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Well my dog took his pre test tonight and passed everything with flying colors. The only thing he struggled with was the last part of test when you leave him with a stranger. He did great the whole time I was gone just sat great but when I came back he ran towards me which will cause him to fail. I know you should come back and ignore him to help stop his excitement. Is there any tips I should practice to help this. I really am going to be bummed if he fails just because when I come back he gets excited and comes to me. Especially when I finally got him to stay with a stranger with no separation anxiety. Any tips would be appreciated as I have one week to train this last little glitch. Thanks.
 

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I went to tractor supply with a friend and her dog so they could practice this exercise. Is there a way you can do the same? We went into different isles and she would leave him, come back and then go for a longer period of time~we kept going into a different isle for distractions. He wanted to go to her, but was pretty good after the second time of her coming back, because he knew she'd be back! The last time, we were in the bulk doggy treat isle, he was distracted by the smells, but was calm.

We did this a week before their test, too. He passed with "flying colors"(those were the instructors words!)!
 

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Do you practice stays? If that is something you already work on, thats how I would handle the exercise. With my dogs I build up length of stays, and distance away during the stay including being out of sight. When I've looked at the CGC, I thought it would be easiest to put the dog in a stay to leave the dog with the stranger. I didn't see anything that would disallow this.
 

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I put Dodger in a stay when I left him with the stranger. we failed because he wanted to say hi to the other dog and wouldn't calm down.
 

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I am working on this with Leyna as well. She takes her test next month.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I was wondering about the stay command. I am going to have to ask about that. Because he will stay. I think between working with him this week with friends and trying the stay command he has a chance. But its going to be a tough hurdle because he greats me with major energy. I will have to keep ignoring him when I first see him to hopefully help. I know I have been doing this for a couple of weeks and I can say its helped alot when I come home now. He used to demolish my kitchen when I got home freaking out. Now he just acts real excited when I get home so its working. Thanks for all the suggestions.
 

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The dog wanting to go to the handler when the handler returns after the supervised separation exercise should NOT cause the dog to fail the CGC. If the dog is showing anxiety and worry during those 3 minutes and then bolts to the handler, maybe. But there it is the overall behavior and mental state of the dog that is judged, not just wanting to go to the handler. A dog who is fine during those 3 minutes and then just wants to go to his handler when the handler reappears is fine and should not be failed for that.

The dog also shouldn't be able to "run to" the handler as the dog should be on leash and the "stranger" holding that leash.

Yes, you can use a stay command for this exercise. But if he is passing with flying colors otherwise, and this is the only problem (and it's one that shouldn't be a problem) then I'd find another evaluator to do the test, one who is a bit more familiar with the exercise and what constitutes a pass/fail.
 

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We practice this in CGC class with each other, as well as bringing friends in "as strangers".
Break it down into smaller steps by shortening the time then slowly working up.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
He sits and waits great. The problem is when I come back into the room and he seen me. He tried to get to me and started to drag the handler. Last night when we practiced this the handler was not expecting this because he sat so good, while I was gone. So when he saw me and came for me he almost knock the handler over because she was not ready for that due to him being so good waiting. It was kinda funny because it took her by such surprise. It did not help my dogs weighs 96lbs and I swear she does not weigh no more. So when he came for me it was like she wasnt even there.
 

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A dog who is fine during those 3 minutes and then just wants to go to his handler when the handler reappears is fine and should not be failed for that.
Chris, I agree with you. I have never seen anywhere in the manual nor have I ever seen another evaluator fail a dog who shows excitement on the owner's return.

Some evaluator's require more than what the AKC asks for and that is against CGC regs.

When taking a CGC class it is fine to practice and work toward going above the requirements but for the testing itself there are guidelines which the evaluator must follow.

Quote from the CGC / AKC website:

Test 10: Supervised separation
This test demonstrates that a dog can be left with a trusted person, if necessary, and will maintain training and good manners. Evaluators are encouraged to say something like, "Would you like me to watch your dog?" and then take hold of the dog's leash. The owner will go out of sight for three minutes. 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. Evaluators may talk to the dog but should not engage in excessive talking, petting, or management attempts (e.g, "there, there, it's alright").

The test consists of the 3 minutes where the owner is out of sight. Now it is possible that several posters idea of excitement on seeing the owner is different than mine.
 

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When you leave the dog, do you (can you) tell them to "stay" or is staying vs just leaving them preferred?
 

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I went to tractor supply with a friend and her dog so they could practice this exercise. Is there a way you can do the same? We went into different isles and she would leave him, come back and then go for a longer period of time~we kept going into a different isle for distractions. He wanted to go to her, but was pretty good after the second time of her coming back, because he knew she'd be back! The last time, we were in the bulk doggy treat isle, he was distracted by the smells, but was calm.

We did this a week before their test, too. He passed with "flying colors"(those were the instructors words!)!
Jane this is SUCH a great idea! We take our CGC on the 12th, and I am paying for a "prep class" right now because of Pimg's severe separation anxiety. Unfortuantely, even though she is making progress in the class, I don't think it's going to be good enough. This is fantastic advice on how to practice this outside of class. Now... to find a friend to go to the store with me.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Jane this is SUCH a great idea! We take our CGC on the 12th, and I am paying for a "prep class" right now because of Pimg's severe separation anxiety. Unfortuantely, even though she is making progress in the class, I don't think it's going to be good enough. This is fantastic advice on how to practice this outside of class. Now... to find a friend to go to the store with me.
Wildo to bad we dont live by each other we could practice with our dogs together lol. Good luck to you on your test.
 

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Teach him a sit or down stay -- whichever is more comfortable for him to do. Practice it at home and slowly build the time up to two minutes, three minutes, five minutes, then ten minutes. (It sounds like a lot, my trainer for Arwen made us do 30 minutes! She was my best trained dog though.)

Ok, now you are at ten minutes of a down stay, where you have a release word of OK (always reach down and pet, and then say OK). No other word to release, always. OK. This can take 1-2 weeks to get to this point, and that is ok.

Now, put her on a down stay, and leave the room and come right back in. Immediately go up to her, reach down, pet her and say OK. Give a treat. Later, do it again, leave the room, count to ten, go back in, this time wait, try not to look right at her, except notice if she is in position, after a count of twenty or so, go over bend down pet her and say OK.

Again, build up the time you spend outside of the room. Then when she is managing five minute out of sight stays, practice them. Practice once or twice a day. Not overboard.

And then move out to the yard and start again with a short period, 1 minute maybe. Secure yard if you are out of sight. Add a buddy if you have one. Do not have them pet or talk to the dog just hold the leash. Explain to them that you do not want them to pull on the leash or pet the dog.

Up the ante and do it while you go into a store, buddy holds the lead dog is on a down stay, you are away 5 minutes.

If possible switch buddies and do it again.

Or you can do what I do --

Practice once or twice in class for about ten seconds total out of sight and pray the whole time during the test.

Arwen never did go to CGC classes and never practiced supervised separation at all. I put her on a down stay and handed the leash to the dog holder, and walked away. I hid behind the proper vehicle for three minutes and she never moved a muscle.
 

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Wildo to bad we dont live by each other we could practice with our dogs together lol. Good luck to you on your test.
And to you as well! Ya, too bad. I just had to bribe my cousin into helping me by paying her $50 for five 30min sessions at Petco... :rolleyes:
 

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Teach him a sit or down stay -- whichever is more comfortable for him to do. Practice it at home and slowly build the time up to two minutes, three minutes, five minutes, then ten minutes. (It sounds like a lot, my trainer for Arwen made us do 30 minutes! She was my best trained dog though.)

Ok, now you are at ten minutes of a down stay, where you have a release word of OK (always reach down and pet, and then say OK). No other word to release, always. OK. This can take 1-2 weeks to get to this point, and that is ok.

Now, put her on a down stay, and leave the room and come right back in. Immediately go up to her, reach down, pet her and say OK. Give a treat. Later, do it again, leave the room, count to ten, go back in, this time wait, try not to look right at her, except notice if she is in position, after a count of twenty or so, go over bend down pet her and say OK.
I don't like to fully release after a stay. Or use "ok" as a release word for a stay, because thats something thats said way too often in casual language! I'm guilty of using it as my release for many other things, such as going out the door or time to eat but I never use it with a stay. I'd say 75% of the time I end a stay by giving another command, and either continue giving a few commands or free the dog up after one command. When I free my dogs up or give a release like "ok!" they typically explode a little bit. Its one of the reasons I never make my dogs sit and wait for a door while on leash, because if I do so and give the release they then rocket out the door as if they are off leash. And its something I'd worked on heavily in the past and gave up on, much preferring the dog to just heel or loose leash walk through the door with me. I never want my dogs to get overly excited at the release of a stay, so we just calmly go into the next command.
 

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Lin, great advice on *OK*. That is a release word that I never use either. People don't realize how often they say it in a normal conversation. I once had a trainer tell me she learned the hard way with a class she was assisting with when she was herself just learning. They were doing down/stays and at the end of the time she said something like "Good, everyone did OK with that." Of course all the dogs were listening for that one word and even though it was in the middle of the sentence they all got up and went every which way.
 

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I have not really had to much trouble with OK. I think it is how I say it when I release. But my dogs are not like tight springs either.
 
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