Conrad Post Office asks public to restrain dogs

   The U.S. Postal Service and your local Post Office are once again asking for the public’s support in keeping your dogs restrained year round; for the safety of your letter carriers and community, and to help prevent dog bites.
   This reminder comes as the Postal Service and other organizations promote “National Dog Bite Prevention Awareness Week” May 17-23.  The spring and summer months are the busiest time of the year for dog attacks and dog bite injuries to letter carriers and others.
   A total of 3,100 letter carriers nationwide were bitten or received OSHA recordable dog bite attack-related injuries in 2008-an average of 10 dog bites per day, but that does not include the many threatening encounters, or loose dog situations, where letter carriers fortunately escaped injuries.
   The Postal Service treats loose dog situations very seriously.  Because of the safety danger to your letter carrier, failure to restrain your dog on a regular basis can result in a temporary stoppage of mail delivery to your home and mailbox, or worse yet, to your whole neighborhood, block or street, depending on how serious the problem is.
   Preventing dog bites is a major public safety and health issue for everyone, not just for the Postal Service.  More than 4.5 million people in the United States are bitten by dogs each year.  Children rank first for dog bite injuries, followed by the elderly and letter carriers.  More than two million children are bitten by dogs each year.  Other victims include newspaper carriers, metal readers, delivery, construction, and utility workers.
   Many letter carriers attacked by dogs were victimized by pets that broke loose of their owners hold to jump through screen or glass doors.  Other letter carriers were bitten after being surprised when dogs were not secure or restrained in their backyard or in a confined area when the carrier attempted delivery.
   “Dogs are protective in nature and may perceive a letter carrier handing mail to its owner as a threat,” says Conrad Postmaster Ryan Christiaens.  “We ask our customers, and especially, to instruct their children to refrain from collecting the mail from their letter carrier in the presence of their pet.”
   So please be responsible dog and pet owners, and restrain your dog.  The USPS, the Conrad Post Office, and your letter carriers greatly appreciate your support.