Rehabilitation Veterinarian FAQs

How do I refer a client for rehabilitation?

Just give as a call! Please prepare your client to provide us with a full medical history (including any medical or surgical procedures), current medications, and access to diagnostic imaging, if appropriate.

Please download and print our referral form, and fill it out. VSMR Referral form

You may send us the form by..

Can I get a phone consultation?

Absolutely! If you would like advice regarding a specific case, please call us or send us an email.

Phone: 979-845-2351


Who can legally provide physical rehabilitation for animals?

AVMA guidelines recommend that any licensed veterinarian who has obtained the necessary skills and knowledge can perform animal rehabilitation. Veterinary technicians with education in physical rehabilitation can function in the field of rehabilitation as allowed by their state practice acts. Each veterinary state practice act has its own specific regulations.

Can I provide rehabilitation in my own practice?

You can implement some basic components of rehabilitation in your practice with minimal equipment. You can also make recommendations for the home care of your patients. Each of these actions requires that you obtain knowledge specific to the area of rehabilitation.

Veterinary technicians can play a vital role in helping you provide rehabilitation, but they need your support and guidance. It is your responsibility to make a diagnosis (from a rehabilitation perspective) and to prescribe the appropriate rehabilitation therapy.

How can I learn more about rehabilitation?

Many veterinary continuing education meetings now offer lectures and laboratories in physical rehabilitation for veterinarians and veterinary technicians. We also offer continuing education programs in rehabilitation at Texas A&M University (TAMU). Watch for a new program in the spring of 2013.

Next international meeting:

Consider attending the 7th International Veterinary Symposium on Veterinary Rehabilitation and Physical Therapy in Vienna, Austria on August 15-18, 2012. Visit the IAVRPT symposium web site.

How can I receive certification in physical rehabilitation?

There are currently two certification programs in canine rehabilitation: University of Tennessee / Northeast Seminars and Canine Rehabilitation Institute. Both organizations offer these continuing education courses in for veterinarians, veterinary technicians, and physical therapists. Certification in each course requires an ‘internship’ experience at a rehabilitation facility. The TAMU VSMR is an approved internship site for both certification programs.

In 2010, the AVMA approved the American College of Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation (ACVSMR). For information on board certification, visit the ACVSMR web site.

What is the status of physical rehabilitation in the veterinary medical curriculum?

We are committed to teaching veterinary students and veterinarians. Physical rehabilitation is not currently considered to be part of the core curriculum, however some elements of rehabilitation are integrated into the veterinary curriculum. In addition, we offer an elective course for the Year 3 veterinary medical students. We guide the senior veterinary students regarding the in-hospital patient care, particularly with respect to techniques requiring minimal equipment, which they will be able to use in private practice after graduation. With the recently established ACVSMR, we expect to see a rapid increase in the number of board certified veterinarians in this field.

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