Physical Therapy for Animals

Golden Retriever Þór, enjoying physical therapy.

Golden Retriever Þór, enjoying physical therapy. ValgardurGislason,Valgarður Gíslason

At the Garðabær Animal Hospital, a short distance from Reykjavík, animals can now get physical therapy. Kolbrún Anna Sigurðardóttir, a nurse specialized in the physical therapy of animals, has found a job to her liking. She is the only person in Iceland with that kind of training. She tells Morgunblaðið that she has always been interested in sports and that the interest in physical therapy was sparked in 10th grade, during a career day.

“Working with people wasn’t interesting to me, so I sought a way to combine my interest in animals with the interest in physical therapy and discovered that you can study physical therapy for animals,” she states. The studies take six years and are only offered abroad.

She works as a nurse for animals in the morning and on physical therapy in the afternoon. The physical therapy division of the animal hospital opened last year. Demand for the services, Kolbrún reports, is rapidly increasing.

“In physical therapy, I treat overweight animals, or animals with congenital disabilities, needing temporary or permanent care, dogs and cats that have been run over by a car, torn ligaments in the knee or that need to learn using a limb again, following an accident.”

She is pleased with her job: “Watching an animal that has recovered and its happy owner is what gives my job value.”

Kolbrún Arna Sigurðardóttr, right, at work with Golden Retriever Þór, …

Kolbrún Arna Sigurðardóttr, right, at work with Golden Retriever Þór, while his owner, Jóhanna Björk Gylfadóttir, looks on. ValgardurGislason,Valgarður Gíslason

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