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- Doggie Daycare -

Evaluating A New Dog
Before Addition To The Playgroup

Dog Name: ________________________  Last Name: ________________

Tester: ___________________________________  Date: _____________

1)     ____ Evaluate the dog for fleas, and check on medical requirements. (Vaccinations, de-wormings, etc.)

a)      ____ Test dog should be wearing a non-choke collar that will not slip over the head.

i)       If only has a slip lead, the owner may purchase one, or return with one.

2)     Test the new dog - with owner present in a neutral room for privacy - before introducing it to the play group:

a)      ______ Rate 0 – 10 (10= high) Will it SIT or DOWN on command for the owner?

b)     ______ Rate 0 – 10 (10= high) Will it SIT or DOWN on command for you

c)      ______ Rate 0 – 10 (10= high) Does the dog pull on the leash and act unruly or calm?

3)     Take the new dog on leash to a fenced area adjacent to the play group.Try to keep the LEASH LOOSE as much as possible. (To avoid “Restraint Aggression.:) Watch the interactions; test dog behind a fence:

a)      ______ Rate 0 – 10 (10= high) Observe for excitability in the test dog (agitated or excited barking)

b)     ______ Rate 0 – 10 (10= high) Observe for aggression (threat postures; type, intensity and duration)

c)      ______ Rate 0 – 10 (10= high) Observe for how quickly the dog becomes calm

i)       ______ Rate 0 – 10 (10= high) If the dog does not become calm, move out of sight of the play group, and determine how long it takes for the dog to become calm.

4)     When the dog is calm, introduce an off leash “Mentor Dog” to interact with the test dog, still in the isolated test area. The Mentor dog must be experienced socially with as many dogs as possible, and known to be reliable. If such a dog does not exist, then use the closest dog possible, but with a second person and the second dog on loose leash. The goal is to allow the mentor dog to approach or move away. Try to allow a loose leash on the test dog. A tight leash triggers barrier frustration aggression.

5)     Observe for the following indicators from the test dog:

a)      ______ Rate 0 – 10 (10= high) Friendly body language

i)       Play bow

ii)      Friendly wagging tail, roughly parallel to the ground

iii)    Relaxed muscle tone

iv)    Some solicitation barking (“Let me inside to play!”)

(1)   If so, ask for QUIET, or SIT to see if the dog will respond to commands when excited.

b)     ______ Rate 0 – 10 (10= high) Unfriendly body language

i)       Stiff body

ii)      Lip lifting or growling

iii)    Attempts to mount or control

iv)    Tail carried high up away from the ground

v)     Threat barking (“Hey you, stop that!”)

6)     Give feedback to the tester dog to see if it responds:

a)      Praise friendly body language

b)     If unfriendly, move the dog away, and ask for a SIT. Then return partially, and test the SIT.

7)     If the dog seems suitable, allow it to drag a leash in a neutral area with the Mentor Dog alone.

a)      Toss a ball or rawhide chew into the area, and observe the test dog’s response.

i)       ______ Rate 0 – 10 (10= high) Friendly body language

ii)      ______ Rate 0 – 10 (10= high)  Unfriendly body language

8)     Allow test dog to play with other dogs while continuing to drag a lead until you are confident the dog is fitting into the play group safely.



...::::::: Copyright 2000-Present  All Rights Reserved by Rolan Tripp, DVM  and Susan Tripp, MS, Animal Behavior Network and Associates :::::::...