Vet Helpline has launched a live answer service in time for Christmas, which can be a difficult time for many people.

The Vetlife website has a host of information to help veterinary professionals.

The new service, made possible with support from the new RCVS joint initiative, Mind Matters, means anyone calling the helpline will be answered by a trained volunteer.

The helpline telephone number has changed to 0303 040 2551, but Vet Helpline chairman Rosie Allister said the non-judgmental, completely confidential and empathetic support offered would remain the same.

“It’s so important people who take the brave and positive step to seek help by calling Vet Helpline are able to connect with one of our trained volunteers as quickly as possible,” she said.

“We know many are deterred by reaching a voicemail, so connecting to a human being is vitally important and can have an important positive impact.

“We are so grateful for this vote of confidence in Vet Helpline from the Mind Matters initiative.”

Miss Allister said everyone involved in running Vet Helpline was a volunteer.

“The team is so incredibly passionate and keen to see the service continually improve,” she said. “The launch of our confidential email service last year, which hides all email addresses (accessible via, was a huge positive step forward and now this evolution to live answering is another.”

As one of the four arms of support offered by the Veterinary Benevolent Fund (VBF) charity, Vet Helpline sits alongside services offering financial support, help with mental health conditions, including drug and alcohol addiction, and a library of useful resources aimed at promoting well-being on the Vetlife website,

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