Former BBC Breakfast presenter Bill Turnbull, 64, has revealed he feels slightly concerned when he is around horses after suffering a painful bite from one of the animals when he was a child. The star got onto the subject on his Paws and Claws with Bill Turnbull podcast while speaking to his former co-star Sian Williams about her fear of dogs.
Sian’s phobia came after she was left “sore, swollen and bruised” following an attack by a friend’s neighbour’s dog.
He told the journalist: “I’m interested by this though because you’ve had this fear of dogs, quite understandably,
“But horses, I tell you, I’m slightly timid about horses because I was bitten by one when I was a child and that made a big mark.”
“Bitten by a horse?” Sian exclaimed in response to her friend’s admission.
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The former BBC Breakfast presenter was diagnosed with an incurable form of prostate cancer in 2017, but explained his pet dog always cheers him up.
While speaking to Sian about their love for animals, Bill warned her the commitment of owning a dog is like that of having a “toddler”.
“It does restrict your movements,” he added, in regards to holidays and having to find kennels or a dog sitter.
Sian then noted that the advantages to having a pet far outweigh the disadvantages, to which the Classic FM host exclaimed: “Hugely!
“Particularly for me at the moment, when I have down days for various different things, you hug the dog and the dog hugs you back and there’s an immeasurable release of tension somehow.
“I don’t understand it but you feel great.”
Sian explained that stroking or cuddling an animal releases the hormone Oxytocin.
“It’s connected to love, which is why you feel better,” she told Bill.
“Thats why they use them in therapy because there is that connection, especially when people are ill.”