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Get access to a 24/7 online vet

Ask a vet online all your pet health questions and get answers in minutes. From preventative care advice to emergency support, our online veterinarians are here to help. 

Get free, unlimited online vet consultations with Fluffy's pet insurance.

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Strelka LTD, trading as Fluffy, Firm Reference No. 986188, is an appointed representative of Innovative Risk Labs Ltd, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, Firm Reference No. 609155.

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Get online vet advice anywhere & anytime

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24/7 vet access

Talk to certified vets whenever you need it, as many times as you want

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Symptom checker

Tell us what’s going on with your pet and we’ll let you know if you need to see a vet a propose at-home treatment

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Treatment plans

Get a treatment plan for your pet’s condition with daily reminders and tasks

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How does our online vet service work?

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Easy Sign-Up

Create an account. It's quick, easy, and opens the door to a wealth of veterinary knowledge.

Choose Your Service

Whether you need a routine check-up, have a specific concern, or require urgent vet advice, our range of services caters to all your needs.

Connect with a Vet

Once you've chosen your service, you'll be connected to a licensed veterinarian through chat.

Receive Care

Our vets are dedicated to providing personalized advice and treatment options tailored to your pet's unique needs.

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Is an online vet consultation right for me and my pet?

1. Routine Queries

If you have general questions about your pet's diet, behavior, or wellness, an online consultation is ideal. Get quick, reliable advice without the need for an in-person visit.

2. Follow-Up Care

Online consultations are perfect for follow-up questions after a physical vet visit. Discuss recovery progress, medication effects, or any concerns you might have post-treatment.

3. Non-Emergency Issues

For minor ailments like mild limping, skin irritations, or upset stomachs, an online vet can provide guidance and recommend whether in-person care is needed.

4. Convenience Factor

If you're seeking a vet opinion but have constraints like limited mobility, lack of transportation, or time restrictions, online consultations offer a practical solution.

What is classed as a vet emergency?

1. Difficulty Breathing

Labored, rapid, or noisy breathing, or if your pet is choking, gagging, or unable to breathe.

2. Severe Injury

Significant bleeding that doesn't stop within a few minutes, or any severe injury such as fractures, deep wounds, or trauma (e.g., from being hit by a car).

3. Poisoning Training

If you suspect your pet has ingested something toxic (like certain human medications, poisonous plants, antifreeze, rat poison, or toxic foods such as chocolate, grapes, or xylitol).

4. Seizures

 If your pet experiences a seizure for the first time, multiple seizures in a short period, or loses consciousness.

5. Paralysis

Sudden inability to use limbs, staggering, or significant weakness.

6. Swollen / Hard Abdomen

A distended or hard belly can be a sign of serious conditions, such as bloat in dogs, which is life-threatening.

7. Inability to Urinate or Defecate

Straining to urinate or defecate or not producing any urine or stool, which can indicate a blockage or other serious issues.

8. Uncontrolled Bleeding

Uncontrolled Bleeding from the Nose, Mouth, or Rectum: This can be a sign of internal bleeding or other serious conditions.

9. Eye Injuries

Any injury to the eye or sudden vision problems.

How much is an online vet visit?

The cost of an online vet visit can vary widely depending on several factors, including the type of service, the expertise of the veterinarian, the length of the consultation, and the specific needs of your pet. Here are some general pricing guidelines based on typical market trends as of of April 2023:

  1. Basic Consultations: For general inquiries or minor concerns, online vet visits in the UK might range from £25 to £50. These sessions typically offer advice, answer questions, and guide whether an in-person visit is necessary.

  2. Specialized Consultations: Consultations with veterinarians specializing in areas like dermatology or behavior might cost between £60 and £120 or more, depending on the complexity of the case and the specialist's expertise.

  3. Emergency or 24/7 Services: Platforms offering 24/7 access to veterinary professionals or emergency consultations may charge between £80 and £160 per consultation. These services are particularly valuable for immediate veterinary advice outside of regular clinic hours.

  4. Subscription Services: Some online vet services use a subscription model, charging a monthly or annual fee for unlimited access to consultations. Monthly subscriptions can vary from £15 to £80, offering a budget-friendly option for frequent users.

Special Offer with Fluffy's Pet Insurance: If you subscribe to Fluffy's pet insurance, you'll receive access to our 24/7 online vet service at no extra cost. This exclusive benefit ensures that professional veterinary advice is always just a call or click away, providing peace of mind and significant savings.

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What is veterinary telemedicine?

Veterinary telemedicine refers to the use of medical information exchanged from one site to another via electronic communications for the health and well-being of animals. This approach allows veterinarians to evaluate, diagnose, and treat pets remotely. Here are key aspects of veterinary telemedicine:

  1. Remote Consultations: Pet owners can consult with veterinarians via phone calls, video chats, or messaging platforms. This is particularly useful for follow-up visits, initial assessments of non-emergency issues, and general advice.

  2. Prescriptions and Treatment Recommendations: Depending on the regulations in the jurisdiction, veterinarians may provide prescriptions and treatment recommendations based on the telemedicine consultation.

  3. Convenience and Accessibility: It offers a convenient option for pet owners who may have difficulty visiting a vet clinic in person due to distance, mobility issues, or time constraints.

  4. Preventive Care and Education: Telemedicine can be used for preventive care advice, behavioral consultations, and educating pet owners on various aspects of pet health and wellness.

  5. Emergency Triage: In some cases, it can help in determining the severity of a pet's condition and whether they require immediate physical emergency care.

  6. Technology Integration: It typically involves the use of digital tools and platforms specifically designed for telemedicine, which may include features for appointment scheduling, secure messaging, and electronic health records.

What are the common signs and symptoms of illnesses among pets?

1. Changes in Appetite / Water Intake

2. Behavioral Changes

3. Vomiting and Diarrhea

4. Unexplained Weight Loss or Gain

5. Coughing, Sneezing, or Difficulty Breathing

6. Excessive Thirst or Urination

7. Limping or Difficulty Moving

8 Skin and Coat Changes

9. Changes in Elimination Habits

10. Bad Breath or Dental Issues

11. Eye or Ear Problems

12. Unusual Odors

What are the most common health problems in pets?

1. Obesity

A significant concern in pets, leading to various health problems like diabetes, joint pain, and heart disease.

2. Dental Disease

Periodontal disease is very common, especially in older pets, leading to issues like tooth loss, infection, and can affect overall health.

3. Ear Infections

Particularly common in dogs with floppy ears. They can be caused by allergies, yeast, bacteria, and ear mites.

4. Skin Allergies and Infections

Skin problems, including allergies, hot spots, and infections, are prevalent, often due to fleas, environmental allergens, or food.

5. Parasites

Fleas, ticks, heartworms, and intestinal parasites like roundworms, tapeworms, and hookworms are common issues.

6. Gastrointestinal Upsets

Vomiting and diarrhea are frequent problems in pets, caused by dietary indiscretion, infections, or chronic conditions like inflammatory bowel disease.

7. Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs)

Especially common in dogs and, in cats, can be associated with stress and lifestyle factors.

8. Arthritis

Older pets often suffer from arthritis, which can significantly impact their quality of life.

9. Diabetes

More commonly seen in older pets, diabetes can be managed with diet and insulin therapy.

10. Cancer

Unfortunately, cancer is a significant health issue in older pets, with treatments ranging from surgery to chemotherapy.

11. Obstructive Diseases

In cats, urinary blockages are common, while dogs may suffer from conditions like bloat.

12. Eye Problems

Including cataracts, glaucoma, and dry eye, which can lead to discomfort and vision loss if not treated.

Can a vet diagnose online?

The ability of a veterinarian to diagnose a pet's condition online depends on several factors, including the nature of the condition, the quality of information and visual evidence provided by the pet owner, and legal/regulatory constraints.

  1. Nature of the Condition: Some health issues can be reasonably assessed based on symptoms described by the pet owner and visual cues observed during a video call. For instance, minor skin irritations, some types of limping, or straightforward behavioral issues might be diagnosed online.

  2. Quality of Information: The accuracy of an online diagnosis greatly depends on the quality and detail of the information provided by the pet owner. Clear descriptions of symptoms, behaviors, and, if possible, quality video or photographic evidence can aid in an online assessment.

  3. Legal and Regulatory Constraints: In many regions, veterinarians are legally required to establish a Veterinary-Client-Patient Relationship (VCPR) before they can diagnose or treat an animal. This often necessitates an initial physical examination. The regulations governing VCPR and telemedicine vary significantly across different jurisdictions.

  4. Limitations of Telemedicine: There are inherent limitations to what can be diagnosed without a physical examination. Conditions that require palpation, auscultation (listening to the internal sounds of the body), or diagnostic tests (like blood work or X-rays) cannot be fully diagnosed online.

  5. Initial Triage and Advice: While a definitive diagnosis may not always be possible, vets can use telemedicine for initial triage, offering advice on whether the situation seems urgent or can be monitored at home. They can also guide on whether an in-person visit is necessary.

  6. Follow-Up Care: For ongoing conditions that have already been diagnosed in person, online consultations can be effective for monitoring and adjusting treatment plans.

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Can I get 24-hour online vet help for free?

In the UK, around-the-clock online vet assistance typically incurs costs between £50 and £100 per consultation. However, subscribers of Fluffy's insurance plans gain access to 24/7 online vet services at no additional charge, offering peace of mind and valuable veterinary advice anytime, without the extra cost. 

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  • Is pet insurance worth it?
    Pet insurance is a valuable safety net, covering unexpected medical expenses. It provides peace of mind, ensuring your pet gets necessary care. It's especially beneficial for pets prone to health issues or accidents.
  • What is the cost of pet insurance?
    The cost depends on factors like your pet's age, breed, and coverage level. Basic plans are more budget-friendly but offer limited coverage. Premium plans cost more but provide comprehensive protection.
  • What pet insurance do vets recommend?
    Vets typically recommend comprehensive policies covering accidents, illnesses, and routine care. They suggest looking for plans with good coverage for chronic conditions. It's also advised to check for policies with minimal exclusions.
  • What does pet insurance cover?
    Accidents: Injuries and emergency treatments. Illnesses: From minor sickness to chronic diseases. Routine Care: Some policies include wellness visits and vaccinations.
  • Pros and cons of pet insurance
    Pros: Financial safety net for unexpected costs. Access to necessary treatments. Peace of mind for pet owners. Cons: Monthly premiums can add up. Exclusions like pre-existing conditions. Potential deductibles and co-pays.
  • Who has the best pet insurance?
    The best pet insurance varies based on individual needs. It's recommended to compare policies for coverage, exclusions, and customer reviews. Look for a balance of cost, coverage, and customer service reputation.
  • Which pet insurance that covers everything?
    No pet insurance covers 'everything,' but comprehensive plans come closest. They typically cover accidents, illnesses, and some wellness procedures. Always check for exclusions like pre-existing conditions and routine care limits.
  • How much is a vet visit for a dog without insurance?
    Costs can range widely, from basic consultation fees to hundreds for complex treatments. Emergency visits or surgeries without insurance can be particularly costly. Prices vary based on the procedure and location of the clinic.
  • What is a good annual limit for pet insurance UK?
    A good annual limit depends on your pet's potential health needs. In the UK, limits typically range from £1,000 to over £15,000. Higher limits offer more coverage but come with higher premiums.
  • Do vets charge more if you have insurance?
    Vets generally charge the same rates regardless of insurance status. Insurance helps owners afford more comprehensive care. It's more about coverage than cost differential at the vet.
  • What’s third party liability pet insurance?
    This covers costs if your pet causes injury to a person or damage to property. It's particularly important for dog owners. This insurance is a safeguard against legal liabilities.
  • How do vaccinations affect pet insurance?
    Keeping vaccinations up to date can lower pet insurance premiums. It reflects responsible pet ownership and preventive health care. Some insurers require up-to-date vaccinations for coverage.
  • What’s co-insurance or co-payment?
    Co-insurance is the percentage of a claim you pay after the excess is deducted. It's a way to share the cost of care between the insurer and the pet owner. Higher co-insurance can mean lower premiums.
  • Why are pedigree animals more expensive to insure?
    Pedigree pets often have a higher risk of inherited health conditions. They may also have higher value, increasing insurance costs. Insurers consider these factors when determining premiums.
  • Does my address matter for my pet insurance price?
    Yes, your location can affect insurance costs. Areas with higher vet fees typically have higher premiums. The risk of theft or straying can also vary by location.
  • Will property be covered if my pet damages it?
    Pet insurance usually doesn't cover damage to your own property. Third-party liability can cover damage your pet causes to others' property. Check your policy for specific exclusions.
  • Does pet insurance cover ‘cherry eye’ in dogs?
    Many insurers cover ‘cherry eye’ treatment if it's not pre-existing. Coverage depends on the specific policy and insurer. Always check for breed-specific condition exclusions.
  • Does pet insurance cover BOAS surgery?
    Coverage for BOAS (Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome) surgery varies. Some insurers cover it if it’s not a pre-existing condition. It's important to check your policy's specifics.
  • How does my pet’s age affect pet insurance?
    Older pets often have higher insurance premiums. They are more likely to develop health issues. Age can also affect the availability of certain coverages.
  • Do I need to pay an excess for pet insurance?
    Most pet insurance policies require paying an excess. The excess is the amount paid out-of-pocket before insurance covers the rest. Choosing a higher excess can lower premiums.
  • Does pet insurance include kennel or cattery fees?
    Some policies cover kennel or cattery fees if the owner is hospitalised. This coverage is typically part of a more comprehensive plan. Always check the policy details for such benefits.
  • Can I get cover that starts immediately?
    Some insurers offer immediate cover for accidents. Illness coverage often has a waiting period. Check with your insurer for specific start times of coverage.
  • Is it better to pay for insurance annually or monthly?
    Paying annually can sometimes offer a discount. Monthly payments provide easier budgeting. Compare options to see which suits your financial situation best.
  • What should I do if my pet goes missing?
    Notify your insurer as many provide assistance for lost pets. Check if your policy includes advertising or reward costs. Also, inform local vets and animal shelters.
  • Will pet insurance cover life-threatening injuries or illness?
    Most pet insurance policies cover life-threatening conditions. This includes emergency surgeries and critical care. Check your policy for any limitations or exclusions.
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James Auton

Fantastic, I'm totally blown away by Fluffy!

Helen Bradfield

I wish there were care plans like this for humans

Rebecca Freeman

After looking at twenty other options, I finally found the perfect one

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