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)

£18,500 Starter


£65,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

38 to 40 a week

You could work

on call as customers demand

How to become a veterinary physiotherapist

You can get into this job through:

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


You'll need one of the following qualifications:

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

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

More information


You can start by doing a physiotherapist degree apprenticeship. You will then complete a postgraduate award in veterinary physiotherapy.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 to 3 A levels, 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:

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
  • counselling skills including active listening and a non-judgemental approach
  • to be flexible and open to change
  • knowledge of psychology
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

On a day-to-day basis you'll be:

  • planning exercise programmes
  • using manual and electro-therapy methods to reduce pain and help with movement
  • applying massage and hydrotherapy techniques
  • giving advice on changes to animals' environments

Working environment

You could work at a veterinary practice or at a university.

Your working environment may be physically demanding.

You may need to wear a uniform.

Career path and progression

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

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

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

Health and Physiotherapy Access to Higher Education Diploma Level 3

  • Start date: 16 September 2019
  • Location: Manchester

Access to HE Health & Human Sciences (Physiotherapy)

  • Provider: Richmond And Hillcroft Adult And Community College
  • Start date: 16 September 2019
  • Location: Richmond

JobsIn the United Kingdom

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