It was just a regular day when Victoria Alexander let her two-year-old Boxer, Bumper, out into the front yard. The yard is completely fenced, so she didn’t think Bumper was at risk for any injury. Unfortunately, she was surprisingly mistaken. A postal worker walked up to the fenced yard and Bumper started barking, as many dogs do when a stranger comes near their home. But what happened next is what shocked Alexander.
The postal worker walked back to his truck, pulled out a can of what Alexander thinks was bear spray, and proceeded to spray Bumper in the face.
“Bumper was rubbing his eyes, trying to get it out in the grass and he was like ‘sorry I sprayed your dog,’” Alexander told WATE 6 On Your Side.
The worker quickly left and she called the post office, who said there was nothing they could do. Postal workers are allowed to carry and use protective spray whenever they feel threatened. When her mother, Amy, returned home, she called the police and animal control. “I was so upset, my hands were shaking, I was bawling my eyes out,” she said. “They told me there is no law in the state of Tennessee saying you cannot spray a dog, even if it is behind a fence.”
The question that the Alexanders are wondering is, why did the postal worker feel the need to spray Bumper in the face? Alexander was home and standing at the door, he could have simply asked her for assistance or to taken Bumper inside.
WATE 6 On Your Side reached out to Susan Wright with United States Post Office, provided the following statement: “The carrier entered a fenced yard and used dog repellent when he felt threatened by the customer’s dog. In this situation the carrier should have left a notice for the package and avoided a potentially dangerous situation. While the effects of the dog repellent are temporary, we understand no one wants to see a beloved family pet experience any discomfort.”
We’re still not sure what prompted such a drastic response to Bumper’s barking, but we’re glad to hear he’s doing much better now. Hopefully this incident does not get repeated in the future.
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