Protocol for Exemption Examination
The examination comprises two parts, both of which must be completed successfully.
Test 1- Assessment of temperament
A veterinary assessment of temperament will be conducted according to the protocol established by the Australian RSPCA (please click), in the absence of the dog owner.
In addition, during the conduct of the tests, the dog should not demonstrate signs of overt aggression towards other dogs or humans.
(NEW!) Bring the dog being tested to another dog which is separated by wired fencing to assess its reaction [Both dogs must be on leash]:-
(a) It shows sociable behaviors
(b) It shows little reaction
(c) It grows, barks, rushes towards or overly aggressive
Dogs with one or more "unacceptable" results or more than four "borderline" results on test 1 will be considered to have failed the test and will not be permitted to proceed to test 2.
Test 2 - Assessment of control
This test will be conducted on a circuit approximately 160 metres in length. The owner is required to walk around the circuit once with his dog unleashed. The circuit will be marked by flags placed 10 metres apart Please note that the circuit has recently been revised. (NEW!) (see attached circuitdiagram in PDF file) or Flash file.[Download Acrobat Reader for viewing the document]
This test contains four elements, all of which must be completed successfully to obtain a pass.
Element 1 - walking with dog off leash
The dog must remain within 10 metres of the owner at all times and within the confines of the markers during the walk around the circuit. The owner is free to decide the distance he allows the dog to move away from him up to the 10 metre limit. [Note: the "10 metre limit" does not apply during the conduct of the other three elements of the test described below]
Element 2 - encounter with a stranger
At one point in the circuit a stranger will walk towards the dog and owner. When the stranger and the owner meet, the dog must sit, stay or drop beside the owner. The stranger will stop, talk to the owner and offer him/her an object. The dog must show no signs of aggression towards the stranger.
Element 3 - recall dog
At the second point in the circuit the owner and dog must separate by a distance of at least 10 metres and then be recalled. The owner can do this by sending the dog off and recalling it or, if the dog is not trained to be sent off, by getting the dog to sit and stay while the owner walks at least 10 metres away and then recalls the dog. The owner should wait for the Veterinary Officer's signal before recalling the dog.
(NEW!) Whist the dog is being commanded to stay , there will be distraction and moving objects, such as a person riding a bicycle, playing football or walking with small pups, etc. outside the circuit.
Element 4 - encounter with a stranger walking a dog on leash
At the third point in the circuit a stranger walking a friendly, leashed dog will walk towards the dog and owner. When the stranger and the owner meet, the dog must sit, stay or drop beside the owner. The stranger will stop, talk to the owner and offer him/her an object. The dog must show no signs of overt aggression towards the stranger or the other dog.
Any dog that fails the examination may retake it at future examination sessions. There is no restriction on the number of attempts.