My story of Overcoming Cynophobia (Fear of dogs)
I confess, just 4 years ago I wouldn’t have entered an elevator with a Teacup poodle in it, not to mention: German Shepherds, Rottweillers, Siberian Huskies or Goldens…Goldens were the worst because, as I’ve come understand, being so sociable and sweet when they felt my fear they wanted to comfort me, so they lay down over my feet, put their bodies near my legs… Once, one rests his head on my lap so I could pet him…I remember trembling out of fear
It had the kindest and sparkliest eyes a dog could have. He wagged his tail, he jumped out of happiness and obeyed every command his owner asked, yet I got paled of fear every time I knew I would visit that house, Or near any dog as a matter of facts.
Cynophobia is the fear of dogs/cats and, like any Phobia comes from an irrational and persistent fear of a specific object or situation. This generates anxiety episodes, even panic attacks. In this case, also deprives the person of enjoying the beautiful bond of friendship and companionship formed with a pet.
In my case, it started when being just a baby, Snoopy the family cocker Spaniel, was always very effusive around me and, in a particular episode, barked am cornered me against a wall, for having taken his favorite toy. Of course, this now sounds very normal, but I used to remember that moment and get literally paralyzed, wanted never getting close to a dog, much less adopt two, but life gives you a lot of surprises.
Although there are professional steps to overcome the fear of dogs that guarantees results in controlled environments, my story deviates enough from being a traditional therapeutic case.
How I met Amelia
Returning home from a trip to the countryside, around march of 2014, the vehicle suddenly braked because there, in the middle of nowhere, a white cub wandered looking for food, perhaps for her mother or brothers…
We got out of the car, and start trying to grab her, she was trembling and scared. When she finally climbed into the car, felt asleep immediately. We took her to the vet, gave her her first vaccines, and took her home with the firm intention of putting her up for adoption. That first night, although she was a small 2 months puppy, I could not believe it… there was a dog sleeping in my living room.
Several nights went by watching her play. I remember Thinking, what does this dog do in my house? How is it possible that she still hasn’t escaped the pen and attack me in my sleep? How does she look so adorable tearing apart a chew toy? How does she devour flip flops so easily? According to my numbers, she has devoured approximately 5 pairs of flip flops until today.
Over time, I taught her several tricks, I named her (Amelia, because she’s brave like Amelia Earhart was) and even got her a sister (Frida, because she has an adorable mustache). Little by little interacting with them and with other dogs during walks I’ve managed to overcome my dog phobia completely.
I found this video that inspired me to do the article because I think it shows in a very emotional way everything that can change your life when you give permission to let your life into a pet, Look at it! I’m sure it will move you:
Also, if you want to know more about Amelia or Frida, Let me know in the comments! See you soon!