Zoophobia is an irrational and persistent fear of animals. This specific fear of animals is more general than a fear of certain types of animals. Fears such as apiphobia, a fear of wasps and bees or arachnophobia, a fear of spiders to name but a couple. It’s a fear of animals in general.
Zoophobia is more, very much more than any normal fear. Let’s face it, we all have a certain degree of fear for particular animals. For example, none of us would go for a swim in a river full of giant crocodiles! We’d be wary and alert walking through an area populated by snakes. And we’d think twice before taking on a guard dog! These fears are completely normal and rational. They’re fears born more out of respect for predatory, powerful or perhaps just scary looking creatures who could do us harm. But, whilst these fears would keep us respectful and alert, they wouldn’t take over our lives.
Zoophobia is different. It’s a fear of all sorts of animals. Even the soft, cuddly pet kittens, puppies and rabbits who would do us absolutely no harm whatsoever. And, being an irrational fear (a phobia) it’s persistant. This means that a zoophobic will go out of their way to avoid being in a situation of being confronted with an animal. Think about it … that’s a huge issue which is going to affect quality of life! No walks in the countryside, no swimming in the ocean, no visits to the zoo and no visits to friends who have pets. Because animals are absolutely everywhere, it’s going to affect every part of life. Even a walk to the local store or a journey to work is likely to result in some sort of encounter with an animal.
Zoophobia – Fear of Animals: Symptoms And Treatment Options
This phobia is commonly found in very young children. For some it persists into adulthood and causes a lot of distress in their daily lives. In that case it’s important for such people to seek active treatment for the condition before it starts to disturb every facet of their daily life.
Zoophobia can develop due to many causes. For some individuals it can be a traumatic incident relating to an animal during their childhood. In others it could be lack of information or even wrong information that causes the fear. The fears will not just manifest themselves when an animal is encountered. Just the possibility of such an encounter can be enough to set off extreme anxiety or even a panic attack.
The good news though – it CAN be treated. No one need fear animals, when we’re talking about Zoophobia there are programs that really do work.
Zoophobia – Symptoms
Individuals who suffer from zoophobia may display or experience some, or all, of the following symptoms:
A sufferer of zoophobia fears every animal in sight, however big or small. Even the harmless squirrels running about in the backyard, the chickens in the coop, the dogs being walked on leads … any animal can set it off. In some others, the fear is very pronounced with regard to type of animals. As an example, ophidiophobia, the fear of snakes is commonly seen in many people.
The zoophobe (the person suffering from the phobia) will avoid any situation that requires him/her to come in the vicinity of any animal.
For the sufferers, a chance encounter with an animal brings severe distress. This may even result in a panic attack. Some individuals even become hysterical.
The persons suffering from zoophobia go to great lengths to alter their personal lives and schedules to avoid encountering an animal. This is easier said than done!
Common physical symptoms that manifest when a zoophobe encounters an animal are:
- Increased heart rate.
- Changes in blood pressure.
- Trouble in breathing.
- Dry mouth.
- Profuse sweating.
This is not an exhaustive list.
Zoophobia – Treatment Options
Many approaches are used in treating Zoophobia. Behavioral therapy, medications to manage the physical symptoms of the phobia, etc., are some of the methods of treatment of the phobia. The treatment may take months or years to bring about a change in the patient.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). This seems to be the most popular option. The patient talks with the therapist in detail about the phobia and helps the therapist to identify the root cause of the fear. Hypnotherapy is also known to aid in this stage of the treatment. The patient is then gradually exposed (and consequently desensitized) to animals and animal images. This is done in a controlled fashion so as to be able to manage the feelings of panic that occur. The sufferer can then slowly gain confidence to deal positively with the situation.
Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP). This is another proven treatment option. It works by disassociating and reframing the experience of a specific fear or phobia.
Hypnotherapy is another really good treatment option. This works by basically re-programming the brain to automatically react to an encounter with animals in a sane, rational manner.
Medications are prescribed to blunt the physical responses that zoophobia can cause. This method is resorted to when the reactions are severe and the patient is unable to start another form of treatment because of the physical symptoms. If the patient is on medication, it may help the therapist to start the behavior control sessions and work along with the patient to better the situation.
The Fear Of Animals Self Help Treatment
If the mere thought or sight of any animal fills you with fear and terror then take a look at one of our recommended, self-help treatment programs that are all guaranteed, proven and effective. We already mentioned the effectiveness of hypnotherapy as a treatment for zoophobia a fear of animals but we’d like to introduce you to a self-hypnosis treatment program called simply Overcome Fear Of Animals.
Follow it in your own time, whenever and wherever is convenient – it’s completely discrete. What’s more, at less than $15 it’s incredibly cost effective too. There’s no hidden extras and it guaranteed to work or your money back within 90 days – no questions asked. You can quickly and permanently cure your fear of all animals and stop associated symptoms such as panic attacks and Agoraphobia – it’s totally GUARANTEED and completely RISK FREE.