The Canine Good Citizen (CGC) program has two tiers. The first is an annual trophy to be awarded at the RRCUS annual Awards Banquet. The second is a tiered achievement level designed to reward breeders who take an active approach to educating and encouraging their puppy owners to earn the CGC titles on their Ridgebacks. Both are available to RRCUS members only.
1. The annual George Sexton CGC Award will be a Dannyquest trophy awarded to the breeder(s) who have the most AKC Canine Good Citizen titles tested and earned on dogs of which they are the breeder of record in a single calendar year (January 1- December 31). The AKC titles must be reported through the AKC’s new title system, so the certificate alone does not qualify. Therefore, dogs who have passed, but the owners do not pay the fee to have the CGC title officially recorded as an AKC title of record, do not count towards this award. This friendly competition should encourage more breeders to educate their puppy owners about CGC, as well as raise awareness of its importance. Breeders are encouraged to include the AKC CGC brochure in their puppy packets. This method of tabulating the yearly award will even the playing field for the newer breeders who have not had the titles accumulating for the past 20+ years.
2. The RRCUS CGC Achievement Program will award breeders new and old, who strive to promote the importance of temperament and training within the breed. There are four different levels of achievement possible, Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum. Each level will be awarded by a medallion. These medallions will be earned by breeders who have reached a certain number of CGC certificates awarded to dogs they have bred.
BRONZE 10 CGC certificates
SILVER 20 CGC certificates
GOLD 30 CGC Certificates
PLATINUM 50 CGC certificates
The achievement levels must be proven by the CGC certificate actually copied and mailed in by the breeder to the RRCUS record keeper. This way it will cover all the past 20+ years of CGC certificates earned. This will not only award breeders who have been breeding for years, but will also be an attainable goal for new breeders. The certificates can be CGC and CGCA, even if not officially recorded as a title through the AKC.
It is recommended, for ease of record keeping, that the breeders send in their proof of certification when they have achieved a certain level. Certificates should not be sent in individually. This puts the responsibility on the breeders, not the record keeper. When the next level has been achieved, the breeders should send those certificates in and the record keeper will then add those to the last level. The medallions can be earned all year long, and the RRCUS webpage will have a list of breeders who have attained the different levels.
When the AKC introduced the CGC program in 1989, George Sexton was the RRCUS Delegate and immediately recognized the importance of this program. At that same time, Breed Specific Legislation (BSL) was being talked about, and many cities and towns were beginning to ban specific breeds. Similarly, some insurance companies and underwriters began to refuse or decline insuring people who owned these "dangerous" breeds. Since Ridgebacks are a large, powerful breed, and were perceived by some as "dangerous" dogs, George was determined to keep Ridgebacks off this BSL list and any other lists.
He felt that one way this could be accomplished was to encourage Ridgeback owners to get their CGC title on their dogs. Having well trained and behaved dogs being the first line of defense against those entities seeking to change the rules. He first challenged the RRCUS Board to do so, and many if not all did follow through. He also encouraged all Ridgeback owners to get their dogs CGC certified, and RRCUS then started offering CGC testing at our National Specialty during the 1990s