A three-year-old crossbreed has gone from devil dog to perfect pooch after attending behaviour classes.
Zack who lives with his over Jo Scargill in Cleckheaton, was once a bossy alpha male but is now a happy, energetic, enthusiastic dog, thanks to the Kennel Club’s Good Citizen Dog Training Scheme.
Jo got Zack in April 2012 from the Spen-based charity Yorkshire Rose Dog Rescue and they have been together for 18 months, but it has not all been plain sailing for as she struggled to come to terms with Zack’s difficult behaviour.
She said: “Zack had been allowed to do exactly what he wanted, when he wanted, and it was difficult – but I could see the potential in the dog that I thought he could become.”
Jo decided to attend training GCDS classes, part of the UK’s largest dog training programme, at Courteous Canines in Birkenshaw.
Both dog and owner found the classes beneficial and it wasn’t long until they started to see significant improvements in his behaviour – and now Zack has passed his GCDS Bronze and Silver awards.
Jo said: “Going to weekly classes has been a lifeline for me and Zack – it has given us both structure and focus and the trainers have been brilliant. I am now at the point where people I don’t know are stopping me and complimenting me on how well Zack is doing. “I can’t explain how much my confidence has increased over the last few months.
“I am now able to take Zack to different places and this is as a direct result of the Good Citizen training. The GCDS has been great, it’s open for anyone and everyone who wants to train their dogs and I couldn’t recommend it enough. We’ve set our sights on the Gold award next.
“If I am completely honest, I am not certain I would still have Zack without the level of training and support I have received through the scheme and the trainers at Courteous Canines.
“If that had happened, it would have meant Zack would have had three homes in as many years – which is just unbearable to think about.”
The pair have both come on in leaps and bounds and have even started agility training together.
Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club Secretary, said: “Now in its 21st year, the Good Citizen Dog Training Scheme’s aim is to promote responsible dog ownership. With thanks to Courteous Canines, Zack is one of thousands of dogs to have achieved their Silver award.”
For more information about the Kennel Club Good Citizen Dog Training Scheme, please visit www.thekennelclub.org.uk/dogtraining. To find a GCDS class near you, please visit www.thekennelclub.org.uk/findadogclub.