Canine Good Citizen

Best Canine Good Citizen Classes Near Me

Started in 1989, The American Kennel Club’s Canine Good Citizen® (CGC) Program is a certification program that is designed to reward dogs who have good manners at home and in the community. The CGC Program is a two-part program that stresses responsible pet ownership for owners and basic good manners for dogs. All dogs who pass the 10-step CGC test may receive a certificate from the American Kennel Club. Our Canine Good Citizen class is intended to help owners and their dogs prepare for the AKC CGC certification and our instructors are AKC certified Canine Good Citizen evaluators. We currently offer a six-week preparatory CGC class, which includes CGC Certification Testing, see schedule below. Please note that the fee for the CGC test is included in the price of our CGC course.

Canine Good Citizen Requirements

The CGC Test includes

  • Accepting a Friendly Stranger

The dog will allow a friendly stranger to approach it and speak to the handler in a natural, everyday situation.

  • Sitting Politely for Petting

The dog will allow a friendly stranger to pet it while it is out with its handler.

  • Appearance and Grooming 

The dog will permit someone to check its ears and front feet, as a groomer or veterinarian would do.

  • Out for a Walk (walking on a loose lead)

Following the evaluator’s instructions, the dog will walk on a loose lead (with the handler/owner).

  • Walking Through a Crowd

This test demonstrates that the dog can move about politely in pedestrian traffic and is under control in public places. The dog and handler walk around and pass close to several people (at least three).

  • Sit and Down on Command and Staying in Place

The dog must do sit AND down on command, then the owner chooses the position for leaving the dog in the stay.

  • Coming When Called 

This test demonstrates that the dog will come when called by the handler (from 10 feet on a leash).

  • Reaction to Another Dog

This test demonstrates that the dog can behave politely around other dogs. Two handlers and their dogs approach each other from a distance of about 20 feet, stop, shake hands and exchange pleasantries.

  • Reaction to Distraction

The evaluator will select and present two distractions such as dropping a chair, etc.

  • Supervised Separation

This test demonstrates that a dog can be left with a trusted person, if necessary, and will maintain training and good manners. Evaluators are encouraged to say something like, “Would you like me to watch your dog?” and then take hold of the dog’s leash. The owner will go out of sight for three minutes. The dog does not have to stay in position but should not continually bark, whine, or pace unnecessarily, or show anything stronger than mild agitation or nervousness. Evaluators may talk to the dog but should not engage in excessive talking, petting, or management attempts (e.g., “there, there, it’s alright”).

For more detailed information on CGC go to:

CGC Schedule

Prerequisite: Level II Obedience Training is required.

Starting Date
February 20, 2024
7:00 - 7:45 pm
Maureen Dwyer
March 2, 2024
9:00 - 9:45 am
Emily Catignani
April 9, 2024
7:00 - 7:45 pm
Maureen Dwyer
April 27, 2024
9:00 - 9:45 am
Emily Catignani
May 28, 2024
7:00 - 7:45 pm
Maureen Dwyer
June 29, 2024
9:00 - 9:45 am
Emily Catignani

Canine Good Citizen Benefits

Enrolling your dog in our Canine Good Citizen class provides numerous benefits for both you and your dog. Your dog will learn essential skills that will help them become a well-behaved and well-mannered member of society, while also strengthening your bond and relationship. In addition, CGC certification for dogs can open up opportunities for therapy work and other dog-related activities. Our experienced trainers will guide you and your pup through the training process, and you'll leave with a confident and happy companion who's ready to take on the world.

If you have been looking for CGC training near me, look no further. Our class is one of the best on Cape Cod and CGC evaluator will be there to administer the CGC test, which is included in the class fee.

canine good citizen classes near me

FAQs About

What is the Canine Good Citizen program?

The Canine Good Citizen program is a certification program designed to recognize dogs that have good manners and obedience skills.

Why should you take Canine Good Citizen class?

Taking Canine Good Citizen classes can help you bond with your dog, improve their obedience skills, and prepare them for real-world situations.

Can any dog take Canine Good Citizen classes?

Yes, any dog can take Canine Good Citizen classes regardless of breed, size, or age.

Do I need any prior training experience to enroll my dog in Canine Good Citizen classes?

We require completion of Level I Obedience class.

How long does it take to complete the Canine Good Citizen program?

It is a 6 week class.

What skills does my dog need to pass the Canine Good Citizen test?

The Canine Good Citizen test evaluates a dog's behavior in different situations, including obedience, socialization, and interactions with strangers and other dogs.

Can my dog get certified as a therapy dog after passing the Canine Good Citizen test?

Passing the Canine Good Citizen test is often a prerequisite for therapy dog certification, but additional training and evaluation are required for therapy dog certification.

Is Canine Good Citizen the same as therapy dog?

While both Canine Good Citizen (CGC) and therapy dog programs focus on well-behaved and obedient dogs, they are not the same thing. CGC is a certification program offered by the American Kennel Club (AKC) that recognizes dogs who have good manners at home and in public. On the other hand, therapy dogs are trained to provide comfort and affection to people in hospitals, nursing homes, schools, and other settings. To become a therapy dog, your dog must first pass the CGC test and then receive specialized training to work with people in need. So, while CGC is an important step towards becoming a therapy dog, it's not the same thing as therapy dog certification.

How many times can you take the Canine Good Citizen test?

There is no limit to the number of times you can take the Canine Good Citizen (CGC) test with your dog. If your dog does not pass the test the first time, you can work with a trainer or practice on your own to improve your dog's behavior and then retake the test at a later date. However, keep in mind that you will need to pay the test fee each time you take the test. It's important to note that some training facilities or organizations may require you to wait a certain amount of time before retaking the test, so be sure to check with them for their specific policies.

Is Canine Good Citizen a title?

Yes, Canine Good Citizen (CGC) is a title that dogs can earn by passing the CGC test. The CGC program was created by the American Kennel Club (AKC) to encourage responsible dog ownership and recognize dogs who have good manners at home and in public. To earn the CGC title, your dog must pass a 10-step test that includes tasks such as accepting a friendly stranger, sitting politely for petting, walking on a loose leash, and reacting calmly to distractions. Once your dog has passed the test, you can apply for the CGC title and receive a certificate from the AKC.