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  • Canine Good Neighbour (CGN)

    Steve-KingYour dog has successfully completed a basic obedience class and with on-going training you are pleased with how obedient and well behaved your dog has become. In order to officially recognize the progress your dog has made, one option you might consider is the “Canine Good Neighbour” program.

    The Canadian Kennel Club (CKC) describes it thus: “The Canine Good Neighbour Program is a 12-step test, that when completed successfully, will ensure that one of our most favoured companions, the dog, is accepted as a valued member of our communities right across the country. Canine Good Neighbours can be counted on to present good manners at home, in public places and in the presence of other dogs.

    The test is non-competitive and allows dog and handler to demonstrate confidence and control in 12 steps. It assesses the handler and dog’s relationship, together with the handler’s ability to control the dog. Dogs are evaluated on their ability to perform basic exercises as well as their ability to demonstrate good manners in everyday situations.”

    Dogs do not need to have had any official training to attempt the CGN test but I would highly recommend it.

    The 12 steps referred to cover the following:

    • Accepting A Friendly Stranger
    • Politely Accepts Petting
    • Appearance and Grooming
    • Out For A Walk
    • Walking Through A Crowd
    • Sit/Down On Command and Stay In Place
    • Come When Called
    • Praise/Interaction
    • Reaction To A Passing Dog
    • Reaction To Distractions
    • Supervised Isolation
    • Walking Through A Door/Gate

    More detail on each step can be viewed using the link https://www.ckc.ca/en/Files/Raising-My-Dog-Section/Responsible-Ownership/CGN-12-Steps.aspx

    To pass the test your dog will need to pass all 12 steps.

    If you are interested in participating with your dog and obtaining a CGN certification, you should first obtain a copy of the Participants Handbook from the CKC order desk at 1-800-250-8040 or review online using the link https://www.ckc.ca/en/Files/Forms/Shows-Trials/Event-Rules-Regulations/Canine-Good-Neighbour-Program-Participant-Handbook

    The tests are conducted by evaluators who have been accredited by the CKC. To become a certified evaluator, the following criteria must be met:

    • be a Regular Member in good standing of The Canadian Kennel Club
    • have at least 5 years experience in the training and handling of dogs
    • be a member/participant in a dog club or dog association.
    • successfully pass a written test based on the Evaluator Guide and Participant Handbook.

    A list of evaluators can be viewed using the link https://www.ckc.ca/en/Files/Raising-My-Dog-Section/Responsible-Ownership/CGN-Evaluators-Web.aspx

    The cost of a CGN test is around $25-$30.

    At the end of the test your dog will be assessed as either “Passed” or “Not Ready”. In the case of the latter result, the evaluator will discuss with you which area(s) still need some work and, as such, will allow you to focus on specific areas for improvement.

    Food for thought!