Bernese Mountain Dog becomes Millionth Dog To Pass AKC’s Canine Good Citizen Test

New York, NY – The American Kennel Club (AKC®), the world’s largest purebred dog registry and leading advocate for dogs, is celebrating one million dogs passing their AKC Canine Good Citizen® (CGC) Test. The millionth dog to pass the test was a Bernese Mountain Dog named Fiona who is owned by Nora Pavone from Brooklyn, NY. Fiona attended instructor Kate Naito’s CGC classes at Brooklyn’s Doggie Academy as the initial step toward her future role as a grief therapy dog in nursing homes.


“We are very proud of Fiona and the other hundreds of thousands of dogs that have passed the CGC test,” said Mary Burch, PhD, Director of the Canine Good Citizen Program.  “Many of these dogs go on for additional training to make a difference in the lives of others.”


Started in 1989, AKC’s Canine Good Citizen Program is a two-part program that stresses responsible pet ownership for owners and good manners for dogs. The 10-step test consists of basic commands and actions like accepting a friendly stranger, sitting, staying, coming when called, walking through a crowd, and behaving politely around other dogs, among others.  All dogs who pass the test may receive a certificate from the AKC.


“A million CGC dogs is an amazing milestone. The program has done so much good, from helping dog owners teach their pet good manners to rehabilitating dogs that have had behavioral issues,” said Doug Ljungren, Executive Vice President of AKC Sports & Events. “CGC instructors can be justifiably proud of the great work they have done for dogs and their owners.” 


The Canine Good Citizen Program has been adopted and utilized for many activities that require basic good citizen behavior. CGC training and titles are used as a prerequisite by therapy dog groups. Many service dog organizations start their dogs with CGC training, and shelter organizations are utilizing the “CGC Ready” program to demonstrate that their rescue dogs are good citizens. Several dog daycare facilities train dogs for the test and 4-H clubs around the country have been using CGC as a beginning dog training program. Other countries (including Korea, India, England, Australia, Japan, Hungary, Denmark, Sweden, Canada, and Finland) have developed CGC programs based on the AKC’s Program.


Legislative Resolutions endorsing the CGC program as a way of teaching responsible dog ownership and canine good manners have been passed in 48 states, and police and animal control agencies use the CGC program for dealing with dog problems in communities.  In addition, some homeowner’s insurance companies encourage CGC testing, and an increasing number of apartments, condos and businesses require that resident dogs pass the CGC test.


More information about the AKC Canine Good Citizen Program can be found at:





About the American Kennel Club

Founded in 1884, the American Kennel Club is a not-for-profit organization which maintains the largest registry of purebred dogs in the world and oversees the sport of purebred dogs in the United States. The AKC is dedicated to upholding the integrity of its registry, promoting the sport of purebred dogs and breeding for type and function.  Along with its more than 5,000 licensed and member clubs and its affiliated organizations, the AKC advocates for the purebred dog as a family companion, advances canine health and well-being, works to protect the rights of all dog owners and promotes responsible dog ownership. More than 22,000 competitions for AKC-registered purebred dogs are held under AKC rules and regulations each year including conformation, agility, obedience, rally, tracking, herding, lure coursing, coonhound events, hunt tests, field and earthdog tests. Affiliate AKC organizations include the AKC Humane Fund, AKC Canine Health Foundation, AKC Reunite and the AKC Museum of the Dog.  For more information, visit

AKC, American Kennel Club, the American Kennel Club seal and design, and all associated marks and logos are trademarks, registered trademarks and service marks of The American Kennel Club, Inc.

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