Welcome to my first blog post!
This entry is going to be about my very first therapy dog class with my dog, Dukey.
Dukey is training to become a therapy dog and the first step is to get his AKC Canine Good Citizen Certificate.
That is what this class is training him to get.
When we got to class, Dukey was getting a little nervous being around some of the German Shepherds in the class because of some past experience he has had with black dogs. (He was once chased and kind of attacked by one when he was younger.) I got Dukey to stop growling after a while by distracting him and petting him. If he can’t actually see the dog, how can he growl and bark at it? Anyways, once class started he was fine. We went through some of the exercises in the test such as sit and stay which Dukey had a little trouble with, being brushed which he was fine with, meeting a friendly stranger which he did fine with, and walking on a loose leash which Dukey could use some work with. The other dogs in the class did well except for one little puppy who kept distracting the other dogs. (Poor pup!) Sadly during this class, we did not get through all of the test material, as we will probably finish it up next week. Below are the requirements for the test:
1. Friendly Stranger
A. I recommend doing a Sit Stay
B. Use Leave It or Attention command
C. Prevent your dog from jumping, lunging, growling, or biting.
2. Sit to be Pet
A. Sit Stay
B. Avoid shyness or jumping
C. A dog out of control or aggressive or too shy will not pass.
A. The dog must receive handling of Ears ; Feet
B. The dog should be a healthy weight and clean
C. The dog is brushed with owner’s brush
D. Your dog must accept handling to pass.
4. Loose Lead Walking
B. Here’s my pattern: Forward, halt, forward, Right turn, about turn, left turn, and halt
C. Things to avoid
1. Do not let your dog sniff the floor the whole time out of alignment
2. Do not keep the leash taut the whole time- start with a loose leash
3. Do not use leash corrections in the turns, instead motivate with your voice or body language.
5. Walking Through a Crowd (of three people)
A. Heeling with attention
1. Jumping on the crowd
2. Tight leash the whole time
3. Excessive shyness
6. Sit and Down on Command and Stay
C. Sit Stay or Down Stay for 20 foot walk away by the owner
D. Avoid handling your dog into position
E. Dogs that walk out of position will not pass
A. Recall with hand signal from 10′ on a long lead
B. Dogs can still pass if they break this stay
C. Exercise doesn’t start until owner calls the dog
D. More than 3 failed attempts to call the dog will not pass the dog
E. Avoid reeling your dog in by the leash
8. Reaction to Another Dog
A. 15′ approach, shake hands and say hello and keep walking with a dog
B. Heel, Leave It and Heel
C. Dogs jumping on evaluator’s dog will not be passed
D. Dogs may not pull toward the other dog after they’ve passed by
9. Reaction to Two Distractions
A. 5′ away a person walks on Crutches
B. Chair falls more than 5′ away
C. A panicked dog will not pass
D. Continuous barking will not pass
10. Supervised Separation
A. Out of sight three-minute parting
B. 3 minute down stay
C. Dogs that continuously pull, whine, bark or pace will not pass.
Dukey is on his way to passing!
Stay tuned for next week’s post!