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Certificate Program in Canine Hydrotherapy

Aims of the Course

Hydrotherapy for the canine patient has been available for many years, but has recently gained more popularly in Australia as a form of exercising in a low load environment as well as rehabilitation of specific conditions, injuries and surgeries.

Until now there has been a distinct lack of education available in Australia around Canine Hydrotherapy.

This course has been designed to teach individuals how to deliver hydrotherapy to the canine patient safely and effectively, working in conjunction with the patient’s vet as part of a health care team


Michelle Monk has been an Animal Physiotherapist, utilizing both pool and underwater treadmill therapy since 2002. She started the first rehabilitation centre for dogs in 2002 complete with indoor heated pool and underwater treadmill. Since then she has delivered hydrotherapy to thousands of dogs and is the most experienced canine hydrotherapist in the country.

She has also authored the Animal Hydrotherapy chapter in the Textbook “Animal Physiotherapy: Assessment, Treatment and rehabilitation of Animals’, 2013.

She is also a human physiotherapist and prior to working with canines she worked for 6 years in Human Hydrotherapy and continues to attend continuing professional development in this field.

Who is this course for?

There are no pre-requisites for this course however a background in the veterinary and / or animal industry is an advantage. Anatomy, physiology and pathology subjects are quite in-depth. This course is designed to enable participants on completion, to deliver hydrotherapy safely and effectively to canine patients.

Course Delivery

Blended delivery includes online learner modules, live fortnightly webinars, recommended texts and online resources. There are 2 practical 3-day work shops and a final practical exam. These are all delivered currently in Melbourne.

Assessments include online examinations, written assignments and case studies, as well as practical demonstrations and work placement.

Duration of the course

The course runs for 8 months 

Study Hours

This is a part time course that will require approximately 8 hours of study per week


  • Introduction to Hydrotherapy in the Canine Patient
  • The properties of water
  • Principles of Canine Hydrotherapy -swimming and underwater treadmill
  • Canine First Aid
  • Anatomy and Physiology of the Canine Patient
  • Canine Hydrotherapy for Health and Fitness
  • Canine Hydrotherapy for Rehabilitation
  • Common pathologies requiring Hydrotherapy in the Canine Patient
  • Working safely in Canine Hydrotherapy
  • Assessment of the Canine patient for Hydrotherapy
  • Use of equipment in Canine hydrotherapy
  • Development of and progression of treatment plans in Canine Hydrotherapy
  • Practical delivery of Canine Hydrotherapy
  • Working as part of a Multi- disciplinary team
  • Hydrotherapy Facility Centre
  • Water Chemistry in Canine Hydrotherapy
  • Record Keeping
  • Business development


Assessments include online examinations, written assignments and case studies, as well as practical demonstrations and work placement in the student clinic.

Commencement Date

The course will commence on Friday November the 24th at 1pm ( Please note change of date - was previously to be 17th November).

The 3 day practical workshops will be held in March and June - dates to be confirmed. These will be held in Melbourne.

Please note there will be a 3 week break over the Christmas period.

Career Opportunities

Completion of this course will enable you to apply for membership of the Australian Canine Rehabilitation Association and professional indemnity insurance with Insurance House. Canine Hydrotherapists are typically employed in large veterinary facilities or rehabilitation facilities, or operate their own private businesses.


There are 2 options for payment.

  • A one time payment of $3500
  • A payment plan of $585 over 7 monthly instalments.

If you require any further information please don't hesitate to contact us.