Open Menu Close Menu Open Search Close Search Open Directory Close Directory

Michael P Kowaleski - DVM, DACVS

Michael P Kowaleski
Clinical Orthopedics
Orthopedic Surgery

As a member of the Foster Hospital for Small Animals' surgical team,Dr. Michael Kowaleski specializes in joint replacement, arthroscopy, stifle (knee) surgery, corrective osteotomy and fracture treatments. Although his most common patients are dogs and cats, he occasionally operates on exotic animals and, most recently, camelids such as alpacas. He serves as the course director for Principles of Surgery for second-year veterinary students and for an orthopedic elective in the third year, teaches small animal surgery for third-year students and serves as a facilitator for the school's Problem Based Learning course for first year students.

Dr. Kowaleski is a home-grown talent from a family of veterinarians. He grew up in nearby Sterling, Massachusetts and his father and sister are both veterinarians. He attended the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine for his DVM studies and completed the dual residency in surgery at Tufts and Angell Animal Medical CenterThe practice of medicine has always intrigued me, Dr. Kowaleski says. I have always been adept at taking things apart and repairing them; thus surgery is a very good fit for me.

Prior to joining the faculty at the Cummings School, Dr. Kowaleski was an assistant professor, then associate professor, of orthopedic surgery at The Ohio State University. He has enjoyed the demanding caseload here, as well as the opportunity to work on unique cases. Recently, he teamed up with the surgical team at the school's Hospital for Large Animals to treat an alpaca with patellar luxation (looseness in the kneecap). In 2008, Dr. Kowaleski also adapted human instrumentation and implants to fix a middle-aged cocker spaniel with a poorly healing fracture in its elbow.

Dr. Kowaleski also enjoys participating in the school's clinical and basic science research projects (please see Dr.Kowaleski's academic profile for the latest research publications) and travels nationally and internationally to present on the latest surgical techniques.

Dr. Kowaleski and his wife, Lisa, have two young sons and enjoy boating, sailing, fishing, skiing and rock climbing.


  • Surgical Residency - Tufts University/Angell Memorial Animal Hospital - 1999-2002
  • DVM - Tufts University - 1993
  • BS - University of Massachusetts at Amherst (Summa Cum Laude) - 1989

Board Certification

  • Diplomate, American College of Veterinary Surgeons
  1. Kowaleski, M.P. 2020. Minimally Invasive Osteosynthesis Techniques of the Femur. Veterinary Clinics of North America - Small Animal Practice.
  2. Roca, R.Y., Peura, A., Kowaleski, M.P., Watson, M.T., Lendhey, M., Rocheleau, P.J., Hulse, D.A. 2020. Ex vivo mechanical properties of a 2.5-mm bone anchor for treatment of cranial cruciate ligament rupture in toy breed dogs. Veterinary Surgery.
  3. Eiermann, J., Kirkby-Shaw, K., Evans, R.B., Knell, S.C., Kowaleski, M.P., Schmierer, P.A., Bergh, M.S., Bleedorn, J., Cuddy, L.C., Kieves, N.R., Lotsikas, P., Pozzi, A. 2020. Recommendations for rehabilitation after surgical treatment of cranial cruciate ligament disease in dogs: A 2017 survey of veterinary practitioners. Veterinary Surgery.
  4. Brida, A.L., O’ Toole, T.E., Sutherland-Smith, J., Pirie, C., Kowaleski, M.P. 2019. Compartment syndrome of the muscles of mastication in a working dog following a traumatic training incident. Journal of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care.
  5. Rohner, D., Kowaleski, M.P., Schwarz, G., Forterre, F. 2019. Short-Term Clinical and Radiographical Outcome after Application of Anchored Intervertebral Spacers in Dogs with Disc-Associated Cervical Spondylomyelopathy. Veterinary and Comparative Orthopaedics and Traumatology.
  6. von Pfeil, D.J.F., Kowaleski, M.P., Glassman, M., Dejardin, L.M. 2018. Results of a survey of veterinary orthopedic society members on the preferred method for treating cranial cruciate ligament rupture in dogs weighing more than 15 kilograms (33 pounds). Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association.
  7. Mostafa, A.A., Cunningham, D.P., Boudrieau, R.J., Kowaleski, M.P., Griffon, D.J. 2018. Influence of radiographic techniques on the measurement of femoral anteversion angles and a conformation score of pelvic limbs in Labrador retrievers. Veterinary Surgery.
  8. Birks, R.R., Kowaleski, M.P. 2018. Combined Tibial Plateau Levelling Osteotomy and Tibial Tuberosity Transposition: An Ex Vivo Mechanical Study. Veterinary and Comparative Orthopaedics and Traumatology.
  9. von Pfeil, D.J.F., Glassman, M., Kowaleski, M.P., Dejardin, L.M. 2018. The authors respond. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association.
  10. Tamburro, R., Petazzoni, M., Carli, F., Kowaleski, M.P. 2018. Comparison of Rotation Force to Maintain Acetabular Ventroversion after Double Pelvic Osteotomy and 25 Pelvic Osteotomy in a Canine Cadaveric Model. Veterinary and Comparative Orthopaedics and Traumatology.
  11. Kowaleski, M.P. 2017. Treatment of Excessive Tibial Plateau Angle. Advances in the Canine Cranial Cruciate Ligament: Second Edition.
  12. DiVincenzo, M.J., Frydman, G.H., Kowaleski, M.P., Vanderburg, C.R., Lai, B., Oura, T.J., Jennings, S.H. 2017. Metallosis in a Dog as a Long-Term Complication Following Total Hip Arthroplasty. Veterinary Pathology.
  13. Brower, B.E., Kowaleski, M.P., Peruski, A.M., Pozzi, A., Dyce, J., Johnson, K.A., Boudrieau, R.J. 2017. Distal femoral lateral closing wedge osteotomy as a component of comprehensive treatment of medial patellar luxation and distal femoral varus in dogs. Veterinary and Comparative Orthopaedics and Traumatology.
  14. Mariano, A.D., Kowaleski, M.P., Boudrieau, R.J. 2016. Novel TPLO alignment jig/saw guide reproduces freehand and ideal osteotomy positions. PLoS ONE.
  15. Nesser, V.E., Kowaleski, M.P., Boudrieau, R.J. 2016. Severe Polyethylene Wear Requiring Revision Total Hip Arthroplasty in Three Dogs. Veterinary Surgery.
  16. Ficklin, M.G., Kowaleski, M.P., Kunkel, K.A.R., Suber, J.T. 2016. One-stage revision of an infected cementless total hip replacement. Veterinary and Comparative Orthopaedics and Traumatology.
  17. Singh, H., Kowaleski, M.P., McCarthy, R.J., Boudrieau, R.J. 2016. A comparative study of the dorsolateral and ventrolateral approaches for repair of canine sacroiliac luxation. Veterinary and Comparative Orthopaedics and Traumatology.
  18. Leonard, K.C., Kowaleski, M.P., Saunders, W.B., McCarthy, R.J., Boudrieau, R.J. 2016. Combined tibial plateau levelling osteotomy and tibial tuberosity transposition for treatment of cranial cruciate ligament insufficiency with concomitant medial patellar luxation. Veterinary and Comparative Orthopaedics and Traumatology.
  19. Ficklin, M.G., Kunkel, K.A.R., Suber, J.T., Gerard, P.D., Kowaleski, M.P. 2016. Biomechanical evaluation of polymethyl methacrylate with the addition of various doses of cefazolin, vancomycin, gentamicin, and silver microparticles. Veterinary and Comparative Orthopaedics and Traumatology.
  20. Gibert, S., Kowaleski, M.P., Matthys, R., Nützi, R., Serck, B., Boudrieau, R.J. 2016. Biomechanical comparison of pin and tension-band wire fixation with a prototype locking plate fixation in a transverse canine patellar fracture model. Veterinary and Comparative Orthopaedics and Traumatology.

General Research Interests

  • Clinical orthopedics, with a focus on total joint replacement
  • Arthroscopy
  • Fracture healing
  • Implant design
  • Biomechanics and the role of osteotomy in the treatment of joint disease

Selected Research Projects

  • Biomechanical evaluation of TPLO and TTA
  • Initial stability of BFX™ cementless total hip replacment
  • Radiological assessment of limb alignment
  • Experimental evaluation of locking plate fixation

Research and Clinical Interests

  • Total joint replacement
  • Arthroscopy
  • Fracture healing
  • Biomechanics
  • Implant design
  • TPLO
  • TTA
  • Cruciate ligament disease
  • Osteotomy
  • Gait analysis


  • Small Animal Medicine & Surgery
  • Principles of Surgery - Course Director
  • Spay Lab
  • Orthopedic Surgery - Clinical Rotation
  • Orthopedic Elective

Research Interests by Area

Spontaneous Animal Disease Models
  • Osteoarthritis of the elbow, stifle and hip, cruciate ligament repair in dogs, total hip replacement, platelet-rich plasma applications, developmental orthopedic disease

Research Interests by Organ System and Disease

Bone and Tissue Repair and Regeneration
  • Biomechanics and the role of osteotomy in the treatment of joint disease, novel therapies for osteoarthritis. Orthopedic surgery research; spontaneous animal disease models for evaluating response to osteoarthritis treatments, fracture repair and implants, implant design, strength and application

Major Specialized Equipment

  • Instron Model 8511 servohydraulic materials testing device
  • Toshiba Acquilion 16 slice CT
  • Siemens Symphony 1.5 Tesla MRI
  • Digital high-resolution gamma camera (IS2 NuCamma Enhanced Technologies, Dallas/Fort Worth, TX)
  • AMTI dual platform force plate gait analysis system
  • Arthroscopy
  • Comprehensive surgical facilities
  • Media center
  • Clinical pathology and pathology facilities complement the environment

House Officer Training

  • Rotating Internship
  • ACVS Resident
  • ECVS Resident