Royal Mail/CWU Dog Awareness Week 2018 – 25-30 June 2018

This annual initiative, which is jointly run by Royal Mail and the CWU and supported by a range of other organisations, is now in its fifth year, with various actions and activities planned in workplaces and communities across the UK – including a Dog Awareness Week postmark.

Dog Awareness Weeks is held at this time of year because the statistics show that attacks on postal workers increase during the summer months – particularly during the holiday period, when the average number of attacks per day increases by 10 per cent.

  • 3,000 Postmen and Women were attacked by Dogs in the UK last year, that’s 44 a week or 7 a day.
  • Royal Mail and the Communication Workers Union say that the number of attacks is still too high

and every dog attack is one attack too many.

  • To raise awareness and encourage responsible dog ownership the Union and Royal Mail will jointly

launch their sixth annual Dog Awareness Week on Monday 20 June.

  • The number of dog attacks on postmen and women increases during summer holidays, when

children and parents are at home and dogs are more likely to be out in the garden with the family.

  • Dog Awareness Week is supported by the Communications Workers Union and a wide range of

organisations and animal charities including Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, Dogs Trust, the

National Police Chief’s Council, PDSA and the National Dog Wardens Association.

  • A special Dog Awareness Week postmark will be applied to all stamped items from Monday 25 June

until June 29.

CWU National Health and Safety Officer Dave Joyce said “The failure of Dog Owners to control 

their animals remains a major concern for Postal Workers and the public. The number of attacks has 

risen, with yearly hospital admissions for dog bites increasing by 76% between 2006-2016. Seven postal

workers are attacked by dogs every working day of the year which is unacceptable and the whole

idea of Dog Awareness Week is to highlight the problem and the repercussions for dog owners and the

victims, many of whom are seriously injured”. 82% of dog attacks on postal workers happened at the

front door or in the front garden and that number is increasing as we deliver more online purchased

parcels. We are appealing to all customers who are dog owners to work with us and think TWICE when

the postman calls. Put the dog away in secure room before opening the door to collect and sign for your

delivery. The vast majority of our customers and their dogs aren’t a problem but irresponsible and

reckless dog owners are. Customers are always pleased to see the postman or postwoman arrive as

they’re eager to take delivery of the goods they’ve ordered and paid for on the internet but

thousands of them unfortunately don’t give a second thought to the postal worker’s safety by putting

the dog in a safe, secure place. There are tough court penalties and a criminal record for irresponsible

dog owners including prison and unlimited fines so it’s in their best interest in more ways than one to

make sure the dog doesn’t bite the postman/woman. One owner from Romford, Essex paid fines and

costs of nearly £9,000 after his dog injured a postwoman’s fingers as she put letters through the

door. Another owner from Oxford was handed a 16-month suspended prison sentence and banned 

from owning dogs for life after his dog badly injured a postman’s hand. Dog owners need to fully 

understand that their actions usually are the cause of a dog being dangerous and simple precautions

can prevent the pain for everyone concerned. No matter what breed of dog is involved, the dog can

present a substantial danger to postal workers. Worryingly there’s been some very serious  

Dog attacks this last year in Boston, Newquay and Wrexham which could easily have ended in fatalities

if it wasn’t for the intervention of the owners and good Samaritans”.


On 25th June – Dave Joyce will be giving Radio and TV interviews on Dog Awareness Week.


On 26th June – Dave Joyce will meet with the Scottish Minister for Community Safety and Legal 

Affairs, Annabelle Ewing, to discuss dog attacks on postal workers following the recent debate in the

Scottish Parliament on 8th May to discuss the post legislative review of the Control of Dogs

(Scotland) Act 2010 plus Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal and Police enforcement and law

interpretation issues. 


On 27th June – Dave Joyce will be at the House of Commons, Palace of Westminster, to give oral 

evidence to a The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (EFRA) Parliamentary Select Committee’s

Inquiry into Dangerous Dogs Legislation. (The Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 as amended by the Anti-Social

Behaviour Crime & Policing Act 2014) after the NHS reported that the number of dog attacks has

risen, with yearly hospital admissions for dog bites increasing by 76% between 2006-2016.

(This will be televised at 9:30am on the Parliament TV Channel).





Notes to editors:


  • The Communication Workers Union (CWU) is the biggest trade union in the communications industry with 190,000 members in post, telecoms, mobile and financial services companies including Royal Mail Group, Post Office, BT Group, EE, O2 and Santander.


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