Today's Veterinary Business

APR 2018

Today’s Veterinary Business provides information and resources designed to help veterinarians and office management improve the financial performance of their practices, allowing them to increase the level of patient care and client service.

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18 Today's Veterinary Business Business Business CONSTRUCTIVE CRITICISM Whether you are a dog lover or a cat lover, you would agree that routine veterinary care is integral to maintaining the health of both. However, cats are a substantial minority of veterinary visitors. By Paul Gladysz, AIA, NCARB, CSI, ICC One of most easily identifiable reasons for their absence is in-clinic anxiety, an issue easily addressed during construction of a clinic or renovation of an existing space. While I am seeing more feline-only clinics, the idea of making a gener- al practice cat friendly is not new. My colleagues and I have been working at it for a while. What follows are features we have been refining over many years, so we have learned what works. Building Options When it comes to your hospital, separate the species to the greatest extent possible on both the client and clinical sides. In other words, keep the stinky dog over there! If you can, maintain separate air flow in feline areas. If you can't do it, configure the flow so that fresh air is introduced into the fe- line area before it circulates toward the canines. The intent is to mini- mize dog scents in cat spaces. Divide and conquer Keeping cats and dogs as far apart as possible in the hospital will go a long way toward securing more feline appointments. Noise control is equally import- ant. Separate dog spaces from cat spaces, especially in noise-produc- ing rooms like wards. If distance is not an option, install a sound-re- sistant dividing wall and add sound-absorbing materials. Walls are made sound resistant by add- ing mass, usually layers of drywall. Major drywall manufacturers offer products specific to this purpose. Don't forget to seal the wall, too. A 1-inch hole will negate all your sound-proofing efforts. Use acoustic caulk at the floor and top. (Walls must be continuous to a solid plane above.) Fill outlet and switch boxes

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