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Veterinary Physiotherapy with Hydrotherapy Level 6 Diploma (RQF) - Part 1

Ofqual Code 603/7725/2
Qualification Level 6
Course Level 1879
Guided Learning Hours 267
OCN West Midlands 3 Years
Enrolment Valid For 3 Years
Credits 153
Entry Criteria Minimum age : 18. Learners must have a Level 3 Diploma in Hydrotherapy (including treadmill unit – with either ABC/SEG, Open College Network West Midlands or OCN London) and prior experience within the industry. Learners must be able to access veterinary physiotherapy clinics to complete 800 hours of clinical practice.
Assessment Method Portfolio of Evidence and practical assessment
Practical (mandatory) Learners need to attend 25 days of practical training and assessment (at one of our centres) PLUS 800 hours of physiotherapy clinical practice
Award Type Diploma

The Level 6 Diploma in Veterinary Physiotherapy with Hydrotherapy qualification will provide learners with a higher-level knowledge of small animal hydrotherapy and allow them to qualify as a veterinary physiotherapist, gaining the skills, knowledge and practical training required to treat animals both in and out of the water. The course content combines a sound knowledge base of anatomy and exercise physiology in animals along with occupational competence in providing excellent rehabilitation and physiotherapy care for a range of animals and conditions. Please click here for Qualification Guide

The units of this qualification, spread over 3 parts, have been carefully curated with the guidance of industry professionals to ensure that learners receive a rich knowledge base to equip them for a rewarding career in this industry. Learners will explore topics such as advanced neuro physiotherapy, understanding pain, physiotherapy techniques, professional skill, exercise prescription and rehabilitation. Learners will benefit from the higher-level hydrotherapy content which compliments the comprehensive physiotherapy content. Clinical reasoning and case reporting are also examined within this qualification and learners will gain valuable experience by completing 800 clinical practice hours.

This course is an excellent choice for students wishing to qualify as a Veterinary Physiotherapist. On successful completion of this qualification, learners can seek employment as veterinary physiotherapists and hydrotherapists, working to treat animals both in and out of the water. Alternatively, learners can seek employment in a specialist role within a wider practice setting. This qualification also ensures that learners are equipped with the professional skills needed to work as a self-employed Veterinary Physiotherapist.

The practical training will be conducted in small numbers split over the clinical spaces with a mix of live clients and practitioner animals to allow focussed personal development. There will be time for reflective learning as well as larger group workshops. Learners will be actively hands-on in all aspects of running a busy practice and teaching approaches will be adapted to reflect learning styles. A range of practical dates are available. Learners attending the Canine Fitness Centre may be able to benefit from additional benefits and opportunities beyond the structured learning including business mentoring and opportunities with an experienced senior business executive, discounted access to an exercise prescription and client record app, and further clinical and behavioural experience with our partners.

Following completion of this qualification, learners are able to join membership organisations such as the Register of Animal Musculoskeletal Practitioners (RAMP) for which we have Accredited Education Provider Status, meaning upon successful completion, there would be no further evidence or training required to register with RAMP as a Veterinary Physiotherapist

Unit 1

Advanced Pool and Treadmill Technique
Discover small animal hydrotherapy using advanced pool and treadmill techniques

Unit 2

Business Management in Small Animal Hydrotherapy
Develop knowledge on how to establish a hydrotherapy company
Learn how to manage a hydrotherapy business 
Explore branding and marketing

Unit 3

Canine Nutrition
Discover the role of nutrients for canines and how they support bodily functions
Study the structure and function of the canine digestive system
Learn about the benefits of canine nutritional and diet

Unit 4

Conditions and Surgical Procedures in Small Animals
Explore orthopaedic and neurological conditions that may benefit from hydrotherapy treatment
Investigate how to manage small animals with these conditions

Unit 5

Feline Behaviour, Nutrition and Handling
Understand feline behaviour and handling in a hydrotherapy setting

Unit 6

Higher Anatomy and Physiology
Explore in detail the muscles and joints and their role within the skeletal system
Learn the anatomical terminology used in referrals

Unit 7

Introduction to Canine Laser Therapy
Study canine laser therapy and the different types of class IV laser equipment
Explore the different types of wavelengths and their importance in laser therapy 

Unit 8

Introduction to Small Animal Physiotherapy
Discover the structure and function of the canine musculoskeletal system
Study common orthopaedic conditions that are suitable for physiotherapy and the equipment required

Unit 9

Land-based Exercise for Small Animals
Learn the importance of clinical reasoning of land-based manual exercise
Understand the risk and contraindications of land-based therapy 
Study the reasons for integration and transfer of land to water-based therapy

Unit 10

Pool and Treadmill Operations and Water Management
Develop the knowledge to maintain hydrotherapy pools and treadmills effectively
Understanding the potential risk and hazards of inadequate maintenance

Unit 11

Practical Skills in Small Animal Hydrotherapy
Study range of practical skills required in small animal hydrotherapy
Design and evaluate programmes for hydrotherapy and treadmill treatment plans

Unit 12

Professional Practice in a Hydrotherapy Centre
Learn the duty of care with running a hydrotherapy centre
Study the implications of health and disease and record-keeping in a hydrotherapy centre

Unit 13

Small Animal Massage Therapy
Explore small animal massage e and the impact on the anatomical structures of small animals
Examine the different types of small animal massage techniques
Understand the benefits for conditions experienced by small animals

Unit 14

Stress and Small Animal Hydrotherapy
Understand how to recognise and reduce stress during hydrotherapy
Learn the safe handling techniques to use on small animals

A Career in Veterinary Physiotherapy

Veterinary physiotherapists work alongside other veterinary staff to provide treatment for animals presenting with a range of conditions. Some physiotherapists focus on the equine sports industry, specifically racing and other sporting disciplines. Others choose to work independently, setting up their own businesses to work with horses, dogs and other small animals.

A veterinary referral for physiotherapy can help animals to recover from a range of conditions such as:
  • back pain
  • sprains
  • strains
  • fractures
  • sporting injuries
  • post surgery recovery
  • improving biomechanics and athletic ability
The use of physiotherapy within the veterinary sphere is increasing. Animals can undergo a variety of treatments such as:
  • manual techniques
  • electrotherapies
  • exercise therapy

Key Points

  • Study the advanced methods used by Veterinary Physiotherapists and Animal Hydrotherapists.
  • Learn the advanced therapy methods used for small animals on land and in water.
  • Discover in-depth knowledge on animal rehabilitation and various therapies and treatments.
  • Gain 25 days of physiotherapy training and assessments.
  • Plus 800 hours of clinical practice experience.

About your Course  

The Level 6 Diploma in Veterinary Physiotherapy with Hydrotherapy is an advanced degree-level qualification. This qualification will enable you to become a qualified Small Animal Physiotherapist and work with animal patients in and out of the water.

This course is for learners aged 18+ who must have a Level 3 Diploma in Hydrotherapy (including treadmill unit – with either ABC/SEG, Open College Network West Midlands or OCN London).

Students must complete 800 hours of clinical practice, and 25 days of practical training and have prior experience in the animal industry.
The course includes 51 mandatory units, split across three parts.
  • Part 1 includes Level 4 in Advanced Small Animal Hydrotherapy. 
  • Part 2 includes Level 5 in Veterinary Physiotherapy with Hydrotherapy. (Not included in this payment)
  • Part 3 includes Level 6 in Veterinary Physiotherapy which is the final stage. (Not included in this payment)
You must complete all parts (Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3) to obtain a certificate and become qualified in Small Animal Hydrotherapy and Veterinary Physiotherapy.

Following completion of this qualification, learners can join membership organisations such as the Register of Animal Musculoskeletal Practitioners (RAMP). learndirect has the Accredited Education Provider Status, meaning upon successful completion of this qualification, students do not require any further training to register with RAMP as a qualified Veterinary Physiotherapist.

Getting Started

Animal Courses Direct is the UK’s leading online course provider. Our online courses give you the flexibility to engage with your studies whenever suits you best. 

The benefit of blended online learning means that you can plan your studies around your existing commitments. So, you’re able to progress with your learning in a way that works for you, without the stressful balancing act. 

What’s more, we have dedicated and experienced online tutors to support you throughout your course. As well as all the material being readily available as soon as you enrol so you’re able to start right away.

For more information about Part 2, click here. For more information about Part 3, click here.

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