Our Journey

In 2010, three women with a shared vision for a new foster-based golden retriever rescue in East Tennessee established Adopt a Golden Knoxville (AGK).  The purpose of this rescue group was to help goldens who needed homes, to build relationships, and to educate the public on responsible dog ownership. They recruited donors and a small group of volunteers, created a logo and website, reached out to shelters and owners, and AGK was born. Hank, the first golden retriever saved by AGK, came into the rescue in late 2010.

From those modest beginnings, AGK has . . .


  • Saved over 1300 Golden Retrievers, Golden mixes, Labs and other retriever breeds.
  • Rescued 25 orphan golden retrievers from Turkey.
  • Rehomed nine golden retrievers from puppy mills in Mississippi, Tennessee, and North Carolina.
  • Built relationships with shelters, other rescue groups, owners, volunteers, adopters, and veterinary partners.
  • Raised funds while strengthening donor and grant support.
  • Embraced opportunities to educate the public on responsible pet ownership through the RESOURCES page on our website, our Facebook posts, local media appearances, relationships with owners, adopters and volunteers, information provided to adopters, and participation in community events.
Our Funding

Adopt a Golden Knoxville is a private non-profit organization that does not receive any government funding. We rely on private donations, fundraisers and grants so that we can help as many Golden Retrievers as possible. We are eternally grateful for our donors and these foundations for their support.

Special Stories

These videos, released at past fundraising events, share the rescue stories of some of the golden retrievers, mixes and other breeds taken in by AGK since 2010. Watch the volunteers, adopters, and vets as they describe the transformation of special dogs from orphans to much loved family members.

Goldens in the City 2019

Goldens in the City 2018

Goldens in the Gallery 2017

Goldens in the Gallery 2016

Goldens in the Gallery 2015

Goldens in the Gallery 2014

Goldens in the Gallery 2013

Goldens in the Gallery 2012