Pinellas Park officer dashes onto I-275 to save dog that had been hit by car

(Pinellas Park Police Department)

A Pinellas Park police officer is being praised for darting into traffic to rescue a dog that had just been hit by a car.

Pinellas Park police Officer Joseph Puglia was driving to work last Thursday when he saw the tiny dog get struck by a vehicle after it had wandered onto Interstate 275 near 38th Ave North.

Video from Puglia's dash cam showed him stop and get out within seconds of the dog getting hit.

"Without hesitation, Ofc. Puglia swerved over to block the dog from traffic," the agency wrote on Facebook.

Puglia said he wrapped the dog in an emergency blanket, put him in his SUV and called dispatch. He then rushed the dog to Pinellas Animal Hospital.

The dog survived with minor cuts and bruises.

"After some medical examinations, the dog is expected to make a full recovery. The owner has not yet been located due to the dog not having a microchip or tag," police said.

Puglia says they nicknamed the dog, who ended up in the county's animal shelter, Lucky. If no one claims Lucky, he says family members are ready to take him.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.