Adduction: Combining Cues Conceptually

Ken Ramirez
Presentation given at the 2020 Conference

Experienced trainers and animals often look for new challenges and ideas to stretch and expand their abilities. In this session, Ken will focus on the art of combining cues – a type of compound cue often referred to as adduction. Although there are many types of adduction, Ken will start with the most common cue combinations that he refers to as “additive adduction.” Here’s an example: a dog is spinning, and while the dog does that behavior the trainer cues a bark. The dog continues spinning but now barks at the same time, creating, in essence, a third behavior (bark while spinning) out of two separate behaviors.

The main focus of this session is to show attendees how to teach an animal the actual concept of adduction – meaning that once the concept is learned the animal could be given any two or more cues and combine them even if the trainer had never presented that particular combination of cues to the animal previously. A training approach for the concept of “AND” as well as the concept of “THEN” will be presented. In addition to being fun to learn and teach, adduction can help animals learn new behaviors more quickly. This can be very helpful for both working animals and any animal facing new challenges on a regular basis.

Click here to return to the 2020 conference program