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Fight the bite

Houston employee recalls harrowing dog attack

Dog bit prevention news conference in Houston
Houston Letter Carrier Sonia Perez speaks to reporters at a news conference to kick off the May 15-21 National Dog Bite Prevention Week.

Houston Letter Carrier Sonia Perez was delivering mail in 2008 when a dog chewed through its leather harness, jumped a fence and attacked her.

The bites left a huge gash in her leg.

“The hole was big enough to put a softball in,” Perez recalled last week.

She spoke at a news conference to kick off National Dog Bite Prevention Week, an annual campaign that runs from May 15-21 this year.

Perez’s attack put her in the hospital for a week and left her unable to work for six months.

“It’s not something you wish upon anybody,” she said.

More than 6,500 Postal Service employees were attacked by dogs in 2015, USPS announced at the conference.

The organization also touted new measures to reduce attacks, including an online tool that will let customers indicate if there is a dog at their address when they schedule a package pickup.

Later this spring, carriers will be able to use their Mobile Delivery Devices to indicate the presence of a dog at an individual address.

USPS is also sharing tips with customers, including reminding them to put dogs in separate, closed rooms before opening the door for letter carriers.

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