This may seem like a silly question to most people, but what most people are not aware of is that the title ‘veterinary physiotherapist’ is not protected. Meaning that anyone can call themselves a veterinary physiotherapist, regardless of whether they have trained for four years, four days, or watched a video on how to do it.
This lack of regulation leaves both Veterinarians and owners confused as to who to choose to treat their animals, to ensure their best welfare.
However, all those who treat animals must work under the Veterinary Surgeons Act 1966. This means that your vet must give permission for them to treat your animal. Please find links to the veterinary surgeons act and my veterinary referral form at the bottom of this page.
There are a number of professional bodies to choose from, all with their own entry routes, level of qualification and code of conduct.
The Associations of Chartered Physiotherapists in Animal Therapy (ACPAT) physiotherapists qualify first as human physiotherapists and, after practicing human physiotherapy for a number of years, then train to be veterinary physiotherapists. Some people believe that this is the only acceptable route to become a veterinary physiotherapist with proper training. Let me ask you this; your veterinarian did not train as a doctor first, does that make them any less capable of being a vet?
I am a member of the National Association of Veterinary Physiotherapists (NAVP) and therefore am bound to their professional code of conduct, you can find a link to their website at the bottom of the page. I completed a four year undergraduate degree in veterinary physiotherapy at Harper Adams University and completed xxxx hours of practical training. NAVP require that their members complete numerous professional competency tests before qualifying and then complete continued professional development (CPD) throughout their professional career.
I am confident that I can call myself a fully qualified veterinary physiotherapist.
I would advise, for the sake of your animal’s welfare, that you ensure your veterinary physiotherapist is fully qualified and insured before allow them to treat your animal.
Link to Veterinary Surgeons Act 1966: - http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1966/36
Link to veterinary referral form
Link to NAVP website: - http://www.navp.co.uk/