Hospital That Let Dog Watch Woman Give Birth in Delivery Room Is On to Something

Awww! 52

I'm not Barney ... thank goodness.I'm totally loving this idea. A woman in Bristol, England was allowed to bring her therapy dog into the hospital with her -- who then stayed by her side as she gave birth. The dog, a Labrador named Barney, was allowed inside the room where the unnamed woman gave birth to a baby. Barney is a certified therapy dog and the woman got permission from higher-ups at the hospital. But some cranky non-pet-loving types are complaining about it, natch. Way to ruin everyone's fun.

Reportedly, the faithful pooch stood by and slobbered over observed the entire two-hour birth. The woman said she needed the dog there to calm her anxiety.

Hospital bosses said that permission was granted by infection control experts and that a thorough cleaning was done after the birth. But some people -- probably poor, lonely, petless people -- do not approve. Sources told The Sun:

Nurses and doctors were appalled ... This is the first time any of the hospital’s staff can remember such a thing happening. They’re now worried that other women will be allowed to do the same because a precedent has been set.

Oh well, boo hoo. The world would be a better place if dogs were allowed everywhere. Let 'em inside the cockpit of planes, I say. How about standing by during open heart surgery? Why not? I'm not a big dog person -- cats are my thing -- but you can't tell me dogs are any more or less germy than people. Do they eat their poop? So I've heard. But people put their noses in some strange places too.

I think this idea should be expanded. What about a delivery ward at the Humane Society? You could pick out a new pet while dealing with those pesky contractions. How about special birthing packages that allow you to push out your lil 'un in the monkey exhibit at the zoo?

There are all kinds of ideas here. I think Animal Planet needs to get on this.

Do you think a dog should be allowed in a birthing ward?


Image via AndreaArden/Flickr

3rd trimester, baby prep, delivery

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psych... psychofab

If infection control didn't think it was a big thing, then who cares. They thoroughly cleaned and it's not like a certified therapy dog is gonna be just any regular old hyper, untrained thing. They are exceptionally calm. They kinda have to be. 

Mamab... MamabearC

An already approved therapy dog, who "visits" patients in the hospital anyway is something that I would not have a problem with. I WOULD have a problem with every patient being able to bring in any dog from home that they wanted.I don't want a part of my hospital bill to include a new charge so that the hospital can pay to have every dog inspected,tested and approved before they come in and yet I certainly don't want an animal in the hospital that hasn't met the health guidlines so hasn't been approved.

nonmember avatar NoWay

Why not during open heart surgery? I doubt the dog is sanatized and wearing scrubs ... as far as the woman in l&d ... it's a tough call because some people are allergic to dogs ... :-/

the4m... the4mutts

Seeing as how it was a trained, liscenced, therapy dog, then yes.

My pets? No. They can barely get petted without whizzing themselves with excitement.

Flori... Floridamom96

Deliver at home. Then you get to decide who is in attendance. Hospital births should only be used when necessary. They should not be the norm.

Rae.302 Rae.302

I'm with floridamom all the way.

nonmember avatar Blush

I think people have therapy dogs confused with the service dogs used by blind and physically handicapped. These dogs are not covered under the ADA public access rights and can be any ill-trained, ragged animal that the patient says soothes them.

Doomy234 Doomy234

In the case of theraphy dogs I say yes. But I dont think just anyone should bring their pets in. They could get in the way, tear up important equipment, or (hopefully not) jump on you during labor or get upset by seeing their master straining to give birth and bite the doctor thinking that he/she is hurting her. I can see a lot going wrong for anything other than trained professional dogs.

mande... manderspanders

Right floridamom... you just have all the answers.  Let's bow down to your righteousness.  I'm not against home birth; but it isn't reasonable or practical for every woman. Duh.  And even in a hospital you should ALWAYS have a say at who is in attendance.


I'm not sure why the author is being so damned snarky. Really, it was a certified therapy dog with prior approval from the hospital... any patient with a certified therapy dog ought to be able to make arrangements to have that dog with them in a hospital for certain things.  Surgery, no... duh. And childbirth isn't surgery.   No people should be allowed to just bring in their pets whenever... it would be a mad house.  But then again... most people's pets are better behaved than most people's kids... *sigh*

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