Animal physiotherapist

Dog being groomed

Animal physiotherapists restore and maintain mobility, function, independence and performance in animals.

They carry out treatment on domestic pets, farm animals and exotic pets, with horses, dogs and cats being the most common.

Tasks you would carry out include:
•    Assessment
•    Massage
•    Ultrasound
•    Electrotherapy
•    Exercise
•    Owner education and advice

Working Conditions

Full-time contracts will work about 37.5 hours a week, Monday to Friday. Part-time contracts are also common, but hours may vary depending on the needs of practice.



Salaries vary with experience, qualifications and between companies, but here's a guide to what you can expect.

Starting salary:


Ending Salary:



Getting started

You will need to have qualifications and training at higher education level.

The most common routes into the profession are through:

•    An undergraduate degree in human physiotherapy, followed by a postgraduate training in animal/veterinary physiotherapy.
•    An undergraduate degree in veterinary nursing, followed by a postgraduate training in animal/veterinary physiotherapy.

Relevant qualifications

Employers are looking for the kind of skills you demonstrate at work, which may include:
•    Strong interpersonal and communication skills
•    Teamwork skills
•    An aptitude for problem solving
•    Analytical skills
•    Administrative and record keeping skills

You’ll also need to be:
•    Patient, sensitive, tactful and persistent
•    Flexible and adaptable


Next steps

Once you're fully qualified you could find work as a lecturer or self-employed consultant.

If you work in a larger company there should be opportunities for promotion to senior or leadership positions.

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