THE number of posties being bitten by dogs within the Dudley postcode area has risen by 36 per cent, Royal Mail has revealed.

In response to the surge, the postal service, in partnership with the Communication Workers Union, has launched Dog Awareness Week, appealing to owners to keep pets under control when mail is being delivered.

Around 19 postmen and women were attacked by dogs across the DY postcode area from April 2013-14.

The campaign, which runs from today (Monday),  hopes to educate owners before the school holidays, as Royal Mail has noticed this is when the number of attacks rise.

Delivery director, Karen English, said: “Following the success of last year’s campaign, there is growing awareness of the issue of dog attacks and the problems our postmen and women face when they are delivering the mail.

"However, last year there were still too many incidents in the DY postcode area and we need to reduce this number further as even one dog attack on our people is one too many."

She continued: “We know that most dogs are not inherently dangerous, however, even the most placid animal can be prone to attack if it feels its territory is being threatened.

"Our first priority as an employer is to ensure the welfare and safety of our people who provide a valuable service to our customers. We appeal to dog owners in the DY postcode area to keep their pets under control, especially if they know their pets have a territorial nature.

"It can also be simple things that help - for example just making sure the dog is kept inside when the postman calls.”

Royal Mail has issued some tips for dog owners with territorial pets, including considering a wire letter receptacle, a secure mailbox on the edge of the property and keeping the animal in another room before opening the door to accept deliveries.