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Tips for Canine Good Citizen Test Item 1 – Accepting a Friendly Stranger

In the first of a multi-part series, Carol Hein-Creger, lead trainer at AnnaBelle’s, and Erinn Hadley, trainer and professional handler, and certified CGC evaluator, takes you through each of the CGC exercises and offers tips and guidance for practicing and for successfully passing a CGC evaluation.

Test Item 1:  Accepting a friendly stranger

This test demonstrates that the dog will allow a friendly stranger to approach it and speak to the handler in a natural, everyday situation. The evaluator walks up to the dog and handler and greets the handler in a friendly manner, ignoring the dog. The evaluator and handler shake hands and exchange pleasantries. The dog must show no sign of resentment or shyness, and must not break position or try to go to the evaluator.

Tips and Guidance:

While the Canine Good Citizen evaluator can’t require that the dog sits or down, you may command your dog to do so for this exercise. You may instruct your dog by voice command only – no yanking, pulling, or harsh correction with the leash. Remember that throughout all of the CGC exercises, you may talk to your dog as much as you want — give the initial command, repeat the command if needed, verbally praise and encourage. If your dog disobeys, verbally encourage and motivate your dog’s compliance — but do not overtly correct your dog with the leash.

Stay tuned for tips for Test Item 2 – Sitting Politely for Petting!

Check the Canine Training Center’s page to see when the next Canine Good Citizen class starts! Sign up today on-line or call 517.599.0995.

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