National Thank a Mail Carrier Day: Teach Your Dog to Love Mail Carriers

National Thank a Mail Carrier Day: Teach Your Dog to Love Mail CarriersRain or shine, our friendly neighborhood mail carriers are there to deliver our most awaited letters and packages six days a week. They brave through the hunger, the traffic, the exhaustion, and even the dog barks just to make sure we get that new Amazon product we’re so excited about not a second too late.

For that, they truly deserve to have a special day observed in their honor. So this February 4th, don’t let your mail carrier go without hearing a “Thank You” because it’s National Thank a Mail Carrier Day!

Unfortunately, while we love our mailman or mail woman, our canine companions normally don’t. And, of course, we simply can’t let this (usually) one-sided feud go on longer than it should. This National Thank a Mail Carrier Day, we shouldn’t be the only ones thanking mail carriers, we should teach our dogs to do so as well. But to do that, we need to understand why dogs seem to dislike our mail-carrying friends.


3 Reasons Why Dogs Bark at Mail Carriers

National Thank a Mail Carrier Day: Teach Your Dog to Love Mail Carriers

They’re Afraid

It doesn’t matter if your dog’s a Chihuahua or a Great Dane—all dogs fear something. For some, it may be the ear-deafening roar of thunder but for others, it’s that strange person who always leaves boxes at their owner’s door.

We may come to know and like our mail carrier, but without proper introduction, our dogs just see them as strangers or even potential threats. So in response, they try to cover up their fear by barking, hoping that the mail carrier becomes intimidated and goes away.

They’re Excited

If your pooch is a little more on the friendly side, then their barking may simply signify excitement. They may only want to greet your mail carrier—maybe even make friends—but since you’re holding them by the collar and pulling them aside, they try “talking” you into letting them go.

However, even if your dog is well-socialized, it’s important to pay close attention to their body language before allowing them to approach someone they don’t know, especially if they’re of a larger breed. If you’re unsure of their intentions, err on the side of caution.

They Want to Protect Their Humans

Some dogs may use barking as an intimidation tactic, but others do it as a way to warn an assumed enemy that they need to back off or else they’ll get bit. Dogs, by nature, are very protective—be it of their offspring, territory, or family.

So if a perceived threat, such as a mail carrier, steps foot in their domain, their first instinct will be to get rid of it. However, since you probably contain them in some way whenever mail carriers are at the door, they resort to good old-fashioned barking.



4 Tips for Teaching Your Dog to Love Mail Carriers

National Thank a Mail Carrier Day: Teach Your Dog to Love Mail Carriers

Socialize Your Dog

One of the main reasons why dogs exhibit negative or aggressive behavior towards humans is lack of socialization. So whether your dog is 2 months or 10 years old, it’s important to allow them to interact with other people besides the family members.

Take them on neighborhood strolls or to the dog park as frequent as you can and allow them to meet new people and pets. This will teach them to be more calm around unfamiliar faces (and wet noses).

Don’t Punish or Yell at Your Dog for Barking

Punishing your dog is a no-go since it’ll only teach them to associate the mail carrier with punishment, which can lead to anxiety and aggression whenever someone’s at the door.

Yelling at your dog for barking at your mail carrier isn’t going to do you any good either. If anything, it’s just going to make your dog think you’re barking along with them. So keep your cool while training your dog to stop barking at the mail carrier.

Introduce Your Mail Carrier to Your Dog

To show your dog that the mail carrier comes in peace, introduce them to each other. If your mail carrier approves, let your dog sniff them from a safe distance with a leash on. Dogs get to know each other by sniffing, so doing this exercise every time your mail carrier comes by will allow your dog to become familiar with them and eventually, learn to trust them.

However, gauge your dog’s reaction. If you think they’re acting too aggressive for this exercise, then you can try the one below.

Form Positive Associations with Your Mail Carrier

Since dogs absolutely love treats, use that to your advantage. Whenever your mail carrier goes to your house, let them to toss your dog a few treats—preferably, your dog’s favorite. Your dog will be eating at the palm of your mail carrier’s hand (literally) in no time!


How do you plan on observing National Thank A Mail Carrier Day with Your Dog?