I've been waiting to share this (unexciting) news for a while because I still haven't gotten him BAER tested, and likely won't until summer, but I think Buzz is deaf. There were a few insignificant events that left me wondering for a couple of months now, but some experiences at the trial as well as at home have nearly cemented it in my mind. If he is indeed deaf, that means no AKC tracking tests for us, and I need to look into the rules for UKC. Thankfully NADAC does not discriminate so regardless, we can continue to play our beloved game of agility.
Not that it bothers me in the least that he's likely deaf (or nearly deaf). I just dislike the fact that it takes away our chance of doing AKC tracking and I don't know of other tracking venues locally. UKC was looking into it but their's will be more like Schutzhund I heard. ASCA tracking isn't really around, but I guess I will look into it further.
I ran the trial this weekend using very few words and he was exceptionally responsive. I don't need my voice to run him in agility or obedience, and he should be working ahead of me on his own in tracking anyways. The only change I really have to make is finding another marker (since he obviously can't hear the clicker), a laser has been suggested to me.
We'll find out for sure in a couple of months, and I'm off to check on the UKC rules now. I'm going to assume APDT doesn't care since they are an inclusive venue to begin with.
ETA: We can continue to compete in UKC! :>)