Restoring our patients' quality of life rehab vets

The American Association of Rehabilitation Veterinarians (AARV)
is a national association of veterinarians and veterinary technicians
dedicated to improving the quality of life in animals through
physical medicine and rehabilitation.


AARV Sponsors Lecture Track at 6th Annual STAAR Conference

AARV will be sponsoring a lecture track at the 6th Annual Symposium on Therapeutic Advances in Animal Rehabilitation (STAAR), to be held April 24-26, 2015, in Florham Park, New Jersey. Pre-symposium labs will be held April 22-23, and a new one-day Equine Track is offered on April 23.

The AARV lecture track, entitled "The Multimodal Approach to Today's Rehab Patient," will be offered on Saturday, April 25 and Sunday, April 26. Speakers include AARV board members Drs. Carolina Medina and Kristin Kirkby Shaw, along with Dr. Felix Duerr and Dr. Gina Bertocci.

The AARV lecture track presentations are:

  • When Can Surgery Help? The Rehab Therapist and Orthopod Working as a Team
    (lecture given Saturday, April 25 only)
    Felix Duerr, DVM, DACVS, Dipl Am Coll Vet Sports Med & Rehab
  • Don't Miss this Diagnosis: Tips and Tricks for Early Diagnosis of Canine Musculoskeletal Disease
    Felix Duerr, DVM, DACVS, Dipl Am Coll Vet Sports Med & Rehab
  • Evidence-Based Medicine in Pain Management
    (lecture given Sunday, April 26 only)
    Kristin Kirkby Shaw, DVM, DACVS, PhD, Dipl Am Coll Vet Sports Med & Rehab
  • Acupuncture: Improve Pain Management in your Rehab Patients
    Carolina Medina, DVM, CVA, Dipl Am Coll Vet Sports Med & Rehab
  • Updates on Canine CCL Research Using Computer-Based Simulation
    Gina Bertocci, PhD, PE, Endowed Chair, Biomechanics

For more information, download the STAAR 2015 flyer or visit the STAAR Conference website.

  STAAR flyer 2015
AARV Board Elections

Thank you to the members who ran for this year's open Board positions and to the AARV members who exercised their right to vote and have their opinions heard.

Congratulations to Dr. Kristyn Richardson on her re-election as Legislative Liaison.

Congratulations to Dr. Jean Tuttle on her election as Secretary.

  Green checkmark


Charleston Veterinary Referral Center (CVRC)

The Charleston Veterinary Referral Center is a 24-hour emergency and critical care center and referral specialty hospital located in Charleston, South Carolina. In June, CVRC was awarded a Level I certification by the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society, one of only six in the United States and the only center in the Southeast to attain this distinction. CRVC recently expanded its Animal Rehabilitation & Fitness department to offer innovations in specialized animal care. CVRC also recently began treating malignant tumors in dogs and cats with a sophisticated new modality, electrochemotherapy (ECT).

Read more about the Charleston Veterinary Referral Center (CVRC) on our Spotlight Practice page.

Charleston Veterinary Referral Center

Charleston Veterinary Referral Center (CVRC)
Charleston, South Carolina

AARV Members:
Tracy Pejsa, LVT, CCRP, CCMT
Artise Stewart, DVM, CCRP

AARV Announces Schedule for Lecture Track at NAVC

Plan to attend the AARV Track on Monday, January 19, 2015, at the North American Veterinary Community Conference in Orlando, Florida. We have planned a full day of presentations on leading-edge topics. All NAVC attendees are welcome to attend the AARV Track.

See the 2015 AARV Lecture Track schedule ...

  Pet insurance summary chart
Order AARV Memorial Cards

AARV has updated its printed memorial cards with original new artwork by artist Carol Lavelle of Hawaii. The new artwork, which was created for AARV, features pawprints, hoofprints and footprints from a variety of animals arranged in a heart.

These memorial cards may be sent to clients of your practice as an expression of sympathy from your staff. The card indicates that you have made a donation to AARV as a way of honoring the life of their companion animal.

Visit the Products page to order cards online with a credit card or check.

  AARV memorial card image
AARV Summary of Pet Insurance Coverage for Rehabilitation Services

AARV has just released an updated version of its summary of pet insurance coverage for rehabilitation services. We believe this information will be helpful to our members and their clients.

To create this chart, we contacted pet insurance companies to collect information regarding coverage of rehabilitation services. Most of the companies were enthusiastic to provide the AARV information about their coverages. The AARV compiled the information received and created a 2-page summary chart in PDF format.

Download the AARV Pet Insurance Summary (PDF)

  Pet insurance summary chart
Presentation Notes Available from the STAAR Symposium

AARV is pleased to provide presentation notes from its lecture track at the 5th Annual Symposium on Therapeutic Advances in Animal Rehabilitation (STAAR), held April 25-27 in Florham Park, New Jersey.

DJO Global logoIn addition to the pre-symposium labs and workshops that have made this symposium so popular, this year's event included a half-day lecture track presented by AARV and sponsored by DJO Global.

The lecture track, entitled "What's on the Horizon? Cutting-Edge Topics in Veterinary Rehabilitation That Impact Your Practice Today," featured 4 great presenters: Joan Coates, DVM, PhD, DACVIM (Neuro); our own Kristin Kirkby Shaw, DVM, DACVS, PhD, Dipl. American College of Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation; Pedro Rivera, DVM, Fellow American College of Functional Neurology; and Gina Bertocci, PhD, PE, Endowed Chair Biomechanics, University of Louisville.

Dr. Shaw has made her presentation notes and reference list available to AARV members.

Dr. Kristin Kirkby ShawVeterinary Rehabilitation: Where is the Evidence?
Kristin Kirkby Shaw, DVM, PhD, CCRT, Diplomate, American College of Veterinary Surgeons, Diplomate, American College of Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation

According to the Evidence Based Veterinary Medicine Association, evidence-based medicine is "the effort to place all medical decisions on the strongest scientific proof (evidence) available." Although physical rehabilitation is becoming an accepted means of decreasing morbidity, speeding and improving recovery, and enhancing quality of life in veterinary patients, it is essential that an evidence-based approach be used in order to critically evaluate and document the efficacy of rehabilitation. Because it is a young discipline, there is a paucity of clinical veterinary studies regarding rehabilitation on which to base decision-making. Rather, rehabilitation therapists must often turn to the human literature and basic science principles when recommending therapy. The purpose of this discussion will be to review the available literature regarding physical rehabilitation and the clinical use of common therapeutic modalities in small animal patients. Discussion of pharmaceutical interventions, acupuncture, othotic/prosthetics and regenerative medicine is beyond the scope of this review.

Evidence for physical rehabilitation in orthopedic patients
Several authors have documented significant improvement following orthopedic surgery in dogs that participate in physical rehabilitation programs compared to dogs that are cage rested (1-4). The incorporation of physical rehabilitation in to weight management programs significantly improves lameness and weight loss in dogs (5,6).

Continue Reading ...
Go to the Resources page in the Members Only Area to read the rest of Dr. Shaw's presentation notes and see her list of references.

  Joan Coates, DVM, PhD, DACVIM (Neuro)
The AARV lecture track at STAAR drew a crowd to hear the four speakers.

Joan Coates, DVM, PhD, DACVIM (Neuro)
Joan Coates, DVM, PhD, DACVIM (Neuro)

Kristin Kirkby Shaw, DVM, DACVS, PhD, Dipl. American College of Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation
Kristin Kirkby Shaw, DVM, DACVS, PhD, Dipl. American College of Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation

Pedro Rivera,         DVM, Fellow American College of Functional Neurology
Pedro Rivera, DVM, Fellow American College of Functional Neurology

Gina Bertocci, PhD, PE, Endowed Chair Biomechanics, University of Louisville
Gina Bertocci, PhD, PE, Endowed Chair Biomechanics, University of Louisville

Congratulations to Dr. Andrea Henderson, the winner of the 2014 IAMS-John J. Sherman III Award for Excellence in the Field of Veterinary Rehabilitation. presented at AARV's annual conference in January in Orlando, Florida.

Dr. Andrea Henderson received her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine in 2005. Her passion for working dogs led her to join the U.S. Army Veterinary Corps. She has been an active duty officer for eight years and currently holds the rank of Major. In July 2011, Dr. Henderson began a residency in canine sports medicine and rehabilitation at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, of which she is currently in her third year. She is concurrently pursuing a Masters of Science with a focus in Kinesology with plans to graduate in 2014. After graduation, she will return to the Department of Defense Military Working Dog Center in San Antonio to oversee and expand the sports medicine and conditioning programs for the military working dogs. Dr. Henderson has specific interests in therapeutic laser applications in healing and nerve regeneration, perioperative multimodal analgesia, and conservative management of degenerative lumbosacral stenosis in Military Working Dogs.

Thank you to P&G IAMS for your generous sponsorship of this award. We look forward to continuing our relationship for the benefit of our profession, our colleagues, and rehabilitation veterinary medicine.

The John J. Sherman III Award for Excellence in the Field of Veterinary Rehabilitation is named in honor of Dr. John Sherman, a pioneer in veterinary rehabilitation medicine, who passed away in 2010.

At the AARV conference, President Dr. Rosemary LoGiudice also presented a plaque of appreciation to Dr. Janet Van Dyke, 2013 AARV president.


  Dr. Andrea Henderson receiving award
Dr. Andrea Henderson (center) accepts the IAMS-John J. Sherman III Award from Marcie J. Campion, PhD, scientific relations manager at IAMS (left). At right is Dr. Rosemary LoGiudice, president of AARV.

Dr. Rosemary LoGiudice and Dr. Janet Van Dyke
Dr. Janet Van Dyke (right) receives a plaque of appreciation for her term as AARV President in 2013 from Dr. Rosemary LoGiudice, the 2014 AARV President.
Become an AARV Member

We invite veterinarians to learn more about AARV and the benefits of membership. As a registered non-profit organization, AARV promotes education and research in the field of veterinary rehabilitation. Members attend continuing education programs offered by AARV in conjunction with national veterinary meetings.

AARV offers members knowledge, publicity, a way to speak out about issues, great continuing education opportunities and discounts from AARV partner companies.

For more details about these benefits, please visit our Membership Benefits page.

We encourage all veterinarians to become members of AARV.



You may now join AARV or renew your membership online! Payments are accepted by credit card or check.




We have adopted new membership categories, effective November 2013. Dues are the same for new and renewing members.

  • Veterinarian or industry professional: $100
  • Additional member from a practice at which another veterinarian is already a
    current AARV member: $65
  • Veterinary intern or resident: $65
  • Veterinary technician*: $40
  • Veterinary student graduating this year: $50
  • Veterinary or technician student graduating next year or later: Free

We are also now offering memberships for multiple years! Join or renew for 2 years and guarantee the same membership rate for both years. Join or renew for 3 years and receive a 5% discount. Join or renew for 5 years and receive a 10% discount.

Go to Join AARV or Renew Online to sign up today.

Please contact AARV whenever you change any contact information (especially email) so that we are able to keep you current!

Want to Learn More?

Please click on the menu to the left of this page for detailed information on rehabilitation and to find a rehabilitation veterinarian.




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