We've all heard the cliche or seen it as a comedic scene on television - the mail man running away from the dog to avoid getting bit. But when it comes to man vs dog, it's more than a cliche, it's real life.

The U.S. Postal Service released its latest rankings on dog attacks against mail carriers, and overall, the number has been going down in the U.S. over the last couple of years. In 2019,  there was a total of 5,803 employees who reported an attack, over 200 less from the previous year and 400 more compared to 2017.

While things are looking up for the country as a whole, the same can't be said for Michigan who saw an increase from 224 canine offenses in 2018 to 238 in 2019. This put the state at #6 in the top 10 states with the highest reported dog attacks on mail carriers. Specifically, Detroit came in at #15 among 30 major cities. Houston was #1.

The USPS does have technology to increase safety for their employees in these situations, nevertheless, there's also some tips that dog owners can follow to help out especially during National Dog Bite Awareness Week (June 14-20) such as:

  • Placing your dog in a separate room & shutting the door when the carrier is at your front door
  • Remind everyone in the home not to take mail directly from the carrier in the dog's presence as it can be seen as a threatening gesture
  • If an employee feels threatened by a dog, they can ask you to pick up your mail at the local post office or facility.

Top 10 Dog Bite States:

  1. California - 777
  2. Texas - 491
  3. Ohio - 378
  4. Illinois - 323
  5. New York - 320
  6. Michigan - 238
  7. Pennsylvania - 237
  8. Florida - 229
  9. New Jersey - 169
  10. North Carolina - 162

USPS says dog attacks on children, the elderly, and postal workers are the most common.

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