Although we are currently unable to get to our training classes, Luna and I have still been working towards her Level 2 dog obedience award. This is equivalent to the Silver Award from the Kennel Club’s Good Citizen Dog Scheme. (You can read about Level 1 which we completed last year here). So, grab your treat bag, some tasty treats and let’s get started!
1) Play with your dog
Dogs need play to live full lives. You need to be able to engage and play with your dog. Toys should be given back to you readily and play fighting is not accepted.
This is an exercise Luna is struggling with. As she comes from the streets she didn’t grow up with toys and had no concept at all of what they were for when we first got her. She’s slowly learning that toys can be fun and not scary but will only engage in play when she wants to.
2) Walking by a road
When you walk your dog, chances are you’ll be walking next to a road at some point. You need to show that your dog can walk under control on a loose lead on a pavement next to a road.
- Walk along the pavement
- Turn and stop at the curb – your dog should wait patiently and calmly
- Cross the road when it’s safe and continue walking on the pavement on the other side.
There needs to be a few distractions for example: pedestrians, bicycles and cars.
Similarly to Level 1, you need to prove your dog has good recall.
Get your dog to stay in one position off lead while you move approximately ten paces away.
When you call you dog, they should return straight to you and stop so you can put the lead back on. (Need a new lead? Why not buy one here?)
Another task similar to Level 1, except this time your dog must stay still for two minutes.
- Place the dog into your chosen position e.g. sit or down.
- Drop the lead and move five steps away.
- You dog must remain in the same position for two minutes.
- Return to your dog (without them moving) and pick up the lead.
At some point your dog is going to have to travel in a vehicle. Whether they’re going to the woods or for a visit to the vet, they need to be used to vehicles.
To pass this exercise, there are several requirements:
- Your dog must walk calmly and not pull while walking towards a vehicle.
- Your dog must wait patiently by the open vehicle door until instructed to get in.
- You dog must then willingly jump into the vehicle and the door closed.
- You should start the engine and run it for a few minutes and your dog needs to remain calm and not become a distraction to the driver.
- When you let your dog out of the vehicle, your dog should not jump out until instructed and should wait calmly until the door is closed again.
Only physically able dogs should jump in and out of the car. Other alternatives include lifting your dog or using a ramp.
6) Come away from distractions
You need to show that you are in control of your dog. Your dog should be taken to a gathering of dogs who are on leads. You should then take your dog off the lead and walk away whilst calling him. Your dog should return without delay and be placed back on the lead.
This is an exercise we haven’t worked much with yet as Luna still has anxiety around other dogs (other than at her class where she is familiar with the other dogs).
7) Controlled greeting
To pass this exercise, your dog needs to learn not to jump up at people when greeted. If they do jump up, you should be able to instruct them to get off the person ASAP.
Luna is good at this task as she is still wary of strangers. Getting her to greet someone she loves without jumping up is a different story!
8) Food manners
Just like humans, dog should have good manners when it comes to food. They should be walked on a loose lead past someone holding or eating food. Your dog will pass this exercise if they walk past nicely without trying to beg for, or steal the food.
9) Physical examination
Similarly again to Level 1, you need to be able to physically examine your dog without them becoming concerned. However, this time your dog must be examined by a stranger (to replicate going to a vet). The stranger needs to be able to examine you dog’s mouth, teeth, throat, eyes, ears, stomach, tail and paws.
10) Responsibility and care
This part of the test requires your knowledge of dog responsibilities and care. You’ll need to answer several questions. Topics include: the needs of a dog, illness, responsibilities of dog ownership, other responsibilities such as socialisation, children, barking, dogs in stationary vehicles and vehicle travel. More information on this section can be found here.
I hope this has helped you understand what you need to be able to do to pass Level 2 dog obedience.
Now, all that training is tiring, time for a rest!