how to become an……Animal Hydrotherapist

Do you want to help animals by offering them hydrotherapy? This page has been compiled to answer some of the most common questions, on how you can be a hydrotherapist. If you've any further queries please email and I'll try to help, or please contact the organisations mentioned.

Are qualifications needed?

Strictly speaking no. The title of "canine hydrotherapist" and "equine hydrotherapist" or "animal hydrotherapist" aren't legally protected. But there are professional training courses that you can take which lead to recognised qualifications. If you're properly qualified, it will give your potential customers some confidence!

Remember - It is an offence for any person, other than the owner of the animal, to treat an animal unless the permission of the vet in charge of the case or to whom the animal would be referred is sought and obtained. A Veterinary Surgeon is extremely unlikely to refer any customers to you unless you are fully qualified and insured.

What qualifications can I get & how do I get them?

Hydrotherapy is commonly used to help horses and dogs. But it's also possible for other animals to receive hydrotherapy too. Generally, there are separate courses for canine and equine hydrotherapy. With other small animal hydrotherapy course also available. Given the different physiology of each animal species. Plus the variety of different ailments they can experience, different knowledge is required.

Although you can become a therapist who only offers hydrotherapy. Many veterinary surgeon's and physiotherapists, (plus other animal therapists), train in hydrotherapy as an extra service to offer their animal customers.

If you want to work as a canine hydrotherapist. Then you should consider taking a qualification that enables you to become a member of either:
  1. Canine Hydrotherapy Association (CHA). This association sets a number of minimum requirements. Which all aim to ensure dogs are safe. This may seem obvious. But it can be easy to overlook small details. So a dog owner who wants to ensure a safe hydrotherapy experience for their loved canine, will often look for a CHA approved centre.
  2. National Association of Registered Canine Hydrotherapists (NARCH). This is a "not for profit" professional association which maintains the List of Registered Canine Hydrotherapists (RCHs) in the UK. NARCH ensures that all RCHs adhere to the highest professional standards and ethics and these requirements are laid out on this website and within the Guide to Professional Conduct for Registered Canine Hydrotherapists

Please below a selection of some popular hydrotherapy for animals courses.

Canine Hydrotherapy Training

Hawksmoor Hydrotherapy was established in 2000, Hawksmoor was one of the first canine Hydrotherapy centres within the UK. They're the original authors of the Canine Hydrotherapy Qualifications that are now used as the industry bench mark. The qualifications are Ofqual licensed and regulated, with SEG ABC awarding body accreditation. You can train in canine and small animal hydrotherapy. Visit their website.

Greyfriars is the leading veterinary practice in the UK for rehabilitation and hydrotherapy referrals. Students have opportunities to work with veterinary rehabilitation professionals and to meet patients and clients. Greyfriars have a range of canine/ veterinary hydrotherapy qualifications together with the awarding organisation OCN London. Visit their website here.

Michelle Monks Canine Health and Wellbeing Academy is an Australian training centre. Students can train in canine hydrotherapy as well as other canine health courses. Visit the website for more information.

Equine Hydrotherapy Training

Hadlow College offer a couple of courses, including an introductory course and an 'equine hydrotherapy in practice' course. Visit their website here for more details.

Other Hydrotherapy For Animals Courses

Justo Development offer CPD courses in hydrotherapy. Find out more here.

If you've any questions please email info at taranet .co. uk

Your Hydrotherapy for Animals Training Links

Canine Hydrotherapy Association
Hadlow College
Hawksmoor Hydrotherapy
Justo Development
Michelle Monks Canine Health & Wellbeing Academy
National Association of Registered Canine Hydrotherapists

Get training advice tips for other popular complementary therapies for animals as follows: