Okay, so this post may be a little controversial, and truth be told, although this is something that I really want to put out there, parts of me have sat this weekend over thinking things, wondering ‘will I annoy a whole group of people by saying this?’ Today we’re going to talk about dog phobia.. or more specifically, I will be taking directly to anyone who has a dog phobia.
Dear lady on the train with a dog phobia,
I just wanted to take the time to let you know, that our brief encounter on the train last week, left me feeling uneasy.
I was sat on the train, minding my own business, heading off somewhere nice, with my gorgeous dog Lexi, and you got on the train and looked uncomfortable..
Uncomfortable is maybe an understatement. You took one look at Lexi, and then you took one look at me and you said ‘ I’m sorry, but I’m not a dog person;.…. to which my response was ‘I’m not a people person’… And I got up and moved.
Now I know that this was perhaps a knee jerk reaction. But the point that I was making was that to me, Lexi means everything…. and when somebody looks at her like she is a man eating monster, I find that difficult to deal with.
However, being in the profession that I am in, I do also understand, that some people out there, do have a fear of dogs, or even a strong dog phobia. However, by expecting the owner of a dog to make allowances, and get up and move carriage (not that you asked that of me), means that you are avoiding taking responsibiliy and looking for help for your phobia.
‘Expecting a dog owner to change their behaviour, because you have a phobia, is like expecting an architect to only build Bungalows because you have a fear of heights. Basically, it’s YOU who needs to create the change here, and not the dog owner.’
We live in a country where dogs are a common house hold pet, and they happen to be everywhere… to expect to be able to go about your daily business and NOT run into the path of a dog, is expecting the impossible. I do understand that seeing a dog is hard for you, and I totally get that it’s not your fault if you have a phobia. However, a dog phobia seems to be the one phobia where people expect the dog owner to be the one who changes……
So – why do so many people have dog phobias anyway?
Because a LOT of people do…… and more often than not they start right back in childhood…
Take a client of mine, who for the sake of this article I will call client A – she came to see me about a phobia, that originated when she was at school and the police bought the dogs in. She saw one of the dogs take an office down, to show how amazing they are and what they can do and in her, that created an intense FEAR. Yet when I saw the same thing at my school, I thought to myself, ‘wow, what an amazing job, and what an amazing dog!!’.
Chances are, that something happened when you were younger that left an imprint on your subconscious. It might even be an incident that you’re not even aware of (because you were really really little), but your subconscoius went on to protect you and it went about this by creating a phobia, i.e an intense sense of panic that is triggered off everytime a dog even comes near to you.
Doesn’t it really annoy you, how this ‘thing’ has control of you? Don’t you want to experience the personal freedom, of being phobia free, and not having to carry the weight of this around with you? I am not saying that you should ‘get over it’ and that you will fall in love with dogs in the end. Hey, some people just don’t happen to be dog people, and you may find that if and when you do deal with your phobia, you still don’t really like them.
But there is a world of difference between not really liking them and being totally and utterly controlled by your fear of them.
Did you know, that freeing yourself from your phobia could take just one, or two sessions with me – I guess that is also what frustrates me – that I walked away without handing you my business card. But more than that, I find it sad, when I see somebody who is dominated by their fear. Because I know that there is ‘a way out the other side’ to that.
So, I felt the need to put pen to paper so to speak and say all of this. A HUGE part of me just wanted to say ‘hey you, it’s your phobia, your problem so take some responsibility and deal with it’… and maybe in a way I am saying that! But it’s done with compassion. I really hope that you overcome your phobia,…. why? Because I know the joy that Lexi brings.. and I know the joy that freedom brings. And I think that you owe it to yourself to chase that.
p.s if you (yes you, the one reading this 🙂 – if YOU happen to have, or know somebody that does have, a dog phobia, please do pass them this caring kick up the backside on to them, and let’s get them (or you) OVER their dog phobia. You can simply book a FREE clarity call with me here, and I will let you know more about how I will help you.