Cynophobia: An abnormal and persistent fear of dogs. Sufferers from cynophobia experience anxiety even though they realize that most dogs pose no threat. To avoid dogs, they may barricade yards or refuse to travel except in an enclosed vehicle. "Cynophobia" is derived from the Greek "kyon" (dog) and "phobos"(fear). Source: MedicineNet.com
I guess I’m not as bad as the definition above (thank GOD, I don’t think I’d be able to live with myself), but I can say I’m pretty bad.
I’m not afraid of any thug who approaches me at night, unless he has a dog. As a matter of fact, I’m pretty much fearless of anything that roams the night, from drag queens to winos, except dogs. Dogs are scary. End of story.
As a child (I was around nine years old), I remember being chased by a large white dog. My dad clocked me running around sixteen miles per hour from his work van as he laughed at me. I ran like an Olympian that day. That day I realized that without a doubt, if it came down to life or death between me and a dog, it would have to be the dog.
Psychologically, the fear of dogs is natural; by nature, dogs are dangerous. Maybe not chihuahuas, but I can say that a fear of pit bulls is a legitimate fear.
A small level of cynophobia is naturally ingrained into our brain, “hardwired” even, if you want to use that term. Yet paradoxically, “dogs are man’s best friend.” Not my best friend.
Evolutionary theories state that this small level of cynophobia is encoded into human genetics to keep us safe in the days of the saber-tooth tiger- eat-man world. This fear was intended to keep us safe when most dogs resembled more like rabid wolves. Gradually they evolve into smaller species, and likewise we slowly lose our fear.
Except people who had a bad experience at a young age like me of course.
In my opinion, I don’t think my fear of dogs has anything to do with me being Haitian or black. Honestly, who would think of such a thing?