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Avoiding bites

Alexandria, VA, Letter Carrier Wubit Yeshiwas

Wubit Yeshiwas recalls the day a customer’s dog pushed through the home’s screen door and charged at her. Her screams alerted the homeowner to come retrieve the pet.

For the Alexandria, VA, letter carrier, the experience reinforced the importance of using USPS-recommended safety measures to prevent dog attacks.

Yeshiwas, a 21-year Postal Service employee, carries dog repellent spray while on her route and knows how to use her satchel to protect herself if a dog tries to attack.

To help mark USPS National Dog Bite Awareness Week, which runs June 14-20 this year, Yeshiwas shares three additional safety tips:

• Use dog warning cards. These cards alert other carriers that a dog is at a particular address, and can be helpful to substitute carriers filling in for regular carriers.

• Use the safety features on your Mobile Delivery Device (MDD). MDDs allow letter carriers to indicate the presence of a dog at a specific address.

• Pay attention to your surroundings. Stay alert so if you’re attacked, you’ll be able to respond to prevent a bite. “There are dogs you can see easily, but not always,” Yeshiwas says.

She adds: “We can’t stop dogs from coming outside, or being out when we deliver, but customers can prevent dog bites from happening by putting leashes on them, locking doors and making sure fences are locked.”

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