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My Shetland Sheepdog, Todd 



Todd is the second Shetland Sheepdog I’ve owned (actually the second dog I’ve owned, period.  And I don’t need to explain that Shelties actually “own” the whole house, right?) He’s so different from my first Sheltie.     

Todd is 10 years old now, and thankfully is still in good shape.  He does, however, have a lot of sound sensitivity issues (ever since he was a pup) that blow me away. These are especially interesting for a jazz singer!  Here are 8 sounds/actions that will make him whine, bark and zoom until I stop:


  1. Emptying the dishwasher (especially when I put the silverware away). Of course, filling the dishwasher is never an issue, because he keeps himself busy by sniffing and tasting any leftover food he finds on the plates;
  2. Raising the mini-blinds on my front picture window. It’s a soft sound, but there must be something about the pitch or the timbre;
  3. Using a nail clipper. I could be in the bathroom with the door closed, and the minute I start to clip my fingernails, I’ll hear him run to the bathroom door spinning around and whining;
  4. Turning on the vacuum cleaner (okay, so I can understand this one);
  5. Pulling a full trash bag out of the kitchen waste basket and taking it to the outside trash container. He’ll spin and bark until I’m back inside the house;
  6. Fluffing out a fresh kitchen waste basket bag as I prepare to place it in the kitchen waste basket—he spins and barks in anticipation of taking it out later;
  7. Spraying hair spray in my hair or using a blow dryer;
  8. Picking up a hand mirror, he knows it will generate a reflection and he has to find the reflection and “kill” it;

There are other sounds that trigger a reaction from him, but you get the idea. I love Todd and hope to learn a little from his super sensitive ears!

What are some of the things that your dogs do?