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Ailurophilia and Ailurophobia

Aileurophilia, Ailurophilia

Definition 1 (www.thefreedictionary.com): "An abnormal fondness for cats" 

Definition 2 (en.wiktionary.org/wiki): "A fondness for cats or other felines" 



Definition 1 (www.medterms.com): An abnormal and persistent fear of cats which produces an undue anxiety reaction even though sufferers realize their fear is irrational. Sufferers of ailurophobia may fear not only the scratch or bite of a cat, but also the "evil mystique" of cats as depicted in Halloween folklore and such literary works as Edgar Allen Poe's "The Black Cat."

From the Greek "ailouros" (cat) and "phobos" (fear). Alternate spellings: "Aelurophobia," "elurophobia." The Greek word "ailourous" has also given us the English word "Ailuroidea," a zoological term for a group of carnivorous animals including cats, hyenas and civets.

An alternate name for fear of cats: "Galeophobia."

Definition 2 (wikipedia): Ailurophobia is a type of specific phobia. It is a persistent, irrational fear of cats. It comes from the Greek ailouros (cat) and phobos (fear). People who suffer from Ailurophobia may fear physical contact, such as bites and scratches, and may also fear the perceived supernatural nature of cats. (...)


Like all fears and phobias, ailurophobia is created by the unconscious mind as a protective mechanism. This phobia could be obtained by a real life scare of some kind that has to do with cats and emotional trauma. Ailurophobia can also be triggered by seeing someone else experiencing trauma. As long as the negative impact on the unconscious mind is strong enough, one will automatically sense negative emotional feelings to act as a reminder of "danger" when one sees a cat again.

The actual phobia manifests itself in different ways. Some sufferers experience it almost all the time, others just in response to direct stimuli. Some possible situations that can trigger the fear of cats are: the sight of a real life cat, the thought of a cat that might attack oneself when he or she is outside, the thought of meeting and cat in the dark, cats in picture and on television, and cat-like toys and cat-like fur.


There are many ways to treat ailurophobia. The most effective way is to consult psychiatrists or other therapy specialist. According to Dr. H. L. Freeman of Littlemore Hospital, Oxford, and Dr. D. C. Kendrick lecturer in psychology at the university of London's institute of Psychiatry, ailurophoiba can be cured by forcing oneself to handle velvet until one gets used to it.


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