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CGC Award™ Assessment Criteria


To be eligible for this award:

  • Your dog must be 12 months of age or over.
  • Ideally you should have previously attended a Delta Foundation Skills program of approximately 6 weeks to be eligible for the Canine Good Citizen™ award.  This training may be as a class or private training program but must be with a Delta Institute trainer.
  • You will need to supply evidence that your dog is microchipped, registered and vaccinated.
  • You will need to bring to class or your private lesson appropriate treats and a treat pouch including poo bags.
  • Your dog must be clean and well groomed at every lesson.

Assessment Criteria

The Canine Good Citizen™ Award can only be offered by currently accredited Delta Institute Members who have been certified to conduct the Award.

To ensure you and your dog are truly competent in the range of exercises included in the Award, the Delta Institute Trainer will observe you demonstrating these skills in different contexts during the length of the program and on at least 3 occasions before you can be assessed as competent.

The Canine Good Citizen™ Award includes assessment in the following 14 exercises:

Exercise 1 - Correct Selection, Fitting and Use of Training Equipment

Demonstrate that you have the knowledge and skills to correctly fit, adjust and use the training equipment recommended for your dog by your trainer. 

Exercise 2 - Response to start and finish cues

Demonstrate that you have the knowledge and skills to correctly begin and finish a training session.

Exercise 3 - Bridging Skills

Demonstrate that you have the knowledge and skills to use a conditioned reinforcer.

Exercise 4 - Appropriate management skills

Demonstrate that you have the ability to observe and interpret your dog’s body language and behaviour and to manage and maintain calm focussed behaviour in a variety of social situations.

Exercise 5 - Health Examination

Demonstrate that your dog can remain in position calmly for a basic health assessment.

Exercise 6 - Leave a food distraction on request

Demonstrate that your dog will leave food when asked to do so.  This exercise should simulate the sort of situation you and your dog might face in “real life” situations e.g. during a walk on the streets.

Exercise 7 - Reaction to another dog

Demonstration of your knowledge and observation of your dog’s body language and using your skills to correctly interpret and manage your dog.  This exercise also shows your dog’s confidence in and relationship with you and their ability to follow you confidently and calmly past other dogs in different situations and environments.

Exercise 8 - Go to mat and stay in a down position

Demonstrate that your dog can be sent to his/her mat, settle down (drop) and stay there for 1 minute.

Exercise 9 - Out for a walk

Demonstrate that your dog can walk with you on a loose lead and in a controlled manner.  This exercise will be assessed at least once in a public place – and cannot be assessed solely in a regular class environment or your home. 

Exercise 10 - Close walk encountering a friendly stranger

Demonstrate your dog can display appropriate behaviour around people.

Exercise 11 - Wait at a door or gate before being invited through

Demonstrate your dog can follow your cues by waiting until asked to walk calmly through a door or gate.

Exercise 12 - Tolerance to Separation under supervision

Demonstrate that your dog can remain calm in the presence of a familiar person while you leave them briefly.

Exercise 13 - Come when called

Demonstrate that your dog will come back promptly when called. 

Exercise 14 - Behave safely around vehicles

Demonstrate that your dog will wait in a vehicle until requested to exit, then wait until you are ready to leave the vehicle.

Finally you will also be required to provide a health checklist completed by your veterinarian.


Completion of the Award

Once you have successfully completed all the exercises required to gain the award, your trainer will issue you with documentation to order your Canine Good Citizens™ Award certificate and dog tag.