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What does it mean to design for animals and the people who care for them?  For us, it means considering everything about a space from the perspective of animals and their caretakers.

For pets, this means metaphorically getting on all four paws and experiencing the world through their senses.  From the flooring up, we look at everything an animal will touch, see, hear, and smell.

Smooth tile floors may look beautiful in a lobby, but if they have no slip resistance, dogs may feel unsteady walking on them, especially if they are older or ill. To prevent this issue, we look for a high coefficient of friction in all the flooring products we specify.

It’s important to remember that dogs and cats see colors differently than we do, that they hear in greater ranges and much higher frequencies than humans, and that they can smell a treat from a mile away (maybe a slight exaggeration).  Creating separate waiting areas, exam rooms, and treatment areas is one way to limit how much dogs and cats sense each other.

And, it’s not just about keeping negative stimulation at bay, it’s also about creating positive stimulation – like lowering windows in exam rooms so pets can see out, creating caging for cats that allows them to have vertical movement, and providing fresh outside air and natural light into every space possible.

The people who care for pets in veterinary hospitals and shelters also benefit immensely from fresh air and natural light.  We also ensure that desks and workstation are ergonomically correct, that paths needed to complete tasks throughout a building are as efficient as possible, and that our facilities are accessible to all.

Creating spaces that support, nurture, and improve well-being for animals and people is central to all of our work. A dog’s eye view might be inches from the floor for the teacup pup, or four-feet Great Dane height, but it’s integral to animal care architecture.

P.S. We haven’t forgotten about reptiles, birds, bunnies, and pocket pets! We apply the same principles to spaces for their care too.

A vet clinic breakroom with glass double doors leading out to a deck with tables and chairs

Veterinary Village Clinic of Hamburg brings natural light into the hospital for skylights, oversized windows, and in the break room with large , double doors and sidelights.

A photo of a vet hospital lobby, highlighting the floor tile

VCA Old Marple – this tile was chosen for the lobby for its cleanability and slip resistance.

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