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Southern Ontario Animal Rehabilitation (SOAR) provides an integrative medicine approach to treating your pets.  We combine rehabilitation, medications, acupuncture, and nutrition to help your pets.  We believe that there is no cookie cutter method to treat patients.. All of our patients are assessed and treated with an individual plan that best suits their temperament, and medical conditions.  We believe collaboration amongst veterinarians is key to giving your pet the best outcome, and we work closely with you and your veterinarian in order to build the best treatment plan for your pet.

SOAR began as a part time hobby for Dr. Danielle Anderson in 2013. In June 2015, she moved SOAR to its brick and mortar location at 850 Legion Rd, Unit 5 in Burlington, ON allowing her to see more patients and offer more services including hydrotherapy!   In December 2019 we obtained approval from the College of Veterinarians of Ontario to add a mobile unit to SOAR which will allow us to treat patients that can not get into vehicles or where travelling is stressful and difficult.

Dr. Danielle Anderson, Animal therapy & Southern Ontario Animal Rehabilitation (SOAR), founder for animal physiotherapy in Burlington, Ontario.


Bachelor of Science, Honours (BSCH)

Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM)

Certified Canine Rehabilitation Practitioner (CCRP)

Certified Veterinary Medical Acupuncturist (cVMA)

 Dr. Anderson graduated from the Ontario Veterinary College in 2002. After working at several small animal hospitals she developed a keen interest in pain control. In 2006, she was introduced to small animal rehabilitation and physical therapy and decided to pursue her certification with the University of Tennessee. Completion of her certification in 2013 inspired her to open Southern Ontario Animal Rehabilitation (SOAR). She then completed her certification in Veterinary Acupuncture in April of 2016 and now travels to Colorado twice a year to help teach the clinical intensive portion of the course. She is a member of the Ontario Veterinary Medical Association, the College of Veterinarians of Ontario, the International Veterinary Academy of Pain Management and the American Association of Rehabilitation Veterinarians.

In addition to running SOAR, Dr. Anderson has been involved with a committee for the College of Veterinarians of Ontario, and is busy
with a 14 year old son, an 11 yr old daughter, two cats, a dog and a wonderful supportive husband.


Registered Veterinary Technician (RVT)

Certified Canine Rehabilitation Practitioner (CCRP)

Certified Canine Massage Therapist (CCMT)

Jenna began at SOAR as a rehabilitation extern in 2016. Jenna has always had a passion for helping animals and has been involved with many different aspects of animal care leading up to, and throughout, her career in veterinary medicine. She graduated from the University of Guelph in 2013 earning a Bachelor of Science, majoring in Animal Biology. While completing her degree, Jenna found her passion for animal rehabilitation. In 2015, Jenna graduated from Seneca College as a Registered Veterinary Technician. She attended the University of Tennessee, earning her credentials as a Certified Canine Rehabilitation Practitioner in 2016. In addition, Jenna became certified as a Canine Massage Therapist by the Royal Canadian College of Massage in 2016, and has since incorporated this skill into her practice. Jenna began her career as head of the animal rehabilitation department at Toronto Veterinary Emergency Hospital. However, in January 2017, she joined the SOAR team part-time and eventually as of October 2018, became a full-time employee. Jenna has a special interest in neurological rehabilitation, geriatric care and pain management. She is currently working on becoming a board certified Veterinary Technician Specialist in animal rehabilitation, as well as a Certified Veterinary Pain Practitioner. She continues to further her knowledge in animal rehabilitation, so she can continue to provide the finest level of care to her patients. Jenna is committed to helping your pet live a healthier and more active life, and looks forward to guiding you and your pet along their road to recovery.

Outside of work, Jenna enjoys going on hikes with her dogs.


Bachelor of Science

Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM)

Certified Canine Rehabilitation Practitioner (CCRP)

Dr. Ekstrom graduated from the Ontario Veterinary College in 2010. She first came to SOAR in 2018 to complete her externship hours for her rehabilitation certification.  Currently, Dr. Ekstrom works full-time at a veterinary clinic in Caledon, ON, however, was convinced by Dr. Anderson to come work at SOAR part-time doing rehabilitation. 

Outside of work, Dr. Ekstrom has a busy life with two small children and we at SOAR are very honoured that she will be spending occasional Fridays with us!


Bachelor of Science, Honours (BSCH) | University of Guelph

Animal Rehabilitation Assistant

Throughout her high school and university years, Michelle has always had a keen interest in working with animals and learning about all aspects of veterinary medicine. Working and volunteering at multiple small and large animal clinics, Michelle came to SOAR in the summer of 2017 interested in learning about the new and exciting world of animal rehabilitation. After only a short while, she quickly came to recognize and appreciate the positive impacts integrative medicine, particularly acupuncture and laser, can have on young animals with sport injuries or geriatric animals struggling with pain and mobility. In September 2018, she came on board as an animal rehabilitation assistant while juggling her very busy university schedule and her other job as a barista at Starbucks. In April 2019, she successfully completed her Bachelor of Science, Honours in Animal Biology with a minor in Nutrition and Nutraceutical Sciences. Michelle’s goal is to attend the Ontario Veterinary College and upon graduation orient her career around educating pet owners about pain management in both large and small animals.

In her free time, Michelle enjoys travelling, spending time with her German shepherd, Bundo, and being involved in her Croatian community (e.g., Croatian folklore, picnics and concerts).


Bachelor of Science (BSc)

Rehabilitation Assistant

Paige joined the SOAR team as a volunteer in 2018.  Her sweet personality and keen work ethic made us quickly realize she would be a great asset to our team.  She started working part time at SOAR in January of 2019 as a rehab assistant.  In April of 2019 she successfully completed her Bachelor of Science and now splits her time working at SOAR and Unleashed Pet Sitters.  


Certified In Veterinary Acupuncture through the CHI Institute

Graduated from FMVZ-UNAM

Sophie graduated with a degree in Veterinary Medicine from the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico (UNAM), Mexico City in 2012. She recently moved to Burlington from Denver CO, having worked in Denver for four years at an alternative medicine clinic. In Fall 2017, she completed her Acupuncture Certification through the CHI institute in Florida. Sophie started volunteering with us in March 2019 but her warm personality and hard work ethic quickly led us to realize what an asset she would be at SOAR. As a result, Sophie is helping us with acupuncture and laser therapy appointments and enjoys seeing interesting cases. Sophie is looking forward to completing her canine rehabilitation certification through the Tennessee University program in the future.

Sophie grew up in Mexico with a French and Spanish heritage. As a result, she is fluent in English, French and Spanish. Her professional interests include acupuncture, laser therapy, holistic medicine and rehabilitation. 

Outside of work, she can be found hiking with her veterinarian husband and her dog Mezcal, at the movies, concerts or exploring and traveling around the world.


Registered Veterinary Technician

Certified Canine Rehabilitation Practitioner

 Emily was working as a full time RVT when we met her.  With her passion for rehabilitation, she began working with us part time in the fall of 2018, driving from her home in Toronto.  She has since relocated from Toronto to Hamilton and is increasing the number of hours she works at SOAR.  Emily has a huge heart and passion for animals and rehabilitation and with her sweet quiet nature, she is a great addition to our team!


Rehabilitation Assistant

Cassi began volunteering at SOAR during the summer of 2018. She officially joined our team as a rehabilitation assistant in the summer of 2019. Cassi is a full time student at the University of Guelph but is continuing to work Saturdays throughout the school year.  She continues to come back to help us out during her school vacations.  Cassi is a popular staff member with many of our patients and often fosters animals for the Burlington Humane Society.  


Certified Canine Fitness Trainer (CCFT)

Rehabilitation Assistant

Kandis has been working part time with us since 2018.  Kandis has a long history of working with animals, including working as a trainer, working as a receptionist and assistant at Burloak Animal Hospital, and is very involved in IPO/Schutzhund.  We are fortunate to have her as part of our SOAR team, even if its only part time!!!!  With an amazing ability to train dogs, she is very much appreciated at SOAR!!


  • blog rehab physiotherapy chiropractic
    11/03/2020 - Dr. Danielle Anderson 0 Comments

    WARNING:  There may be some strong opinions in this blog.  Please, don't let it offend you.  Let it change how we are doing things!!!  

    Veterinarians, especially solo practitioners, tend to experience a degree of isolation.  Some of this is situational as they have busy practices and little time.  Some of this is also self-induced, meaning in today's very competitive atmosphere, with veterinary clinics on every corner, and corporations buying every clinic they can, there is a fear.....a fear that collaborating or referring to colleagues may lead to loss of clientele.  

    All of this aside, this "island" approach seems to be even more common with rehabilitation.  There is little to no communication between chiropractors, physiotherapists, rehab technicians and veterinarians.  Lets delve into why.

    Read More
  • Rehabilitation, Veterinary Rehabilitation
    21/02/2020 - Dr. Danielle Anderson 0 Comments
    So...this is 45

    Well it happened....I thought it wouldn't but it did.  I couldn't stop it.  Yesterday I turned 45......

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  • veterinary medicine, rehabilitation, ccrp, ccrt, veterinary rehabilitation
    25/01/2020 - Danielle Anderson, BSc, DVM, CCRP, cVMA 0 Comments
    Cookie Cutter Medicine in Rehabilitation

    Over the last few years I have seen an increase in the standardization of veterinary medicine.  By this I don't mean standard protocols to make clinics run more efficiently, but instead to provide vets with how they should approach cases.  I personally find it disheartening and it seems to remove the "art" of veterinary medicine;  reliance on communication and connection with clients, and your physical examination to then proceed with the best possible plan for the patient and the client.  This 'cookie cutter' approach, although not common, is seeping into the rehabilitation field and I wanted to take a minute to address it from my perspective.

    Read More
    14/01/2020 - Dr. Danielle Anderson, BSc, DVM, CCRP, cVMA 0 Comments

    I have no idea what it takes to run a successful veterinary practice lol!!!   I definitely don't claim to have all the answers as to what is required to make a veterinary hospital or any business thrive and I have made so many mistakes along the way.  What I do know as that as SOAR continues to grow, I must be doing something right.  I know that I question my own decisions almost daily and learn from my mistakes.  I have never been OK with status quo and constantly change things to improve who SOAR is, and what we can do for our patients.  After graduating from veterinary school in 2002 I have worked in a large number of clinics.  I have worked as a receptionist and an assistant.  I have worked as a veterinary associate.  I have worked as a locum.  Now I am a business owner.  This has provided me with perspective from all aspects of veterinary medicine.  I have experienced a large number of practice management styles and have taken away many different ideas; some which I vowed to never use if I ever owned my own practice, and some that I took away as important pearls of wisdom from the many veterinary owners I encountered.   As I watch SOAR grow, I look back on decisions that I have made, mistakes I have made, and what allows us to continue to grow and be who we are.  It would be so easy to say the typical things like pick a good location, work within a budget, and market yourself well.  While these are definitely important in the growth of a business, these are the things I have found to be important to me, my personality, and SOAR.

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  • 10/09/2019 - Dr. Danielle Anderson, BSc, DVM, CCRP, cVMA 3 Comments
    Suicide Awareness day

    When I was a kid, I remember wanting 2 things in life. A family, and a career as a veterinarian.  I have the extreme fortune of having accomplished these dreams.  Neither of them was what I expected, but at my current 44 years of age, both have exceeded my expectations.  My staff, my friends, and my clients know me and know that I am an open book....sometimes to a fault.  So most are also aware that I suffer from depression and anxiety.  I actually wrote "have suffered" and changed it as I realized that that is not a true representation. Why??  Because although 99% of the time I am good....really good due to a very strong support system and coping mechanisms. I also know that there are times where that anxiety is lurking and that sad day can spiral pretty quickly.  I am writing this because not only have I know people who have committed suicide, it is becoming far too common in our veterinary community and I felt on today's Suicide Awareness Day, it was something that I needed to talk about.

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  • 03/06/2019 - Dr. Danielle Anderson, BSc, DVM, CCRP, cVMA 0 Comments

    Four years ago today we opened SOAR as a brick and mortar building at 850 Legion Rd in Burlington.  There have been so many changes  I want to thank all of our referring clinics and clients for all of your support.  

    Read More
  • 31/03/2019 - Dr. Danielle Anderson 0 Comments
    What does it take to be a certified rehabilitation technician/veterinarian?

    We constantly get asked the question of what it takes to become certified in rehabilitation.  What does this certification mean?  Where do you take the courses?  How long does it take?  How much does it cost?  What are the legalities surrounding practicing veterinary rehabilitation?  How come it is not called veterinary physical therapy or physiotherapy?  Hopefully this blog will help you to understand more of what is involved in this growing and complicated field of medicine.

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  • 07/02/2019 - Jenna Cook, RVT, CCRP, CCMT 0 Comments
    ​Weight loss in our Pet’s …..whats the skinny?

    With our temperatures in the GTA dipping well below freezing and the snow and ice storms making for slippery road conditions, it has been virtually impossible to exercise our dogs. Safety comes first when it comes to our best friends, so often we opt for some cuddles on the couch rather than a walk on an ice covered side-walk, or a frostbitten run in the dog park. So what does this mean for our pets? Canine obesity is prevalent all year round, but most of our pets tend to gain some extra weight during the winter months. This is commonly due to inactivity with no dietary adjustments.

    Obesity is a medical condition in which excess body fat in the form of adipose tissue has accumulated to an extent that it may result in negative health effects. Obesity is proved to have a direct link to the incidence of joint inflammation, osteoarthritis and other orthopedic conditions such as ACL tears, hip and elbow dysplasia and intervertebral disc disease… to name a few!

    So what can we do to help prevent this epidemic in our pets? Well to start, adjusting our pets treat and cookie intake may be enough to account for their decreased energy expenditure and balance out their metabolism. If your pet has more than just a few pounds to lose, have your pet examined by your veterinarian or a rehabilitation practitioner. At this time, we can weigh and perform a body condition score assessment on your pet and calculate an accurate ideal weight estimation specific to your pet. We will develop a structured weight loss plan tailored to meet the needs of your pet. We can do this by calculating more appropriate quantities of food to be fed, or we can suggest a veterinary prescription weight loss food to promote more effective weight loss long term.

    Prescription weight loss foods are specifically designed for weight loss by containing lower calorie density than pet store “lite” or “weight care” foods. Since these prescription diets are lower in calorie and higher in fiber your pet can actually eat a higher volume of food and feel satiated between meal times…. this means less begging for scraps at the dinner table. Veterinary weight loss foods are completely balanced in protein, carbohydrates, fats and vitamins and minerals. By restricting your pet’s caloric intake with pet store foods, your pet can actually develop deficiencies which can lead to other detrimental health conditions. Prescription weight loss diets have been through extensive testing to ensure their efficacy in achieving ideal weight. We know these diets work and have seen these diets work their magic in our pets’ lives. So why not give one a try for your pet?

    Talk to us about a weight loss plan for your furry friend! Let us help your pets live a happier and healthier life!

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  • 22/01/2019 - Dr. Danielle Anderson 1 Comment
    Pain Management

    Everyday we have many discussions amongst our staff at SOAR.  We are starting this blog to bring you in on some of the topics we are passionate about and even get you to weigh in on some of these sometimes heated topics.  One of the things we talk about every day is pain management.  Every day we see animals walk in our doors in varying degrees of pain.  When asked what pain medications the are on, the answer is often none at all.  Why is this? Sometimes medications are declined by owners due to their perceptions of "drugs".  Sometimes it is because they have been deemed non-painful by their veterinarian.  Sometimes it is just because these subtle signs we see are not known to be expressions of pain.  So here we go....

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