‘Any Dog Can Bite’

More than 5,800 Postal Service employees were attacked by dogs last year, an increase compared with 2019 that can be attributed to more people being home and more packages being delivered during the coronavirus pandemic.

The organization reported the numbers this week in advance of USPS National Dog Bite Awareness Week, which will take place from June 12-18.

Houston led the pack of cities where the most bites occurred — 73. Rounding out the top five cities were Chicago (59), Los Angeles (54), Cleveland (46) and Denver (44).

The top state was California at 782, up from 777 attacks reported in 2019.

Of the top 10 states for bites, six saw a decrease year over year, with Texas’s being particularly substantial, from 491 in 2019 to 402 in 2020.

The general trend in the past few years has been a decrease or plateauing in bite incidents nationwide.

However, as anyone who’s been on the receiving end can tell you, one bite is too many, and there’s a lot of work to be done educating humans on how to train and interact with dogs.

“Raising awareness about dog bite prevention and how to protect our letter carriers as we deliver the mail is paramount,” said Jamie Seavello, acting safety and health awareness manager for USPS.

“Dogs are instinctive animals that may act to protect their turf and that why’s it’s important to inform the public about this campaign.”

The theme for 2021 is “Be Aware: Any Dog Can Bite.” As in years past, the effort aims to promote bite prevention and best practices for both pet guardians and letter carriers.

The Postal Service provides dog bite prevention safety training for employees and reminders for customers.

One tip: To prevent dog attacks, carriers should use dog warning cards and pay attention to mobile delivery device scanner alerts about dogs on their route.

Informed Delivery, a free feature that offers digital previews of incoming mail, and Package Pickup are also useful tools in bite prevention because advance notification of a delivery gives customers an opportunity to secure dogs before a carrier arrives.

Shipping boost

A lead from a Pennsylvania employee has resulted in a shipping deal worth more than $2.8 million for the Postal Service.

James McCollum, a retail associate at the Fort Washington Post Office, served a business customer who was looking to save money on shipping.

McCollum submitted a lead through Clerks Care, a program that allows retail associates, call center agents, and machine and distribution clerks to pass on sales tips.

Mark Ferretti, a DE-PA 2 District business development specialist, along with Tim Summers and Michael Rice, both senior sales executives, followed up with the customer.

They closed a shipping deal for $2.8 million in new estimated annualized revenue for the Postal Service.

Sales generated from Clerks Care leads count toward the USPS Power of One campaign to raise revenue through sales leads from employees.

“James has been with USPS for more than 40 years, and he knows how to help his customers,” said Mary Anderson, small-business engagement director at USPS headquarters in Washington, DC. “And sometimes that help leads to a big boost in revenue for the Postal Service.”

The Postal Service is encouraging as many employees as possible to submit at least one lead through any of its six lead programs by Sept. 30. The Small Business Sales team is tracking program participation rates through its weekly “Drive to 35” downloadable report.

The Small Business and Lead Generation Programs Blue page has more information about Clerks Care and the other employee lead programs: Business Connect, Customer Connect, Mail Handlers, Rural Reach and Submit a Lead.

Male call

National Men’s Health Week, observed each year before Father’s Day, provides an opportunity for men to focus on being healthier and for women to support the well-being of the men in their lives.

To help men get ready for this year’s observance (June 14-20), here are some recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

• Complete routine medical visits and preventive health screenings. Understand the history of your family’s health conditions, many of which can be prevented or detected early through screenings and checkups.

• Select nutritious foods. Add a variety of fruits and vegetables daily, and limit foods and drinks that are high in calories, sugar, salt and fat.

• Be physically active. Adults need 150 minutes of moderate physical activity every week.

• Avoid or eliminate tobacco products and alcohol.

• Recognize and reduce stress. Managing long-term stress can lower your risk for high blood pressure, obesity and depression. Use techniques to control stress, like exercise, meditation, deep breathing, hobbies and seeking emotional support.

The leading cause of death for men in the United States is heart disease, with a heart attack occurring every 40 seconds.

• Knowing the signs of a heart attack and calling 911 quickly can save lives. Common warning signs include:

• Shortness of breath;

• Chest pressure or pain.

• Discomfort in the upper body, including arms, back, neck, jaw or stomach; and

• Light-headedness, nausea, vomiting, cold sweats and extreme fatigue.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and USPS June Wellness Toolkit websites have more information on men’s health.