Animal Physiotherapy in Finland


Animal physiotherapists in Finland go through 3.5 years (210 ECTS) of studies at a university of applied sciences (formerly polytechnic) to become a Bachelor of Health Care (degree in physiotherapy). After two years of work experience with humans, a physiotherapist can apply for specialist studies (1.5 years part-time studies, 30 ECTS) to become an animal physiotherapist.

The Finnish Association of Animal Physiotherapists was founded in 1997 and currently has over 130 members. About 100 members are currently working actively as animal physiotherapists. All true members have the formal education described above. Animal physiotherapy students and everybody willing to promote the cause are accepted as supportive members.

The Finnish Association of Animal Physiotherapists is an official special interest group of the Finnish Association of Physiotherapists.

The aim of the association is to promote the status of animal physiotherapy, to advance professional skills of animal physiotherapists, and enhance co-operation between animal physiotherapists and other occupations working professionally in animal health care in Finland and internationally.

The Association offers its members a news bulletin four times per year and a minimum of two professional courses per year.

The Association recommends actively working members to uphold and promote their personal professional development by attending a minimum of one professional course every two years.

Current situation of animal physiotherapy in Finland

Most animal physiotherapists in Finland work as independent entrepreneurs with the co-operation of veterinary surgeons, and a few are already employed by veterinary hospitals or clinics on a full-time or part-time basis. Physiotherapists are not allowed to make a medical diagnosis or to order medication of any kind. A referral from a veterinary surgeon is needed when treating animals with a medical condition. A few insurance companies cover animal physiotherapy with a veterinary surgeon’s referral.


Ms Hanna Tuominen

tel: +358 40 5821 491