The Links Group and BSAVA to host veterinary training on non-accidental injury and domestic and child abuse

13 April 2023

The Links Group and the British Small Animal Veterinary Association (BSAVA) are hosting regional training days to help veterinary teams recognise and act on non-accidental injuries, helping them understand the link between animal abuse and domestic abuse. The training will take place in locations across BSAVA’s regional network in the UK, and is open to large, small, and equine veterinary teams.

The sessions will cover the complexity of abuse and the impact of domestic abuse on children, as well as how to recognise abuse/non-accidental injury in animals, how to document vital information, and importantly, what to do when dealing with disclosure from a human victim of abuse. They will also provide guidance on setting up a practice protocol and identifying a practice links adviser who will assist those involved in the veterinary team to manage suspected cases of abuse.

Invited guests will vary by region and include representatives from human and veterinary health, welfare bodies and policy makers, with the aim of raising awareness of the link and informing opinion at local and national levels. Previous guests have included the NSPCC, Women’s Aid, NHS Integrated Care Boards, county councils, regional domestic abuse services, children’s services, adult safeguarding services, veterinary schools, and veterinary associations.

Vicki Betton, Vice-Chair of The Links Group says: “We’re thrilled to be rolling out our programme of in-person training days with BSAVA. Abuse of any vulnerable member of the family, human or animal, is a difficult subject for many to even consider, but with reported cases of domestic abuse reaching an all-time high during the pandemic, its essential that teams are aware of the issue and have a practice protocol in place for if they feel something isn’t quite right with a case.

“We’re looking forward to exploring the most effective ways veterinary teams can recognise and act on suspected cases of non-accidental injury or disclosures of domestic or child abuse.”

For more information and to book your place on any of the upcoming training days, visit the BSAVA website This training is free to BSAVA members, but all members of the veterinary team are welcome and the rate for non-members is £50 inc. VAT.

For more information on The Links Group, visit the website here: