Columbus Ranks Among Top Cities for Dog Bites on Mail Carriers

Columbus, Ohio, has found itself in an unexpected spotlight alongside major cities like Los Angeles and Chicago due to an alarming trend: dog attacks on mail carriers.

According to data from the United States Postal Service (USPS), Los Angeles leads the nation in dog bites against postal workers. In 2023, the city reported a staggering 65 incidents, surpassing previous leader Houston, which had 56 attacks. Notably, Columbus ranks 10th on the list of cities with 33 reported dog bites against mail carriers.

Here are the top 10 cities for dog attacks on mail carriers, including Columbus:

1. Los Angeles, CA – 65
2. Houston, TX – 56
3. Chicago, IL – 48
4. St. Louis, MO – 46
5. Cleveland, OH – 44
6. San Diego, CA – 41
7. Dallas, TX – 39
8. Cincinnati, OH – 38
9. Philadelphia, PA – 34
10. Columbus, OH – 33

In terms of states, California leads with 727 reported dog bites in 2023, followed by Texas with 411 incidents. Ohio ranks third among states with 359 reported dog bites in the same year.

To address this issue, the USPS has launched a weeklong initiative starting June 2 to raise awareness about mail carrier safety, especially regarding dog encounters.

Leeann Theriault, USPS Manager of Employee Safety and Health Awareness, stressed the importance of responsible pet ownership in reducing these risks, stating, “Letter carriers face potential hazards every day, with none more prevalent than encounters with dogs.”

Mail carriers undergo training on how to handle dog encounters, including techniques such as making non-threatening noises to alert dogs of their presence and avoiding actions that could startle them.

Tara Snyder, a letter carrier, shared her experience, advising homeowners to secure their doors to prevent dogs from pushing them open and attacking carriers, even if the dog is typically friendly.

The USPS advises dog owners to take precautions such as keeping their animals behind gates or leashed during postal deliveries to ensure the safety of both mail carriers and pets.

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