ok, i've been thinking a lot about this Emotion: surprise. and i think that part of the reason i have such trouble resisting a cute dog (while everyone else can just walk by without even being tempted), is that i'm new to all of this.
when i was a kid, we weren't allowed to have pets. in addition to that, i was terrified of dogs. in kindergarten, my dad's girlfriend had a boxer. i was so afraid of the way he looked that i insisted he be locked in the laundry room before i would come to visit. that dog scared the *** out of me.in elementary school, our neighbors had two dobes. they had run of the back yard, and the kids were not allowed to have friends over because of the dogs. if we even stepped into the front yard, the dogs went apeshit, barking, hitting the fence, generally being scary. if that wasn't scary enough, the youngest girl (i think she was 4) was attacked by the two dog and had her ear and cheek ripped off, as well as chunks taken out of arms and legs. let's just say the poor girl will never look "normal" again.

in jr. high, it was the german shepherd down the street, who would chase anyone who rode by, and try to take them off their bike. luckily i was fast enough to get by her (her name was "annie"), but i knew a few kids who were pulled from their bikes by this dog. luckily she left them alone once they were on the ground. then there was the guy down the street who had a pit bull. the dog was contained behind an 8 foot fence, and no one ever heard it bark, but nonetheless, the neighborhood parents got together and requested that he only be walked after dark.

so i knew that dog had to be dangerous.
in high school, another german shepherd took to chasing me on my bicycle (by this time i was training for long distance rides, so was riding farther from home). this one got my shoe, and tried to take me off the bike. luckily i had one of those tube type bicycle pumps, which i used to smash him over the head. he didn't bother me after that. then, i think i've mentioned, that i was bit by a cocker spaniel, for no apparent reason.

so basically i was terrified of the beasts. i wouldn't visit friends who had dogs. i would cross the street to avoid them. i don't know when it changed, but even then, i was never comfortable around them (with the exception of my grandmother's three legged golden retriever). even as recently as two years ago, if i was at a friend's house and they had a dog, i didn't know how to act, didn't want them jumping on me, didn't want to pet them, and certainly didn't want their slobber all over me.

so what happened? i'm not sure. my SO decided he wanted a dog, and i began to do research. we started visiting shelters, dog shows, and dog parks, and i realized that these dogs were pretty darn fun. and the slobber wasn't so bad after all.
somehow in my research i fell in love with pit bulls (go figure), and the rest was history.
so yeah, i guess i feel like i'm making up for a lifetime of missing out on these wonderful creatures. i know, this is no excuse for self control. but let's just say the pull is a little stronger with me.

though i'm still terrified of german shepherds and cocker spaniels.

-kelly
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Your loneliness saddens me...I am not joking
ok, i've been thinking a lot about this Emotion: surprise. and i think that part
of the reason i have such trouble resisting a cute dog (while everyone else
can just walk by without even being tempted), is that i'm new to all of
this.
when i was a kid, we weren't allowed to have pets. in addition to that, i
was terrified of dogs. in kindergarten, my dad's girlfriend had a boxer. i
was so afraid of the way he looked that i insisted he be locked in the
laundry room before i would come to visit. that dog scared the *** out of
me.
in elementary school, our neighbors had two dobes. they had run of the back
yard, and the kids were not allowed to have friends over because of the
dogs. if we even stepped into the front yard, the dogs went apeshit,
barking, hitting the fence, generally being scary. if that wasn't scary
enough, the youngest girl (i think she was 4) was attacked by the two dog
and had her ear and cheek ripped off, as well as chunks taken out of arms
and legs. let's just say the poor girl will never look "normal" again.
in jr. high, it was the german shepherd down the street, who would chase
anyone who rode by, and try to take them off their bike. luckily i was fast
enough to get by her (her name was "annie"), but i knew a few kids who were
pulled from their bikes by this dog. luckily she left them alone once they
were on the ground. then there was the guy down the street who had a pit
bull. the dog was contained behind an 8 foot fence, and no one ever heard
it bark, but nonetheless, the neighborhood parents got together and
requested that he only be walked after dark. so i knew that dog had to be
dangerous.
in high school, another german shepherd took to chasing me on my bicycle (by
this time i was training for long distance rides, so was riding farther from
home). this one got my shoe, and tried to take me off the bike. luckily i
had one of those tube type bicycle pumps, which i used to smash him over the
head. he didn't bother me after that. then, i think i've mentioned, that i
was bit by a cocker spaniel, for no apparent reason. so basically i was terrified of the beasts. i wouldn't visit friends who
had dogs. i would cross the street to avoid them. i don't know when it
changed, but even then, i was never comfortable around them (with the
exception of my grandmother's three legged golden retriever). even as
recently as two years ago, if i was at a friend's house and they had a dog,
i didn't know how to act, didn't want them jumping on me, didn't want to pet
them, and certainly didn't want their slobber all over me. so what happened? i'm not sure. my SO decided he wanted a dog, and i began
to do research. we started visiting shelters, dog shows, and dog parks, and
i realized that these dogs were pretty darn fun. and the slobber wasn't so
bad after all.
somehow in my research i fell in love with pit bulls (go figure), and the
rest was history.
so yeah, i guess i feel like i'm making up for a lifetime of missing out on
these wonderful creatures. i know, this is no excuse for self control. but
let's just say the pull is a little stronger with me. though i'm still terrified of german shepherds and cocker spaniels.
-kelly
Your loneliness saddens me...I am not joking

and your utter lack of intelligence saddens me. i guess that's just something we'll have to learn to deal with.
-kelly
The need comes from your genes! Or so some recent studies have suggested. We all have a programmed need to nurture, and most of us are programmed to nurture dogs.. and well as or in place of children.

Jo Wolf
Martinez, Georgia
The need comes from your genes! Or so some recent studies have suggested. We all have a programmed need to nurture, and most of us are programmed to nurture dogs.. and well as or in place of children.

interesting. i've often wondered about that. i know i have a strong "maternal instinct", yet have no desire to have kids. so i guess i have to get it out with my dogs (and cats. and SO...).
sounds good to me. :-)
-kelly
ok, i've been thinking a lot about this Emotion: surprise. and i think that part of the reason i have such ... tempted), is that i'm new to all of this. when i was a kid, we weren't allowed to have pets.

Me too. we lived in an apartment that didn't allow cats or dogs.

in addition to that, i
was terrified of dogs.

Me too.
in kindergarten, my dad's girlfriend had a boxer.
My cousins had a boxer. I curled up in a ball on the couch next to me mother, and wouldn't move for the entire visit, unless they dog was outside.

i
was so afraid of the way he looked that i insisted he be locked in the laundry room before i would come to visit. that dog scared the *** outof me.

Well, they wouldn't lock it away for me.
in elementary school, our neighbors had two dobes. they had run of theback yard, and the kids were not allowed ... bother me after that. then, i think i've mentioned, thati was bit by a cocker spaniel, for no apparent reason.

Hmmm. Never had those experiences, but my mother made it abundantly clear that dogs were scary and evil and would bite you and then you'd get rabies, froth at the mouth, need painful shots, and then probably die a painful death anyway. Or at least you'd get fleas and itch a lot.
so basically i was terrified of the beasts. i wouldn't visit friends who had dogs. i would cross the street ... act, didn't want them jumping on me, didn't want topet them, and certainly didn't want their slobber all over me.

Me too, as far as being trerrified as a youngster. Then the cousin's somewhat old and sedate boxer died and they got a rambunctious German Shorthair Pointer. I wasn't crazy about that dog either, but I'd stay with them for a week or two in the summer, and I had to learn to at least tolerate the dog.
But I also remember being terrified of a neighbor's toy poodle, and being terrified of a chi.
so what happened? i'm not sure. my SO decided he wanted a dog, and ibegan to do research. we started ... say the pull is a little stronger with me. though i'm still terrified of german shepherds and cocker spaniels. -kelly

There aren't particular breeds I'm afraid of, but I must say that I tend to be a bit cautious with dogs I don't know. As a adult, a dog I thought I knew bit me, so that was interesting. I'll probably always be a little cautious with strange dogs, which is why I'd probably refrain from touching someone's dog if I didn't ask first. Once I know the dog, it's a different story, though.
Interesting how similar circumstances have different outcomes.

Donna
"It's even worse than that. Sometimes I think I'm living in a perpendicular universe."
ok, i've been thinking a lot about this Emotion: surprise. and i think that part of the reason i have such trouble resisting a cute dog

The desire to touch dogs, and more generally to have dogs with us, must be something deeply engrained in the human psyche. In my opinion, there was always more to having dogs around than just their usefulness to us in hunting, cleaning up our garbage, etc. And that "more" is a big part of why dogs became our companions.

As with all facets of the human psyche, it manifests itself at different levels in different individuals.
EmilyS
so yeah, i guess i feel like i'm making up for a lifetime of missing out on these wonderful creatures. i know, this is no excuse for self control. but let's just say the pull is a little stronger with me.

Honey, you HAVE self control. I suspect the only problem here is that you never realized that some people don't want their dogs petted. And most people don't mind.
I am certain that if you saw a dog that didn't wish to be petted, or the owner asked you not to, that you would be perfectly capable of exercising the self-control necessary not to pet the dog. If you LIKE petting dogs, including other people's dogs, there isnt' a damn thing wrong with that. In fact, its kind of a requirement to volunteer at the pound (which you might consider). Some people don't like to pet other people's dogs, and thats fine, but folks shouldn't accuse you of having no self control because you like to.

BethF, Anchorage, AK
It's YOUR God.
They are YOUR rules.
YOU burn in hell.
The need comes from your genes! Or so some recent studies have suggested. We all have a programmed need to nurture, and most of us are programmed to nurture dogs.. and well as or in place of children.

Yup. The study I'd love to see is one on whether there's a difference in how people relate to dogs, based on the age they first bonded with a dog. Informally, I believe there's a huge difference. My theory is that people who knew dogs as children tend to anthropomorphize less; that they learned to observe them as a different species before too many adult mental processes got in the way.
Lynn K.
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