Dog Bite Awareness Week – Tips for Keeping Your Dog and Mail Carrier Safe
COLUMBIA, SC (WCBD) – The United States Postal Service is raising awareness of letter carrier dog attacks this month.
With more than 5,800 dog bites last year, the USPS recognizes June 12 through June 18 as Dog Bite Awareness Week.
Houston ranked first city with dog attacks on USPS factors last year.
People may be surprised when their dog bites or attacks someone. When a dog attacks a mailman, the owner can face dire consequences.
With the onset of summer weather, more and more families tend to spend time outdoors, but their dogs are also protected outside their homes.
“Dogs are instinctive animals who can act to protect their territory and that is why it is important to educate the public about this campaign,” said Jamie Seavello, Acting Head of Employee Health and Safety at the USPS.
Here are some helpful tips for keeping families and letter carriers safe (provided by the USPS):
Door delivery: If a carrier delivers mail or packages to your front door, place your dog in a separate room and close that door before opening the front door. Some dogs barge through screen doors or windows to attack visitors. Dog owners should keep their pets safe. Parents should remind their children and other family members not to take mail directly from carriers in the presence of the family pet, as the dog may consider the person delivering the mail to a family member. like a threatening gesture.
Electronic fence: Carriers may assume, when they do not see any physical fencing around a property, that the property is free of animals. This can be a dangerous mistake. Postal agents ask you to keep your dog tethered or indoors when mail is delivered. While electronic fencing can keep your dog from wandering, it does not protect your mail carrier, who must enter your property to deliver the mail. Even homes with curbside mailboxes can have oversized packages or necessary signature items that require the carrier to approach a gate and cross the boundaries of the electronic fence. This poses a serious risk to the safety of carriers.
Dog in the yard: Make sure your dog is properly strapped on a leash away from where your postman delivers mail. Mail delivery service may be interrupted to an address or area that the carrier deems unsafe because of an unattached dog. When service is interrupted at an address or neighborhood, all parties involved will need to pick up the mail at their local post office. Service will be restored once assurance has been given that the animal will be confined during normal delivery hours.
Monitoring: Dog owners who have access to postal functions, such as Informed delivery notice (deliveryinfo.usps.com) for letter post and package tracking, are requested to use this as a means of determining when the carrier is on its way and ensuring dogs are properly restrained. Are you expecting a Sunday parcel delivery? Postal officials are urging dog owners to restrain their pets also on Sundays, as more residences receive deliveries throughout the weekend.
The USPS urges the public to use the hashtag #dogbiteawareness to broadcast campaign news.
Get news delivered to your inbox! 📥 Subscribe to News 2 daily news explosion of emails.