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Coco's Musings

Advanced Manners/Canine Good Citizen Class!

By May 21, 2018July 7th, 2023No Comments

We are offering Advanced Manners/Canine Citizen class! This class is designed to help you teach your dogs the skills that allow him to be a well mannered family member. We will specifically be teaching the skills needed to pass the American Kennel Club’s Canine Good Citizen test.

The Canine Good Citizen (CGC) program was designed by the American Kennel Club to promote training for the family pet. It has grown tremendously since it was started, and now acts as a starting place for most service dogs, therapy dogs, and other working dogs. Having your dog pass the CGC test shows the world that your dog is friendly, polite, and well trained. Some insurance companies offer discounts on your homeowners insurance if you can prove your dog passed the test, and most therapy organizations require the test in order to qualify your dog as a therapy dog.

The CGC test consists of 10 elements, all of which your dog must show they can do.


They must accept a friendly stranger.

In this exercise, your dog must stay by your side while you greet a friendly stranger and shake hands. The person will not pay attention your dog. Your dog should stay sitting or standing by your side and should not jump or rush to greet the person and can’t show any shyness or aggression.

Sit politely for petting.

Your dog must stay sitting or standing by your side and allow a friendly stranger to pet them on the head and body only. Again, they can’t jump nor can they show shyness or aggression.

Appearance and Grooming.

Your dog should appear well groomed, clean, and free of external parasites. A friendly stranger will perform a short “exam” on your dog by looking in their ears, checking their body condition, and picking up both front feet. Your dog can stand or sit, but must not jump on the examiner nor show signs of aggression or shyness.

Out for a Walk on a loose leash.

Your dog should show that he knows how to walk on a loose leash. You will demonstrate a left and right turn as well as an about turn and a halt. Your dog has to walk with you and shouldn’t pull or lag behind you.

Walking through a crowd.

Your dog must walk with you on a loose leash through a crowd of people. They may show interest in the people, but are not allowed to interact with them or show any fear or aggression of them.


Your dog must demonstrate that they can sit and lay down on cue. They will also show they can stay in place while you walk 20 feet away and come back. You can choose if you want them to sit or down for the stay.

Come when called.

Your dog will come when called from 20 feet away.

Reaction to another dog.

Your dog has to show that you and he can approach another handler with a dog and not go to greet the other dog nor show fear and/or aggression. The dog that you meet will be a “neutral” dog.

Reaction to distractions.

Your dog has to demonstrate that he can handle distractions such as a wheelchair, walker, or loud noise. They can startle, but they must not try to run or bark at the distraction.

Supervised separation.

Your dog needs to show that they can stay with a neutral stranger for 3 minutes while you are out of sight.

Yes, that does sound like a lot! But in reality, with a little practice, most dogs can pass this test!

Please call us and ask for Juli for class details.

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