It is the classic tort and a virtual cultural icon: mailman versus dog. New figures show that this is not some cultural mythology. According to the U.S. Postal Service’s annual report, 6,549 postal workers were attacked by dogs in 2015. That is an increase of 14 percent from the year before so either dogs are getting more aggressive or mail carriers are getting slower.
The highest rate of dog bites appear to be Houston which 77 attacks last year. Some 800 more mail carriers were attacked last year than the year before.
However, the staggering number is found in all dog bites. There are roughly 4.5 million or so people bitten by dogs each year.
Under the common law, dogs unlike wild animals are not subject to strict liability. As a domesticated animal, dogs are subject to a negligence standard. This led to the evolution of a “one-free-bite” rule where after a bite, the dog was presumed to be vicious and the owner was potentially subject to strict liability for future attacks. The rule is a bit of a misnomer. You do not get a free bite if the dog showed vicious propensities in other ways.
Source: Washington Post
23 thoughts on “Report: 6,549 Postal Workers Were Attacked By Dogs In 2015”
A training technique for teaching dogs not to bark is spraying his face with water (by a pump bottle, not the hose). Maybe mail carriers should carry one. I’m surprised how many dogs are out alone. Our back yard has fencing. If our dog was out alone, which is rare, she couldn’t run toward someone approaching in the front. We live in a coyote area so we need to be outside when she is. Mostly she gets to run free at a park. Barking is a warning to her humans. Apparently we live in a civilized area. We know each other’s dogs and they know us. Teaching good behavior to a dog is as important as teaching children. I can’t imagine living without a dog. But she sits when told and doesn’t move until we call her.
Dogs don’t belong in civilized society. Seriously.
If a dog bites a person it is always the fault of the person. According to the owner. My experience twice.
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