Dog Deaths on Roads in the USA – Causes and Prevention - Dog Respect

Dog Deaths on Roads in the USA – Causes and Prevention

by Assaf Sharashov January 23, 2019

Dog on the road



If you draw up some basic statistics, you’ll find that there are approximately four million miles of roads in the United States and 26 million vehicles registered for travel. With such extensive numbers, naturally the amount of roadkill that happens as a result of careless driving is naturally high. There are many animals that become the victim of a speeding vehicle, and dogs make up a significant chunk of the animal population that becomes a target of negligent driving and road accidents.

Dog deaths on roads in the USA have now reached an alarming total, with 1.2 million dogs getting killed on roads every year.

Why Does It Happen

In most cases, dog deaths on roads happen for a simple reason; most motorists fail to see the dog and only spot it when it is too late. Dog deaths are more common during the night time, especially for a dark-colored dog. Even light colored dogs become unfortunate targets.

Dogs might also die after an accident where they seem to be unharmed. This is because dogs tend to hide their pain. If your dog does get hit by a car, it’s likely that they will pretend like nothing happened. They might exhibit more timid behavior, but for the most part, they will not give any indicators of being injured. This is because dogs have an inbuilt survival instinct due to how injuries are treated in the wild. Animals that show signs of weakness get killed.

As a result of their persevering nature, a treatable internal injury can escalate and result in eventual death.

Protecting Dogs from Road Accidents

Making dogs more visible to incoming traffic during nighttime is the first step towards protecting them. LED collars will make your dog visible to the motorists.  

If your dog still gets hit, then no matter how minor the accident, you should still drive them to a veterinarian or a veterinary clinic immediately. Call them while you are on your way so that they are prepared to receive the dog, especially if the accident is a bad one.

If your dog has fallen unconscious and is hurt badly, you should be extra careful with them. If possible, bring another person to keep watch while you drive. Unconscious dogs can wake up while you’re still driving and act crazy due to their injuries. This might cause you to lose control of your driving.

Being Prepared

A visit to the vet is naturally expensive, but it is important to remember that in a serious situation, such as this, the well-being of the animal is your top priority.

As a dog owner, you should have a contingency plan in place for any vet emergencies. You should either have a pet insurance policy in place or a credit card or savings account.

Statistics also show that a dog chasing a car is at a higher risk of getting hit by one. Therefore, besides taking measures to deal with an emergency situation, you must also teach your dog to not chase cars.

Assaf Sharashov
Assaf Sharashov

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