ROCKFORD (WIFR) – More than 5,000 mail carries suffered from dog bites nationwide in 2013 and as the weather warms up, local mail carriers want us to help prevent these painful, sometimes serious injuries.
“There was a pitbull inside, he saw me and he just jumped right out of the porch and latched on to my arm.”
Twila Bailye’s scars are a constant reminder of the danger she faces everyday on her mail delivery route in Rockford.
She says she was brutally attacked by a larged dog earlier this year, causing her to lose feeling in her left hand for two months.
“This is the pepper spray we carry,” Bailye explained. “It is serious, you know, it can be life altering or career altering. People say ‘oh, my dog doesn’t bite’ but my response to that is if he has teeth, he can bite.”
“It has made me leary of dogs now, I hear dogs bark and I turn around to make sure that they are still in the fence. We’re out here doing a service, and so I guess we would like for people to be aware of that and do their part by keeping their dog inside and safe from us.”
Dog owners can face a fine from animal services if their dog bites a mail carrier. A representative from the USPS says if a carrier doesn’t feel safe, delivery can be suspended to a particular address or even an entire block. He says that’s a last resort if the situation can’t be resolved.