Harrisburg Canine Good Citizen Testing

Is your dog the ultimate good girl or best boy? Prove it once and for all with our Canine Good Citizen Testing, backed by the American Kennel Club. This certification can open doors to service animal training, discounts on certain accommodations, and other benefits for dog owners.

Greenlin Is a Certified AKC Canine Good Citizen Test Evaluator

As part of our pet-friendly services made available to the community, we provide testing for the American Kennel Club's (AKC) Canine Good Citizen (CGC) program. Evaluations are ongoing and often take place in a group setting.

If you have been working hard on your relationship with your dog to make sure that they are ready to demonstrate exemplary behavior in a variety of situations, now is the time to put it to the test! Our certified trainers are able to observe your dog through all 10 CGC Test Items and evaluate how well they perform. We can even provide detailed feedback in our scoring, helping you know what areas of training to focus on while commending you for your great performance together with others.

AKC CGC testing is available whether you have trained your dog at Greenlin or they have received their training elsewhere, including at home. Of course, we always offer training for dogs of all ages, so if you want them to be ready to ace their CGC test, then sign up for our dog training classes today!

Find out when our next AKC CGC test dates will be held, and learn more about our available services and programs when you reach out to one of five Greenlin Pet Resorts locations in the Central Pennsylvania area.

What Is the American Kennel Club's Canine Good Citizen Test?

AKC's Canine Good Citizen Test serves as an objective and standardized evaluation to establish that a dog has mastered the basics of calm, considerate behaviors. The test consists of a 10-point list of evaluated behaviors conforming to some of the most common scenarios a dog may encounter. The purpose of the test is to ensure that the dog is prepared to meet these situations in a patient and self-controlled manner, setting the stage for the owner to help guide the animal through the situation safely and without incident.

The American Kennel Club states that their goal in providing the test is to help dog owners set goals based on the most generally useful skills, forming a foundation of positive behavioral responses that will set the dog up to enter most situations comfortably. Above all else, the primary intention is for dogs and owners to enjoy better communication, a better relationship, and less stress when encountering common scenarios, especially while out in public.

Participants will be presented with a certificate upon successful completion of the exam as well as a special tag for the canine companion to wear proudly. Obtaining CGC certification is frequently a requirement of therapy dog programs and other specialty programs, including entry into some dog sports and other activities.

Some landlords and service providers will offer reduced pet deposits, discounts on services, or other perks based on whether or not a pet has obtained CGC credentials. In severe cases, a dog may even be required to be CGC certified before they are allowed to live in a building or enter a service provider's facilities.

Canine Good Citizen Test Items: A 10-Point Checklist

The Canine Good Citizen Test evaluates the dog's performance across 10 main performance areas. All Canine Good Citizen Test Requirements are geared towards helping both owner and pet be prepared for common situations where positive behaviors can make a huge difference in the outcome.

The 10 Canine Good Citizen Test Items are as follows:

  • Test 1: Accepting a friendly stranger
  • Test 2: Sitting politely for petting
  • Test 3: Appearance and grooming
  • Test 4: Out for a walk (loose lead)
  • Test 5: Walking through a crowd
  • Test 6: Sit and down on cue and stay in place
  • Test 7: Coming when called
  • Test 8: Reaction to another dog
  • Test 9: Reaction to a distraction
  • Test 10: Supervised separation

Greenlin Dog Training Can Help You Prepare for the Canine Good Citizen Test

If you are interested in preparing for the Canine Good Citizen Test, Greenlin is here to act as your partner in training and a reliable study buddy! Our customizable dog training programs can help you focus on the goals or behavioral areas you care about most.

As part of your personalized dog training program, we can incorporate the ten testing areas your pet will encounter during CGC evaluations. Not only will this preparation increase the chances of your dog acing their exam on their first try, but each of the ten items represents a highly useful tool in helping your dog interact safely and calmly with the world around them.

At Greenlin, our highest goal is improving the relationship between pets and their household while giving dogs the skills needed to thrive in a variety of situations. From basic commands to focusing on "behavior shaping" in situations like a noisy park, your dog will be prepared to enter situations ready to know how to act and ready to receive any needed commands.

Best of all, owners and even the entire household can join in on the learning! We provide demonstrations of what the dog has learned along with tailored advice and instruction on how to get the most out of your dog obedience classes in the home setting or out in public.

Good relationships are built on understanding, trust, clear communication, and consistent boundaries. With the skills we help equip you and your dog with, you'll reach a deeper point of understanding and be better prepared to handle any challenges life throws your way!

Ask about our Canine Good Citizen training program when you book your free evaluation!

Greenlin's Dog Training Approach in Five Stages

Each stage of Greenlin's customizable dog training programs corresponds to a critical phase of learning. Just like how school-age humans must learn the basics of arithmetic before moving on to more complex topics like algebra, we'll start with the basics. Behavior shaping and foundational commands ensure your dog is ready to learn every day and tackle more complex challenges more easily.

Classes are structured according to where your dog is at the current moment and where you want to be. If your dog has never had any formal obedience training before, or if they're already excellent at commands like "sit" and "stay", we still have lots to teach them and lots of learning to do together!

Below are our five phases of learning that help ensure repeatable success on your way toward reaching your goals:

1. Evaluation — Before we get started, we first assess where your dog is at right now. We have conversations with you to understand their strengths and weaknesses as well as your ideal outcomes. We will then observe your dog in a public setting at our facility to understand their behaviors, see how they react to certain situations, and begin curating a curriculum tailored to their unique motivators.

2. Behavior shaping — Behavior shaping is a dog training technique that recognizes how seemingly simple commands or expectations actually represent a series of discrete steps. For example, before a dog can be ready to "sit", it must first be calm and attentive. Behavior shaping helps the dog reach a point of being ready for other instructions or interactions by positively rewarding the desired behaviors while gently redirecting others.

3. Imprinting (Teaching Commands) — The imprinting phase of training helps dogs to recall specific series of actions upon a simple command or when encountering a specific scenario. For example, a dog can be taught to sit calmly while its harness is being put on and then to wait patiently while the door is opened before being instructed to go out.

4. Proofing — Proofing strengthens the ability for a dog to respond as expected to imprinted commands and routines. To accomplish this, we will introduce new challenges or complicating factors, such as noise, distractions, or the introduction of unfamiliar elements. Over time, we help ensure that your dog can reliably recall specific actions on cue in less-than-ideal conditions.

5. Maintenance — The maintenance phase of training ensures that taught behaviors and commands are practiced regularly. More importantly, maintenance helps evolve training in response to new factors or situations that emerge. If the dog has a new canine sibling joining the family, for example, new training can help them adjust and be better prepared to respond to the demands of the new situation they find themselves in.

All dog training programs can be concluded with a demonstration as well as owner instruction, allowing the owner to see and understand what the dog has learned. Often, getting the desired behaviors involves as much of what humans do to reinforce earlier training. At Greenlin, we equip owners with the tools they need to help their dogs be more responsive and better prepared for challenges like passing their Canine Good Citizen Test!

Schedule Your AKC Canine Good Citizen Test or Exam Preparation Dog Training at Greenlin

Passing the Canine Good Citizen test is a high watermark both dogs and owners should be proud of! It also sets the stage for future successes you hope to achieve together.

If you are interested in scheduling your dog for our next exam period, or you want to enroll them in training to prepare for the exam, we are here to help! Get answers to your questions and schedule a free dog training evaluation today when you reach out by phone or online contact form to one of our five Harrisburg-area dog training facility locations.