Cabana Good Citizen

Over the weekend, Cabana took the Canine Good Citizen test--and wonder of wonders, she passed! This was our first time taking the test, and I really wasn't sure if she would pass, with the culprit being "reaction to another dog". The dogs are only allowed to show "polite interest" in one another, and we've never been able to completely master Cabana's dog distraction.

Thankfully, the evaluators weren't that picky. Cabana did attempt to meet the other dog, but she sat when I asked her to. Her loose leash walking wasn't as loose as it should have been, but I think the evaluators know it's hard to keep the dogs from being too excited in a new, dog-filled environment and are somewhat lenient.

I TRIED to get to the test location early, but I couldn't find the address. I drove back and forth on the road and even called my husband to look it up online for me (I don't have a smart phone). Finally, I found the location in the nick of time, just had a minute to relieve Cabana before walking into the dog-filled training center. Thank goodness Cabana still knows how to relieve on command, especially since eliminating during the test is immediate failure.

Treats are not allowed during the test, so I didn't bring a single treat with me. Not a smart move, considering that Cabana is so used to getting treats for good behavior. There were 10 other dogs in the room, also taking the test, and we sat in the only available spot, next to a big handsome male black lab. Of course, Cabana was DYING to meet the hunk, but I couldn't let her. I sat down and had Cabana down-stay in front of me. But she kept looking up at me and groaning, expecting a treat for being so good about not meeting the big black lab.

Since we had gotten there last, we were the last ones to take the test. So for an hour, Cabana grunted and groaned at me, telling me that she wanted to meet all the other dogs, like this Ibizan hound and American Eskimo dog, and if she wasn't allowed to, shouldn't she be getting treats instead?

It actually turned out best that Cabana was the last to get tested because finally, after an hour of being busy of mind, body and sound, she settled down and relaxed. The black lab had already tested and left early, after performing all the test items perfectly. It was also helpful that Cabana watched the other dogs take the test--I think it definitely clued her in on what to expect.

All but one of the dogs passed. The dog that didn't pass was extremely stressed, urinated submissively twice while waiting for her turn to test, and during the test, refused to "stay". There were also two black labs and two pitbulls who had to leave right after being tested, so they are not in the photo. I heard one of the pitbull owners say she needed her dog to pass the CGC test so she could show the certificate to the landlord of a house she wanted to rent. Breedism is so unfortunate, but I'm glad she's able to have documented proof that her dog is not a liability. (Cabana is so used to having her photo taken, she's the only dog looking straight at the camera.)

After the testing was done, I drove straight to a pet store and bought Cabana a bully stick. I felt awful that she had done such a good job and that I'd had nothing to reward her with! Here, she looks more like a walrus than a Canine Good Citizen!

So what does it mean, now that Cabana is a Canine Good Citizen? For us, it basically means that she can participate in an elementary school program in our area, where they bring in dogs and teach the kids how to properly meet and greet them. Cabana is already a therapy dog, but for many therapy dog organizations, the CGC is a requirement.

Most importantly, I also thought it meant that Cabana would get a cute CGC pin to attach to her therapy dog jacket. But the pin they gave us only has the name of the training facility on it. I looked on the AKC website, though, and saw that we can buy our own CGC pin, so I guess that's what we'll do.

Casey  – (August 21, 2012 at 11:59 AM)  

Congrrats, Cabana! The CGC test is a tough one! I took it a year or so ago and (naturally) passed with flying colors. But it was tough restraining myself! I felt bad for the dog in front of me, though. He did beautifully the entire test, then in the very last skill where you have to wait without your owner for 3 minutes, he made it about 2 1/2 minutes and then pooped on the floor! Awwwww. You look extremely dashing in your pin and ribbon!

Casey  – (August 21, 2012 at 2:15 PM)  

PeeS: Yes, I heard that the dog that pooped got another chance to be tested after everyone else had gone, and he passed that time!

Becky  – (August 21, 2012 at 4:31 PM)  

Congratulations, Cabana! Doesn't surprise me at all ... you are awesome and glad you finally got a treat :)!

Martha G  – (August 21, 2012 at 5:14 PM)  

It's all about certification these days! So glad you have another certification under your collar, Cabana!

Maggie Mae and Max  – (August 21, 2012 at 5:54 PM)  

YaY Cabana!!!

Woofs and Licks,
Maggie Mae and Max

Vader's Mom  – (August 22, 2012 at 6:14 AM)  

Congrats Cabana!!! You look beautiful in your pin & sash!

Kari in Vegas  – (August 22, 2012 at 8:10 AM)  


Stop on by for a visit

OSU 98  – (August 22, 2012 at 10:29 AM)  

You are such a good girl Cabana. Chelsie definitely would have been moaning and groaning over the lack of treats as well...she is with you on that one in lab sisterhood. :)

Mandy and Norton  – (August 28, 2012 at 8:32 PM)  

Sax just passed his CGC too. :) He didn't get one of those fancy ribbons, but he did get a natural balance treat roll, which I cut up and then forgot to refrigerate for several days. Turns out they mold pretty quickly!

Anyway, good job Cabana! :)

Mango  – (September 2, 2012 at 5:30 AM)  

When my little hound took her CGC they were a bit lenient as well. I think that good testers go with the spirit of the test rather than the rules. Cabana will love her new job.

Mango Momma

Susan Campisi  – (September 3, 2012 at 4:28 PM)  

Congratulations to you and Cabana! Passing that test is really impressive and a testament to the hard work you've done with her. I used to entertain the idea of getting Tommy certified, but frankly, even now after four-plus years, we have a long way to go. Kudos to you for your dedication to her training.

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