Over the few years, we have received many testimonies from individual adoptors telling of their horrific experience with Gentle
Giants Rescue and/or Burt & Tracy Ward. However, a lot of those individuals have requested that we not make their testimonies
public because of the fear that the Wards will either repossess their dog from them, will take legal actions against them, or will
hinder their ability from ever adopting a dog from any rescue group again.
** Please people, do not let them frighten you with their saber rattling and their threats. The law is there to protect you, and it will.
Just because they do not like something, does not make it illegal or give them the right to sue you. And the more they try to use the
courts to bully people, like they did with us, and the local newspaper before us, the more it will cost them. You have rights, they can
not take away your dog just because they do not like what you are doing. Nor can they sue you for speaking out. The only way they
will be stopped is if people stand up to them, just like any school yard bully. The more people speak out about their experiences
with GG and the Wards, and file complaints with Norco Animal Control, the sooner they will be shut down and dogs will find their
way to safe responsible REAL rescues. ** excerpts from Message Board post by Marc Sayer
Although it may be in your contractual agreement that GGR "reserves the right to repossess the adopted dog at ANY time, for ANY
reason", this section of the contract is NOT legally enforceable (check with your own legal counsel). Once the "purchase" takes
place and you have paid for the item, in this case a dog, that item is your own personal property and CANNOT be taken back
unless you have failed to pay for this "item" in full. And since we all know that you cannot leave with one of their dogs without you
emptying your pocket book and maxing out your Credit Card, lack of payment will never be the issue. To my knowledge, the only
way you can "lose" your dog is if your local animal control deems your household unsafe to the animal, or if your animal is unsafe to
the public by way of previously reported dog bites from your dog. So, if you are taking care of your dog humanely and your dog is
not a danger to anyone ... you have absolutely NOTHING to worry about.
It is also my understanding that GGR is now requiring that you bring your adopted dog ONLY to their vet for care. Folks ... THEY
CAN'T DO THAT. That is against the law. That would be like a car sales man telling you that in order for you to purchase their car,
they require that you have your car serviced ONLY at their service station, and purchase your gas ONLY at their gas station. If it's
not lawful, it can't be enforced.
This brings me to another "contractual agreement" that you probably had to sign in order to adopt a dog from GGR. THE FOOD
CONTRACT. GGR seems to believe that you are REQUIRED to feed your newly adopted dog their food (Gentle Giant's World
Class Canine Cuisine) and ONLY their food for the life of the dog in order for you to adopt a dog from them. Again, it may be in
your contract (or a separate contract), but this is also not legally enforceable. Once you own the "item" that you purchased, the
"Seller" cannot dictate the manner in which you feed, maintain, or take care of that item (the dog).
Although you may have signed the contract, the contract can only be enforced in what is LEGAL. The illegal terms on that contract
are null and void. This does not mean that the entire contract is invalid, it only means that certain portions of the contract may
possibly be invalid and unenforceable.
WHAT GENTLE GIANTS DOESN'T WANT YOU TO KNOW:
The dog they adopt out to you becomes YOUR personal property once the dog is handed over to you.... even if you received the
dog for free. In fact, the State of California only recognizes "Adoption" only between humans. Dogs cannot be "adopted" ... they
are purchased ... according to the Courts in the State of California. They consider an "adoption agreement" as a "Bill of Sale" or
What does this mean to you? EVERYTHING in the contract / Bill of Sale that tells you how to "maintain" the dog does not apply to
you. The prior owner (meaning Gentle Giants) no longer has control over that dog... they relinquished that responsibility to you. You
are only accountable to the laws of the land, ei: State, County & City regulations.
The ONLY way that dog can be taken away from you, would be if you are endangering the dogs live (as determined by a Court) or
the dog is endangering others.
So......... if you were to speak up about your own personal testimony of your adoption experience with Gentle Giants, you have
absolutely NOTHING to lose. Gentle Giants CANNOT repossess your dog for any reason whatsover.
Here are a few more things you should also know about Gentle Giants Rescue:
In order for them to operate in the City of Norco as a "Non-Profit" Rescue Organization, they must comply AT ALL TIMES with
certain requirements that the City has established. (See a copy of the "Conditional Use Permit")
1. They are limited to a maximum of 55 ANIMALS (not just dogs) on their premises at any time. This includes their own
family pets, of which are limited to just 4 dogs. This also includes cats, horses, pigs, goats, etc. (See Resolution, Page 3,
Take a look around ..... how many animals did you count?
2. They MUST have all dogs, 4 months of age or older, vaccinated for Rabies and MUST have those records available
at all times. (See Resolution, Page 4, Paragraph 11)
Were you provided with a copy of the Rabies Certificate? Were you told they would be sent to you as soon as she find them?
Were you ever sent them? If they are supposed to have those records available, why can't they provide them to you? This forces
you to have to re-vaccinate the dog in order to be in compliance with your City or County regulations. This puts your dog at risk of
3. They MUST have all dogs, 8 weeks of age or older, spayed or neutered within 30 days of their receipt of dog into
their rescue operation. (See Resolution, Page 3, Paragraph 9)
How many of the dogs were not available to take home that day because they had to be spayed or neutered?
There are a lot of people that would LOVE to see this "Organization" get closed down. There are also a lot of people that don't
want them closed down, but would like them to be in compliance with the Law.
Here's how you can help:
1. If you have adopted from Gentle Giants, even if the dog you adopted was in good health and good temperament, if you notice a
violation of ANY or ALL of these 3 regulations, we would encourage you to file a complaint with the City of Norco. The City would
have not other way of knowing of these violations if nobody tells them. Keep a copy of the complaint form for your own records, and
we would also appreciate it if you would forward a copy of the complaint form to us. (forwarding information can be provided upon
**Please note: You do NOT have to be a resident of Norco in order to file a complaint.
2. Send us your experience so that the public will be made aware that what happened to you could possibly happen to them if they
adopted from Gentle Giants Rescue.
4. If you found Gentle Giants Rescue through Petfinder about a dog they had listed on Petfinder, then find out that the dog is no
longer available for adoption, write to Petfinder and let them know. Their email address is: email@example.com
For the past couple of years, the puppy population at Gentle Giants Rescue has been increasing by leaps and bounds. If you were
to talk to ANY other rescue group around the Nation, both breed specific and all-breed, puppies are a rarity. So, how is it that
Gentle Giants Rescue ALWAYS has puppies? They have puppies of just about any Giant Breed dog. Additionally, they have
recently been advertising "designer" breed puppies. Here is a snippet from their website: "See our unique 'one-of-a-kind' Gentle
Giants, such as our very rare “Doodle” a giant Great Dane/Poodle who looks like a Great Dane when he is shaved and groomed,
but looks like a giant "Super Poodle" when his fur grows out. Also, check out our amazing "Woodle" an Irish Wolfhound/Poodle,
our funloving "BorzAf" a beautiful Borzoi/Afghan, and our breathtaking "Great DaNewfé" a Great Dane/Newfoundland" (see their
So the question arises, "Where do they get all these puppies?"
Email testimonies come in on a regular basis from adopters that have been through horrible experiences. Most of those
testimonies are posted in the Adopter's section of this website. There seems to be a common thread with most of these
testimonies, in that the dogs they are showing as "available" for adoption are not yet spayed or neutered. If they adopted that dog,
they would have to come back in a few days to pick him/her up after the dog has had it's surgery.
It is also well-known that it is standard practice of Gentle Giants Rescue that all the dogs live together in a pack. They sleep
together, they eat together, and they "hang out" together. Most of these dogs live in the back "house", so they are not supervised at
So ... what do you think? Unaltered adult dogs ... living communally ... lots of puppies available.
After carefully reviewing 9 years worth of Gentle Giants IRS 990 Tax Returns for the years 2003 - 2011, here are some of my
If you read or hear any of the media that Burt Ward publicizes about GGR, he is constantly bragging about how many dogs they
adopt out each year. At one point, he had stated that they adopt out 1,000 dogs per year. To back up this claim, a lawsuit
complaint was filed in the County of Riverside against one of the adopters claiming that they have adopted over 10,000 dogs in the
past 14 years. Assuming that GGR was not adopting out that large of a quantity when they first started, over the years the quantity
has increased, it averages out to approximately 1,000 dogs per year. This would actually make Burt Ward's claims to be close to
the truth. And since it IS filed with the County Courts, it MUST be true.
They are now boasting (as of Sept. 2013) to have adopted out 14,000 dogs over the past 10 years. Gee, I guess that averages
1,400 dogs per year. So ... I'm going to use that number in my averages.
HOWEVER, based on the 2004 to 2011 returns, they are claiming to have adopted out 200 to 500 dogs year. So which is it?
1,400 adoptions per year, or an average of 350 dogs per year? These numbers aren't even close.
The next observation I made, and having in my possession a number of adoption contracts over the above referenced years, the
average adoption fees for the year 2004 were between $400.00 to $650.00 ; average adoption fees for the years 2005 & 2006
were between $650.00 to $900.00, and almost all their adoptions after 2007 were close to $900.00 per dog.
Based on the estimated amount of dogs adopted per year of 1,400 dogs, this is what I calculate for the following years:
2004 (1,400 dogs x $500 per dog) = $700,000.00
2005 & 2006 (1,400 dogs x $700 per dog) = $980,000.00 each year
2007 - 2010 (1,400 dogs x $900.00 per dog) = $1,260,000.00 each year
2011 seems to have been a bad year for them ... at least according to their tax returns.
(I believe my math is correct. Check the math yourself.)
HOWEVER, gross adoption fees reported on the 990 Tax Returns for those years were MUCH lower than that.
2004 = $222,493.00 reported
2005 = $351,359.00 reported
2006 = $337,160.00 reported
2007 = $284,559.00 reported
2008 = $156,868.00 reported
2009 = $112,120.00 reported
2010 = $104,758.00 reported
2011 = $ 40,821.00 reported ... oops, are all the negative reports all throughout the internet affecting them?
I don't know about you ... but these numbers just don't make any sense to me.
CLICK HERE to read my thoughts on the following expense items (You'll be shocked at what they claim they spend
money on .... non-profit "rescue" money.
Feeding/Cleaning (this is NOT Food) & Food (Food is a separate item)