People and Pets Veterinary Services' Dr Michael O'Donoghue has set up grief counselling support for those that are struggling after losing a pet.
A NATIONAL hotline has been set-up to connect people who have lost their pet with a trained counsellor who can help a person better cope with their loss.
The service founder, People and Pets Veterinary Services' Dr Michael O'Donoghue, believes grief associated with the loss of a pet is often misunderstood.
He has found that people can grieve deeply the loss of their pet and for a long time.
"Pet loss and grief is almost an unknown or unrecognised factor in society," he said.
"I think some people really get it and others just don't get how people grieve intensely about their pets.
"Often they are very close companions.
"They can spend 24 hours a day with us and we become extremely well-attached to them.
"When they die, there can be a huge hole in your life and you don't get the same kind of support you would if a close family member died."
People can call the Pets and People Loss Counselling hotline, 1300 431 450, 24 hours a day and talk to a specialised pet loss counsellor or by going to petsandpeople.com.au.