Royal Mail Launch UK’s First Dog Awareness Week
Monday, 15 July 2013 | D for Dog
Royal Mail has launched the UK’s first Dog Awareness Week to raise awareness of the issue of dog attacks on postmen and women and to appeal to dog owners to keep animals under control when the postman calls.
Shaun Davis, Director of Health, Safety and Wellbeing for Royal Mail Group said: "Clearly most dogs are not inherently dangerous, however, even the most placid animal can be prone to attack if it feels its territory is being threatened. Our first priority as an employer is to ensure the welfare and safety of our people who provide a valuable service to our customers and we appeal to owners to keep their pets under control, especially if they know their pets have a territorial nature."
Dave Joyce, CWU health, safety and environment officer said: "Dog Awareness Week is an important initiative to raise the profile of dog attacks and the risk that family pets and security dogs can pose to postal workers carrying out their everyday duties.
"Royal Mail staff really are at the sharp end of dog attacks, with thousands suffering injuries each year which range from minor scratches to lost fingers, severe scarring and psychological issues. There is a lot that dog owners can do to prevent an attack taking place - simply keeping your dog out of reach of the letterbox or front door is a great way of preventing any unintended injuries.
"It's especially important during the school holidays when children may let dogs out. Your pet will react very differently to your postman or woman than to your own family and behaviour can be unpredictable - we've seen it all too often. Please think and act to prevent the opportunity of an attack."
Royal Mail in partnership with Dogs Trust, are asking customers to keep their pets under control and are issuing top tips in an attempt to reduce the number of dog attacks.
Lynn Barber, Head of Training and Behaviour at Dogs Trust said; "We fully support the Royal Mail's Dog Awareness week and hope that it raises awareness amongst dog owners about taking that little bit of extra time to train and help their dog for when the postman knocks on the door. Often the reaction of the dog is misconceived as plain aggression rather than the reality which is fear that manifests itself as aggression.
"There are some easy tips on how to avoid drama when the postman arrives; even taking your dog out for a walk during the time that you know the post will be delivered. Always remain calm with your dog and use positive methods to get him used to the postman arriving. All of our top tips for helping your dog get over this fear, and indeed avoid it developing in the first place, are here www.royalmailgroup.com/dogs"
Top Tips for dog owners in partnership with Dogs Trust
Even the most lovable dog can be a danger to postal staff. Dogs are territorial by nature and if they feel they need to protect their family, they can become unpredictable.
Here are some ideas to help your postman deliver your post in safety:
In further support of Royal Mail's Dog Awareness Week, Dogs Trust is stepping up the real life training its rescue dogs receive.
In recognition of the real problems postal and other community workers face when visiting private properties, the charity is installing letterbox facilities in all its rehoming centres with training rooms to help its resident dogs to learn to love the postman's arrival.
Eight of the 18 Dogs Trust rehoming centres in the UK already use letterboxes in their real life training rooms but the charity is keen to see that the majority of the 16,000 dogs that it cares for each year have access to similar acclimatisation facilities. Where appropriate, staff will work with dogs to address the underlying fear that is often the trigger for aggression towards visitors to a home.