Worker/pet safety

People love their pets, but some pets don't love people.  Just ask a mailman or meter reader.  For workers visiting your home, it could be trouble.

Even the most trained dog can lash out if it feels threatened, so for people who work in and out of homes, learning how to handle an aggressive animal is a top priority.  

As a meter reader, Daniel Sheeley visits hundreds of homes a week.  His job is already tough...but something makes it a little harder every day....your pets. So, today he takes part in National Fuel Gas Company's dog bite training so he'll know what to do if a dog turns aggressive.

When asked what Sheeley got from his training, he tells us, "Just feeling the force of the dog. I didn't feel much of the bite at all because of the sleeve, but it was a cool experience just to learn what that actually might feel like and how to set yourself up for it and be ready for something like that." Sheeley says there are dogs in around 80 percent of the homes he'll visit during his shift.  Today, he and his co-workers learn how to stand and what to say to prevent getting bitten. 

National Fuel Safety Supervisor, Joe Dworskanski, says, "It prepares them for what happens when all else fails, when the home owner doesn't take the time to put the dog away or a surprise scenario where they maybe sneak up on a dog." 

Trainers tell us no matter how well people think they know their dog, they do have animal instincts and might react when a stranger is in the home.

Mitzi Robinson, Owner of Bulli Ray Enterprises, says, "They're not asking you to put the dog away because they're trying to make you less safe. They're asking you to put the dog away for your safety, the dog's safety and the employees safety." 

Robinson says an owners standing with the dog increases the risk of biting by 87 percent. Meter readers ask that people simply throw them a bone...by keeping their pet away while they're working. 

Robinson says when an owner comes into the picture, the dog feels more confident to make a move.  So, if you know a worker is coming to your home; put the dog away ahead of time to avoid any harm.


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