Cedar Rapids, Iowa News, Sports, and Weather
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa -- The mail is delivered come rain or snow, but a dog is halting deliveries for about a dozen homes in Cedar Rapids.
The mail carrier assigned to that block feels threatened. A spokesman with the Postal Service said officials have no other choice but to stop mail delivery for the safety of the carrier.
It's a real concern for many postal workers. In 2012, the USPS said more than 5,000 workers were attacked by dogs.
This mail issue is impacting people on Walker Street Northeast.
"The dog has interfered, on a number of occasions, with the delivery of the mail in that particular neighborhood," said Postal Service Spokesman Richard Watkins.
The Post Office sent out letters saying after the mail carrier saw the dog unrestrained for the fifth time, the entire block's mail is on hold.
Elmer Kasey isn't happy.
"It's a bunch of poop. I think it's got stamps on it and it says to deliver it, they should deliver it," Kasey said.
Everyone on his block has to go to a nearby Post Office if they want their mail. The city's public safety spokesman said the dog at the center of this mail holdup is a Chihuahua mix. Guillermo Tellez defends his dog, saying it occasionally gets out but usually stays inside.
"It's a nice dog," Guillermo said.
He said the dog is friendly and plays nice with his children. The next-door neighbor, however, understands why the postal carrier feels threatened.
"We got chased a couple times just bringing groceries into our house in our own driveway. And then, we called Animal Control at that point and they did come and seize the dogs because it did not have its vaccines up to date. Two weeks later my five-year-old was bit in the leg in the back of our own yard," said neighbor Alyssa Taylor.
Many just want the situation resolved.
"I don't really care what they do. All I want is my mail back," Kasey said.
"Once we know that the dog owner has taken responsibility and make sure that dog is not running free in that neighborhood, the mail delivery will continue," Watkins said.
The city said animal control went to the home twice last summer because of that dog, once when the dog bit the child. An officer returned this week to discuss the matter with the family after neighbors called when the mail stopped. Police said owners will be cited if the dog is seen running around the neighborhood.