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Walking With A Fear of Dogs

Attention Chien Surprenant Warning, surprising dog

Attention Chien Surprenant Warning, surprising dog

I walk every single day, whether it’s raining, windy, snowing, a heat wave and more. I like heatwaves because dog walkers usually stay in. We live in an age and society where fear of dogs is not respected. Yesterday I was on a walk and i saw two big dogs. One was on a leash and the second was free to roam. That freedom to roam encouraged me to divert my route to go through a muddy forest.

I ran by the side of a muddy field today to avoid more dogs. The thing about dogs is that they come up to you if they are not held on a leash and you have to fight with all of your will power not to lift your arms as that will trigger them to think you’re playing, when in reality you’re terrified.

Dog walkers think that we are strange for fearing dogs, but dog walkers don’t understand how to read that people are afraid of their dogs. They just allow their dogs to look at us, approach and more. I was once in the middle of a field, with a dog running towards me and I froze. I didn’t move until the owner called it back. On another route a dog threatened me two or three times. In the end I barked insults at me, for barking at me. That dog chased me into at least one field before I stopped walking that route.

If I finished a PhD In Finland I could walk around with a sword, since every PhD graduate gets a sword. Imagine if people saw me walking towards them with a sword. “Oh but you should not walk with a sword, it scares people”. “Fantastic, I’m glad you brought it up, I feel the same way about your dogs.”

Why should people who are afraid of dogs be forced to overcome their fear of being attacked by a dog on every walk. I stopped walking all of the routes where people do not control their dogs. I often take a third, and sometimes even a fourth alternative on a walk, to avoid walking by dogs. I fear dogs. I’d rather walk an extra kilometre than confront my fear every single day.

It isn’t fair to force people who are afraid of dogs to overcome their fear on every walk they do.

When you go for a walk you always see “Attention au chien”, or other such warnings. People on the one hand warn you about dangerous dogs when you’re near their home, but then if you’re walking they bark, snarl and threaten you and you’re meant to be happy and relaxed. Dogs are sadistic creatures. I much prefer cats, foxes, and other animals. Either a cat wants to be petted, or it sprints away. Foxes see you, and run away. Chamois and other animals see you and run, if you get too close.

Dogs threaten us, but we’re meant to know how to be around them. It’s the only animal I encounter on walks that threatens me. Dogs are the only animals that approach when they are afraid.

And Finally

There is a rule on plenty of paths that says “Dogs must be kept on their leads” and owners do not obey this rule. The result is that dogs run towards me and I have to overcome my fear. In some cases I yell, Dogs respond to yelling. So do the owners. If you yell at a dog it stops approaching. The owner then calls the dog back. I wish dog owners would be considerate of people with a fear of dogs.

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