Late tries to Matt Worboys and Mitch Turner helped Goulburn cement a Canberra Raiders Cup top-four spot with a 33-24 home win over Woden Valley on Sunday.
With just one win from six previous games, the Rams threatened an upset when a field goal on half-time gave them a 17-16 lead.
But the Bulldogs held their nerve in the second stanza to leap to a share of the competition lead with Queanbeyan Blues and Queanbeyan Kangaroos.
"We've just had two weeks off so it's good to get a win today after some time off to get some injuries right,'' Goulburn player-coach Mick Picker said.
In Saturday's results West Belconnen produced a 22-14 boilover against the Kangaroos, the Blues hammered Tuggeranong 28-6, while Belconnen registered its first win of the year over Gungahlin 26-6.