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Assessment of the Small Animal Patient

Online Course: Assessment of the Small Animal Patient

Gain insight into the orthopaedic and neurological assessment of dogs

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Course instructor:

Ansi van der Walt

Ansi is a Veterinary PT, President of the IAPTAP and Managing Member of PetFit Canine Fitness

2.5-3 hours

Summarising the latest research & evidence

Trusted by over - clinicians

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Accredited certificate of completion


The purpose of any physiotherapy assessment is to gain relevant information about a patient in order to determine the most appropriate intervention. Many domains need to be evaluated, from gait to functional tasks, range of motion, strength, and motor control. The assessment of the canine patient is no different - the animal physiotherapist must conduct a thorough assessment to identify all primary and secondary impairments that are affecting a dog's quality of life. However, they must also consider the impact of the owner’s beliefs and expectations on the physiotherapy intervention. This course explores in detail the orthopaedic and neurological assessment of the canine patient.


The aim of this course is to familiarise you with the elements of the subjective and objective assessment of the canine patient. It also aims to identify challenges that are unique to working with small animals and their caregivers.


This course is made up of videos, reading, discussions and a final quiz. The course content is split into the following sections:

  1. Video
  2. Reading activity
  3. Quiz

Target audience

This course is aimed at Physiotherapy and Physical Therapy clinicians, students and assistants. Other interested professionals such as athletic trainers, occupational therapists, nurses or medical doctors interested in this subject are also invited to participate.

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