"Dog owners who allow their pets to attack people face tougher prison sentences from Tuesday.
Maximum prison sentences in England and Wales for allowing a dog to fatally attack someone have increased from two years to 14 years, while the term handed down when injury is caused is up from two years to five.
Changes to the Dangerous Dogs Act will also mean dog owners can face prosecution if their dog attacks a person in their home or on any private property, except if they attack a trespasser.
Two babies were killed by dogs earlier this year.
Six-day-old Eliza-Mae Mullane was mauled by a family pet in Pontyberem, South Wales, in February. Less than two weeks later, 11-month-old Ava-Jayne Corless was killed by a pit bull terrier in Blackburn.
Animal welfare minister Lord de Mauley said: "Dog attacks can have horrific consequences for victims and families and it is only right those responsible should face tough punishments.
"Irresponsible dog owners will not only face longer prison sentences, but will also be liable for prosecution regardless of where an attack takes place, even in their own home.
"This will give protection to those who provide vital services in the community - postal workers, nurses, utility workers - as well as people visiting family and friends."
New preventative powers for the police and local authorities are being introduced including sending owners to dog training classes, repairing fencing to prevent dogs escaping and requiring dogs to be muzzled in public.
Guide Dogs chief executive Richard Leaman said: "An attack on a guide dog can be devastating. It can rob someone with sight loss of their independence and freedom, leaving them virtually housebound.
"We're delighted that irresponsible owners can now be given tougher sentences if their dog attacks an assistance dog.
"With an average of 10 guide dogs being attacked every month, we're looking to the police to fully use their new powers to protect vulnerable people from these sometimes life-changing attacks."
Dee McIntosh, Battersea Dogs and Cats Home's director of communications, said: "We believe if more people understood how to care for and be around dogs, there would be far fewer tragic incidents.
"Dog attacks tear apart our communities and affect how we feel about pets and specific dog breeds.
"Any dog, no matter what size or breed, can attack a child, adult or another dog. Training and caring for an animal, and being able to clearly read a dog's body language, are the only ways to help provide safety for the likely victims of attacks, especially children."