Skip to Main Content Skip to Footer


111 2nd Ave NE, Suite 113
St. Petersburg, FL 33701
(727) 755-7387 | Pet Portal


1401 4th St N
St. Petersburg, FL 33704
(727) 822-8501 | Pet Portal

What To Do if Your Pet Is Hit by a Car

What To Do if Your Pet Is Hit by a Car
December 30, 2022

There are few things that will make a Pet Care Coordinator at Northeast Animal Hospital stop in their tracks faster than hearing a call come in from someone who's pet has just been hit by a car. We immediately spring into action, alerting the doctors and nurses that there's an emergency on the way. Sadly, one week we had 3 "hit by car" in as many days.

It has to be one of the most traumatic things we can experience as a pet owner. Whether we just let them outside for a moment without a leash, or they slipped out the door accidently, what can result happens in fractions of seconds. What would you do if your dog or cat was hit by a car?

First, remember a pet in pain can lash out in unexpected ways. A normally sweet and docile dog may snap and bite as you try to help them. So, carefully prepare your pet for transport.

Next, call us at (727) 822-8501, or the emergency vet if it is after hours, and as calmly as possible let us know you are on your way. (Please, use a hand's free device if you are driving or have a friend or family member call.)

Even if you think your pet has not been seriously hurt after being struck by a car, it's vital they still see a veterinarian as soon as possible. Major internal injuries which could cause internal bleeding may be present and be difficult to tell just by looking.

Take the time now to prepare yourself in case the unexpected happens. A general search on the internet for "What to do if your dog is hit by a car" yields many informative results, from how to safely stabilize your pet for transport, CPR, applying pressure to wounds, and much more.

As for our 3 dogs hit by cars that week, 2 of them survived and recovered after surgery.

What are some practical steps you can take to help protect your dog from being hit by a car? Obedience training can do wonders for a dog who wants to slip out the door the first chance they get.

Make sure you don't ever—even for a second—let your dog off leash in an unconfined, unsecured area. A squirrel, a neighborhood cat, even the temptation to go 'say hi' to a neighbor across the street can cause a dog to dart across the road in the blink of an eye.

A pet doesn't have to run out in the road to be run over by a car—driveway accidents account for many injuries. Always know where your pets are and check your surroundings when backing out of or pulling into your drive.

The old saying really is true, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.