Bearing witness to your family pet being struck by a car can be one of the worst experiences for a dog owner. In the event that this happens, you as the dog owner can prepare yourself to aid your pet.
The first thing you should do is get the dog to a safe space away from traffic or other potential hazards. The dog may be scared and try to bite so use caution when approaching and handling your dog. If you have a blanket or cloth or something similar try to use it as a makeshift sling or sac to move your dog off the road. Once your pet is in a safe spot check for signs of life.
If you have a leash or a t-shirt on hand you can use it as a temporary muzzle in the instance that it wants to bite. Leaving the muzzle on should only be used when lifting the dog into a vehicle. Leaving it on can make it hard for the dog to breathe and could become dangerous for the dog if the dog vomits.
While at the Veterinarian, they will assess damages by taking x-rays, drawing blood, and other tests. If there is any internal damage, the vet will suggest emergency surgery.
The best thing a dog owner can do to prevent such disasters is to have defenses against ways their pet may get out of the yard or house, etc. Microchipping and registering your dog is also a great idea in the event that you are not present when your dog is struck, your dog’s chip will notify you if it has been brought to a hospital.
In the case that you hit a dog, per California Vehicle Code Section 20002, dogs that belong to an owner classify as that owner’s property, so you must legally stop and take the effort to find and contact the property owner. In the case that you cannot find the property owner, you can leave a note with details on the incident as well as your contact information. If you don’t leave a note, you must go to the police and report the incident. If you do not report the accident, you could be fined or charged with a misdemeanor.
It is important that you contact an attorney if you have been bitten by a dog. They can offer you advice and most are more than happy to give you some information.
Please feel free to call West Covina accident and injury lawyer, Lem Garcia, for a free consultation.
By: Lem Garcia, personal injury attorney in West Covina