(AP MODIFIED) - The U.S. Postal Service says Detroit, Michigan ranks #6 for the worst cities in America for dog attacks on letter carriers last year, and it urged pet owners to help reduce the attacks.
To help reduce the number of attacks, the American Veterinary Medical Association is offering Michigan residents tips during National Dog Bite Prevention Week.
The agency on Wednesday released its city rankings ahead of National Dog Bite Prevention Week, which starts Monday. The Postal Service said nearly 5,900 postal workers were attacked last year, a tiny portion of the 4.7 million Americans bitten by dogs annually.
Los Angeles was the worst with 69 attacks, followed by San Antonio with 42, Chicago with 41, San Francisco with 38, Philadelphia with 34 and Detroit with 33. The city with the least attacks on the list was Wichita, Kan., with 20.
If letter carriers feel threatened by a dog, they can skip delivery to the house and ask the customer to retrieve any mail at the post office instead.
The AVMA released the following tips that could help prevent a dog bite:
●Don't run past a dog. Dogs naturally love to chase and catch things.
●Never disturb a dog that is caring for puppies, sleeping or eating.
●If a dog approaches to sniff you, stay still. In most cases, the dog will go away when it determines you are not a threat.
●If you are threatened by a dog, remain calm. Don't scream or yell. If you say anything, speak calmly and firmly. Avoid eye contact. Try to stay still until the dog leaves, or back away slowly until the dog is out of sight. Don't turn and run.
●If you fall or are knocked to the ground, curl into a ball with your hands over your head and neck. Protect your face.
For more information, go to https://www.avma.org/public/Pages/Dog-Bite-Prevention.aspx