DOG attacks on postmen and women in Gloucestershire has dropped by 13 per cent this year.

It is Royal Mail's dog awareness week this week and postmen and women are handing out top tips to prevent posties from being attacked.

Studies also showed that there were five dog attacks on postmen in Cirencester last year, and just four this year.

Royal Mail’s postmen and women deliver six days a week to more than 29 million addresses across the UK and have said that dog attacks are a significant hazard. Around eight postmen and women a day attacked across the UK.

These attacks rise during the school holidays and in the summer months when parents and children are at home with dogs sometimes allowed unsupervised in the garden or out onto the streets without restraints.

This past week workers have been raising awareness of dog attacks, and how the number still remains unacceptably high.

They have now released top tips for all dog owners, as even the most lovable dog can be a danger to postal staff.

A Royal Mail spokesman said: "Dogs are territorial by nature and if they feel they need to protect their family, they can become unpredictable. Here are some ideas to help your postmen and women deliver your mail in safety."

  • Ensure your dog is out of the way before the postman or woman arrives.
  • Place your pet in the back garden or a faraway room and if you have a back garden, please close off the access, in case your dog could get round to the front when the postman calls.
  • Dog attacks can happen when you’ve opened the door to sign for an item. Please keep your dog in another room before answering the door and make sure children don’t open the door, as dogs can push by them and attack.
  • Give your dog some food or a toy to occupy them while your mail is being delivered.
  • Wait 10 minutes after your mail has arrived to let your pet back into your hallway. Keep everything as calm and low-key as possible.
  • If your dog likes to attack your mail consider installing a wire letter receptacle. It will protect your post, and your postman’s fingers.
  • If it is not practical for you to keep your dog away from a postman delivering your mail, please consider fitting a secure mailbox on the edge of your property Please make sure your dog is microchipped, wearing a collar and that both sets of details are kept up to date.