I think I might have hit a cat with my car.

I am hoping beyond hope that it was a very cat-like plastic bag. Every time my coworker passes me she says “Plastic bag!” for reinforcement.

It’s a busy four-lane road, and the cat was lying in the middle of my lane. I thought it was dead - it looked freshly roadkilled. I aimed the car so it would go under the middle and not under the wheels. Looked back in the rear view mirror and it had moved to the far side of the next lane. I thought I felt a thump in the back wheel.

It may have been only hit a bit, or stunned, or the world’s stupidest cat sleeping in a four lane road, and then startled when I drove over it and run into my rear wheel. It wasn’t in my tire tracks - it had moved a lot farther, but I might have broken its leg or something. The road was too busy to stop, and there were cars and cars and cars coming in that lane - if it was a cat, and if I did hit it and cripple it, it didn’t last the next fifteen or twenty seconds, I’m sure.

But I feel horrible. I guess I should have pulled down a side street and walked back to find out if it needed putting out of its misery. (Or for that matter if it was a Very Catlike Plastic Bag. It did move VERY fast when I drove over it, in the manner of a plastic bag. However, cats can move like that when frightened, and I can’t stress enough that this would have been the world’s most mammalian plastic bag.)

I just feel awful about the whole thing. I’d like to go throw up.

It was a plastic bag. You wouldn’t have thought you felt a bump, you would have wondered what the hell you hit with your car if you ran over something more than a plastic bag.

Another vote for plastic bag. Kittie Kats, especially the cuter ones, do a lot of damage to the front of your car and the undercarriage. More damage than hitting a log or large rock. It’s not uncommon for entire axle assemblies to be ripped off by even a small kitten. I’m a car insurance claims guy, so I know whereof I speak.

So, minimal damage to your car = plastic bag.

If I just hit its leg?

I was a passenger when my college roomate hit a puppy with a collar. The beagly kind. It darted into traffic and she slammed on the brakes and slowed down in time for it to make it in front of her, but then it turned around and ran right back into her front wheel. Nothing she could have done, but god. She wouldn’t stop. I mean, I know it was dead, the way she hit it, but I still think we should have gone back and knocked on the nearest door or something. It was ten years ago and thinking about it still makes me think I might throw up. I was afraid to get out of the car when we got to where we were going (dinner!) because I thought there might be puppy-parts on the door.

Yeah, that was a serious KATHUMP when we hit that dog. This was more like a bump in the road, or a metal plate or something. I definitely didn’t hit an animal dead-on. Which is really worse, if it suffered. Or is even now suffering in the median.

You are being too kind. :slight_smile:

Several years ago, I hit a cat while driving. He darted across the two lane country road I was traveling, I braked, he zigged at the wrong moment, and ran right under my front left tire.

He wasn’t a big cat, and he wasn’t immediately killed by the impact, but short of a collision with another car, I’ve never experienced such a jolt while driving.

Poor guy. I stopped my car, got out and walked back to him. It took him about a minute to bleed out, and then I carried him back to the nearest house where, it turned out, he’d come from.

Then I cried my eyes out the rest of the way home. :frowning:

You hit a plastic bag. There was probably something light in it, and it was blown under your back tire either by the draft of the car or another breeze.

I once hit a possum with my car. Trust me, you would’ve felt it. Still voting for plastic bag.

Because hearing this over and over probably helps:

You didn’t hit a cat. You would definitely, definitely know if you ran over an animal.

I’m unconvinced, because like I said it would have been the cattiest plastic bag in the history of plastic bags. But I appreciate it.

Many years ago, I hit a small dog on my motorcycle. It put me on the ground. I say plastic bag.

It was a cat in a plastic bag.

This was just a matter of time. :slight_smile:

So you drove over the thing and heard a “whump” as the bag inflated and smacked the bottom of your car. I mean, if it was a cat that had ‘deflated’ under your car you would have smelled it cooking on the exhaust.

Take it easy on yourself, okay?

I agree with the others and you need to let this go.


Hey, any of you seen a cat around here? I let him out this morning and he hasn’t come back yet. His name is Plastic Bag. Let me know.

But it wasn’t moving when you saw it? If it was a live cat it would have been darting around. It was either already dead or it was a plastic bag.

Cats don’t sleep in the road. If it was a cat it was already a goner.

I thought maybe somebody else had already winged it.

That seems very low-probability to me–that someone could have struck it badly enough to immobilize but not kill it. Also, that would contradict the theory that it ran into your wheel or you crippled it but it darted away.

You saw it in the road, not moving. You felt a “thump” but not a very definite one. Then you saw it in a different location, a few yards away, outside your tire tracks. You couldn’t have flung it that far with the force of your wheels if it was a cat. Not without feeling a really big bump and making an obvious gory mess. I just don’t see this adding up to a cat. It really sounds like the behavior of a plastic bag to me.

You mean like this?

Relax, it was a plastic bag. I mean think about it. One, cat’s don’t just sleep in the middle of a busy road. That means if it was a cat, it was already hit. Yet, if it was already hit, how could it have moved across the road so fast? It was just a very devious plastic bag.

I know how awful you must feel though. Hope you are feeling better.

The way you describe it zipping to the next lane, it sounds baggie to me. I’ve seen plastic bags with the handles knotted together making them look a helluva lot like pointy ears.

A friend’s young cat was recently killed by a car driving over it, the way you describe you went over the bag. The undercarriage of the car still didn’t clear the cat when it was standing. Looking at the body, the impact even of what would have been a glancing impact had still been significant. I’ve passed over a dead ground hog the way you describe and didn’t quite clear it. The thump was like pitcher had launched a softball at my car, there was no mistaking the sound of impact.

If you hit a cat you wouldn’t think you felt a thump, you would absolutely know there was undeniably some kind of impact. Also if you hit an animal, it would have be thrown more in the direction your car was going and not sideways into the next lane.

I’ve gone over plastic and it made quite a noticeable “whoosh-FLUD!” sound, that was definitely thump-like.

It was a bag.