Canine Good Citizenship


This book will teach you everything you need to know to get your dog ready to pass the American Kennel Club Canine Good Citizen Test.  While I was reading it, I came across a few interesting ideas that I wanted to share.

  • Use pleasant experiences, such as inducing your dog to sit with a treat.
  • The most important benefit of training your dog is safety.
  • Dogs are social animals, and one of the cruelest forms of punishment is to deprive them of the opportunity to interact with family members.
  •  Well-behaved dogs control their impulses around others and listen to their owners, making the dogs a pleasure to be around.

Dog Park Disaster

Gwen and I decided to take Joey, Ben, Buddy, and Blue to the dog park.

All of our dogs are well trained.  Joey earned the Canine Good Citizen Certification from the American Kennel Club.  Blue is in advanced classes.  Ben and Buddy are at the intermediate level.

However, sometimes they act like a pack of wild crazy dogs that have never had a day of training in their lives.  Today was one of those days.

  • They were involved in several disagreements with the other dogs.
  • Joey got into a fight.
  • Three of the boys managed to escape the park and create a ruckus by running around and barking at a group of people with their dogs.

Due to their behavior, we had to leave the park early.  The boys still managed to have a great time and are rather pleased with themselves.

Oh well, they are cute and we still love them.

Happy Adoption Anniversary Joey

It has been five years since I took leave from work and drove to Shelbyville, Tennessee.  I walked into the animal control office and said I wanted to adopt a Labrador/Great Pyrenees dog they had listed on the Petfinder website.

The dog was large and appeared to be a bit wild.  However, he had a goofy grin and a wonderful personality.  It was that goofy grin that sold me.  I loaded the dog into my SUV and drove home.

Once we arrived home, I sat and watched as the dog explored his new house.  He was jumping so much that I decided to name him Joey (like a baby kangaroo).


That first year with Joey was a nightmare.  He annulated my couch and loveseat, ripped up the carpet in the living room, pulled the currents off the wall, bite the current rod in two, destroyed pillows, shoes, various items of clothing, bedspreads, a printer, calculator, phones, and a host of other items.  Joey literally caused thousands of dollars in damages during that first year.

I quickly realized I had bitten off more than I can chew with this dog, so I signed him up for some dog training classes.  Joey attended a few sessions, but we were expelled.  A few months later we were expelled from another training center.

The receptionist at my vet’s office recommended, Steve Russell, a local dog trainer.  I called his office and asked if he would be willing to train a juvenile delinquent dog.  Steve laughed and agreed to admit Joey at his training school.

Joey and I attended classes twice a week for the next few years.  We went to private training classes and group training classes.  Joey took the beginner class three times, before we were finally ready to move up into the intermediate class.

During this time several people recommended I find a new home for Joey.  They truly believed he was to wild and not redeemable.  I honestly considered that option, but decided not to give up on my dog.  After all, he did have a great personality and a goofy grin.

Much to everyone’s surprise, Joey started to excel in his training classes.  He even completed an advanced level class and received his Canine Good Citizen Certification from the American Kennel Club.

Joey’s transformation from buck wild dog to canine good citizen was so dramatic that a newspaper article was written about him in the Shelbyville Times.

I am so glad I refused to give up on Joey.  He is an awesome dog.

Joey pooped out Happy Adoption Anniversary Joey!

You really are an amazing dog.