In a world where you can buy anything with a few clicks and have it delivered to your home, you would think the number of incidences in which a dog attacks or bites a mail carrier would go up. But thankfully, that isn’t the case.
To coincide with National Dog Bite Awareness Week, the United States Postal Service just released its yearly reports on how many of its employees were bitten or attacked by a dog. In 2019, it recorded 5,803 incidents, more than 200 fewer than in 2018 and more than 400 fewer since 2017. The decline is in part due to technology that can help avoid potential attacks, including asking people if there is a dog in the home, along with alerting customers when their packages will be delivered, allowing them to secure their dog, if needed.
Houston reported the most dog bites in 2019 (85), followed by Los Angeles (74), Chicago (54), Cleveland (51) and Dallas (40).
As many of us dog parents are still self-quarantining to an extent, it is important to ensure mail carriers feel safe.
Here are a few ways to avoid a potential disaster:
- When a mail carrier comes to your home, put your dog in another room. USPS has reported that dogs who view the carrier as a threat have been known to bust through the front-door screen or barge through a door.
- If your dog is at the door, USPS suggests household members, including children, avoid taking mail directly from the carrier, as this can be seen as a threat.
If a mail carrier feels threatened, he or she may require a dog parent to go to the post office to pick up mail.