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April Fund


The initial April Fund, created in 1995 by a New York
rescue group, assisted in the handling of puppy mill dogs.
The fund’s namesake, April, with her nine two-week old
puppies, was removed from a puppy mill. Only two of her
puppies survived, but April lived happily to the age of
16 years with her loving adoptive family.

The April Fund was incorporated into the Golden Retriever
Foundation in the summer of 2000. It reimburses rescue groups for extraordinary veterinary expenses. Many
rescued Goldens are taken in with major medical problems
that drain the financial resources of the rescue groups.
The April Fund rescues the rescuers.

When the founding group disbanded, they donated the
remaining $3,000 to the GRF for medical expenses
associated with puppy-mill rescues. The GRF expanded
that purpose to include all rescued dogs and added
additional money to the fund to cover what the Board
thought would be needed relief for Rescue groups.
Statistics indicate that 60% or more of a Rescue group’s
expenses are medical.

Guidelines for April Fund Grant Applications

The April Fund of the Golden Retriever Foundation is intended to help rescue groups defray veterinary expenses
for an individual dog due to a single, extraordinary treatment or procedure. It is also used to assist groups with veterinary costs when they suffer a sudden influx of dogs from a puppy mill. It is designed to help rescue groups
deal with abnormal situations, not as a subsidy for routine health care of rescued dogs.

  • The turn around time once the request is received is approximately one month.
  • The minimum amount granted per dog is $250. If the dog is from a puppy mill, this minimum is waived. The maximum award per dog per year is $400.
  • No requests will be considered for expenses incurred more than six (6) months prior to the date the
    application is received by the Golden Retriever Foundation.
  • Applications are considered on a case-by-case basis.
  • There is a $5,000 cap on the amount which any one rescue group may receive annually from the April Fund.
    This cap may be waived in emergency situations.
The April Fund is supported by direct contributions, augmented by funds from rescue contributions to the GRF.
The directors strive to make an equitable distribution of the available resources among rescue groups, but they
may find it necessary at times to deny otherwise qualified applications because of a lack of immediate funds.

What the April Fund WILL cover:

  • Surgery, and expenses associated with the surgery, which exceed $250
  • X-rays, ultrasound, and other diagnostic procedures which exceed $250
  • Medications prescribed as treatment for a specific illness which exceed $250
  • A single vet visit for an individual dog for which the bill exceeds $250
  • Any vet expenses up to $400 per dog for dogs rescued from puppy mills, no minimum

What the April Fund will NOT cover:

  • Boarding, unless it is short hospitalization associated with a medical procedure
  • Spay/neuter surgery unless done in conjunction with another eligible surgical procedure
  • Normal veterinary visits, routine inoculations, or basic health care, except for puppy mill rescues
  • Repeated veterinary visits that gradually add up to the $250 threshold

To Apply for an April Fund Grant

Grants are made only to recognized rescue organizations for dogs under their care, not to individual owners or
foster homes. Any of the following items on file with the GRF or with GRCA's National Rescue Committee (NRC)
will satisfy the Foundation’s accountability requirements:
  • A copy of the rescue group's current IRS 990 form
  • A current, completed GRF Rescue Group Grant Application
  • Participation in the most current NRC rescue group survey

To maintain the integrity of the program, the GRF will expect rescue programs seeking GRF support to have participated in
the GRCA National Rescue Committee's Annual Survey, to submit a copy of that
survey with their grant request, or to authorize the GRF to obtain a copy of the submitted survey from
the NRC. For new organizations not functioning during the previous survey year, GRF expects these organizations to be known to the NRC and to be listed on the State Listings of Rescue Programs ( This will be verified with the NRC.

Please remember that the purpose of the April Fund is to offset exceptional medical expenses, not to pay the
ordinary vet costs that are incurred with each rescue. Groups are asked to monitor their own requests with this
in mind. If you have questions concerning your application, contact the Foundation directly by e-mailing, writing
or calling any of the directors.

To Apply:

Fill out the April Fund Grant Application( DOC OR PDF)

  1. Send completed application to the GRF with a copy of the paid vet bill and a full body photo.
    Please note: bills may be dated no more than six months from the date of the application.
  2. GRF reimbursement will be sent in approximately 30 days if application meets established criteria.

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