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More than 150 townhomes in northeast London have lost mail service due to off-leash dog

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It was around mid-March when residents of a townhouse complex at 305 Briarhill Ave. noticed their mail hadn't been delivered for over a week. That prompted Kevin Traill to contact a Canada Post representative, “She explained the issue was to do with dogs in the neighbourhood and within a few days it seemed to be resolved, but that was short-lived."

Four of the complex residents had been asked to sign waivers assuring Canada Post that their dogs would not be off-leash. Three agreed, but the fourth?

"From my understanding, there is one individual from within this complex that seems to be the issue and that one stops all delivery,” according to Lisa Smith, senior property manager with Norquay Property Management.

The complex has 151 rental townhouse units. It covers approximately two square city blocks.

"This individual is a fair distance away from many of the other homes within this complex,” Smith explained to CTV News. “So why stop everybody? Would that happen in a municipal, single dwelling home? No."

Traill also questions what happens if, in the future, an off-leash dog from another neighbourhood wanders into the complex. Could they lose their mail delivery again?

Lisa Smith and Kevin Traill, seen on May 8, 2024, discuss efforts to get mail delivery restored for 305 Briarhill Ave. (Gerry Dewan/CTV News London)

For now, all residents have to pick-up their mail at the Canada Post administration building 955 Highbury Ave., south of Oxford Street. Whoever picks up the mail has to have identification for each person in the home that's getting mail.

Traill said there are other challenges, "I feel for any neighbour here who's elderly or doesn't have a car. It's just a rough situation for everybody living here; one, I'm sure, everybody wants resolved."

The London Animal Care Centre will often be requested to respond in circumstances like this. They say they are familiar with the situations at 305 Briarhill Ave., but administrators said they haven't received a formal complaint of a dog at large and they would need a specific unit number to address any concerns with the owner; that information hasn't been given to them.

In a statement to CTV News, Canada Post confirmed, “…there were several incidents that put our delivery agent at risk at the townhouse complex with multiple loose dogs.”

The continued, “This was a serious cause of concern for our delivery agent and service was temporarily suspended to a part of the neighborhood. We have sent out letters of assurances to known residences within the townhouse complex with dogs and are working with the complex management to resolve the situation and hope to resume delivery as soon as possible when it is safe to do so.”

“At Canada Post, we are proud to deliver our customers' packages and mail. That's why we need to ensure our employees can do it safely. This is our number one priority and responsibility as an employer to every employee,” the statement said.

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