Consumer Complaints and Reviews
Beware of sanitation at Goldrush Kennels! We recently purchased a golden retriever puppy there. Four days later he was in the emergency room at the vet. After testing the vet stated the puppy had the worst case of Coccidiosis she had ever seen! This is a parasitic infection contracted from feces and soil. Our vet, AND TWO OTHER VETS, INDEPENDENTLY stated our puppy left Goldrush Kennels with a substantial case of Coddidiosis. Due to the high levels of the parasite detected upon examination, we were in fear of our new puppy dying or having some type of permanent medical issue. Fortunately, after several days in the hospital and several thousands of dollars' worth of medical procedures (including a protein transfusion due to bloody, watery stools) we were able to take him home where he continued treatment.
We contacted Amy at Goldrush Kennels only to be met with belligerence! She stated the puppy left there with medicine for the disease (obviously they were aware of the problem and acted like this is normal) and stated this was all our fault for over stressing the puppy. The puppy was delivered to us by a third party and we were not aware of medicine in his info packet to help with the parasites. That call was followed with a letter from their attorney stating they have no further obligation with the puppy or his care. "Are they used to this scenario?" was the first thought that came to my mind. I would caution the potential customer to check out the sanitation and be prepared to deal with their aloofness!
I have had 6 Gold Rush Golden Retrievers since 1995 to the present. Four of them have died. All of them were over twelve years old. The oldest one was 13 years and 7 months old. Two of them had hemangiosarcoma of the spleen, one had lymphoma and one had liver cancer. And no one has had any hip or other health issues. It has been heartbreaking to have so many of my babies die but my 6 experiences with Ann Johnson have been flawless. Her dogs are beautiful and have wonderful temperaments.
I have also been a pet sitter for 24 years and many of my clients have been Golden Retrievers. None of them were Gold Rush and many of them died much before they turned 12 like my dogs and they all died of cancer. I think I'm unique in that. I've had 6 of Ann's dogs and the dogs have lived longer than many other Goldens from other breeders. I currently have 2 Goldens and one is 11 years old and my other one is 9 years old. Will they die of cancer? Probably. But that won't ever stop me from sharing my life with these amazing dogs. As Rudyard Kipling said, "My brothers and sisters I bid you beware of giving your heart to a dog to tear." Sadly it is an inevitable part of loving a dog.
I was assured that the litter of Gold Rush pups had excellent hips and legs. 4 years on, the dog started to exhibit failure in getting up. In his 6th yr. it was very difficult for him to stand. At 9 I had to get expensive doggy cart to support his back so he could walk. He lived till his 13th birthday, had a heart attack. My complaint is even though he lived a long 13 yrs., more than half of it he was in extreme pain and could walk on his own. He was on pain killers and anti inflammation tabs, which took the edge off his pain, but he had less than 4 years of quality life. And I spent thousands with the vets in trying to help him walk painlessly. I paid $850.00 for him and about another 4000 without food.
I was led along with false promises about the dog's sire and bitch's health. I loved that dog and did everything I could to medically help him, but I felt I was snookered by this couple who knew what they were selling, 'a heartache' for money. These people should not be permitted to sell any more dogs and commit fraud on the general public. I have the akc BLOODLINE THAT THEY WERE USING. It hurts to the heart to watch your best friend go through such long and painful hardships. DO NOT BUY FROM THESE PEOPLE, THEY ARE A BAIT AND SWITCH ACT.
In 2006 I purchased a beautiful Gold Rush Golden. Papers indicated "good" hip rating. The truth? My dog was born with severe hip dysplasia as well as numerous herniated discs. By the age of 7 the chronic herniated discs had fused to her spine. What sort of breeder would do this? This breeder falsified records and has only one goal in mind - Best in Show.
Having had two English Creme Goldens from Gold Rush, they are living long lives. Unfortunately those on this forum expect perfect animals and that is NOT life. Dog breeding has developed into expectations of perfection through "certifications" that somehow lull people into believing that they will get a perfect pup that will not have any health issues, ever. There have been attempts to do this with humans. It is called cloning and has all but been outlawed and shunned due to the (what should be) obvious moral issues. People, and animals, are NOT perfect people. They get sick. Yes, there are those that inbreed and cause most of the problems, but guess what, most of these are those "certified" dogs and have extensive inbreeding because they only want to breed those "perfect" dogs, to get "more perfect" dogs. People need to STOP expecting perfection for their pets. ENJOY them, in sickness and in health, whether for a few months, or 20 years.
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We had a similar issue with Gold Rush. We purchased a great dog in 1997 from Gold Rush. Riley was beautiful and smart. When he was 5 years old, he suddenly became very ill within a matter of days. He also had cancer and died suddenly. When I contacted Gold Rush, they disclaimed other similar issues. However, I have spoken to many individuals in New Jersey that have gone through similar issues. I would never purchase another dog from Gold Rush. I have actually been in contact with breeders on the West Coast so that I can avoid any involvement with Gold Rush.
We have purchased two dogs from Gold Rush Kennels. The first puppy was a wonderful female, who lived a long and healthy life. At the time of the first purchase, Ann Johnson Sr. was CEO of the business, and she bred only for the betterment of the breed. She tried her best to breed out diseases. She was also a very discerning owner as she would interview for hours while the prospective buyers played with her puppies. When our female golden passed, we decided to buy another puppy and since the Gold Rush Kennel had a good reputation, we thought why not buy there again.
But when we got our puppy, he was not actually bred at Gold Rush. Yes, he was from a champion blood line but there was no guarantee of his hips (just elbow). Our golden is now 4 and 1/2 years old and he has stage III Lymphoma. We are heart-broken because we can't afford the expensive treatment on a fixed income. The current owner of Gold Rush is Robin Ann Johnson, who signs all documents as R. Ann Johnson. This daughter is selling puppies bred from states all over the country. Again champion lines, but not combed through for potential diseases. I believe the new owner sells pups on the heels of her mother's reputation. This is just my opinion but seeing your 4-year old dog dying of cancer is heart breaking.
On August 9, 2001 we purchased two golden retriever puppies from the above-mentioned breeder. At the time of this sales transaction we requested and received an OFA (Orthopedic Foundation for Animals) report for both parents which read as "good".
However, when these puppies were only 8 months of age, they were both diagnosed as having severe hip dysplasia with significant arthritis already present as per a board certified orthopedic surgeon in Plainview, New York. Upon this diagnosis we personally contacted the gentlemen that signed the OFA report to find out that indeed the mother's report had apparently been changed from "fair" to "good" on the copy provided to us. The breeder denies knowledge of this forgery.
As per the puppy lemon law this breeder has offered us the purchase price back if we return the puppies to her to be eunthanized -- we do not entertain this option as we love these puppies dearly. However, if the breeder had been honest at the time of the sale, we never would have purchased them in the first place. There were a total of 12 puppies in this litter which means that most probably there are other sick puppies as a result of her negligence and consumer fraud!
According to the findings of the orthopedic surgeon, these two puppies will most definetly require total hip replacement surgery by about age two years. The cost of these combined surgeries will be in excess of $16K.
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