I (Heather) haven’t always been afraid of dogs. On the other hand I’ve never been extremely fond of them either. I have a few “bad” memories involving dogs. Like the time I got locked out of the house and my aunt and uncle’s black lab puppy attacked me with “love”. Oh that was sooo fun! But really my like or dislike of dogs has never affected my life ….until now.
China is a strange place at times and as long as I live here I don’t know if I’ll ever get closer to understanding some of the things Chinese people do. I could probably make a list a mile long, but we’ll save that for another time. For the time being I would like to address just one of the strange things they do….pets. Strange right? I mean who in their right mind keeps a pet (just kidding), and in particular a dog (again, just kidding). Now I know this is just my opinion and that there are millions of dog lovers out there, but if you do happen to be one of “them” please tell me that you use a leash? Maybe it’s that the mass amount of people in China also means that there’s a mass of dogs. But imagine that none of those dogs are on leashes? And it just so happens that Chinese people are particularly fond of dogs.
I’ve heard a couple different theories on why that is. Theory #1.) Chinese are only allowed one child so their dog becomes like their second child. Fair enough. Theory #2.) Chinese are not a very trusting people, therefore “man’s best friend” is a literal meaning here.
I’m not sure which, if either, are true, but all I know is that when you have 4 kids that are all 5 and under. And when all your kids want to run in different directions, dogs are NOT your best friend, especially when leashes are not involved. Here’s another thing, most Chinese people like little dogs. (not the cute ones) the ones that want to bite your ankles off (ouch!).
So to say the least, since being in China my fear of dogs has increased. Is my fear reasonable? Well that depends on who you are and how you feel about dogs. I know what my Dad would say to me regarding this situation . He would tell me that it is not ok that I let fear control my life, then he would tell me that I can’t put my fears on my kids. (and, I do this daily, “It’s a dog! FREEZE!”) So I’m trying to work on it. My kids should have the right to like dogs…..I guess.
It’s crazy how our fear can control our lives, whether it’s dogs or public speaking. FDR said it best “we have nothing to fear but fear itself”. I want to live life to its fullest and I’m not gonna let some little dog stop me from doing that.
Until next time,