Yes, they are cute, cuddly, fun and photo-worthy, but puppies require a lot of time and hard work. Proper training and socialization is important for your puppy to become a good canine citizen both to humans and his or her fellow canines. To encourage owners to complete training classes with their new puppies, the American Kennel Club (AKC) has announced its S.T.A.R. Puppy Program.
This program is essentially a precursor to the AKC’s Canine Good Citizen (CGC) Program. Classes that qualify for S.T.A.R. Puppy distinction are basic training classes that last at least 6 weeks in duration. Topics such as housetraining, chewing, and effective ways to teach practical skills such as coming when called are covered in most basic or puppy training classes. These classes are also useful forums for owners to ask questions about specific issues or training skills and also for puppies to learn socialization skills by interacting with other dogs.
Once you and your puppy have completed a basic training class, your instructor will administer the AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy test. When a passing score is given, you will send an application for enrollment in the AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy Program to AKC. S.T.A.R. Puppies receive medals and the distinction of being listed in the AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy records. To encourage a lifetime of learning together, owners will receive a S.T.A.R. Puppy certificate, an AKC Puppy Handbook, discount enrollment in AKC’s Companion Animal Recovery Corporation (a 24-hour recovery service) and an ongoing monthly newsletter from AKC.
The best part about the AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy Program is that it’s open to all puppies up to one year of age, including purebreds and mixed breeds. Get started in AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy training by contacting an AKC CGC Approved Evaluator. A list of approved evaluators is listed by state at http://classic.akc.org/events/cgc/cgc_bystate.cfm. Locally, there are several approved evaluators located in Davis, Dixon, Elk Grove, Folsom, Granite Bay, Rancho Cordova, Roseville, Sacramento and Vacaville.
For more information about the AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy Program, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.