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Call 07983 514968  Physiotherapy ... caring for your animal



Now Available 

Online veterinary physiotherapy consultation sessions

Launched soon after the start of the Covid epidemic, my online consults have now become a convenient and valuable support to owners and their pets requiring access to veterinary physiotherapy advice and information from home.




What does a veterinary physiotherapist actually do? 


Veterinary physiotherapy is a science-based, health care profession based on specific training, that uses physical approaches to accelerate the healing process, relieve pain and promote, maintain and restore physical movement and function.


A thorough knowledge of anatomy, physiology and biomechanics gives physiotherapists a strong foundation to assess, treat and rehabilitate a wide range of muscular, skeletal and neurological conditions. Clinical reasoning and use of their hands (for palpating/feeling) are two of the most important skills of the animal physio in assessing and treating animals.


It is a legal requirement for veterinary physiotherapists to gain consent from your veterinary surgeon prior to treating your animal.


Why choose a veterinary physiotherapist to treat your animal?


Just like humans, animals can suffer from back, neck, pelvic and musculoskeletal problems at some time during their life. So, whatever the age of your animal, whatever their level of activity, they can also benefit from physiotherapy treatment.


Injuries and illness can happen which will affect your animal’s mobility and wellness. These conditions can cause pain and discomfort which - if left untreated - can affect your pet’s quality of life and cause compensatory issues, that can be very subtle and may go undetected for years. This can lead to compensatory movement patterns which can result in chronic tension in soft tissues.


Whether it is to enhance healing, improve quality of life, prevent re-injury or increase performance, treatment from a veterinary physiotherapist can achieve remarkable results.


All types of animals are referred by veterinary surgeons for physiotherapy treatment, including domestic cats and dogs, professional and working animals (racehorses, show jumpers, competitive dogs) and also donkeys, monkeys, cattle, goats, rabbits, parrots and even swans! 


It is not necessary to wait for a problem to present itself. If you feel your animal could benefit from physiotherapy, you can have them evaluated with a view to improving their quality of life and conditioning. 

Click here to see what is involved.



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How would I know if my animal needs physiotherapy?


Apart from the post-surgery or post-injury conditions commonly treated, the following are five key signs to look for

  1. Lameness - limping, stiffness or weakness when getting up after rest or first thing in the morning

  2. Reluctance - to go on walks, to run or to play and struggling even with low exercise levels

  3. Behavioural changes - withdrawing or defending certain areas of the body by growling or snapping

  4. Mobility problems - inability to jump in/out of the car or on to the sofa, difficulty going up or downstairs

  5. Age-related conditions - arthritis, loss of muscle tone/weakness

Other indicators to look out for include

  • Reduced performance in agility - working and competitive dogs

  • Vocalising - whining when getting up or changing position

  • Excessive chewing of an area of the body

  • Neurological signs - weakness, dragging feet, and tripping

  • Unsettled - pacing at night

  • Before and after surgical treatment - including rehabilitation exercises 

  • After trauma - injury or accident

To read more about the actual conditions that could underly the above indicators, please click on the link below.



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Julia qualified as a Chartered Physiotherapist at Kings College Hospital in London and has had more than 30 years of extensive experience treating people and animals. In 1999, she combined her two passions of physiotherapy and love of animals by extending her training and practice to incorporate veterinary physiotherapy and rehabilitation. 


Her particular interests are in canine post-surgical rehabilitation, neurological cases and the elderly canine patient affected by osteoarthritis. 


Her animal veterinary physiotherapy practice is based in Bulmer near Sudbury, Suffolk and she also consults at Christchurch Veterinary Referrals (a second opinion practice in Ipswich). She works in consultation with a number of first opinion veterinary practices and local hydrotherapy centres including Canine Hydrocare in Sible Hedingham and Blue Bear Animal Rehab in Colchester.


She treats equine patients at stable yards within a 15 mile radius of Sudbury. 


  • Member of Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (MCSP)

  • Registered with HCPC (Health Care Professions Council)

  • Category A member of ACPAT (Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Animal Therapy)

  • Member of RAMP

  • Professional Public Liability Insurance Cover

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Treatments & Benefits



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Physiotherapy treatments may include a combination of techniques and modalities, including

  • Orthopaedic rehabilitation – functional re-education of movement specific to the musculoskeletal system

  • Neurological rehabilitation – functional re-education of movement specific to the nervous system

  • Manual therapies – spinal & limb joint mobilisation/manipulation

  • Soft tissue techniques – massage, passive stretching, myofascial release, trigger point release

  • Electrotherapy – therapeutic ultrasound, low level laser therapy, muscle stimulation, TENS

  • Thermotherapy (heat & cold)

  • Proprioceptive retraining – sensory integration techniques

  • Individually designed rehabilitation programmes

  • Assessment, fitting and advice on orthotic devices and mobility aids - walking harnesses, splints, braces, carts, wheels, ramps, etc

  • Advice to owners re home care and exercise – written protocols, videos, prescribed lead walk advice, etc



  • Enhanced healing process of recovery after surgery or injury

  • Repaired tissue damage 

  • Pain relief 

  • Increased muscle tone, strength and performance  

  • Increased range of movement and flexibility

  • Minimising of muscle atrophy

  • Reduced inflammation, swelling & muscle spasm

  • Improved proprioception/body positioning awareness

  • Re-educated movement to reduce compensation and adaptive postures 

  • Improved or restored function

  • Decreased risk of further or recurrent injury

  • An alternative treatment approach where surgical treatment is contra-indicated

  • Enhanced general well-being




Having studied and practised animal and human physiotherapy for most of her life, Julia has an in-depth understanding of human and animal anatomy.


Her works in oil reveal the ability to capture likeness and spirit.


Commission enquiries: please get in touch using the Contact Us section below for a costing and an idea of how the process works.


To view more of Julia's work, please click on the "view more" link below.

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Animal Portraits
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Smeetham Hall Lodge, Smeetham Hall Lane, Bulmer, Suffolk, CO10 7EU

Tel:  07983 514968



8:30 AM - 6:30 PM

Monday - Friday


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