M.A. Evaluation Scoring Guidelines

1. WAIT IN THE CAR

Student asks their dog to wait in the car 5 seconds while student stands 5 feet away until student releases dog to exit the car.

  • Excellent: Dog waits with 1 cue until released.
  • Needs Work: Student gives 2 to 3 cues to wait, or student resets dog 1 time.
  • Incomplete: Student gives 4 or more cues to wait, or student resets dog 2 or more times, or dog does not wait.

2. PASS BY OTHER DOGS

Student walks with their dog, passing by 3 dogs of varying breed, size, or gender.

  • Excellent: Leash is loose or tightens 1 time.
  • Needs Work: Leash tightens 2 to 3 times.
  • Incomplete: Leash tightens 4 or more times or is consistently or mostly tight, or dog barks repeatedly or lunges 1 or more times at other dogs.

3. WAIT AT THE DOOR

Student asks their dog to sit and wait at the door while a person walks by until student releases dog to enter.

  • Excellent: Dog waits with 1 cue until released.
  • Needs Work: Student gives 2 to 3 cues to wait, or student resets dog 1 time.
  • Incomplete: Student gives 4 or more cues to wait, or resets dog 2 or more times, or dog does not sit or wait.

WARM-UP TIME

Dog and student are allowed up to 5 minutes to explore and acclimate to the testing area. Food treats, petting, toys, and on-leash games may be used freely during the Warm-Up Time.                                                 

  • Excellent: Dog does not eliminate, or dog eliminates in potty area, or student successfully interrupts and redirects dog to potty area if dog starts to eliminate out of potty area.
  • Needs Work: Dog eliminates out of the   designated potty area, or needs more than 5 minutes to acclimate before continuing evaluation.

4. COME AND LEASHING UP MANNERS

A. Student asks their dog to come from 15 feet away after dog is distracted by a treat.
B. Student asks their dog to sit or down, and attaches leash and detaches long line before releasing the dog.

  • Excellent:
    • A. Dog comes to student with 1 cue to come (and 1 cue to leave it, if needed) and responds to cue within 3 seconds.
    • B. Dog sits or downs with 1 cue until released after student attaches leash.
  • Needs Work:
    • A. Student gives 2 cues to come and/or to leave it, or dog needs 4 to 5 seconds to respond to cue.
    • B. Student gives 2 to 3 cues to sit or down until released, or student resets dog 1 time.
  • Incomplete:
    • A. Student gives 3 or more cues to come and/or to leave it, or dog does not respond to cue within 5 seconds, or passes by student, or does not come.
    • B. Student gives 4 or more cues to sit or down, or resets dog 2 or more times, or dog does not sit or down.

5. SIT, DOWN, AND STAND

Student asks their dog to sit, down, and stand.

  • Excellent: Dog does behaviors with 1 cue for each, responds to each cue within 3 seconds, and maintains each behavior for 2 to 3 seconds until released or cued otherwise.
  • Needs Work: Student gives 2 to 3 cues, or resets dog 1 time, for one or more behavior; or dog needs 4 to 5 seconds to respond to one or more cues.
  • Incomplete: Student gives 4 or more cues, or resets dog 2 or more times, for one or more behavior; or dog does not respond to one or more cues within 5 seconds; or dog does not sit, down, or stand.

6. HANDLING

Student handles each of their dog's paws, strokes their dog on one side from shoulder to tail, and examines either each of their dog's ears, or their dog's teeth from each side of mouth.

  • Excellent: Dog allows handling of paws, stroking of one side, and handling of ears or teeth.
  • Needs Work: Dog does not allow handling in 1 of the 3 (paws, side, or ears or teeth) areas.
  • Incomplete: Dog does not allow handling in 2 of the 3 (paws, side, and/or ears or teeth) areas; or dog growls, snaps, or bites during handling.

7. LOOSE LEASH WALKING AND LEAVE IT

Student walks with their dog by 2 food bowls and student diverts dog's attention from the bowls.

  • Excellent: Dog leaves food bowls with 1 cue for each bowl per pass, leash remains loose with 0 to 1 cues, and dog's nose does not investigate within 2 feet of food bowls.
  • Needs Work: Student gives 2 to 3 cues to leave it for one or both bowls per pass, or student gives 2 to 3 cues to loose leash walk, or leash tightens 1 to 2 times, or dog's nose investigates within 2 feet of a bowl but does not touch bowl.
  • Incomplete: Student gives 4 or more cues to leave it for one or both bowls, or student gives 4 or more cues to loose leash walk, or leash tightens 3 or more times or is mostly tight, or dog's nose touches a food bowl.

8. STAY

Student asks their dog to stay in a sit or down position for 1 minute (and until released) during distractions while student stands 5 feet away.

  • Excellent: Dog stays with 1 cue until released.
  • Needs Work: Student gives 2 to 3 cues to stay, or student resets dog 1 time.
  • Incomplete: Student gives 4 or more cues to stay, or student resets dog 2 or more times.

BONUS 1: TARGETING

Dog uses his nose to touch each of the student's hands on cue.

  • With Honors: Dog targets each hand with 1 cue and responds to each cue within 3 seconds.

BONUS 2: TRICK OF STUDENT'S CHOICE

  • With Honors: Dog performs trick with 1 cue and responds to cue within 3 seconds.

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