Frequently Asked Questions

How do I register for a class?

Classes are posted on the class calendar on our website. Scroll down the page until you find the class you want and click on Register. Please note: The 'Register' button will appear only when registration for that class is open. You will then be taken to the registration page for that class. You can register for the class and pay online by credit card (preferred) or pay by check. Prepayment is required to attend any class.

Where should I send my check?

GCOC encourages payment by credit card on our secure registration pages and we accept all major credit cards. If you would prefer to pay by check, please mail your check to: GCOC  P.O. Box 8534  Columbia, SC 29202. Payment must be received prior to the start of classes. 

When are the classes?

Classes are usually scheduled for one hour on weeknights, but occasionally, daytime and weekend classes are offered. Class dates and times are posted on our class calendar several weeks before the start date and registration opens at least one week in advance.


Where are the classes taught?

All Puppy, Basic, Obedience and Rally classes are held in our training building at  947 South Stadium Rd, Suite #10 Columbia, SC . Agility classes are held on our agility training field.


The class I wanted to register for is full. Can I be on the waiting list?

Due to the volume of requests that we receive, GCOC cannot maintain a waiting list for classes. Class start dates and times will be posted on the website as soon as they are scheduled. Prospective students are encouraged to check the website frequently and to enroll in a class as soon as registration opens. Not all classes are offered every session. Our classes fill very quickly.

Does my dog have to be a purebred to . . . take a GCOC class, join GCOC, compete in AKC performance events?

No. GCOC classes are open to dogs of all kinds - rescues, mixed breeds and of course, purebreds too.

GCOC membership is open to all dog enthusiasts interested in learning more or in helping others learn more about obedience, rally, agility or those who simply want to socialize and learn from other dog lovers in the community.

Your dog does not have to be purebred to pursue AKC competition sports. The AKC now allows mixed breeds to compete in performance events. Any dog has to be registered with AKC to enter a show. This does not have to be done right away. You can take a few classes and still register your dog well before you are both ready for a show. Check out the AKC's Canine Partners Program.

If you have a dog with no registration papers who appears to be a purebred dog, the AKC will allow you to register the dog through the PAL or Purebred Alternative Listing program.

What is the Canine Good Citizen (CGC) Test?

GCOC periodically offers the Canine Good Citizenship Test

Created by the AKC, CGC is open to all dogs - both purebred and mixed breeds of any age. Dogs must, however, be old enough to have received all necessary immunizations. See our Canine Good Citizen and Therapy Dog pages for more information.


Who are the GCOC instructors?

All our instructors are club members who volunteer and give generously of their time and knowledge and are not compensated in any way. GCOC instructors have a wide variety of dog training experience in many venues. Many of them have trained with some of the top experts in the country and they all have a working knowledge of canine learning theory, behavior, psychology and problem-solving. All of our instructors are also competitors and have won AKC, UKC and/or other titles in a wide variety of canine disciplines. They compete at the local, regional and national level.


Do I have to be a member to attend a GCOC meeting?

You do not have to be member to attend a meeting. Many club meetings include an educational program and we charge a small fee to attend those. Meeting dates, times and locations are posted on the GCOC home page.


How do I join GCOC?

GCOC offers its members many great opportunities, including the chance to meet other dog lovers in the area. The club consists of people just starting out in the various canine sports and others who have been around for years. We all love sharing our dogs with others and working together. For information on how to join the club, check out the Join GCOC page.

Greater Columbia Obedience Club 
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