AKC Canine Good Citizen
Instructors And Evaluators: Rick Bulcak, Deb Cawley, and Jamie Killian-Coody
What Is It?
We believe that all dogs deserve training and a responsible owner and our goal is to reward responsible dog ownership. The AKC’s Canine Good Citizen Program is designed to recognize dogs who have good manners at home and in the community. This rapidly growing nationally recognized program stresses responsible dog ownership for owners and basic training and good manners for dogs. All dogs who pass the 10 step CGC test may receive a certificate from the American Kennel Club. The Benefits of Training The AKC CGC Program provides an excellent foundation for training in other fun activities such as Rally, Obedience, and Agility and results in a well-mannered dog who is a joy to live with. Some therapy dog groups require passing the CGC Test as a prerequisite, some insurance companies recommend CGC training, and an increasing number of apartments and condos are requiring CGC training for resident dogs.
How It Works
Many dog owners choose Canine Good Citizen training as the first step in training their dogs. The Canine Good Citizen Program lays the foundation for other AKC activities such as obedience, agility, tracking, and performance events. As you work with your dog to teach the CGC skills, you'll discover the many benefits and joys of training your dog. Training will enhance the bond between you and your dog. Dogs who have a solid obedience education are a joy to live with-they respond well to household routines, have good manners in the presence of people and other dogs, and they fully enjoy the company of the owner who took the time to provide training, intellectual stimulation, and a high quality life. We sincerely hope that CGC will be only a beginning for you and your dog and that after passing the CGC test, you'll continue training in obedience, agility, tracking, or performance events. There is no age limit for the CGC test. A dog is never too old to be a good citizen. Puppies who have completed all immunizations and boosters may be tested, however, because we know that behavior and temperament can change over time, when puppies pass the CGC test, owners should have them re-tested as adults. We recommend going through the Puppy S.T.A.R. prior to going through CGC.
The CGC is a requirement for our Service Dogs. Brothers and Sisters want to make sure every handler and Service dog Team excel with no problems. We mandate that all our Service Dog Teams go through all programs we offer for the benefit of the Service Dog and Handler.
CGC Test Items and Pledge
The CGC Program teaches good manners to dogs and responsible dog ownership to their owners. The 10-step Canine Good Citizen test is a non-competitive test for all dogs, including purebreds and mixed breeds. The CGC award is a prerequisite for many therapy dog groups. Some homeowner’s insurance companies are encouraging CGC testing, and an increasing number of apartments and condos require that resident dogs pass the CGC test. The CGC Program also includes the AKC CGC℠ Responsible Dog Owner Pledge.
The CGC test includes:
Appearance and Grooming
The dog will permit someone to check it’s ears and front feet, as a groomer or veterinarian would do.
Walking Through a Crowd
This test demonstrates that the dog can move about politely in pedestrian traffic and is under control in public places. The dog and handler walk around and pass close to several people (at least three).
Coming When Called
This test demonstrates that the dog will come when called by the handler (from 10 feet on a leash).
Reaction to Another Dog
This test demonstrates that the dog can behave politely around other dogs. Two handlers and their dogs approach each other from a distance of about 20 feet, stop, shake hands and exchange pleasantries.
This test demonstrates that a dog can be left with a trusted person, if necessary, and will maintain training and good manners. Evaluators are encouraged to say something like, "Would you like me to watch your dog?" and then take hold of the dog's leash. The owner will go out of sight for three minutes. The dog does not have to stay in position but should not continually bark, whine, or pace unnecessarily, or show anything stronger than mild agitation or nervousness. Evaluators may talk to the dog but should not engage in excessive talking, petting, or management attempts (e.g, "there, there, it's alright").
AKC CGC℠ Responsible Dog Owner's Pledge:
I will be responsible for my dog's health needs. These include:
routine veterinary care including check-ups and vaccines
adequate nutrition through proper diet; clean water at all times
daily exercise and regular bathing and grooming
I will be responsible for my dog's safety.
I will properly control my dog by providing fencing where appropriate, not letting my dog run loose, and using a leash in public.
I will ensure that my dog has some form of identification when appropriate (which may include collar tags, tattoos, or microchip ID).
I will provide adequate supervision when my dog and children are together.
I will not allow my dog to infringe on the rights of others.
I will not allow my dog to run loose in the neighborhood.
I will not allow my dog to be a nuisance to others by barking while in the yard, in a hotel room, etc.
I will pick up and properly dispose of my dog's waste in all public areas such as on the grounds of hotels, on sidewalks, parks, etc.
I will pick up and properly dispose of my dog's waste in wilderness areas, on hiking trails, campgrounds and in off-leash parks.
I will be responsible for my dog's quality of life.
I understand that basic training is beneficial to all dogs.
I will give my dog attention and playtime.
I understand that owning a dog is a commitment in time and caring.