I heard my bipeds saying that it was time that I met the postman. I was always eager to meet new people.
They watched for the postman bringing the mail and opened the door when he arrived. The female biped said, “Good morning, we wanted the puppy to meet you!”
He said, “I don’t particularly want to meet a puppy. I don’t like dogs – they’re an occupational hazard!”
This really shocked me. I hadn’t come across anyone who didn’t like me – I thought everyone wanted to make a fuss of me! But difficult as it was to believe that there was someone who didn’t like me, this was even worse – this was someone who didn’t like any dogs at all, not just me. And he’s not the only one with this problem! There’s a word for it – cynophobia, which is a very strange thing to call it. I’d had no idea that anyone could be frightened of dogs and it seemed like a bad dream.
I heard my biped say, “Oh, you don’t have to do anything. Just as long as you don’t mind me opening the door and taking the mail from you some days. It’s just so the puppy gets used to you bringing the post and knows that there’s nothing to worry about. She’s going to be quite big and we want her to be friendly to you.”
The postman said, “Well, if it means one less dog that wants me for breakfast, I’ll give it a try.”
I had no idea why he thought I might want to eat him – my bipeds always ensured that I was perfectly well fed. I felt really sorry for him, he was missing out on so much! It was rather clever of my biped to tell him that it was for my benefit, so that he wasn’t embarrassed about being nervous.
We opened the door to him a couple of times a week and I always put on my cutest expression. The postman always kept his distance and watched me carefully. My biped always kept me very close by her side and sometimes I got a treat for sitting nicely. Some weeks went by and the postman was gradually looking less nervous than he had at first.
One morning he said, “She does sit quietly, she seems like a nice dog.” We were making progress with his problem!
Then a week or two later, he said, “She’s grown a lot, but she’s still being nice.”
Of course I was being nice – I wanted to be his friend! But I took it as a good sign that he’d noticed and said so – his attitude was slowly improving.
A few weeks after that, when my biped was giving me a treat for sitting nicely, he asked, “Do you think I could give her one of those?” My biped replied that he could and handed him a treat. He held it out to me and I took it very gently. He smiled at me! I was delighted! It had only taken a couple of months and I knew we’d be friends for a lot longer than that.
After that he always seemed pleased to see me and I decided to make the eradication of dogophobia my mission.
See you next Wednesday!