Accepting a Friendly Stranger
The dog shows no resentment or shyness while allowing a stranger to approach it, exchange pleasantries, and shake hands with the handler (ignoring the dog).
Sitting Politely for Petting
Dog sits at the handler’s side, allows evaluator to pet head and body. The handler may talk to the dog throughout the exercise. The dog may stand in place as it is petted but does not show shyness or resentment.
Appearance and Grooming
The dog welcomes being groomed and examined and will permit someone, such as a veterinarian, groomer or friend of the owner, to do so. The evaluator inspects the dog to determine if it is clean and groomed. The dog must appear to be in healthy condition. The evaluator will comb / brush the dog, examines the ears and picks up each front foot.
Out for a Walk (Loose Leash Walking)
The dog may be on either side of the handler and should be attentive to the handler and respond to movements and changes of direction. Right turn, left turn, and an about turn with at least one stop in between and another at the end.
Walking Through a Crowd
The dog can move about politely in pedestrian traffic and is under control in public places. The dog and handler walk around and pass close to at least three people. The dog may show some interest in the strangers but should continue to walk with the handler, without evidence of over-exuberance, shyness or resentment, pulling on the leash, or jumping.
Sit / Down / Stay
The dog will respond to the handler’s commands to sit and down and will remain in the place commanded by the handler. The dog must do sit AND down on command, then the owner chooses the position for leaving the dog in the stay.
Come when Called
The dog will come when called by the handler from a 10 foot distance.
Reaction to Another Dog
The dog can behave politely around other dogs. Two handlers and their dogs approach each other from a distance of about 20 feet, stop, shake hands and exchange pleasantries, and continue on for about 10 feet. The dogs should show no more than casual interest in each other without to the other dog or its handler.
Reaction to Distractions
The dog is confident at all times when faced with common distractions such as dropping a chair, rolling a crate dolly past the dog, having a jogger run in front of the dog, or dropping a crutch or cane. The dog may express natural interest and curiosity and/or may appear slightly startled but should not panic, try to run away, show aggressiveness, or bark.
The dog can be left with a trusted person, and will maintain training and good manners for three minutes with the owner out of sight. The dog does not have to stay in position but should not continually bark, whine, or pace unnecessarily, or show anything stronger than mild agitation or nervousness.
Wait Under Control
Dog stands, sits or lies down and waits under control while the owner: sits at the registration table and fills out paperwork, or, if the test is done in the community, dog waits while the owner sits and has a snack or visits with another person.
Natural Loose Leash Walking
Must make a left turn, right turn, stop, fast and slow pace
Loose Leash Walking Through Crowd
At a show or in class, this item is tested in a real crowd, not in a ring. In the community, dog walks on sidewalk, through a crowd at a community fair, park, on a trail, through a busy hallway, etc.
Loose Leash Walking Past Distractions
At a show or class, dog walks by dogs waiting in the crowd–dogs 2 ft. apart. In the community, dog walks by other dogs on a trail, sidewalk, in a hallway, etc.
Small Group Sit and Stay
Three other people with dogs. Owners and dogs are in an informal circle/square while owners have a conversation. Dogs are all on the owner’s left side, on leash; 3 ft. apart for at leash 30 seconds
Greeting Someone Carrying Something
Dog allows person who is carrying something (backpack, computer bag, etc.) to approach and pet it. “May I pet your dog?” (Item is placed on floor/ground before the person pets the dog)
Dog walks by food and follows owner instructions, “Leave it.” This can be food placed by the evaluator on the floor or ground in a food dish with a wire cover as in Rally.
Distance Down or Sit and Stay
Dog is on 20ft line, owner walks away with back to dog, picks up an item (e.g., backpack, training bag, clipboard, folder etc.) placed on the floor/chair/ground by the evaluator and returns to the dog.
Recall with Distractions
Handler goes out 20ft and calls dog.
Dog is on the 20–ft. line from #8 above.
Stay Through Passageway
Dog sits or stands and stays while owner enters/exits a doorway or narrow passageway. Owner calls dog through door when ready. Owner may also choose to: send the dog through first and have the dog wait for the owner, or the owner may choose to have the dog go through the doorway at the owner’s side. Whichever method is used, the dog must not pull the owner and must be under good control. Think of the handler having the leash in one hand and a cup of coffee in the other.
Doorway or gate can be real or simulated with ring gates, two chairs, or a natural passageway (e.g., entrance to trail) in the community.
Loose Leash Entry
Exit/enter doorway with no pulling in dog-friendly buildings.
Loose Leash on Busy Sidewalk
People come toward the dog from 1-ft. away, tolerate distractions (people wearing hats, coats, men, women, etc).
Appropriate Reaction to City Distractions
This includes movement, noises, and walking on a variety of surfaces. Examples: Noises: horns, sirens, construction noise, etc. Moving objects: skateboard, bike, carts, person running. Surfaces: concrete, grass, grates, plastic tarp, wet sidewalk
Stop at corner, stand or sit to wait and cross with no pulling (on leash, with owner). Crosses street under control.
Ignore Food on Sidewalk
Dropped food, or cups, bags, cans, in which food was wrapped
Greeting Someone Carrying Something
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.
Loose Leash Walking in Public Building
Dog Friendly Building. 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.
Loose Leash on Stairs, Steps, Elevator
Steps: at least 3 – up and down. Elevator: enters under control, exits, rides under control
For apartment, condo, city living. Owner may verify this item. Evaluator may also observe in public buildings, or have observed in training classes.
Owner’s choice depending on transportation needs. Car: Enters/exits, remains under control during the ride. Subway: Small dog in bag for ride. (large dogs are not always permitted; know and abide by the Transit Policies in your area). Dog friendly: enters/exits or allows to be put in/taken out under control.
Perform 10 approved tricks from the novice list, twice for each trick. Can use food / toys for lures and rewards. Cannot repeat these tricks for further titles.
Perform 10 approved tricks from intermediate list, twice for each trick. Food may only be used for rewards, no lures. No repeat tricks from Novice Title unless trick is made more advanced.
Perform 10 approved tricks from Advanced tricks list, once for each trick. Food may only be used for rewards, no lures. No repeat tricks from previous titles.
Perform 10 tricks, at least 3 of those tricks from Performer level tricks list, at least 3 tricks must use props. Food may only be used for rewards, no lures. No repeat tricks from previous titles.
Tricks must be performed in a script or story in front of an audience of at least 5 people in a public place. The dog must perform 10 tricks, at least 5 from Performer level tricks list, at least 5 tricks must use props. Food may only be used for rewards, no lures.
We'll teach you everything you need to know to get your pup ready for their AKC Trick Dog Evaluations! Classes are one hour long, once a week, for six consecutive weeks. They are done one-on-one with a team consisting of you and your dog, with one of our trainers.
Fitness is very important for both dogs and people to improve overall health and well-being.
The most commonly recommended exercise to improve fitness that can be performed by both you and your dog, is walking. Walking is considered a safe activity that improves muscular strength, circulation, memory, weight loss, increases energy, helps with sleep, and reduces stress, while adding additional enrichment for your pup. The American Heart Association recommends walking a minimum of 150 minutes per week. Participation in the AKC FIT DOG program will bring health benefits to both you and your dog. If you walk with your dog on a regular basis, join the ranks of AKC FIT DOG and get your FREE FIT DOG logo car magnet. The AKC FIT DOG magnet proudly declares to the world that you are committed to your dog’s health and fitness through regular exercise.
You can qualify for a free magnet when you and your dog have met one of these fitness goals:
You must keep record of your walks using this form
Attend an AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy class for at least 6 weeks. Your instructor will administer the AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy test at the end of the course. Upon passing the test, you’ll get an application to send to AKC for enrollment in the AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy Program. All dogs are welcome to participate in the program including purebreds and mixed breeds. Your puppy will receive the AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy Medal for display or memento purposes. You and your puppy will be listed in the AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy records. In addition, so that you can continue learning, you’ll receive our AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy package that includes:
1. Maintains puppy’s health (vaccines, exams, appears healthy)
2. Owner receives Responsible Dog Owner’s Pledge
3. Owner describes adequate daily play and exercise plan
4. Owner and puppy attend at least 6 classes by an AKC Approved CGC Evaluator
5. Owner brings bags to classes for cleaning up after puppy
6. Owner has obtained some form of ID for puppy-collar tag, etc.
7. Free of aggression toward people during at least 6 weeks of class
8. Free of aggression toward other puppies in class
9. Tolerates collar or body harness of owner’s choice
10. Owner can hug or hold puppy (depending on size)
11. Puppy allows owner to take away a treat or toy
PRE-CANINE GOOD CITIZEN® TEST BEHAVIORS:
12. Allows (in any position) petting by a person other than the owner
13. Grooming-Allows owner handling and brief exam (ears, feet)
14. Walks on a Leash-Follows owner on lead in a straight line (15 steps)
15. Walks by other people-Walks on leash past other people 5-ft away
16. Sits on command-Owner may use a food lure
17. Down on command-Owner may use a food lure
18. Comes to owner from 5-ft when name is called
19. Reaction to Distractions-distractions are presented 15-ft away
20. Stay on leash with another person (owner walks 10 steps and returns)
There are 198 AKC recognized breeds. One of the things that makes a specific breed unique is not only the dog’s physical appearance, but each breed also has its own distinctive temperament.
The AKC Temperament Test (ATT) was developed to bring focus and provide a meaningful evaluation to assess the temperament of our canine companions.
The ATT tests how a dog reacts to a variety of stimuli. Desirable traits are that the dog will be emotionally stable, inquisitive, cooperative, appropriately social for its breed, biddable and demonstrates the ability to recover from a startling situation in a reasonable amount of time.
Undesirable traits are fear, shyness, lack of cooperation and an inability to recover from unfamiliar or unexpected situations. Examples of undesirable behaviors include being afraid of friendly strangers or unfamiliar stimuli, obsessive barking, and aggression.
In the ATT, dogs are tested in 6 categories of stimuli that include:
If a dog passes the ATT on two occasions, under two different evaluators, the owner may apply for the AKC Temperament Test (ATT) suffix title. The ATT Title Application along with the passing Evaluator Score Sheets from two different tests and the required title application fee must be submitted to AKC. Upon verification, the ATT title will be applied to the dog’s record and will appear on the dog’s AKC title record. The title certificate will be mailed to the dog’s primary owner of record.
All dogs entered in tests should already have either an AKC or FSS registration number or a Canine Partners Listing number or Purebred Alternative Listing Number.