Little darling, it’s been a long cold lonely winter…

She was a baby carrying babies.

Sunshine, a petite, pregnant, year-old Golden Retriever, was up for sale at a commercial dog breeding auction, her bulging belly attracting bidding commercial breeders. Under normal circumstances, Sunshine’s story would have had a sad script: continuing to suffer as a puppy producer until she was used up and discarded. But the sun was shining on this special girl. She was at the right auction on the right day, because Retrieve a Golden of the Midwest (RAGOM) was there, and thanks to a grant from Friends of Flicka, they had the funds to rescue her.

Little darling, the smiles returning to the faces…

Sunshine was welcomed into a foster home where she discovered the warmth and comfort of life with a family, who loved watching her tail wag her whole little body when she was happy. A veterinarian confirmed that Sunshine was pregnant, and her foster family was happy to help her raise her pups in their loving home.

sunshine with pups

Sunny, as she was affectionately known, soon gave birth to ten beautiful puppies. She was a gentle and attentive mother, and her foster family helped care for the pups as well as for Sunny, who required over eight cups of food each day to keep up her milk supply.

sunshine with pup

While raising her young family, Sunshine also adjusted to life as a loved dog. She learned basic skills needed to live inside a home, and the comforts of dog beds, good food, and gentle massages from her foster mom. As the pups grew older, her foster family ensured Sunny received breaks from her caregiving – to play, explore, and nap. 

Sun, sun, sun, here it comes

Once her puppies were ready for adoption, Sunny too was ready for her own forever family, and she found the perfect one. For her foster mom, it was bittersweet. The two had worked tirelessly to care for the pups, and developed quite a bond. “I’m a little sad, but mostly thankful. Thankful for this experience, for the love that has filled our home these past nine weeks, all the laughs! Most of all, I’m thankful for Sunshine’s trust in me. We did it, Sunny girl, and we did it together.”

sunshine with her growing pups

Sunshine’s new family is everything a dog could dream of. People who love her, and five fenced-in acres to romp around in with her two new Golden Retriever brothers.

Here comes the sun, and I say
It’s all right

Sunny now spends her days walking, hiking, cuddling with her family, going to dog parks, and playing with her Golden brothers, who adore her. She is drawn to water and loves to swim. Her family is even exploring the possibility of training Sunny to be a certified therapy dog so she can spread the light of her sweet and loving spirit.


“We are truly grateful to Friends of Flicka for supporting dogs like Sunny,” her new family said. “Not only did they help save Sunny from the never-ending cycle of puppy mill breeding, but they also gave her and her 10 puppies the chance to have a real family life. What a difference they made.”

After grieving the loss of one of their dogs, her family is thrilled to have her in their lives. “Sunny is the happiest dog. She has brought the ‘Sunshine’ back to our family.”

Here comes the sun. It’s all right. It’s all right.

sunshine loves the water