— Arkansas, Iowa, Rhode Island & Vermont Recognize Importance of Responsible Dog Ownership —
New York, NY – As a testament to the important role that training and responsible dog ownership play in ensuring that dogs are well behaved members of society, four states have recently joined the growing list that have passed American Kennel Club® (AKC) Canine Good Citizen® (CGC™) resolutions. AKC CGC is a 10-step certification program that rewards dogs with good manners at home and in the community. The resolutions signify an endorsement of the AKC CGC program at the state level.
Iowa, the most recent addition to the list, passed its resolution in March, following closely behind Arkansas, Rhode Island and Vermont, who passed their resolutions in January and February 2009.
“Many dog owners choose CGC as the first step in training their dogs,” said Mary Burch, PhD, AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy and CGC Director. “The support provided by the 39 state legislatures that have endorsed the program clearly demonstrates that CGC is becoming increasingly accepted as the nationwide gold standard in basic training.”
Due to the success and recognition the AKC CGC program has received, AKC recently introduced a natural precursor to becoming an AKC Canine Good Citizen®, the AKC S.T.A.R.sm Puppy Program. “S.T.A.R.” stands for what every puppy needs – Socialization, Training, Activity and a Responsible owner. The program provides all dog owners with the early guidance needed to get their puppies off to the best possible start in life and set them up to thrive as adult dogs.
“Practicing responsible dog ownership is the best way to combat restrictive dog legislation and ensure that reasonable ordinances are proposed in every community,” added Dr. Burch.
In total, 39 states have adopted CGC resolutions, including Alabama, Alaska, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and the U.S. Senate.
Viewed as the first step in dog training, S.T.A.R. Puppy and CGC lay the foundation for other AKC activities such as obedience, agility, rally, tracking and performance events.
Additionally, police and animal control agencies use CGC for dealing with dog problems in communities; therapy dog groups use CGC as a partial screening tool; and some 4-H groups around the country have been using the CGC as a beginning dog training program for children.