The Southgate Veterinary Hospital has been providing a friendly, caring environment for animals to heal in the Fargo, N.D., area for almost 25 years. Over time, a chronic leak necessitated a total reroof of the 4,600-square-foot building in the spring of 2018.

The hospital’s owners wanted to ensure that their new roof was weather resistant, aesthetically pleasing, and affordable. This is where M & J Construction of Moorhead, Minn., stepped in to redo the roof using asphalt, the natural product choice.

Combatting Extreme Weather

Fargo was crowned “America's Toughest Weather City” by the Weather Channel in 2011. This area of the Great Plains is known for freezing cold winters, a high concentration of blizzards, and high winds. Weather resistance was an important factor in choosing asphalt, which was trusted to provide the durability needed to withstand Fargo’s climate.

To protect against water penetration, the contractors laid down one ply of CertainTeed’s WinterGuard® waterproofing shingle underlayment in the eaves of the roof, roughly 1,000 square feet in total. CertainTeed RoofRunner® underlayment was used on the remainder of the roof (approximately 3,600 square feet) to protect against slipping and provide additional water resistance.

Finding the Right Color

When it came to choosing a color, complementing the building’s stucco was a priority. The large array of options available with asphalt made it easy to find a color match (Georgetown Gray) at an affordable rate. M & J chose a CertainTeed system, including Landmark® Pro Max Def shingles, SwiftStart® starter shingles, and Shadow Ridge® hip and ridge shingles.

Standing Out on Main Street

It’s hard to miss the standout feature of Southgate’s new roof: a paw print imprint on the roof. The hospital’s owner wanted to match the paw print in their logo and make it look like an animal stepped on the roof, and the ease of working with asphalt made this request a reality.

“The owners wanted the paw print to be visible to planes as they flew over the hospital coming into Fargo,” said Lisa Spriggs, marketing manager at M & J. “They were thrilled with the final product. It really gives the roof a special pop!”

The paw print was created using CertainTeed’s Flintlastic® SA CAP in the color Moire Black. An enlarged vinyl sticker of a paw print was placed on the roof as a template. Once the membrane was put down, the paw print was cut into the shingles to add depth and create an imprint. The roof’s color blends in with the surrounding buildings, but the hospital stands out thanks to the imprint.

“As you drive down a busy main street in Fargo, you can see it plain and clear,” Spriggs said.

A Family-Owned Business

M & J Construction has been a family-owned-and-operated business since it was founded in 1966. With over 50 years of experience in roofing, siding and remodeling, M & J Construction has adapted to industry changes while maintaining its commitment to its customers.

Awarded for Excellence

The Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association (ARMA) named M & J Construction the 2019 Gold Winner in the Excellence in Asphalt Roofing Awards Program for its work on the Southgate Veterinary Hospital. M & J was chosen by a panel of industry experts and media members based on its showcasing of asphalt roofing’s key qualities: durability, weather resistance and style. The Southgate Veterinary Hospital is now a permanent part of ARMA’s online winners gallery.

The selection process for this year’s award winners is underway and will culminate with formal announcements from the show floor of the 2020 International Roofing Expo in Dallas, Feb. 4-6, 2020.

Visit to learn more about ARMA’s Excellence in Asphalt Roofing Awards Program, the annual, free-to-enter awards program recognizing the top commercial or residential asphalt roofing project in North America.