Skip to content

Welcome guest

Please login or register
Veterinary Telehealth for Pets

Veterinary Telehealth for Pets

The Covid-19 pandemic had a tremendous impact on many essential healthcare businesses—one of which is veterinary services. Though veterinary clinics remained open during the pandemic, many people were still hesitant about leaving their homes to take their pets to the vet. As a result, veterinarians had to find a way to quickly adapt to pandemic conditions so that they can still provide services for their patients, but in a safe and effective manner. This led to the emergence of new trends and technologies that helped to transform the way veterinarians provided healthcare for their furry patients.

As a result, one of the most popular and ongoing trends in the pet wellness industry is Veterinary Telehealth—also referred to as telemedicine. This service allows pet parents to access veterinary care from the comfort of their homes, regardless of their location. Through the use of technology and online services, veterinarians are able to connect with pet owners to deliver quality care and services to their pets. Not only do pet owners find this easy and convenient, but it also means they do not have to travel to the vet for every minor concern.

According to Grand View Research, the global Veterinary Telehealth industry is expected to reach a revenue of $546.8 million USD by the year 2030. With an increase in awareness about animal health, coupled with the rising prevalence of animal diseases, people are seeking out veterinary telehealth services more and more.

What is Veterinary Telehealth?

Telehealth is a broad term that embodies various veterinary healthcare services that can be accomplished remotely. According to the American Animal Hospital Organization, the practice of telehealth can be viewed as a tool that is capable of enhancing animal care by making client- patient education, treatment, diagnosis, scheduling, and communication much simpler. It is important to note that telehealth does not replace the need for a physical exam or in-person appointments. Instead, it is used to help augment in-person visits and traditional patient care. With telehealth, not only will you be able to receive professional veterinary help online—as opposed to traveling to the vet—but it makes it easier for you to have access to reliable information that is needed to keep your pet’s health and wellness in check. How? Well, through the use of digital technology of course.

Veterinarian telehealth relies on a variety of different communication tools and technology to deliver clinical health care and relay information to pet owners, regardless of where they are or how far the distance. For instance, some forms of technology that veterinarians will typically use include live video conferencing, emails, the internet, text messaging, phone calls, an app and more. In real-time, and from the comfort of your home, you will be able to have a one-on-one (or one-on-two, including your furry friend!) consultation with a licensed veterinarian regarding general pet health information, guidance, advice and more.

The practice of telehealth focuses on providing both clinical and non-clinical services such as checkups and education. Other services that telehealth is used for include preventative care advice, behavioral counseling, nutrition consultations, monitoring of chronic conditions, and more. According to a 2022 survey by Vetster—an online veterinary service—83% of respondents in the U.S. reported that they used telehealth services as a way to evaluate their pet’s health and seek professional advice, while 40% of respondents used telehealth in order to gain access to veterinarians outside of office hours.

Depending on who is involved in the communication, telehealth can be divided into other subcategories. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), whether a Veterinarian-Client-Patient Relationship (VCPR) has been previously established or not is important when it comes to the communication between you and your pet’s veterinarian.

Subcategories of Telehealth


Teleconsulting is essentially when a veterinarian uses technology to seek out and communicate with a veterinary specialist or qualified expert in order to gain advice and insights on the care of a specific patient. An example of this would be an individual that is board-certified and whose expertise can be of great help.


Also known as remote monitoring, telemonitoring is the use of wearable monitors by pets that can capture their vital signs, glucose levels, and other important behaviors. It is used to monitor pets who are not at the same location as their vet. Through the use of this technology, healthcare data is able to be transmitted back to veterinary professionals who can then disclose any recommendations or treatments for your pet.


Teleadvice is basically the act of providing concerned pet owners with general pet health advice, opinions or guidance that is not specific to their pet. It is simply just a relaying of general information that is not intended to diagnose, treat, or prevent any physical or mental conditions or injury. An example of this would be “how-to” informational guides or wellness recommendations. Teleadvice does not require a VCPR and is made via text, phone call, online, etc.


Teletriage refers to the assessment of your pet in a timely manner in order to determine the urgency of their illness or injury and if they need to seek emergency care. Via electronic consultation with pet owners, veterinarians will determine the level of urgency based on the pet’s medical history and the conditions they observe through photos or videos sent by the owner. They will then determine if they need to be seen in person immediately, or if it can wait until the clinic is open. As pet owners, this can provide us with a great sense of relief. It’s always a nerve-wracking experience to observe something going on with our pets and being uncertain on whether or not it's really serious or if we’re just overreacting. Therefore, the use of teletriage is really helpful, especially in situations where the clinic is closed. Teletriage does not give your pet a diagnosis and a VCPR is also not required.


Telemedicine is the subcategory of telehealth that allows for licensed veterinarians to care for, diagnose, treat, and prescribe medication for your pets remotely. According to VCA Animal Hospital, it is essentially the act of providing medicine at a distance. In order for telemedicine to be conducted, it is especially important that there is an existing VCPR. Veterinarians will utilize video conferencing and other means of communication to visually observe your pet and administer clinical services. An example of a situation in which telemedicine services may be used is post-surgical care and follow-up. According to a report conducted by Grand View Research, it is also anticipated to be the fastest growing segment of telehealth over the forecast period of 2022 through 2030.

E-prescribing or Electronic Prescribing

Electronic prescribing refers to the generation, filling and transmission of a medical prescription in a digital format. This is as opposed to paper and faxed prescriptions. Depending on each state and whether or not controlled substances are involved, there may be some restrictions. Therefore, veterinarians need to check both state and federal requirements if they are interested in using this service.

mHealth or Mobile Health

mHealth is the use of mobile devices such as laptops, phones, and tablets to practice veterinary telehealth.  Through mHealth apps, you are able to keep track of your pet’s health and receive educational information from your furry friend’s veterinarian as well.  Not only is this simple and easy, but it is also convenient as it allows for you to have access to your pet’s health information no matter where you go.  mHealth wearable devices are also able to help amplify animal health care within VCPRs.

The Importance of VCPR in Veterinary Medicine 

As mentioned earlier, telemedicine specifically refers to remote clinical services conducted via technology between you, your pet, and the veterinarian. With telemedicine being a subcategory of telehealth, they are oftentimes used interchangeably to mean the same thing. However, there is one main difference between the two—and that is the existence of a veterinarian-client-patient relationship, or VCPR for short. Not only is this highly important, but it acts as a barrier to practicing telemedicine. This is because without an already existing VCPR, veterinarians wishing to practice telemedicine will not be able to do so. Therefore, it is absolutely required.

For a VCPR to be established and maintained, the licensed veterinarian must have treated your pet before through an in-person appointment. Your pet should already be an existing client and have gone through regular physical examinations by their primary vet. Meaning, the first meeting between your pet and the vet would need to be at the actual facility and not through any technological means. Within a VCPR, your pet’s veterinarian should also be familiar with and keep a record of your pet’s medical history.

When a VCPR exists or is successfully established, there are various services that vets can provide for your pet under the practice of telemedicine. For one, veterinarians will be able to determine the diagnosis for your pet, as well as treat and prescribe medication. They will also be able to conduct virtual exams through real time video, provide post-surgical follow ups, and more.

Without the establishment of a VCPR, veterinary professionals are not legally permitted to diagnose or prescribe medication to your pets virtually. However, they are still able to practice telehealth. Under the category of telehealth, the services provided are predominantly for giving out general advice and guidance for you and your pet through electronic communications such as text, the mHealth app, email, etc. The advice and information given should not be specific to your pet or their condition.

In terms of legalities, veterinary medicine is heavily regulated. Under federal law, in order for veterinarians to prescribe drugs in an “extra-label” manner, the FDA requires for there to be an existing VCPR. “Extra-label” refers to the use of an approved drug in a way that is not listed on its labeling. Veterinary telemedicine also varies state by state, therefore it is important for veterinarians to check with their state licensing board on whether or not a valid VCPR is required to exist before they can write a prescription for your pet.

Being that the practice of telemedicine also allows for vets to potentially consult with patients in other states, it is recommended by the AVMA that they make sure to be licensed to practice in both the state they are located in, as well as the state that their patient is in. This is just a precautionary measure to keep them, along with their pet patients, safe from any legal issues that may arise.

Benefits of Veterinary Telehealth

As pet parents, we know how much of a hassle it can be sometimes to get our pets to the vet, much less in the car. To some pets, the vet is quite literally the last place they would ever want to be. As soon as they realize where they’re headed, cue the dramatics—side eye, silent treatment, barking, whining, —oh trust me, we’ve all probably been there. It’s almost like the ultimate betrayal! But it’s important to realize that oftentimes, they are not simply just being “dramatic”, but instead are showing you signs that they are truly feeling stressed, discomfort, anxious or even fear! According to a study by Royal Canin, 24% of cat owners cited stress as the reason why they did not make frequent trips to the vet.

Telehealth is a viable option for pet parents to choose from for a variety of reasons. In what I’d like to refer to as the four C’s, here are some of the ways in which veterinary telehealth is beneficial for not only your pet, but for you as well!




One of the benefits of veterinary telehealth is that it may prove to be a more comfortable option for your pet. As all pet owners know, trips to the vet can be a stressful situation for our furry or feline companions. When our pets are stressed or are a little too worked up at the vet, there is a possibility that it can tamper with any tests or diagnostics that the veterinarian needs to perform. It can also interfere with any care that needs to be provided.

With veterinary telehealth, your pet is assessed from the comfort of their home. Being in a more familiar environment can help to reduce any stress or anxiety your pet may feel, as opposed to an in-person appointment. Veterinary telehealth can also provide comfort for pet owners as well. The use of teletriage—a timely assessment of your pets condition— can help offer peace of mind to owners who are worried about how serious their pet’s condition may be. Knowing that they have access to a quick health assessment of their pet can potentially make them feel better. Pet owners may also feel more comfortable speaking with a veterinarian from home where they can ask all the questions they want and get general advice back.

Connection & Convenience

Veterinary telehealth can help foster connections between pet owners and veterinarians. It can help to connect you with veterinarians and specialists who may be located far away from you—, sometimes even with those who are in an entirely different state. No matter the distance, the various technologies that telehealth utilizes can help connect you with veterinarians so that you can have easy access to your pet’s healthcare in an efficient manner. These connections can help to improve the communication and relationship between you and your pet’s veterinarian, as well as potentially strengthen the bond between you, your pet, and their vet. It is also able to connect with those who otherwise wouldn’t have been able to access veterinarian care in their area due to geographical limitations. For instance, this can apply to pet owners who live in rural or remote areas and do not have access to a veterinary clinic in their community. With telehealth, these pet owners do not need to travel long distances in order to receive care for their pet.

Veterinary telehealth is also convenient and easy to use. For one, it can be done right at home—or on the go—which can shorten the wait time for your appointment. Not to mention, appointments can be made around your busy schedules so that it can happen at a time that is most suitable for you. Telehealth is also convenient as it allows for you to have access to your pet’s health information anytime, anywhere. All you need is a phone, tablet, or computer with a stable internet connection. Some providers even offer 24/7 veterinary telehealth services!


Veterinary telehealth can be cost-effective. For instance, it can help pet owners cut down on travel costs that are typically incurred by taking their pet to the vet. For the most part, telehealth services can also be a little more affordable than traditional veterinary care. However, it really all depends on the provider. There is also a possibility that pet telehealth services can be covered partially by insurance companies, which can further help to reduce costs. Some insurance programs may offer free telehealth consults for being a part of their programs, however, always be sure to check with your insurance company on how these services can be covered. According to Airvet—a pet telehealth platform—pet telehealth can also potentially reduce pet insurance claims by 80% since many visits can be resolved virtually.

Other benefits of telehealth is that it can improve your pet’s overall health and wellness. With telehealth services, your pet can receive post-surgical care, routine wellness check-ups, after- hours care, and more. Chronic illnesses, minor injuries, and acute health concerns are also able to be addressed via veterinary telehealth. Telehealth is also a good and easy way for licensed veterinarians to educate pet owners about pet care and give advice. Utilizing these services also give veterinarians the opportunity to reach and offer services to a larger audience, while saving time as well since it can help them reduce the need for in-person consultations for minor concerns.


There are many telehealth providers out there that veterinarians use to help them communicate and connect with pet parents. While the majority of telehealth apps are free to download, they will typically charge monthly or annual subscriptions. Through these apps, you will be able to schedule appointments, keep track of your pet’s medical history, send text messages, or even start video chats. You will also be able to get connected with your primary veterinarian—or a vet you never worked with before if your primary vet is unavailable. 

Telehealth/Telemedicine Apps to Consider

There are many telehealth providers out there that veterinarians use to help them communicate and connect with pet parents.  While the majority of telehealth apps are free to download, they will typically charge monthly or annual subscriptions.  Through these apps, you will be able to schedule appointments, keep track of your pet’s medical history, send text messages, or even start video chats.  You will also be able to get connected with your primary veterinarian—or a vet you never worked with before if your primary vet is unavailable.

Here are some of the most popular telehealth apps!


Televet is a telemedicine platform that allows pet owners to schedule their appointments via text messaging, phone, or video. Through the app, they also have access to their pet’s medical history and can digitally check-in to appointments to avoid wait times. Pet owners have the ability to pre-pay for upcoming services, as well as complete payments for appointments. Other services include: two-way texting, prescription refill requests, and more.


Price is determined by their regularly visited veterinary clinic. Each clinic can set their own prices for each service. 


This service allows pet owners to have 24/7 access to “world-class veterinary care” no matter their location. The app includes unlimited chats and video calls with veterinary professionals without any time limits. Pet owners will be able to receive advice and guidance from licensed veterinarians. These veterinarians can also help them assess a variety of pet health concerns such as: skin issues, allergies, dietary needs, separation anxiety, and more. Through the app, veterinarians can determine if a pet needs to be seen or not depending on their condition.


It is subscription based. For $30 a month, you can become an Airvet Member and have access to a $3,000 life-saving emergency fund. However, there are two other options for virtual consults that pet owners can choose from. One of the options is on-demand video calls which have a fee of $49. The other option is if pet owners want to have a virtual appointment with their primary veterinarian. This is typically used for non-urgent matters and their primary vet would have to be on Airvet. The fee is also set by their primary vet.

Preparing for Your Pet’s Telehealth Appointment

To prepare for your pet’s telehealth appointment, there are a few things you need to have prepared in order for it to be a smooth experience. To make the best of your virtual visit with the veterinarian, here are a few preparations that need to be in order!

1. Internet Connection. Make sure that your internet signal is strong and that the device you are using is able to support the app used by your veterinarian. Make sure to test the audio and video camera before the appointment to ensure that they work properly.

2. Lighting. Be sure to sit in a well-lit area of your home so that the vet is able to see everything clearly. Make sure it is quiet and that there are no distractions so that your attention can solely be focused on the appointment at hand.

3. Prepare materials beforehand. If needed, make sure to have already sent any pictures or videos to your pet’s vet before the appointment. Have any updates, medical history, or vaccine information readily available. This is more so important in the case that this is a veterinarian who has never examined your pet before.

4. Have your pet nearby. Of course, this appointment is all about them! So make sure that your furry friend is right by your side, especially in case the vet may ask to see physical features of your pet or ask you to carry out a task.


*This post is intended for informational purposes only. Always seek out professional veterinary help and advice for any inquiries you may have.

CBD Oil for Pet Wellness
Woman on an airplane with dog in kennel on her lap.

Your Cart

Your cart is currently empty

Your Wishlist