Fear of dogs

The fear of dogs is more rational than many animal phobias, such as fearing spiders, birds or mice, as dogs are potentially dangerous and have the capacity to do us harm. Traditionally, dogs were bred for working situations such as guarding or hunting a long while before they became pets, so it is reasonable to respect them in this way. However, when this respect becomes an unnatural or exaggerated phobia – cynophobia – then this can have an adverse effect on our emotional, psychological and physical well being.

We can all read the signs of an agitated dog – growling, showing of teeth, raised hackles, etc – and even the smallest dog can pose a danger if it feels threatened itself. And, in such cases, we all would be cautious. For the cynophobe, however, every dog is a threat or a danger at all times and it is this belief that can cause cynophobes extreme anxiety and stress to the point where they may become agoraphobic. Just the thought of coming across a dog can be enough to instill a sense of panic.

Like other phobias, it is generally accepted that cynophobia is brought on by an early traumatic or frightening exerience involving dogs. This experience, such as having been bitten, will lead to the belief that all dogs are bad or all dogs bite.

Fear of Dogs

Cynophobes, as with sufferers of other phobias, may feel symptoms which include:
  • Excessive sweating or a cold sweat
  • Nausea
  • Palpitations
  • Breathlessness
  • Trembling
  • A dryness of the mouth
  • Dizziness
  • A loss of control

How can hypnotherapy help ?

The good news is that you can beat your fear of dogs with the help of cognitive behavioural hypnotherapy. Under a state of relaxed calm your subconscious mind will be reprogrammed to replace all the inbuilt negative mental constructions with positive ones. Teaching you to access this calmness when confronted by a situation where there may be a dog will enable you to conquer your irrational fear of dogs and maintain a normal and healthy respect for them instead.

What those with a fear of dogs say...

“I wanted to say a big, big thank you for your help with Jake – from me, Jake and the rest of the family. Jake’s dog phobia was really affecting our family, but Christmas Day was amazing and in a controlled way Jake decided to stroke Lenny by himself, with no anxiety. I know he still has a way to go with all dogs, but to me he is already 100% better than he was prior to our appointments. Thanks again.”




“With Russell’s help I have conquered my fear of dogs. Before, I would be anxious about walking down the street just in case I encountered a dog. Now I don’t even think about it. I can even enjoy a walk in the park which I wouldn’t have dreamed about previously.