Dog Bites a Painful Reality for Mail Carriers: Letter to the Editor

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Note: The United States Postal Service’s 2019 National Dog Bite Prevention Week takes place April 14-20. This year’s campaign theme is “Avoid the BITE.” You can find more information as well as tips to help prevent dog bites when a mail carrier visits your home, dog bite statistics for U.S. mail carriers and more on the USPS website.

Did you get bitten at work today?

On average, nearly 15 mail carriers per day will say, “Yes.”

U.S. Postal Service officials report that in 2018, 5,714 letter carriers experienced dog bites or dog attacks. With deliveries every day, including Sundays and holidays, carriers continue to experience dog bites in urban, suburban and rural settings.

Dog attacks and bites are 100 percent preventable when dog owners remain vigilant and properly restrain their dogs.

To ensure mail carriers’ safety, dog owners must securely lock their dog in another room until a delivery exchange is done. If outside, dogs must be leashed at a distance from the mailbox.

Dog Bites Prevention

Credit: United States Postal Service

If kept outside, dogs should be leashed at a distance from the mailbox, to help prevent mail carriers from being bitten or attacked.

When a carrier feels unsafe, mail service could be interrupted, not only for the dog owner, but also for the entire neighborhood. When mail service is interrupted, mail must be picked up at the Post Office. Service will not be restored until the dog is properly restrained.

With your help, we can keep our carriers, your neighbors and your dogs safe.

Thank you for protecting your pet and our mail carriers as we continue to bring packages and correspondence to your door each day.


Joseph C. DiRusso

Safety Ambassador/Union Steward

Note: Letters to the editor should be about local topics of general interest. Letters are published at the editor’s discretion and should be emailed to

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