Selecting Flooring Materials for your Veterinary Hospital

December 30, 2014

Key components to selecting flooring for a Veterinary Hospital

View of the treatment area of veterinary hospital flooring has a pattern

As many of us know, the floors in a Veterinary Hospital are more abused than in any other medical facility for the simple reason that the clients tend to relieve themselves on the floor. In addition, flooring usually consumes the largest part of any interior construction budget and also has a very important role to play in the success of the hospital. Thus, the flooring materials selected, their detailing, and their method of installation are critical to the quality of the environment within the hospital.

There are twelve factors that are significant in the selection of the most appropriate flooring material for the various areas within the hospital:

  1. Durability – The life expectancy of the material
  2. Abrasion resistance – Its resistance to damage
  3. Required Maintenance – The time and effort required to maintain the floor
  4. Odor resistance – Its resistance to the absorption of liquids and thus the retention of odor
  5. Slip resistance – Its resistance to discoloration from various acids or chemicals
  6. Physical comfort – Its comfort underfoot primarily for staff who are on their feet for many hours
  7. Aesthetics – Its beauty and the visual message it conveys to both clients and staff
  8. Bacterial resistance – Its ability to resist the growth of bacteria
  9. Combustibility – Its resistance to burning and to the emission of toxic fumes during a fire
  10. Initial cost – Its actual installation cost
  11. Long-term cost – Its subsequent maintenance and upkeep cost, long after the project is completed, including potential early replacement cost

Naturally, no one flooring material can possibly meet all twelve criteria. Due to the varying conditions in each part of the hospital, no single flooring material can be appropriate throughout the entire facility. Nevertheless, a patchwork quilt of different floors throughout a hospital is certainly not necessary or even desirable.

There are five types of flooring material that are most appropriate and can meet the varied demands of a veterinary hospital. These are:

  1. Concrete floors
  2. Sealed concrete floors
  3. Resilient sheet vinyl floors
  4. Seamless floors
  5. Ceramic or quarry tile floors

Before making your selection, ask your colleagues about what has worked for them, familiarize yourself with the different types of floor coverings available in your local area, and work closely with your architect. Informed decisions should guarantee that your hospital and its floors remain durable, easily maintainable, odor free, and attractive virtually for the life of the building.




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