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Veterinary physiotherapist

Alternative titles for this job include Animal physiotherapist

Veterinary physiotherapists work with injured animals, or animals with movement problems, to help reduce pain and improve their health.

Average salary (a year)

£24,000 Starter


£38,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

38 to 42 a week

You could work

on call as customers demand

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become Veterinary physiotherapist

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • an apprenticeship
  • specialist courses run by private training organisations


You'll usually need to study one of the following qualifications:

If you have completed a degree in human physiotherapy, or animal science, you could apply for a place on a postgraduate master's course in animal physiotherapy.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English, maths and science
  • 2 or 3 A levels, or equivalent, including biology for a degree
  • a degree in a relevant subject for postgraduate study

More Information


You could start your career by doing a Physiotherapist Level 6 Degree Apprenticeship. You could then go on to complete a postgraduate award in veterinary physiotherapy.

This apprenticeship can take around 4 years to complete.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, preferably including biology, for a degree apprenticeship

More Information

Other Routes

You could train in animal massage or animal hydrotherapy, if you do not have a degree but want to work in a related area.

You can get more details about training from the:

More Information

Professional and industry bodies

You can join the Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Animal Therapy for professional development and training opportunities.

Further information

You can find out more about becoming a veterinary physiotherapist from the:

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • sensitivity and understanding
  • to enjoy working with other people
  • customer service skills
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • analytical thinking skills
  • to be flexible and open to change
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • knowledge of medicine and dentistry
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

As an animal physiotherapist, you could:

  • learn about an animal's medical history from its owner, keeper or vet
  • work with animals in recovery after operations or accidents
  • plan exercise programmes
  • use manual and electrotherapy methods to reduce pain and help movement
  • write reports on an animal's rehabilitation progress
  • use massage and hydrotherapy techniques

Working environment

You could work at a veterinary practice, in a therapy clinic, on a farm, at a wildlife park or at a zoo.

Your working environment may be physically demanding.

You may need to wear a uniform.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

With experience, you could become a senior physiotherapist, or a specialist physiotherapist for animal breathing conditions or problems affecting the nervous system.

You could also set up your own animal physiotherapy practice or move into research.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

We can't find any apprenticeship vacancies in England for a Veterinary physiotherapist right now.

The Find an apprenticeship service can help you with your search, send alerts when new apprenticeships become available and has advice on how to apply.

Courses In England

Access to HE Diploma (Health and Physiotherapy)

  • Provider: The Manchester College
  • Start date: 01 September 2024
  • Location: Manchester

Health and Human Sciences (Physiotherapy) - Access to HE

  • Start date: 23 September 2024
  • Location: Richmond

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