In this file photo, a Canada Post employee fills a community mail box in Dartmouth, N.S. on Thursday, June 30, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan

Canada Post is asking homeowners to keep their dogs away from postal service workers, due to a rise in dog attacks on mail carriers during the pandemic.

“We have seen an increase this year of incidents across the country,” the Crown corporation said in an email to CTVNews.ca.

According to Canada Post, around 41 per cent of households in Canada have dogs. Postal service workers come into contact with pets when they drop off mail, and with everyone at home during the pandemic, the chances of them coming face-to-face with a dog is even greater than usual.

“As much as we love our canine pets, they are protective of their home and their family, and it’s impossible for delivery agents to know how any dog will react when they approach your home to deliver the mail,” Canada Post said in a statement. “Dog incidents can range from encounters with threatening dogs to being attacked and bitten.”

Canada Post is asking homeowners not to open their doors during mail delivery, as this not only can make physical distancing harder, but can allow a dog to rush outside at an unsuspecting mail carrier. They are reminding the public to wait until a postal service worker has left to go pick up the mail or packages left on the doorstep.

“A way to prevent your dog from approaching our employees is to keep them in another room for the time of the delivery,” the statement added.

In a video posted to its social media accounts back in April, Canada Post told dog owners that mail carriers still “appreciate a wave though from you and your pet,”with a graphic of a person and a dog waving through a window.  

We love dogs, but even the most gentle dog can bite.

Now that you are home, please help keep our people safe by keeping your dog inside. pic.twitter.com/Hn0kw7JxVA

— Canada Post (@canadapostcorp) April 21, 2020