We are delighted to publish these Good Practice Points support health visitors working with families where a baby or young child may be at risk of harm from a dog.

Approximately 40% of households in the UK have pets (Pet Food Manufacturers Association, 2016). Working animals and livestock animals may also play an important role in many families. The most popular household animals are dogs and cats but people also keep more exotic creatures such as snakes and tree frogs.

Interaction with animals can have developmental and therapeutic benefits for children. However, interaction can also result in harm. For example, cat faeces can contain a parasite that causes toxoplasmosis infection, which can cause miscarriage or stillbirth in some pregnant women. A specific risk of harm to babies and children is from dog bites.


Please note that this GPP is available to iHV members only.

If you’re not a member, please join us to get access to all of our resources.

The iHV is a self-funding charity – we can only be successful in our mission to strengthen health visiting practice if the health visiting profession and its supporters join us on our journey. We rely on our membership to develop new resources for our members.

So do join us now!

button small_200