Canine Good Citizen and Beyond


AKC Canine Good Citizen Preparatory Course:  This four-week class is an Intermediate level obedience class for dogs who have completed at least some basic skills training.  The focus of the class is on the ten stations of the CGC exam.   We practice the skills needed to pass the CGC exam in a fun & motivating format, utilizing games and real-life situations.  The CGC Exam is scheduled by appointment.  We have also built CGC Practice into our REAL WORLD program (see dates/locations above)! 

Upcoming Intermediate Manners & CGC Prep Class Start Dates:
Mar 19, 2019 ~ Tues 6:30-7:20 PM at Choice Pet Supply, 
535 Monroe Tpke Monroe CT
Apr 10, 2019 ~ Fri 6:30-7:20 PM at Choice Pet Supply, 63 Washington Ave North Haven CT

  • CGC Testing TBD at end of class session and at select REAL WORLD locations.


What is the Canine Good Citizen?

The canine Good Citizen (CGC) is an assessment created by the American Kennel Club (AKC) and recgnized by hotels, homeowners' associations and insurance companies as a way to identify "good" dogs who are low risk.  Some insurance companies will not insure a person who owns certain breeds without a CGC on the dog.


The Canine Good Citizen exam consists of 10 test items.  No treats may be used during the test. The dog must be on a flat leash and a regular buckle or martingale collar or a harness.  NO choke chains, prong collars, head halters or no-pull devices of any kind may be used during the CGC test.  The owner may give reminders or repeat a cue a few times within reason. The dog does not need to be "perfect." The dog and owner must simply demonstrate that they are working together, and the dog is a friendly and safe companion animal.  Each test item is a pass or fail, and if the dog fails any one test item, he does not pass the CGC test.  The evaluator will make recommendations for improvement to prepare to take the test again.  These test items may be done in any order at the evaluator's discretion.

Test 1: Accepting a friendly stranger. The dog needs to remain under control while the evaluator greets the owner.  The dog does not need to remain sitting, but should not jump up, or act aggressive or fearful.

Test 2: Sitting politely for petting. The dog should sit near his owner and allow the evaluator to pet his head and body. Again, he does not need to remain sitting, but should not jump up on the evaluator, nor act aggressive or fearful.

Test 3: Appearance and Grooming. The dog must appear to be cared-for and in good condition. The dog must allow the evaluator to briefly examin his ears and paws, and lightly brush him with his own brush. 

Test 4: Walking on a loose leash.  The dog and owner must walk together as directed by the evaluator.  There will be several turns and at least one stop/sit. The dog must remain under reasonable control of the owner. The leash needs to remain relaxed for most of the exercise.

Test 5: Walking through a crowd.  The dog and owner walk through a crowd of 3 or more people. The dog may show an interest in the distractions, but ust stay walking with his owner and not pulling or lunging toward other people.

Test 6: Sit, Down, Stay.  The dog must demonstrate a Sit, and a Down, And Stay in place while the owner walks 20 feet away and back.  

Test 7: Coming when called.  The dog must come at a distance of 10 feet.

Test 8: Reaction to another dog.  Two dogs & their handlers will walk toward each other, stop and exchange pleasantries, and continue on away from each other.  This should simulate encountering a neighbor (with a dog) while on a walk.  The testing dog should show no signs of aggression or fear, and be under his owner's control during the entire test.  

Test 9: Reaction to distraction. The dog may be startled by a loud noise, or distracted by some novel stimuli like a baby stroller or wheelchair.  He should follow his owner's directions and not show any aggression or fear. He may show interest or be startled, but should recover quickly and relax at his owner's reassurance.

Test 10: Supervised Separation.  The dog will remain with an evaluator or test helper while his owner goes out of sight for 3 minutes.  The dog may exhibit mild stress, but should be relatively relaxed and calm.  If the dog is overly stressed, barking or whining, or becomes dispondent, he will not pass the test.

© The Refined Canine, LLC 2015
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