It is definitely not the most pleasant experience, but it is nearly unavoidable - the longer you drive, the greater your odds of hitting an animal. I've been driving for 30 years, and I have certainly had my share of vehicular encounters with critters - nothing too serious or dangerous though.

READ MORE: Indiana Man Has Unexpected Encounter With This Uncommon Hoosier Critter

I've never stopped to think about what I should do (if anything) after I hit an animal, especially if it's not someone's pet. Do I need to report it? Is there someone I should call? Should I just keep on driving? I decided to look for answers to those questions and was surprised by what I found.

What Should I Do After Hitting an Animal With My Vehicle?

The answer to whether you should or shouldn't call someone after you hit an animal is pretty unclear, so I'm gonna say that decision is up to you. You probably don't "need" to in most cases, when it's a smaller wild animal, like a squirrel, rabbit, or raccoon. I would definitely recommend that you stop if you hit an animal that appears to be someone's pet and do your best to find and contact the owner. I think the most obvious reasons you would need to make a call are if you hit a large animal, causing damage to your vehicle or property, or if you encounter a large carcass that is blocking the road. In those situations, who you gonna call?

Deer crossing
Photo by Ross Stone on Unsplash

According to, the Indiana Department of Transportation is who you should contact to report roadkill on state and federal highways. When it comes to city and/or county roads, you need to contact your local public works or sanitation departments to collect wildlife killed on the road. If you want or need to remove a dead animal from private property, you can contact a wildlife control operator or just do it yourself.

Rabbit in the road
Photo by Michael Yantis on Unsplash

If you are going to handle a dead animal, though, please remember to wear gloves and place small animals in plastic bags or garbage bags (double-bagged). You can dispose of those animals in the trash. Other legal disposal options in Indiana include burial, incineration, rendering, and composting.

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There is no shortage of stunning wildlife in Indiana. Here are six species native to the state that you might encounter the next time you head outside.

Gallery Credit: Kat Mykals

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