Good Dogs Can Have Bad Days: Postal Service

Agency reports thousands of attacks on employees last year, with California tops
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 4, 2023 4:10 PM CDT
Good Dogs Can Have Bad Days: Postal Service
A pit bull participates in a Postal Service awareness event about dog bites in Los Angeles in 2017.   (AP Photo/Amanda Lee Myers)

The Postal Service has released its count of workers bitten by dogs last year, an effort to increase awareness and inspire owners to mind their pets. California, Texas, and New York again were responsible for the most bites, CNN reports—675, 404, and 321, in order. All were increases from 2021. Among cities, Houston topped the list with 57 bites. Los Angeles followed with 48, then Dallas with 44. All told, more than 5,300 Postal Service employees were attacked while delivering mail in 2022, the data show.

Part of the Postal Service's message is that "even good dogs have bad days." That's the theme of National Dog Bite Awareness Week, which began Sunday. "When our mail carriers are bitten, it is usually a 'good dog' that had not previously behaved in a menacing way," safety director Linda DeCarlo said in a statement. The Postal Service's release said employees are trained to not startle a dog, or even try to pet or feed it. The agency in turn asks owners to secure their dogs when the letter carrier is due. The guidance includes a warning to not let small children accept mail directly from a carrier; the dog might think the child is in danger. (A carrier was killed by five dogs last summer in Florida.)

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