Rehabilitation Services

VSOS Rehabilitation Services

VSOS is proud to be offering rehabilitation services at it’s Advanced Treatment Centre.

Our team of specialists are committed to the best possible outcomes for their patients, and we aim to achieve progressive rehab goals and speed up recovery, while improving function, comfort and quality of life.



Why choose VSOS Rehab?

Your pet will receive expert care at our Advanced Treatment Centre and benefit from having a team of talented experts dedicated to the best possible recovery. Having a rehab therapist working alongside your pet’s specialist surgeon facilitates early physical therapy, even before they have been discharged from hospital. Our therapists can guide you through the recovery of routine orthopaedics to the most complex spinal surgeries, while liaising with your surgeon each step of the way.

Our team also have access to all the VSOS facilities – CT, MRI, arthroscopy, ultrasound, epidural pain management and regenerative therapies such as platelet-rich-plasma (PRP) and hyaluronic acid (HA) injections.




Pre-hab (preventative rehabilitation)

Pre-hab is a form of physiotherapy that conditions the body to help it heal quicker after surgery, speed up recovery processes, and prevent injuries from occurring.

For surgical recovery, pre-hab is done before the patient even goes under the knife – making the surgery itself much easier, along with the recovery.

If your pet is stronger before surgery, they will meet physical milestones much quicker after surgery, decreasing recovery time.

Patients undergoing joint replacement (such as total hip replacement or CUE), bilateral repairs or amputation would especially benefit from pre-hab.

Laser therapy – (PhotoBioModulation)

VSOS has invested in a state of the art K-laser, specific to veterinary needs. This high intensity laser therapy (HILT) allows us to utilise faster, deeper and more efficient treatments, in order to reduce pain, inflammation, and promote tissue healing.

By accelerating the normal biochemical process the K-Laser is able to increase blood flow, boost cell oxygenation, and enhance ATP production. The aim is to improve healing as well as reduce pain and swelling.

Our laser can also be used for trigger points and acupuncture points.

  • TENS / EMS sessions (and hire)
  • Wheelchair (mobility cart) fitting, sales and hire
  • Assistive Harness fitting and sales
  • Custom splints and braces
  • Home advice and exercise programs
  • Platelet-rich-plasma (PRP) and Hyaluronic Acid (HA)
  • Hydrotherapy – coming soon


Meet our team

Alicia Smith

VSOS has been fortunate to have Alicia Smith join the team after an appointment at Illawarra Veterinary Rehabilitation.

Alicia gained her certification as a Canine rehabilitation assistant through the Canine Rehabilitation Institute, USA.  She has extensive experience in land-based therapies, as well as hydrotherapy for patients recovering from surgery and injury, and managing senior pets. She is adept at designing fitness and strengthening programs, home and lifestyle adjustments and is an advocate for “prehab”… working with her patients’ humans prior to surgery for the best recovery outcomes.

Alicia is passionate about her work…

“After surgery, the fun begins…I love working with the clients to set goals and progress their dogs through recovery and gradually return to their normal lifestyle and activities. 

My neurological patients are my most rewarding role. Each milestone and goal reached is through hard work and commitment from owners and the patient. It can be a tough time in a family but with the right guidance and support the rewards are amazing.”

Dr Elizabeth LaFond

Dr. Elizabeth LaFond received her veterinary medical degree from the University of Minnesota in the United States in 1992. She completed a small animal internship in Massachusetts and worked for 3 years in primary care private practice before accepting a 2 year research fellowship with the PennHIP lab at the University of Pennsylvania studying canine hip dysplasia.

Following her fellowship, she completed a surgery residency at Purdue University and in 2001 became a Diplomat of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons. Dr. LaFond returned to the University of Pennsylvania for the first 3 years after her residency as a surgery instructor.


In 2003, she returned to her roots in Minnesota to join the faculty at the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine where she remained for 17 years. During her time at the University of Minnesota, she served as director of rehabilitation services, director of the small animal internship program, and associate medical director. She has a strong interest in physical rehabilitation as complementary to her surgical training and was a charter member and on the Board of Directors of the International Association for Veterinary Rehabilitation and Physical Therapy (IAVRPT) in 2006. She served as president of the IAVRPT for 2 years. Dr. LaFond became a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation in 2013.

Frequently Asked Questions

What equipment do I need at home?

We aim to create programs for your pet that can be managed with items you already have in your own home. We also have equipment for hire, so you don’t have the burden of purchasing expensive equipment.

Do you offer a package?

Yes! For those committed to regular ongoing sessions speak to our staff about pricing options.

What happens on your first visit?

The VSOS therapist will review your pet’s medical records and performs a physical assessment and gait assessment. A specific treatment plan with be tailored to suit your individual pet’s needs.

Do I need an assessment? Referral vs VSOS patient

Every patient will require an assessment with our therapist, however internally referred VSOS patients will have been formally assessed at the time of surgery and management discussed with their surgeon.

For patients referred from outside veterinary hospitals, your local vet should fill in a form and our therapists undertake an initial 60 minute formal consultation and musculoskeletal assessment with input (as-needed) from our specialist team, and this includes the first treatment. We will report back to your referring vet and work with them to develop a treatment plan.

If you are self-referring and don’t have a veterinarian made diagnosis, a consultation will be required with our veterinarians to ascertain if rehab is right for your pet.

What if my dog is paralysed?

Even dogs who are unable to stand or walk will benefit from physical therapy. If bones, cartilage, muscles, ligaments, and tendons are not used, atrophy occurs. Nerves regenerate slowly, so it is important to maintain and support the surrounding structures. Our team are experts at setting goals for these special patients.

When should physical therapy commence?

It’s never too early! Some patients will benefit from pre-hab or even bed-side treatment before they even leave the hospital. Speak to our team about your pet’s needs.

Will my insurance cover rehabilitation therapy?

Some insurers will cover physiotherapy and complementary therapies when referred and endorsed by your vet and it is deemed necessary to treat an injury and/or illness.

Check with your insurer about your specific policy.

Do I need a referral?

If you have not been referred internally by one of the VSOS team, we like to receive as much information from your regular vet as possible. This includes your pet’s medical history, radiographs and any other advanced imaging and reports if possible.


Click to make an appointment

Opening hours

Monday 8am – 4pm

Thursday 8am – 4pm

Speak to one of our friendly co-ordinators to book an appointment.

Contact us today

to join our incredible veterinary specialist team here in Sydney, Australia.