Not meant to offend

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by Lilavati, Nov 19, 2007.

  1. Lilavati

    Lilavati Arbitrary and Capricious

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2007
    Messages:
    7,644
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    Way too many!
    Location:
    Alexandria, VA
    Home Page:
    I've had three encounters with people who were profoundly afraid of dogs since I've gotten Sarama. By this I mean people who cringe away from her, or swear at me for walking within 10 feet, or nervously say. . . "He doesn't bite does he?" . . .

    Everyone one of these people has been a black man. I can't figure it out . . . is there some reason why more black men would be terrified of dogs than anyone else? Sarama doesn't look like a scary or vicous breed, and she's manifestly friendly (not that people who are afraid of dogs would notice, but she's not slavering at the mouth)

    I don't mean to be racist at all, I'm just puzzled.
     
  2. chanda

    chanda New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2007
    Messages:
    1,980
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    i think it's just a coincidence that all of those people were black.
     
  3. Chewbecca

    Chewbecca feel the magic

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2007
    Messages:
    7,328
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Weird.

    I guess I have never noticed that. In fact, I find more white people afraid, or act weird, around Ella than black people.

    The black people we've encountered on our walks are all very interested in her as far as complimenting her is concerned.

    I had one guy, on our walk once, that didn't even ask what kind of dog she was, nor did he ask her breed. He simply asked, from his van, "How old is she?"
    It kind of weirded me out a tad because as soon as I answered and told him she was spayed, he drove off and it was just a question that seemed out of sequence. Most would think he would have asked "what breed is your dog?" or "Is that a pit bull"?<---which is the most common question I get about her. Nor did he ask, "Is that a girl or a boy?" Just, "How old is she?"
    It also weirded me out because pit bulls are the number one dogs stolen. Especially in an area like mine where just across the river they are fought.
    My best friend's friend used to work for our local AC.
    She lost count of how many times they had gotten called out to pull a dead pit bull out of tree because it apparently lost and was hanged.

    My specific neighborhood doesn't have a lot of pit bulls (if any besides Ella) in it. But, like I said, just across the river, it's not uncommon to see a pit bull tied in a yard.
     
  4. Lilavati

    Lilavati Arbitrary and Capricious

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2007
    Messages:
    7,644
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    Way too many!
    Location:
    Alexandria, VA
    Home Page:
    I thought it was until the 3rd one . . . I frankly expected more scared white people too . . . but after three grown black men being terrified of her I had to wonder if there was something going on . . . the way she looks (though I can't see what about her) or maybe lots of black people having bad experiences with dogs? It could be coincidence . . . it just sticks in my mind because two of these encounters were unpleasant (one of them ended with me grabbing her and saying 'dont hurt my dog, don't hurt my dog' before I fled) and the third the man was so clearly frightened that I felt bad, even though she was well away from him.

    I have had lots of people, of all races, interested in her on walks, including a walk my fiance took her on in which a kid with a put bull was WAY too interested in her . . . but that's not really what's puzzling me now.
     
  5. shazbot

    shazbot not so newby

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2006
    Messages:
    1,824
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    NC
    I have noticed this also. I think it may be the way they were brought up. I've dated a few black guys who were petrified of my dogs. Once they got to know them they were fine with exception of one guy, who broke up with me because he was so afraid of them.
     
  6. smkie

    smkie pointer/labrador/terrier Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2004
    Messages:
    55,166
    Likes Received:
    35
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Many people of color i have seen in public express fear of dogs. OR if not fear, aprehension.
     
  7. Lilavati

    Lilavati Arbitrary and Capricious

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2007
    Messages:
    7,644
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    Way too many!
    Location:
    Alexandria, VA
    Home Page:
    Anyone know why that is? Is it something they are taught? Bad experiences? I'm just trying to understand so I can avoid the situation in the future.
     
  8. Zoom

    Zoom Twin 2.0

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2005
    Messages:
    40,739
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    I've had similar experiences...not sure why. Some lady about had a heart attack in the parking lot yesterday when I came walking out, because Virgo was trying make a beeline for her to get some attention. She relaxed when I said they were friendly and kept on walking though.
     
  9. milos_mommy

    milos_mommy Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2006
    Messages:
    15,349
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Honestly, it could be where they grew up. Around here, a lot of the black people grew up in NYC, Queens, the Bronx, and Brooklyn mainly, and i don't think they saw a lot of dogs there. My guess is the dogs they did see were, quite possibly, dog-fighting dogs who were aggressive.
     
  10. corgipower

    corgipower Tweleve Enthusiest

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2007
    Messages:
    8,233
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    4 dogs
    Location:
    here
    i had that with my corgis...i was taking them to a show and go, and the neighborhood was predominantly black. one of my trainers told me before i went that black people were afraid of corgis. i thought he was joking. a local black family came in to look and the kids went off and petted some of the dogs -- GSD's , rott's, dobes, am staff's. they got to me and the corgi, and got very nervous, hurrying past and cringing.
     
  11. Tankstar

    Tankstar ~Lisa~

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2007
    Messages:
    2,301
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    1 dog, 1bird, 1 rabbit, 2 rats, 1 turtlem and a ca
    Location:
    Toronto Area
    I live outside of Toronto, the most multi cultral city in the world. So my neighboorhood has offcourse lotsss of differnt backgrounds all living together in it. I have noticed pretty much every person in our neighboorhood from the middle east is down right terrified of dogs (ofcourse there is always the exception and a few familys absoulutly love to see dogs out on walks and interact with them). But alot are deathly afraid. One little girl goes SCREAMING and RUNING as fast as she can in to her house to get away from me and my dog, that is on leash and 30 feet across the road from her. What I know is that countries in the middle east dogs are like vermon to them like rats are to us. Dogs over there all live on the streets and are riddled with disease. So most families bring that "attitude" with them and teach it to the children. I am friends with many middle east girls and guys, all have told me their families have taught them dogs are evil. Offcourse some dont belive it, but some do. It all boils done to either
    -what their families teach them
    -or couldbe a bad experience.
     
  12. SizzleDog

    SizzleDog Lord Cynical

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2004
    Messages:
    9,449
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I grew up in a 50/50 neighborhood, and in my experience was that only the poorer families (of either color) were afraid of dogs. Either that, or the criminals which were of either color.

    In the town where I live now, it's mostly foreigners who are afraid of my dogs. Foreigners = students at the university who don't speak much english... specifically from the Asian and Middle Eastern countries.

    Although the only time in my current town where someone ran away screaming and crying at the mere sight of my dogs was at a flavored ice stand - and they did happen to be black. Both women were scared of my dogs, as well as JACK the goofy English... so I don't think it was a fear of "big scary dogs".. jut dogs in general.
     
  13. SizzleDog

    SizzleDog Lord Cynical

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2004
    Messages:
    9,449
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    corgipower - I have a theory why people might be afraid of corgis... but it doesn't apply to one race and not the other.

    Corgis, to the untrained eye, can look foxlike. I've had people ask me if Ada is a fox with an amputated tail. Perhaps people who don't know dogs could see a corgi and think "wild animal"?
     
  14. Sweet72947

    Sweet72947 Squishy face

    Joined:
    May 18, 2006
    Messages:
    9,158
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    1 Dog, Norris!
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    Home Page:
    In some Middle Eastern religions, dogs are "unclean" and they aren't allowed to interact with them, except for one breed (the Saluki, I think) who was sent to them from Allah and used for hunting and stuff.

    In my area I haven't really noticed people of any race being more afraid of dogs than any other. There are more white people than other races that adopt from and volunteer at our rescue though. I'm not sure why that is, we certainly aren't predjudiced.
     
  15. corgipower

    corgipower Tweleve Enthusiest

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2007
    Messages:
    8,233
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    4 dogs
    Location:
    here
    interesting. i can see it.

    :hail:
     
  16. RD

    RD Are you dead yet?

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2004
    Messages:
    15,572
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    2 dogs
    Location:
    Ohio
    Interesting.

    I've had varying experiences with people, and I think race is truly just coincidence. It's secondary to people's lifestyles. I've had hispanic people compliment my dogs in public. I've had black people want to give Eve a hug. I've had white people stop me and talk to me about Eve in a department store or restaurant. There is the nicest guy at the sushi bar I go to, who always saves a little piece of fish for the dog when we go in for lunch, and talks sweetly to her in Japanese while he feeds it to her. I know a lady who came here from Pakistan, who speaks hardly any English but still always bends down to talk to Eve when we go into her store. She never touches Eve, but the two of them look into each other's eyes for probably a full 60 seconds and "talk" to one another. Every time we go in there. Although she's never been petted by this gal, Eve adores her. I think it's sweet that people here have been so welcoming towards her.

    I've also had numerous people of various races cross the street when they see me walking my dogs. The dogs are all under my control (and Eve in particular is glued to my side, leash or no leash, no matter where we go) and they don't look wild or intimidating. So all I can think of is that some people just don't like dogs. That's their right, and if they'll respect my right to have my dogs then I respect (and appreciate) their right to stay the hell away from 'em. :)
     
  17. Herschel

    Herschel New Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2006
    Messages:
    3,303
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    East Central Illinois
    It might be coincidence, but here is my experience:

    1) When Herschel was a puppy we had him outside in front of my house and he ran up wiggling his butt at a woman that was walking by. She screamed, "I'm scared of dogs!" and shielded herself against the 8lb impact. We called Herschel back before he got to her and we felt terrible about it. She was black.

    2) We walk past this guy in our park at least 3 times/week and he is seriously afraid of Herschel and Nala. He sees them playing, sees us walking, and sees that they interact with other people and dogs perfectly well, but when we walk past him he jumps off of the sidewalk and throws his arms up. He is black.

    Most of the white people that we've met that don't like dogs are disgusted by them (rather than being afraid of them).
     
  18. noludoru

    noludoru Bored Now.

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2006
    Messages:
    17,830
    Likes Received:
    7
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Occupation:
    1 Dog
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    Home Page:
    I haven't had anyone overtly afraid of Middie. I did have one man of middle eastern descent who was giving Middie the nastiest, most hateful glare.... I got his attention and kept eye contact until the asshole walked away. It really made me angry.... NO ONE is allowed to look at my sweet, innocent little pup that way especially when he's done nothing towards them, not even a tail wag.
     
  19. Lizmo

    Lizmo Water Junkie

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2006
    Messages:
    17,300
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    2
    Location:
    AL
    I've heard this only from a few, few people. So I don't know how true it is.

    Anyways, it's not ment to offend any one either. I've heard that many of that (Black) color race are afriad of many dogs because when they were brought to America as slaves they were treated harshly by dogs.

    Dunno, it's probably some stupid myth.

    But yeah, my neighor's of the same race are terrified of all dogs on this street.
     
  20. Paige

    Paige Let it be

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2007
    Messages:
    7,359
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Around where I live it's mostly people with brown skin that are afraid of dogs though a lot of older white women jump sideways too. I don't know about you but where I live it's mostly dominated by east indians so that could be why there are more of them afraid of dogs. Simply because there are more of that race that live around here.
     

Share This Page