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Taxidermy fear? 

I received this letter the other day from someone with an extreme phobia of taxidermy. Does anyone else run from taxidermy? I would run from this guy.  But in all seriousness, any advice for Amelia?

"Hello, my name is Amelia, I am 18 years old. I go to Emmanuel College in Boston. I wanted to talk to you about my extreme fear of taxidermy. I was wondering if you have ever heard of this? It seems a lot of people contact you with feelings of taxidermy, positive or negative. When I see taxidermy I get severe panic attacks. I have no idea why. It started when I was 4 and I don't remember a point in my life when I wasn't scared of taxidermy. Its lead to extreme paranoia, I wont go near any "steak house" or western themed places. And I have missed out on school field trips all of my life due to this fear. I was wondering if you have heard of other people who have this fear? And if you knew anyone who has gotten over this."

Reader Comments (14)

Let her know that she is not alone!
I was the only person I knew for my many years (and many miles traveled) with this crippling fear.
I finally found others (and your website, eventually--) on a Facebook group called 'taxidermiphobia.'
I recommend she checks it out.

I'm not trying to actively rid myself of my fear, but others there are.
I just like to know there are others of us out there.

Still avoiding my coworker's office with the comical deer butts,
March 7, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterVal
you are definitely not alone, girl! there's even a facebook page for taxidermiphobia.

join us!
April 24, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKate
I have been extremely afraid of taxidermy for my whole life (birds and fish don't bother me). I have never met anyone in my 44 years of life with this same phobia. I thought I was the only one. I have a panic attack every time I know I have to go some where I have never been before. My husband and 3 children (who are now adults) know how to scope out a place before I enter it.
July 6, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAngie
I suffer from the same fear. If I'm somewhere that might have taxidermy I always have someone scope it out for me. I'm not sure when this developed, but it has been as long as I can remember. Like Angie birds and fish don't bother me, but if I see any other animal I panic. I've been known to start crying even. Usually I just jump and panic though. I am glad that there are others out there like me.
January 21, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAidan
I can't believe there are at least four other people who have this extreme fear! Birds and fish don't bother me either, but basically every other animal does. I have had this fear for as long as I can remember. I am going to check out the Facebook page because I have never known anyone else who has had this phobia. Whenever I go to a new restaurant or bar, I enter the place slowly and with caution. If the place has taxidermy, I must stay as far away as possible from it. Usually if I am caught off guard or overwhelmed I will hide, cry, or panic. I don't understand where this came from, but I would like to be rid of my fear. However, I am very frightened of facing my fear.
May 8, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJenni
I'm so glad to know I'm not alone in my fear! I've had this fear for as long as I can remember. Strange thing is, I'm fine with wet specimens and bones, just nothing that's stuffed and covered in fur.
August 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterKels
I am exactly the same. I have made a few scenes having a panic attack. Twice walking into place I have been before that added mounted animals to the decor. I pushed people out the way, could not get out fast enough. I am also fine with birds and fish but fur and eyes not good. Has stopped me from doing a lot of things in fear I may make a scene. I can get used to one deer head but the next one I see I panic.
September 13, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterHolly
Its really seeming dangerous. Its teeth are killer. http://goo.gl/RNMr2L
October 21, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJohn
I suffer from the exact same phobia. Like the others, fish and birds do not bother me. But any other taxidermied animal leads me to extreme anxiety, often accompanied with trembling and crying. For me, it started when I lived in Africa, where I was exposed to a lot of taxidermied animals often used as decoration in different Safari lodges and restaurants. Maybe it was the contrast of seeing the live animal compared with the lifeless, inanimate version of itself. It's funny because I'm a vegetarian and a huge animal-lover, people who hear about my phobia often assume that it is due to ethical nature of seeing a dead animal, but it has NOTHING to do with that (not that I condone hunting for sport). It's simply terrifying for an inexplicable reason.
November 18, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterBecca
i have this fear. it is extremely crippling to me because most of my family hunts. im not afraid of the hunt. i understand why they hunt ( for food ) im not afraid of the guns/bows/arrows or the noise of hunting. im afraid of the taxidermy. i was at my sons dr visit yesterday and he was asked how hes doing and he explained he was deer hunting. he then explained that i wont allow it in my home. the dr asked me why and i explained that i have a fear of it and throughout the entire ordeal i was crying. because of my fear. the dr suggested i start looking up information on it because they saw i was extremely upset over even talking about it. as the previous posters stated i do not know where it came from ive had it all my life. i also send in my family when going to strange places and they have to come back with info. they have to give complete info on it what it is, where it is in the place, color ,size, shape and what position it is in. if i then decide to visit the place ( yes most times i turn around and just wait in the car ) i must hold someones hand at all times. and they cannot walk away from me. even then im crying looking around in a panic and crouched down almost like im crawling because i have a fear its going to eat off my head. i once walked out of a restaurant mid meal where they had a moose on a wall after they turned down the lights for" ambiance " . as much as i love muesums these scare the living daylights out of me you never know where they have them, monkeys mammoths, dinosaur bones etc. my recent new house hunt moved at a standstill pace because my realtor once showed me a house with deer heads on the wall. i not only walked right out but after that he enter each house before i did to make sure there wasnt any taxidermy. please please do not feel alone. ive felt that way for years upon years. im not really seeking active help for it because most ppl do not believe me. ( except my sons dr now) my family although understanding of my fear thinks it is silly and offers little help in the way of helping me cure the fear
November 21, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterpenny
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June 5, 2015 | Unregistered Commenterpappi
Me too! Wow this is so nice to know! I thought I was crazy for having a fear of taxidermy. So many others have it though, and I agree fish and birds don't bother me as much as the other stuff, and I can relate to panic attacks and scoping out places.
June 16, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterAgreeingPerson
I have had this fear since I was about 7. The west is just full of all those museums with all sorts of animals. When I see taxidermy I burst into tears and this has caused several problems for me recently. Fish do not scare me, however bird a flippin terrifying. I love birds that are living and actively seek them out to take photos but stuff them up and I would be mortified.
August 5, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterScaredCoco
I have this exact same fear and I've never met anyone else with it. I think the worst part about it is that it's too embarrassing to tell people and they never understand so I just have to suffer through it. It's such a curse. Having to be worried every time you go into a questionable restaurant, store, or persons house you haven't been too. It takes the joy out of so much. I have tried everything to try to get myself over it but nothing works. Fish and birds don't really bother me but any type of head sends a horrible shiver down my spine and I feel like my throat starts to close up. I wish I understood why I have this fear because it makes no sense to me. I know it's not going to hurt me. I'm 20 now and I've been this way for as log as I can remember.
August 20, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda

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