I have always been afraid of dogs and now have a puppy and don't want him...help!

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I have always been afraid of dogs and now have a puppy and don't want him...help!

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Old 12-16-2012, 02:30 PM
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Unhappy I have always been afraid of dogs and now have a puppy and don't want him...help!

Here's my story:

I have always been afraid of dogs....all dogs....I have never been bit by one nor have I ever owned one while growing up. I admire dogs and their owners but can never seem to handle my fear of being bit, or jumped on etc. It is so overwhelming for me that I tend to freeze when a dog approaches me and then I cry. (sounds silly I know) I can't seem to help it.....It is a fear that I am embarassed by because friends and family always have to make concessions for me if I come around and they own a dog.

I am married and together we have a little boy who is almost 4. My husband has grown up with dogs his whole life and enjoys all breeds. He has tried to help me with my fear for a long time now but I know it must be annoying to some extent. My hubby and others have suggested we get a puppy and that way I can grow with the dog and learn how about dogs in general to help calm my fears. I thought I would give this a go and last February I decided to get a shih tzu puppy. I figured the breed was small and manageable. We only had him for two weeks when he was stolen off his leash outside. My littly guy was so sad. In those two weeks I have to admit I learned alot and although I was very nervous at some of his puppy behaviors I was doing ok.

Yesterday I took my friend to look at puppies and this one puppy "picked me" per se. I was hesitant but I really liked the puppy and felt like "I can do this!" and I knew how happy my little guy would be. After some convincing I decided to get the puppy (SILLY ME I KNOW!) I did ask about the breed when I was there and was told he would only get to be about 25-35 lbs but after the puppy has been to the vet the vet told me his is actually a collie crossed with a german shepherd. This has sent me into panic mode. I am terrified of german shepherds!! And moreso I feel like I can't handle a big dog.....Knowing all this I am so scared and nervous and have been crying off and on with the thought of this dog growing up. My neighbour is willing to take the puppy (she is an experienced pet owner) but husband is saying that I am not giving the dog a chance (fair enough) How on earth do I work through this? I don't want to be afraid in my own home especially since I will be spending alot of time with him alone (hubby is in army) I just don't know what to do...I feel like a complete loser for getting the puppy---the last thing I wanted to do was disappoint my son and husband..... I would appreciate some feedback if anyone has any...
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Old 12-16-2012, 02:39 PM
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Therapy? Personally, I think this is more a serious phobia problem than a dog problem. If you are having serious physical problems and anxieties now, I don't think "giving the dog a chance" is going to fix it. Talking to someone about the problem to try to resolve it might though, and a professional would be able to help you decide whether or not it is healthy for you to keep the dog at this point. Your husband should be supportive of helping you work through this problem. Imagine you were deathly afraid of snakes and they wanted a snake. I don't think you need to worry about disappointing anyone. What I might suggest is asking if the neighbor is willing to take the dog on a trial (for you) basis and would be willing to return it in a few months as you work through the problem. Likewise you could work through the problem and also keep the dog, but it might be more of a struggle. JMHO.

ETA: Collies and GSDs are NOT first time dog owner dogs. Considering your condition, it might be a better idea to give the dog to the neighbor and try this with an easier breed later. Of course, mixes are always a toss up so you could end up with a laid back guy. Is there a possibility of returning the puppy since you only got him yesterday? FWIW, dogs/puppies are usually one of the worst impulse buys for people to get.
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Last edited by seebrown; 12-16-2012 at 02:47 PM.
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Old 12-16-2012, 02:46 PM
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Dogs are not toys to experiment with. How many poor dogs are you going to cycle through in an attempt to "fix" yourself? If you were afraid of children, would you have had your son and risked the fact that you may have hated him his whole life?

Get some serious psychological help, and THEN, only when you're 100% that any dog you get will be in your home for the rest of his life, think about getting a dog.
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Old 12-16-2012, 02:58 PM
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#1. ****zu puppy was tied outside? They should be inside. Way too small to be outside, esspecially as puppies. I'm on my phone and I can't see where you live but it's cold in most places this time of year...danger of it being stolen or become hawk prey. I'm just saying... So in the future you don't repeat this mistake.
As far as the new dog, I have to agree with torchiKatashi. Fix your issues first by seeing a proffesional and working through the fear. Give the collie\gsd to your nice neighbor and go from there. It's not a test run. It's a live being that will pick up on your feeling and on one part you're right. You don't want a GSD to know you're deathly afraid of him even when all he's doing is playing.
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Old 12-16-2012, 03:01 PM
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Thank you so much for your response. I agree that this certainly is a true phobia no matter how much I try and desire to be rid of it. I think I need to accept it as being true and real for me despite what others around me view as silly. My neighbour is in love with the puppy and has agreed to take him and allow my son to still interact and play with him as he grows. It seems like a win win situation and I have learned two important lessons: my fear of bigger dogs is real and not something I should be ashamed of---but would like to learn to over come and 2) never ever go on instinct in purchasing an animal. Thank you for your help
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Old 12-16-2012, 03:03 PM
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Welcome to the forum..
First off it is a puppy. It can not really hurt you. If you really want to over come your fear you did good by getting a puppy. You can actually learn together.
What is your biggest fear?
If the dog jumps on you what are you afraid it will do?
If you really feel this will not work it is best to place the puppy before it gets settled in just to have to go somewhere else.
Can you post a photo?
The vet is guessing by looking..unless he knows the people you got it from.
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Old 12-16-2012, 03:04 PM
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Maybe it's a good opportunity to ask if your neighbor would help you with the problem and you can visit the puppy as it grows?
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Old 12-16-2012, 03:04 PM
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Thank you for your input. I can appreciate your frusteration with me. I would like to clarify that I am not in any way attempting to cycle through dogs in an effort to fix myself. I would just like to be able to overcome this issue of fear and be a happy dog owner someday. I realize the mistake I made yesterday and if I didn't care I wouldn't be expressing how I feel right now. Just saying....
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Old 12-16-2012, 03:09 PM
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We have some very passionate members here, and feedback comes from a good place, so try not to be offended. Dog/cat euthanasia is huge in the US.

I think you can work through the problem and plan to get a dog or puppy later in life when the timing is right, you are ready, and offer a forever home to a dog in need. FWIW, I have the occasional panic attack based on really (I'm sure in other's opinions) dumb things, so I can understand wanting to get over the problem.
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Old 12-16-2012, 03:23 PM
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Seebrown beat me to saying it. If you neighbor is willing give the puppy to him/her and visit it daily with your son. See if that will help you to learn that the puppy and, as it grows up, dog is O.K. and is not going to hurt you. That the jumping and mouthing they do is not going to do you any harm.

I do agree that you shouldn't get anymore dogs until you can work through the fear/phobia you have. If you do decide to keep the puppy see about getting one one one training sessions for you and the puppy, that way it will grow up to be a good dog and you'll have help with any behaviors that it has that may worry you. Also, if you keep it, look into getting a therapist for yourself that specializes in phobias.

I'm sorry that whomever you got the puppy from mislead you like they did. I can tell that you wouldn't have taken the puppy if you knew what it's breeds were, or if you had realized it would get as big as it is likely to get.

If you want to know around how big a 25lb dog is, my boy in my avatar is around 23 lbs. He's around 1ft tall at the shoulders and around 1 1/2 ft long.
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