mail carriers, beware
Off the chain: Texas ranks third in the nation for dog bites
Turns out the Texas may not be the best state for mail carriers — and not just because of the searing summer heat.
According to recent data compiled by insurance giant State Farm, our fair state is third in the nation for dog bites.
With 236 dog-bite claims filed with the company in 2012, Lone Star residents managed to rack up $4.3 million in payouts, which is peanuts compared to $9 million in Illinois and $17.1 in California.
In another recent report, the U.S. Postal Service also highlighted Texas as a hotbed of unruly dogs in fiscal year 2012. In the agency's top 15 cities for dog attacks on postal workers, San Antonio ranked second with 42 incidents with Houston and Dallas earning ninth and 13th places, respectively.
Though great for companionship and protection against intruders and squirrels, even the best of dogs can have the worst of days. As such, the City of Houston and its BARC animal shelter suggest a few preventative measures:
- Never leave a child unattended with a dog, even a family pet
- Work one-on-one with your pet to reduce anxiety in uncomfortable situations
- Keep dogs leashed in public to prevent confrontations
- Keep pets confined when postal workers deliver mail
Now if you find yourself on the wrong end of an angry local canine, the City of Houston has advice for that as well, albeit much more graphic. Click here for BARC's tips and don't be scared away by phrases such as:
- "Once a dog has bitten, do not pull back; the damage is already done"
- "You may have to sacrifice, or 'take the bite' ”
- "If all else fails, go limp, curling up into the fetal position"