Reporting Gigi Barnett
BALTIMORE (WJZ) — The U.S. Postal Service ranks the top cities for dog attacks against letter carriers, and Baltimore is on the list.
As Gigi Barnett reports, the post office is turning to dog owners for help.
Letter carrier Chris Hock has had several run-ins with dogs. He was never bitten but he’s always aware. It’s a hazard of the job. And it’s one the U.S. Postal Service calls a widespread problem. This week, it ranked the most dangerous cities when it comes to dog attacks on letter carriers.
“If they sense you’re afraid, they have you,” Hock said.
At the top of the heap are Houston, San Diego and Columbus tied and Los Angeles. Baltimore ranks at number 11, with 27 attacks on mail carriers last year.
“It can be traumatic and it can be extremely painful,” said John Budzinski.
Budzinski is Baltimore’s postmaster. He knows firsthand the dangers of dogs and mail carriers. He was once bitten. He says the post office can suspend service to a home with a vicious dog.
“It’s not the dog’s fault. Keep the dog locked up,” he said.
Nationwide, more than 5,600 mail carriers were bitten last year.