When I got Beau, I knew that I was taking on a LOT of dog. Dobermans are known for being wicked intelligent, thoughtful, energetic, loyal, and hard working. Now, almost 18 months into my Doberman experience, I can attest to all of that and more! Owning a Doberman is like riding a tornado! 😎
I had specific goals in mind when I began his shaping behaviors. Heck, I had goals before the breeder even told me I could have him. A Companion Dog title…maybe even Utility Dog! But that all starts with a Canine Good Citizen (CGC) designation. The CGC comes from the American Kennel Club (AKC) and they define it as: CGC is a ten-skill training program that’s open to all dogs–purebred and mixed breed–that focuses on teaching the basics of good manners and obedience, instilling the values of responsible ownership, and strengthening the bond between you and your dog at home and out in the community.
Given the negative looks I get from many people when I walk Beau, having a CGC is more than a “feather in our cap”, it is something that I can use to help remove the breed bias that still exists around Dobermans.
Well, after all that, I am super pleased to announce that Beau and I passed our CGC exam on December 23rd! We tested at Capital Dog Training Club (our local club) and Beau was a champ. We had 2 new dogs come in for their tests so I was concerned that Beau would be off his game. He was a bit more excitable with the scent of 2 new females, but he did exactly as he was asked and passed with flying colors! It was a great early Christmas present. Admittedly, it was about 6 months later than I wanted, but I have to remember that each dog is unique and Beau had to mature a bit more. All-in-all, it was a great experience and I was super proud of my boy!
Next up! AKC Novice Trick Dog (TKN)!! Beau has a variety of tricks I run him through on a daily basis. While we wait for the elevator or wait for the concierge desk to get our mail or when we have to wait on a light to cross the street. Those are all good times to have him give me a paw, spin, poke my hand, whisper, etc. It keeps him focused on me and gives us a fun little interaction to break up whatever else we are doing.
With any luck we will have our TKN by the end of January. Wish us luck!