I am excited to report that Beau passed his CGC-U on Saturday! This is the one I was most concerned about as I knew it would take place outside the club and in a completely new area. I am over the moon!
We drove through the misty morning to Gaithersburg and met our evaluator and fellow testers at this large outdoor mall-type place (Rio Washingtonian). Now, Beau is perfect with strollers, runners, skateboarders, scooter demons, large trucks, crowds, etc., but I knew there would be dogs of the non-trained variety so I was anticipating having to manage rather than participate. He nailed all of it, listed below the photos, if any of you are interested. Beau and I do most of this multiple times a day, every day BUT with the issues of overexuberance that I’ve dealt with, I was unsure how he’d do when he saw new dogs that he couldn’t greet. The evaluator is great as she is fair but holds you to the standard, so it is not a “gimme”, which I appreciate.
Beau was a rockstar. He saw several dogs from the club that he’s never seen before and simply greeted them by laying down near them and sniffing the air. Two of his classmates were there (2nd photo) so we all walked together around the lake past geese (a novelty for Beau) and their copious poop (a HUGE novelty for Beau), a fish food dispenser that all the dogs stopped to sniff (of course, only my dog and his anteater nose managed to life the metal flap and lick out some residual pellets), packs of teenagers coming from a soccer tournament, throngs of moms with strollers who ended up doing a baby bootcamp of sorts right near where we stopped at the end, and lots of dogs. Some large, some small, some barking, some screaming, all distracting. Beau was very alert and vocalized once but it was more of a “hey, get a load of those weirdos” at a soft volume instead of his “oh my god!!!! DOGS!!!” yodel.
After passing the test and getting our ribbons, 3 of us sat down for coffee and someone said “now, THIS is the real test”. Beau laid by my chair on the busy sidewalk in front of the bakery and hung out quietly while we relaxed. He got all the attention from passers-by and appreciate all the cuddles. We had a small dog walk right by him and several other dogs passed by on the street side and he had no more than a casual reaction. While I am giving myself some credit, I know we were helped by the pack walk and the damp weather. Still….I will take the win. So proud of this knucklehead!!
For those of you who are interested here are the CGC-Urban test items with my commentary in bold.
- Exit/enter doorway with no pulling in dog-friendly buildings. Exit building to start test, additional Public buildings items are below. We each entered the parking garage elevator lobby, having to wait to ensure the dog didn’t walk through the door before the handler.
- Walk through a crowd on a busy urban sidewalk.
- People come toward the dog from 1-ft. away Yep, lots of this.
- Tolerate distractions (people wearing hats, coats, men, women, etc). The evaluator had a big bag and it was raining so lots of hats and umbrellas around.
- Appropriate reaction to city distractions. This includes movement, noises, and walking on a variety of surfaces. Examples:
- Noises: horns, sirens, construction noise, etc. Heavy traffic noise on one end of the lake.
- Moving objects: skateboard, bike, carts, person running Lots of this.
- Surfaces: concrete, grass, grates, plastic tarp, wet sidewalk Slippery concrete, wooden decking, metal plates/grates, astroturf, grass, and pea gravel.
- Crossing street: Stop at corner, stand or sit to wait and cross with no pulling (on leash, with owner). Crosses street under control. We individually left the midway rest stop (near the baby bootcamp) and had to do an automatic sit, look both ways and walk across the crosswalk.
- Ignore food on sidewalk. (Dropped food, or cups, bags, cans, in which food was wrapped). Napkins and other trash was present but the biggest distraction was people carrying their breakfast leftovers at dog nose level. Beau got a whiff of bacon, french toast, and sausage as a bag brushed by his head at one point.
- Person walks up and pets the dog. May be carrying an item such as a small dog in a bag, a computer bag, etc. Person does not put the bag down to pet the dog. A few times in a few places from a few people.
- Public Building (that is dog friendly). Walks under control in building (slick surface, carpeted floor). Down stay (3 min) in lobby or outdoor area, or waits while owner has a meal or snack.
- Stairs, steps, or elevator under control.
- Steps (at least 3 – up and down) We went down several flights of stairs, again no pulling or hesitancy and repeated at the end of the test.
- Elevator (Enters under control, exits, rides under control) We were given the option but since Beau does this about 10 times a day, I offered video evidence.
- Housetrained for apartment, condo, city living. Owner may verify this item. Evaluator may also observe in public buildings, or have observed in training classes.
- Transportation. Owner’s choice depending on transportation needs.
- Car. Enters/exits, remains under control during the ride. (Crate? Seatbelt?) We started with exiting the car to ensure the dog was calm and didn’t bolt or push out of the vehicle.
- Subway. Small dog in bag for ride. (large dogs are not always permitted; know and abide by the Transit Policies in your area). No but I would love to take Beau on the Metro.
- Dog friendly (enters/exits or allows to be put in/taken out) under control. We got to walk through the main thoroughfare by retail shops and restaurants, which I assume counted for this.
Thank you for following along on our adventure!!
Peace, love, and paw prints!