Project Planning Photos

Make room on your site for storm-water management. Governmental requirements and space allocation needs may be more extensive in wet climates like Florida. A geotechnical team drilling on a project site. To build a new structure on a site, you will need a site survey, a Phase 1 Environmental Report, and a geotechnical (soils) report. A lobby area prior to renovation. The space was closed off and dark, and staff was separated physically and psychologically from clients. (Courtesy of Hulen Hills Animal Hospital, Fort Worth, Texas.) The lobby after renovation. The new space is more open and inviting, with a lighter and brighter feel. With this space configuration, staff can more easily step out from behind the desk to assist clients and their pets. (Courtesy of Hulen Hills Animal Hospital, Fort Worth, Texas.)

Fear Freeā„  design is discussed in detail in Chapter 10 of the book, but here are some important ideas that should be addressed in relation to renovations.

While it may be easier to incorporate Fear Free concepts into a brand-new hospital, a variety of simple design elements can be included in a renovation project for big effect:

  • If your site allows for it, consider creating an outdoor covered waiting area. This can be as simple as a covered porch with some comfortable seating and/or an outdoor dog exam space.
  • Separate species as much as possible in your remodeled hospital. Create separate seating areas for cat and dog owners and their pets in waiting. Designate at least one exam room for cats only. Integrate visual barriers into your treatment area so that at the very least dogs and cats cannot see each other. If possible, designate separate ward rooms.
  • Play to the visual range of cats and dogs by using Fear Free colors on your walls.
  • If your remodel includes providing new caging and runs in ward spaces, ensure that they allow for comfortable movement (as described in Chapter 38, Animal Housing).
  • Provide as much daylighting as possible in animal areas, including exam rooms and wards, and include dimmable lighting in these spaces as well.
  • Look at ways to reduce noise by adding doors between spaces or decorative acoustic panels to walls.