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Postie's and dogs, a war of attrition with my new postie! Advice please!

(112 Posts)
Farmnanjulie Thu 20-Sep-18 10:22:52

I live on a farm in rural country lane,and we have two dogs,they are two Staffies who I use as volunteer therapy dogs due to their friendly and gentle nature,we take these dogs everywhere and anyone who meets them loves them,well our two postie's share this route and have met my dogs from new pups,and actually knock on the door to see them if they are not out in the garden,the postie who replaces them on days off ,is the same.
As are our bin collectors etc.
Our garden goes around our cottage with a wrought iron gate with the country lane in front of it so we get farm and public traffic coming by.
Sorry to waffle but helps you understand the problem.
On my birthday on one of the hottest days of the year,I saw a parcel left outside the gates on the road side, they were a bouquet delivered by royal mail,the chocolate inside were in a melted puddle,and the flowers so wilted they were dead by the end of the day,then on another day i saw a new postman ramming our post in the bars of the iron gate,this included folded over birthday cards,this has happened with other items,and I really got fed up when a contactless card in a Halifax envelope was hanging out of the gate, when I saw one of our regular postman I asked what was going on ,he said there was a new postman appointed and in his words " was terrified of barking dogs" he also said they had told him that these were lovely dogs and he had known them all there lives,and they have been tested and used as therapy dogs,
Since then I have noticed we have gone from having daily post to barely getting any,we have had daily post always and things were not arriving..

I complained to the post office and they had him Interviewed and said he has a duty to leave post secure,as he isn't doing that,he now refuses to post at all ,and they want us to pick up most from a office nine miles away,the customer service said that as our post could come between 8.30 to 3.00,it's not practical to keep the dogs in for all that time,the manager said he was told by other postie's that there is no problem ,but he won't budge,he was asked would be like to meet them with me,and he refused,.

I feel really cross! They have not done anything,never have and have plenty of support from those who know them,and now we have considerable problems to get it post!
In a farm area,he is going to come across dogs,if he is that terrified ,should he be doing this job!
What do you think,! I would welcome your views!

Farmnanjulie Thu 20-Sep-18 10:24:07

Posties and dogs

Squiffy Thu 20-Sep-18 10:34:02

Could you set up a secure box at your gate so that post can be left safely in it?

Farmnanjulie Thu 20-Sep-18 10:38:29

That's what the royal mail said,we have parcels that are really big to small letters,the box would have to be massive! As we have the farm a lot comes,well should be! I looked at some online called a parcel safe ,and it's a lot of money,2_3 hundred!

KatyK Thu 20-Sep-18 10:41:21

Some people are afraid of dogs - I am, after some bad experiences. No matter how many times the owners says 'he's/she's lovely', it doesn't work for me.

merlotgran Thu 20-Sep-18 10:44:48

We have the same problem, Farmnan. The answer was to get a box at the gate and ask them to send their Health and Safety manager out to photograph it so regular and temp posties would know exactly where to leave the mail.

We have an arrangement with our regular postie, who is very accommodating, to reverse down the drive if there is a parcel. We then go out and take it from him, leaving the dogs indoors. He can see if we are out because our car won't be there so that means the dogs will be indoors and he can leave the parcel in the shed.

Temp posties can be a pain because they like to make up their own rules but if you have an arrangement with H&S they have to abide by it.

ChaosIncorporated Thu 20-Sep-18 10:53:01

For convenience, and lack of stress, I would agree with squiffy that a mounted secure external postbox is the way to go.

The principle of the thing, is another matter! it seems ludicrous that the new postman can take this stance in the face of all evidence to the contrary however I believe ( ^happy to stand corrected if someone knows more^ ) that most service employees who routinely visit homes are free to make a judgement call about their personal safety regarding dogs, and refuse to enter. Management cannot discipline for such a judgement call....despite evidence, it would seem.

I guess you could mount a legal challenge that the judgement call was patently irrational, and is causing you undue stress/work/cost(in petrol), but I suspect it would be an expensive tilt at a windmill as he will be entitled to judge any barking as he sees it at the time, not as others see it at a.n.other time.

henetha Thu 20-Sep-18 11:03:56

I agree that if he is terrified of dogs then he's in the wrong job. I once took a job as a leaflet deliverer and left after just one day due to several dogs frightening the hell out of me.

MillieBear Thu 20-Sep-18 11:07:08

KatyK yes some people are but I doubt many would then choose to become a postie.
Farmnanjulie he sounds like a bit of a jobsworth to me, let's hope he gets replaced.

mcem Thu 20-Sep-18 11:34:22

Sounds a bit like someone with a fear of heights taking on the job of a steeplejack! Yours are surely not the only dogs he comes across on his rounds?
Really think it's a problem for management to solve.

FlexibleFriend Thu 20-Sep-18 11:39:57

Is there no way to fence off the area from the gate to the front door? Sorry but despite your explanation I can't tell how far the house is set back from the road. You do say the garden wraps around but that doesn't mean it has to. If you can put a reasonable size fence at some point so the dogs can't access the front gate or door. I would have to for my own peace of mind and I know in your case he has no reason to be concerned, I as an owner would be concerned one of my dogs would get out.

Willow10 Thu 20-Sep-18 11:49:42

Dog issue aside - if you or anyone else is paying postage on these items, then surely they have a duty to deliver them? Will they refund the postage if you travel 9 miles to collect? Just a thought!

FarNorth Thu 20-Sep-18 12:03:01

A box which can take letters and some packages, so that you only have to collect large parcels, could be a compromise.
Also, there is usually the option to have things re-delivered on another date. Could that be arranged for days when a regular postie is on?

Is this person now doing your (non)-deliveries most of the time instead of the regular posties? If so, why is that?

A fenced area which keeps the dogs away from the entrance and door could be a good idea, depending on your garden layout.

FarNorth Thu 20-Sep-18 12:06:10

Is there somewhere easily accessible in your farm buildings that post could be left?

JenniferEccles Thu 20-Sep-18 12:06:23

I'm afraid all postmen will have heard the old 'the dogs are lovely - wouldn't hurt a fly' statements many times, but know to their cost that many dogs, especially your breed are unpredictable.

I'm sure it's not an essential job description for a postman to have to love dogs.

allule Thu 20-Sep-18 12:11:37

There are very cheap doorbells around now. Would a bell at the gate to ring in the house help, when you are in, at least?

Fennel Thu 20-Sep-18 12:18:51

We had that problem in France. Finally, if he had a parcel, the postie would drive up to the house which was some way from the road, sound his horn, and if we didn't come - tough!
We did have a letterbox near the road, and usually he put stuff in there without getting out of the van.
He wouldn't get out of the van.
Our border collie thought it was all great fun - she made the postie run away.
I recently read that posties suffer a lot of injuries from dogs, some really serious.

Jaye53 Thu 20-Sep-18 12:25:14

Agree with comments. Have a shed or an old wheelie bin even with instructions for this "jobsworth" to leave your stuff in. It's like a swimming baths lifesaving instructor frightened of water lol. Complain again and take action ASAP . your dog's are innocent!!

Farmnanjulie Thu 20-Sep-18 12:27:23

This is all very helpful !!! There are lots of ideas, royal mail said they have a duty to bring the mail,but they cannot force him to come in,they said he's in the wrong job,as he will encounter dogs everywhere he goes,the garden is quite big ,and the front gate is about ten feet from the door,we have our touring caravan park in there as well,so fencing not could be possible ,a lot of work,
So maybe the box would have to do , somehow!
I don't know why he is suddenly doing this lane,as we have two who are still doing this route after ten years,he does various days! I asked if he could be moved to another route,they said no,he is also really pissed that we have complained,and has shown it!
We have had so much damaged by him ramming things through the gates,but are being the most inconvenienced,
I understand that some people are not dog lovers,but when they trot out ,tails wagging, to say hello, why that is perceived as threatening,do you think it's the breed? Staffies have a poor reputation,as they are sometimes owned by idiots,we knew both the dogs parents,and our vet ,said he could not reccomend them highly enough ,they are brilliant dogs!
I will be Interested to know your views on Staffies!
Dogs homes are full of them,we were told that they are not in the top 50 biters in the post office lists.
We take them when we use our tourer,and have taken them into pubs etc and people comment how lovely they are,very well behaved,do any of you have Staffies,or have a opinion ?

TellNo1Ok Thu 20-Sep-18 12:29:56

I don’t have your problem with dogs but to accommodate all my parcels and papers I have a Treasure Box (actually says that on it) outside the gate.... we are in a very rural area... and it works.
Many households around here all have Wooden Boxes/Treasure boxes ... and it seems to work well..

Farmnanjulie Thu 20-Sep-18 12:33:42

Jennifer Eccles, this breed are not unpredictable,this is on of the common mistakes,if that was was true why are so many staffs therapy dogs like mine,a huge amount are!
I couldn't take unpredictable dogs to lay their heads on laps of old people,or work with kids scared of dogs,
Hardly something a unpredictable could do !

paperbackbutterfly Thu 20-Sep-18 12:35:06

I dislike dogs they are germ carriers as well as unpredictable and I would not venture up towards your house either. I think you should fence off the area at the front of your house if you expect your post to be delivered to the door or you should provide a secure box at the gate.

TillyWhiz Thu 20-Sep-18 12:44:00

My husband was a postman for many years and suffered nasty bites from much loved dogs. A complaint was even made against him by a loving owner whose dog tried to get him when he was delivering their mail and failing that, proceeded to rip the postvan's tyres: apparently my husband was 'harrassing' the dog!! A box by the gate solves all the problems or keeping the dogs in at a set time.

Billybob4491 Thu 20-Sep-18 12:49:09

My son is a postman, and has been told many times by owners of dogs that their dogs are friendly and placid. To date my son has been bitten twice by "friendly" dogs who wouldn't hurt a fly. If you know roughly when the postman is arriving, chain your dogs up, not everyone are dog lovers.

rizlett Thu 20-Sep-18 12:59:52

As a district nurse we have to phone people who have dogs in houses that we visit and the dogs have to be shut away before we can commence any treatment at all. This is the outcome of a NHS risk assessment. We are not allowed to treat patients with a dog in the room.

I don't have any concerns about your breed of dog but I do think you are being unreasonable to force your postie to enter a garden where there are two dogs running loose. What if one did bite him? He is fully entitled to refuse to enter your garden.

This is a bit like those threads where dog owners feel it isnt right for others to complain about their off lead dog running over and jumping up at people.

Give your postie some respect and make sure the dogs are indoors until your post has been delivered.