SA ranks 6th in nation for dog bites against postal carriers

47 dog bites reported in Bexar County in 2018

By Mary Claire Patton - Digital Content Curator

SAN ANTONIO - The United States Postal Service released rankings for cities with the most dog bites against postal carriers, and San Antonio ranks sixth.

Bexar County had 47 reported dog bites in 2018, according to Animal Care Services.

The high number of bites highlights the link between pet owner responsibility and neighborhood safety.

“Socializing your dog and correcting them when they’re being aggressive can help lower the number of bite cases we’re seeing. Every day, we’re out in the field, and we see owned dogs roaming on the street, getting into other people’s yards, chasing cars and scaring people. It seems a bit ridiculous, risking your mail delivery simply because you can’t keep your dog contained," ACS assistant director Shannon Sims said.

San Antonio also ranked sixth in the nation for dog bites against postal carriers in 2017, with 44 reported bites.

ACS created a training video specifically for USPS workers to help raise awareness and prevent bites.

“Our employees have been great at taking preventative measures against dog attacks, but they need help from our customers, too,” said USPS Safety Director Linda DeCarlo. “We are confident we can keep moving the trends of attacks downward, and ramping up overall awareness for everyone is the best way to do that.” 

A total of 5,714 postal employees were attacked by dogs in 2018, according to a press release.

The top five cities with the most dog bites against postal carriers in 2018 are Houston, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Cleveland and Dallas, in that order.

The Postal Service offers the following safety tips:

•    When a letter 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. Dogs have been known to burst through screen doors or plate glass windows to attack visitors.
•    Parents should remind children and other family members not to take mail directly from letter carriers in the presence of the family pet. The dog may view the letter carrier handing mail to a family member as a threatening gesture.
•    If a letter carrier feels threatened by a dog, or if a dog is loose or unleashed, the owner may be asked to pick up mail at a Post Office or another facility until the letter carrier is assured the pet has been restrained. If the dog is roaming the neighborhood, the pet owner’s neighbors also may be asked to pick up their mail at the area’s Post Office.
 

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