What to do if you hit an animal
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  • What to do if you hit an animal
  • 15 September 2021
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    What to do if you hit an animal

    Don't worry - It's not a common occurrence, but it can happen, and we're here to tell you what you need to do!
The first thing you need to do if you hit an animal is turn your hazards on!

You also need to come to a stop when it's safe to do and turn your engine off.

Ensure that neither you, or your passengers have sustained any injuries from the accident, and then safely exit the vehicle. When you're out of your car, keep your distance away from the animal, as if it's injured it could become aggressive.

If the animal you hit is one of the following...

   - Dog
   - Horse
   - Cattle
   - Pigs 
   - Goats 
   - Sheep
   - Donkey or mules

...The next step is to call the police! It is illegal to hit an animal and drive away from the scene, however, you don't have to inform the police for all animals, for instance, with badgers, foxes or any other smaller animals, you could reach out to the RSPCA, who could potentially save the animals life. 

If the animal has died, you need to report this to the local authorities so they can come and move the body. Alternatively, if you're able to, you should move the body out of the road, onto the side, so it does not cause further obstruction. 

If you are concerned that the animal involved in the accident may be somebody's pet, you will need to take a slightly different route.

If it's a dog that you've hit, like above, you will need to call the police, however, unfortunately, if it's a cat you do not need to do so.

Once you have got out of your car, check your surroundings to see if you can see the owner. If you can, they may be panicked and distressed, so stay calm, and give them your details. If you can not see the owners, you should check the animal over for any tag, or collar that may have contact details on it. If no details can be found, you can then contact the RSPCA who can check for a microchip which should have up-to-date details of the owners.

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