Animal Hydrotherapy Diploma Course Level 3

Animal Jobs Direct

Ofqual Code 600/8025/5

Animal Hydrotherapy Diploma Course Training
Hydrotherapy Training

Please see end of this page for 2018 theory course start dates. The practical element is carried out at the end of the course.

Animal Hydrotherapy
Diploma Course

       £3,300  with practical placement

£1,900 followed by  10 x monthly payments of £150

Course fees are inclusive of 1 Week Intensive Practical Placement Plus 1 x Intensive Treadmill Training Day

Fees also inclusive of tutoring fees, assessments, course materials, course registration and practical placement.  There is nothing extra to pay.

This Animal Hydrotherapy course and all other hydrotherapy courses offered by Animal Jobs Direct meet the criteria for membership of the Canine Hydrotherapy Association (CHA) and the National Association of Registered Canine Hydrotherapists (NARCH).

Animal Jobs Direct is has been granted Approved Learning Provider status in the Enhanced Learning Credit scheme to offer the ABC Awards Level 3 Certificate course in Hydrotherapy for Small Animals and the ABC Awards Level 3 Diploma course in Hydrotherapy for Small Animals to MOD Service Leavers.

The ABC Awards Level 3 Diploma in animal hydrotherapy has been developed for learners seeking a specialised qualification in animal hydrotherapy, with the overall aim being to prepare learners for a career working as an Animal Hydrotherapist or in a Veterinary career utilising hydrotherapy as a treatment.

The Level 3 Diploma in Hydrotherapy for Small Animals is a regulated qualification recognised by  within the RQF (Regulated Qualifications  Framework). When achieved, you will gain 41 Credits at Level 3.  

Our Animal Hydrotherapy courses are offered as online courses and this enables students to fit their studies around their other commitments.  Intensive practical training is included in this course.

The animal hydrotherapy diploma course includes a total of 6 days Practical Placement at Woozelbears, an established canine hydrotherapy company with branches covering Oxfordshire and Newcastle. The centres have top of the range equipment including underwater treadmills, large bespoke pools, hydrotherapy spa, the 2nd gait analysis treadmill in the UK and a team of highly qualified personnel.

Placement within one of these centres enables you to learn from experienced professionals in the industry whilst working with a range cases at different stages of treatment.

This is also an opportunity to have first hand experience within the industry.

This qualification makes you very employable and there are many companies around the country that are recruiting for Qualified Canine Hydrotherapists. Woozelbears offers franchise opportunities in various parts of the UK if you have the ambition to own your own business.

ABC Awards Level 3 Diploma in Hydrotherapy for Small Animals 

Course Unit Summary

276 GLH

Total credits earned for this course = 41

ABC Awards

Unit  T/504/1180 Introduction to hydrotherapy for small animals

The study of hydrotherapy for small animals must start with the basics. This module will introduce concepts that every professional performing this therapy must understand, but it doesn’t offer any hands-on experience. The manipulation techniques will come later, but this information is still essential to the safe and effective usage of hydrotherapy.

GLH 25

4 Credits 

Unit   A/504/1181 Management of medical conditions in hydrotherapy for small animals

Now that you have a basic understanding of what hydrotherapy is and how it can benefit small animals, you’re ready to learn how specific medical conditions influence this type of therapy. This is the unit that will help you create effective hydrotherapy treatment plans for each animal in your care. Upon completion, you’ll be able to do the following with confidence:

  • Recognize the symptoms of prominent medical conditions seen in small animals
  • Determine how hydrotherapy can help animals with recognized medical conditions
  • Create realistic expectations for results achieved through hydrotherapy

GLH 10

2 Credits

Unit J/504/1183 Management of common orthopaedic and neurological conditions in hydrotherapy for small animals   

Many small animals with neurological disorders and orthopaedic conditions are referred to professionals for hydrotherapy treatment. This learning module introduces some of the most prevalent conditions that therapists may see, giving you the information needed to match those conditions with the most impactful hydrotherapy procedures.

GLH 18

3 Credits

Unit   L/507/5174 Small animal first aid for hydrotherapists

Would you know how to respond if an emergency occurred with an animal in your care right now? You typically have no warning when something tragic happens, and you must act in a split second to rescue an animal in need. Small animal first aid is introduced in this module, so you’ll know how to respond to a variety of emergencies without hesitation. This includes the application of theories, so prepare to put your knowledge to the test.

GLH 18

3 Credits

Unit   Y/504/1186 Assessing and checking an animal’s suitability for hydrotherapy treatment

Just because a veterinary surgeon refers an animal for hydrotherapy doesn’t mean that the animal is well suited to this type of treatment. This module will help you assess an animal to determine how hydrotherapy may help their medical condition, if it will at all. There are some clear and not-so-clear signs that will help you make this determination.

GLH 25 

3 Credits

Unit   R/507/5174 Anatomy and physiology for small animal hydrotherapy 

You can’t effectively treat small animals with hydrotherapy without a solid command on the physiology and anatomy of those animals. If you could use a refresher course or haven’t studied anatomy or physiology in depth, this module will teach you everything needed to approach hydrotherapy with confidence.

 GLH 30

4 Credits

Unit   D/507/5176 Professional practice and Multi DisciplinaryTeam working for hydrotherapists

As a hydrotherapist, you’ll have to work with other professionals to ensure that animals in your care receive the best overall treatment for their condition. This module will teach you how to work as part of a multi-disciplinary team while enhancing your development as a professional through reflective practice.

GLH 10

2 Credits

Unit   H/504/1191 The principles of small animal hydrotherapy

Before you can start performing manipulation hydrotherapy techniques, you must develop a thorough understanding of how those techniques work. While this unit doesn’t require hands-on manipulation experience, it does deliver a solid foundation of knowledge regarding the various approaches that hydrotherapists take to their work each day.

GLH 10 

2 Credits

Unit  Y/507/5175 Administering hydrotherapy treatment to small animals

You’ve accumulated a lot of knowledge regarding small animals and hydrotherapy treatment. It’s now time to learn how to interact with animals safely and effectively during three phases of the treatment process:

  • Preparation: You’ll get animals ready for their hydrotherapy treatment while ensuring that the treatment area is set up for safe use.
  • During Treatment: You’ll learn how to manage animals while hydrotherapy manipulations are in process. This includes overseeing the work area and the therapy process for safety and efficiency.
  • Aftercare: You’ll learn how to properly care for small animals after hydrotherapy treatment is complete. This includes interacting with pet owners and other professionals caring for the animal. The paperwork and documentation required after this type of therapy is also covered.

 GLH 25

3 Credits

Practical Unit

Unit  K/504/1189 Water management for small animal

This is a hands-on unit that allows you to put some of your accumulated hydrotherapy knowledge into practice. You’ll receive an introductory lesson in the management and treatment of water. This includes a basic understanding of all components of hydrotherapy treatment, including:

  • Pool equipment
  • Water chemistry
  • Water chemicals

All health and safety regulations are taken into account when completing this unit. Each student is responsible for staying within the realm of their experience and knowledge when determining which tasks they can confidently perform. While it’s important to learn and grow professionally, you don’t want to perform beyond your competency level.

GLH 20 

3 Credits

Practical Unit

Unit T/504/6475 Hydrotherapy Treadmill Therapy for Small Animals Unit

This unit consists of theory and practical elements where the learner will learn how to conduct a hydrotherapy treadmill therapy session involving pre-treatment, during treatment and post treatment treadmill procedures.

In this unit, learners will develop their knowledge of the treadmill equipment available and the principles of small animal and canine hydrotherapy treadmill therapy.  

Learn how and where to position an aquatic treadmill and how to prepare the area, the patient and clients for a therapy session.  

Gain an understanding of the types of conditions for which this treatment is suitable / unsuitable and how to monitor the treatment correctly.

GLH 25

3 Credits

Practical & Theory Unit

Unit (T/505/3149) and Unit (K/505/3147) Advanced Hydrotherapy Treadmill Therapy for Small Animals

These units consists of theory and practical aspects where the learner will learn how to conduct an advanced hydrotherapy treadmill therapy session involving appropriate use of equipment to improve the hydrotherapy programme for the patient.

Learners will develop their knowledge in the operation of the hydrotherapy treadmill and how to maximise patient performance and treatment outcomes.  

Learn in-depth gait analysis to give you the knowledge to apply the advanced techniques.  The Learner will gain an understanding of additional equipment that can be used to optimise patient movement and learn which and when to apply.  

Assess patients through observation, evaluating their performance and developing their decision-making skills when providing treatment. 

GLH 45

6 Credits

Practical & Theory

Unit F/504/6477 Canine Elbow and Hip Dysplasia for Hydrotherapists 

In this unit, learners will concentrate on elbow and hip dysplasia firstly learning about the anatomy of elbow and hip dyplastic joints.  In the hydrotherapy industry dysplasia is one of the most prevalent in practice and so this module  concentrates on the surgical procedures to help an animal with these conditions in order that they can use this information to analyse their own practice to improve the hydrotherapy treatment offered to these animals. This is a theory based unit.

GLH 15

Credits 3

Total credits earned for this course = 41

Read some of the recent ABC Awards Moderator Report Comments regarding our delivery of the Small Animal Hydrotherapy Qualification:

"All team members are very experienced and suitably qualified to deliver and assess the course. A professional, supportive and highly qualified team."

"The feedback to the learners was very constructive and given throughout the portfolio of evidence. I was particularly impressed with the new video assessments. This is showing how the centre is growing and developing the qualifications. This is a new exciting way of evidencing the assessment criteria in practical work". 

"An excellent range of assessment methods that are valid, fair and reliable have been used throughout the units of study. The course was very practical and included workplace learning where video evidence/filming was carried out to show the learner meets some of the assessment criteria. This was an excellent addition to the course".

"I’m sure the learners enjoyed carrying out this form of assessment. All feedback from the learners was good". 

"Practical work was very well planned and covered a large proportion of the course".

Frequently Asked Questions:

Who can do the course?

The Animal Hydrotherapy Diploma course is open to anyone from the age of 19 years onwards.  A good, working standard of Maths and English is required.  

What's the difference between the Diploma and Certificate course?

The Diploma course consists of more theory learning and associated credits as well as Treadmill Training. Employers prefer candidates who have completed the Diploma course instead of the Certificate course. You do not need to complete both courses to work as an Animal Hydrotherapist.

How long do I have to complete the course?

You need to be able to complete the course within 2 years of enrolment

Do I have to have a practical placement to enrol on this course?

We provide this as part of the course once you have completed the theory aspects of the course. We include an intensive 6 day practical training programme where you will gain valuable hands-on experience.

How is the course designed, delivered and assessed?

The course is designed primarily to be a self-study, distance learning course with tutor support to guide and support you through the learning and materials. The materials contain internet resources that have been examined for quality, content and access that are relevant to the topics and subject matter in the different units. The practical training is carried out towards the end of your course. 

I don't live in the UK, can I still enrol?

Absolutely yes, we accept international students and are able to offer assessment via video link.

Are there any examinations

There are no examinations but you also need to build a portfolio of evidence of your learning and understanding according to assessments set out in the course materials. Internal moderation of your portfolio is carried out by Animal Jobs Direct Ltd and then moderated externally. 

How long can I expect to be studying?

Each unit of the Certificate in Hydrotherapy for Small Animals contains a certain number of Guided Learning Hours (GLH) to give an indication of how long you can expect to be studying and preparing for any one unit’s assessment. Although the GLH of any unit may seem small (please see the specification above), you need to take into account the research and reading before attempting the assessments. 

Is there any funding available for this course?

Yes,  Professional and Career Development Loan (PCDL) funding is available for this course.

Animal Jobs Direct is has been granted Approved Learning Provider status in the Enhanced Learning Credit scheme to offer the ABC Awards Level 3 Certificate course in Hydrotherapy for Small Animals and the ABC Awards Level 3 Diploma course in Hydrotherapy for Small Animals to MOD Service Leavers.

The Animal Hydrotherapy courses offered by Animal Jobs Direct meet the criteria for membership of the Canine Hydrotherapy Association (CHA) and the National Association of Registered Canine Hydrotherapists (NARCH).


Study from home, at your own pace and with full tutor support. This course includes 6 days intensive practical training at a well established Hydrotherapy Centre. 

Click here  If you would like more information about how to enrol and study

Contact us  if you would like to discuss this Animal Hydrotherapy Diploma Course with our Careers Adviser

Course Start Dates 

22nd January 2018

5th February 2018

9th April 2018

4th June 2018

3rd September 2018

5th November 2018

If you’ve already invested some time into learning how to work efficiently and safely with small animals, you’re potentially the ideal participant for this vigorous qualification course. From veterinarian nurses interested in moving their careers forward to animal welfare workers eager to learn more about the care of animals in their charge, many adults over the age of 19 find this program a suitable way to advance their knowledge and perfect their skills. Most students have some experience handling animals before starting the coursework.

What will you learn if you sign up for this qualification? You’ll discover valuable information regarding the use of hydrotherapy to treat small animals. This includes answering some critical questions:

  • How can this unique form of therapy benefit small animals in varying states of physical health?
  • Which medical conditions respond best to hydrotherapy?
  • What are the safest and most effective procedures for applying hydrotherapy techniques?

While a variety of hydrotherapy techniques are introduced through this course, it’s important that every student act in accordance with their personal qualifications. Participants are never required to perform skills that they can’t competently and confidently implement.

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