hi Mogley,

    Riley here (with Gavin, the foster dog) -- we think your write-up on the GRRR picnic is great! We had such a good time! My mom didn't know what a strong swimmer I am. Hopefully now she will take me swimming more often. :) We have shared our pictures too and now GRRR is getting exposure from Hawaii all the way to Maine and lots of points in between! It's great! Anyway, we just wanted you to know all humans and dogs from this family had a super time too. Have you recovered yet from all the frolicking? It took us awhile (especially after the post-picnic baths we received. Now we smell like lavendar! Ick!). Hugs to you Mogley!

    Riley and Gavin

  6. That is AMAZING!! I can't imagine how much fun that must have been. How great that the weather cooperated. A beautiful day to celebrate all the lives saved!

    love & wags,

  7. We drove up from Albuquerque just to be part of this amazing event. Willie Ann, our Golden, could not get enough of the play, the water and the other Goldens. What a joyous event. We even got some great pictures of Mr. Mogley.

    Thanks for the wonderful day.

    Sandi & John
    Tijeras, NM

  8. Hey Mogley (& Bella),
    How y'all doing? Thanks for stoping by and signing our guest book. You sure nuff were right that we'd have a lot to talk about and a a lot in common. Your event up at Boulder Resevoir (we didn't see any BIG rocks) looked like it was a lot of fun. We live next to Lake Anna (VA) and we love swimming for tennis balls but we've never seen that many in our lake at one time; how cool was that? It was 95 degrees Monday but only 74 degrees today. The winds always blow our way from Colorado so let us know when it's gonna get cold. Do you live near Mork & Mindy?
    GOLDEN RETRIEVERS RULE (sometimes Yellow Labs and sometimes Newfoundlands when they throw their WEIGHT around.)
    - Homer J. - Jubal - J.E.B. - Shelby Belle - Jack - Abby - Max - Shiloh - Alex - Boru - Jenny = The Bumpass Hounds (TBH)

  9. Whoa!!!!Wet goldens in a lake of tennis balls! How awesome can that be! Thanks so much for sharing the pics! I am so happy that you were rescued by GRRR and be here to tell us your story and adventures! By the way, I've given you an award in my blog! Check it out!
    Love, Dino

  10. That would have to be the most beautiful post Ive read in a long time (and believe me Ive read alot) it made me teary to think of all those beautiful loved dogs...Bloody great work by all