If you’re like most dog owners, you train your dogs so that their manners are nice in the house and when people come over. Often, we take our dogs with us when we go places locally or on vacation, so we want them to behave well in new situations, too. Although the majority of us aren’t looking to compete for titles in obedience or
agility, we do realize the importance of teaching good manners. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a bona fide certificate that recognizes the basic manners you have worked so hard on with your dog?
There is! The American Kennel Club (AKC) has a certification program that certifies your dog as a Canine Good Citizen (CGC). Positive training not only strengthens the bond between you and your dog, but also helps to make your canine companion a happier dog. The CGC certificate is not a competition – you
and your dog are evaluated solely on the exercises performed, regardless of how anyone else does. Most people already have at least half of the skills needed. The remaining skills can be practiced and learned usually in a few weeks (don’t hold me to that exactly – every dog/handler team is different). The evaluator will make sure you are evaluated in a relaxed environment, so that both you and your dog are comfortable.
The CGC is a 10-
The exercises are as follows: Accepting a friendly stranger, sitting politely for
petting, allowing someone unfamiliar to brush the dog, walking on a loose leash,
walking through a crowd, sitting and staying, coming when called, reaction to another
dog, reaction to distraction (a loud sound, usually) and being calm while separated
from the handler for 2 minutes. There are no breed or age restrictions. A flat buckle
collar or no-
Some of these exercises are easier than they may sound—but they all require practice. And although I do not know of a CGC Prep class locally, there are quite a few skilled positive trainers in the area who can help you prepare if you are interested. Contact your vet or Second Chance Animal Center for a recommendation of a good positive trainer. Some insurance companies and Residential Property Management organizations do take a CGC certificate
into consideration when deciding whether to insure a home-
P.S. ShelterFest, an exciting event run by Second Chance Animal Center, will be held this year on July 28th at Willow Park in Bennington. There will be an Obedience Demonstration as well as CGC Testing opportunities. So you have lots of time to fine tune those skills if you would like to have them evaluated. If not, you are always welcome to bring you dog and watch! Hope to see you there!
if you don't take some extra precautions to protect your pet during the winter months. Here are some tips...
Before long the snow will be flying, so now is the time to prepare your pets to cope
with the coming cold weather. In addition to the dangers of cats seeking warmth on
an automobile engine, and dogs drinking carelessly spilled antifreeze, there are
other, less obvious threats to your pets" well-