First off, your phobia is your problem, not other people's problem... i.e. not MY problem. I repeat....your phobia is your problem, and not mine! If someone had a giant pet tarantula that weighed 50 pounds that they put a harness on, attached a leash to it and took it for walks, I'd either faint and die, or I'd run away screaming, and I probably wouldn't stop until I reached the Alaska/Canada border. I live in California for reference as to how far I'm saying I'd run. However, I would NOT expect said pet spider owner to avoid me and take a special route to keep the spider out of my sight. So, for people who are desperately scared of dogs, I get it. Well ok that's a lie, I don't really get it, but I understand irrational fear, so I do sort of get it. Some dogs certainly can be scary, but I base how worried I will be about them on their behavior, not the fact that they are just dogs. I know that most spiders aren't going to kill me, and my fear is mostly irrational, except it's not completely irrational, because...... some spiders will straight up murder you.
Now to get to my point of this post....
I do not have to accommodate you if you're afraid of my dogs, so don't get mad at me when I don't seem to care if you are acting like you're scared out of your mind, because I really do not care.
Is that cold of me? Perhaps. But they are on leashes at all times, I am more than strong enough to keep hold of them if they did happen to decide one day that "Hey, you know, I'm gonna maul this person's foot RIGHT off their leg! :-D " and they decided to make a lunge for anyone. If you are walking past me and my pups, you are more than safe from the dogs. Now, myself on the other hand, that's another matter. I am the kindest, gentlest person in the world...when it comes to animals. A loooooot of people can go fuck themselves in my opinion, and if you piss me off, it is definitely not the dogs you will need to be afraid of.
I have a few neighbors who are afraid of, or just hate, dogs. In particular, they seem to dislike MY black mixed breed pound puppies. I feel the need to point that out, because I see these people when I walk my dogs, who are trying to stare me down (ME! Hah! Yeah right. I win that contest every time, fools.) or, they're glaring down at my dogs, but then sometimes I see these SAME people petting someone else's little-white-fluffy-dog.
I'm not saying the white-fluffy types aren't cute...I'm saying these people are racist.
So why the hate for MY dogs, huh? I assume it's because they're mostly black, and one of them is in the 45-50 pound range, putting her into medium sized territory, and making some people who are completely stupid and dog-ignorant view her as a "big vicious thing" or something along those lines, I guess. I don't really know what these people think about my dogs, because when I see them giving my BABIES dirty looks that say "disgusting animal, get away from me" I glare at them with the fires of hell in my eyes, which usually causes those people to never look at me or my dogs again, and I don't get a chance to ask them what their problem is. Some of them who have gotten the demon-eye from me avoid me and my pups at all costs now, which is 100% fine with me.
Pretty sure this is the face I give them, hence why they avoid me forever.
And yes, that is Kerrigan from Starcraft, I'm a nerd, remember?
I have other neighbors who are at the other end of the dislike spectrum and seem TERRIFIED of my dogs. Fortunately, but UN-fortunately for them, my little dog is very friendly, so when these people act terrified, she gets concerned and tries to go up to them to say hi and let them know everything is ok, which makes the people more afraid, so I have to drag her away from them which hurts her feelings. My little pup is very sensitive. Some of the terrified individuals do this thing where they stare at the dogs with wide-eyed horror, ball their hands into fists and hold them up to their chests while skittishly moving around in place. THIS particular behavior makes my dogs think.... actually ANY dog would think that this is "I have something for you" behavior, since a fist usually means there's a treat in that hand....except that jumping around thing makes the dogs think it's time to play AND get treats! Yay!! Again, I have to drag them away from this terrified person who seems to not understand what they're doing is making it worse, and it crushes BOTH of my poor babies spirits every time.
I rarely have any chances to tell people that if they're scared of dogs or just don't like them, don't even look at them! Don't make jittery movements, and for God's sake DO NOT make fists with your hands.
I'll wrap up this rant by saying that a LOT of people seem to be under the impression that they are special, and that I should be accommodating their fear or dislike of dogs by either NOT walking my dogs in my own neighborhood, OR they expect me to walk in the street and get off the sidewalk, judging by the dirty looks I get. Neither of these things will happen. I don't concern myself with other's problems because they're their problems, not mine. Unless someone is getting STABBED or something terrible that I can stop is happening right in front of me, I don't concern myself much with other people. If I was walking dogs that were actually scary and barked and growled at everyone for no reason, I would definitely try to get them to not do that. But since they both mostly ignore people unless those people start doing things that gets their attention, staring at them, making fists and hopping around, I have decided that it's not my job to avoid these people. If they're scared of dogs, they should avoid dogs. Just like I avoid spiders.