Today’s Solutions: December 11, 2023

It’s a well-known fact that dogs hate postal workers. No matter how well trained your pet is, when the mail arrives, they expel a kind of protective angry growl that is a little scary.

We accept this as a normal day-to-day occurrence, however, if this is your job this is not a laughing matter. Not only can the attacks cause serious injury but also lasting emotional trauma. Statistics have shown that 1.15 percent of the total USPS workforce are subjected to dog attacks. The top five states where postal workers were bitten by dogs in 2020 were California with 782 incidents, Texas with 402, Ohio with 369, New York with 295, and Pennsylvania with 291.

Why do dogs attack?

Although we see dogs as our cute and cuddly friends, these animals once roamed free in the wild as wolves, hunting for prey, fighting, and protecting their territory from other wolf groups.

Through domestication and training, the nature of these animals has drastically changed. However, some instincts – like the one to protect their space – are hard-wired into them. If dogs feel like this is threatened, their evolutionary instinct to defend themselves will be kicked into gear.

Many people believe that certain breeds of dogs are more likely to be aggressive and attack, however, this stereotype is untrue and unhelpful. The truth is that any dog breed can become protective over their area, after all, every single one of their ancestors was wolves.

Why do dogs hate postal workers?

It’s simple, dogs hate reading the news and bills! We are joking of course, with the real reason not even being especially about postal workers.

One cause is that dogs love to chase. When they see a postal worker riding past one a bike, they can’t help but chase them down the street. The problem is some can get overexcited and overstimulated, resulting in an accidental bite. Other times, dogs can bite because they do not like strangers in their spaces unannounced, and the unpredictability of drop-offs makes things difficult.

Owners can take responsibility for stopping their dogs from attacking people by keeping their pets in a separate room, distracting them with a toy or treat, or keeping them on a leash while postal workers are doing their jobs. It’s also helpful to not let children answer the door in case the dog pushes its way past and if your letterbox is outside, to keep your dog securely away from it.

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