Goal: Evaluator approaches, shakes hands with handler.
Does not touch dog.
" Since the dog must be at least six months of age to even take the Canine Good Citizen test, this is where your socialization of the puppy from early on comes in handy.
You dog should be willing to allow people to approach you without barking, growling, hiding behind you or jumping on the person approaching.
A bit of sniffing to identify the stranger approaching is permissible, but, for the most part, your dog should be willing to sit at your side and allow you to converse with someone that comes up to you.
It is not imperative that the dog be sitting in the heel position, but it is imperative that you keep an eye on the dog during the conversation (which will be brief in this case).
Ways to help the dog learn this are to take him to places were there will be lots of people that won't have a dog with them.
Grocery parking lots, public parks where dogs are allowed, playgrounds where you can ask the parents to allow the children to pet your dog while he sits quietly, anywhere you can find people so your dog can get used to waiting while you chat.
The more your dog is around people and learns to not bother them while they're talking to you, the easier this test will be to pass.
How to correct the dog early in the training?Start with people that you know.
When they approach you, if the dog jumps up at them, have them stop and totally ignore the dog.
You give a single "sit" command and then ignore the dog until he complies.
Then, you can have the approaching person pet and praise the dog.
Should the dog jump up again, repeat the procedure until he gets the idea that only if he's sitting will he get praise and petting.
Once that idea is in his mind, gradually phase out the other person praising or petting the dog, while you quietly praise the dog for obeying.
Then, start exposing the dog to other adults and, eventually, children.
It won't be long before your dog is politely sitting while you're engaged in a brief conversation.
(The information in quotes at the beginning of this article is involved in the CGC test taken from the AKC test scoresheet.