Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Pet Talk

March 23, 2012

Injured canines need quick attention

CNHI News Service —

In seconds your life can be changed forever. As distractions increase for drivers, so does the number of car accidents. Unfortunately, pets are often affected by distracted drivers and can incur serious injury.

“On average, here at the Texas A&M Small Animal ER, we tend to see at least three to five animals that have been hit by a car each week,” said Dr. Brooke Smith, veterinary resident instructor at the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences.

“Most of the victims are medium to large dog breeds that were playing somewhere off leash and ran into the road or dogs that escaped from the back yard,” Smith added. “We do see smaller dogs and cats, but unfortunately due to their size and the amount of trauma a vehicle can cause, they sometimes pass away before they make it to the hospital.”

If you do see an animal hit by a car, please call your local Animal Control Officer on duty immediately.

“Animals that have sustained serious trauma will be in a lot of pain,” Smith says, “and there is a high risk that a good Samaritan will be bitten while trying to help the hurt animal. Animal Control Officers are trained to handle these situations.”

If you witness your pet getting injured, ask someone to assist you to place the animal in your car and bring it to the nearest emergency care facility.

However, if your pet is in a lot of pain there is a possibility that it may bite you. Smith recommends placing a blanket or towel over its head to ensure your safety when helping your pet. It is always good to know where the nearest 24-hour veterinary care facility is in case of emergency situations like this.

One important point to take away from this topic is to have your pet microchipped and to keep your contact information current with the company that supplied the microchip.

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