Chain Petstore Comedy - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 31 (permalink) Old 12-03-2007, 06:38 PM Thread Starter
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Chain Petstore Comedy

So, while in a national chain pet store last week, I was looking at some really impressive apple snails (blues and ivories!) and a woman was shopping for live plants right next to me. She picked out some cambomba, hornwort, and then asked the store employee if the corkscrew val would do well in her tank.

I have corkscrew val in my 5 gallon and it's taken off like nothing else, sending runners in every direction and completely taking the spotlife. But the store employee says to the customer "That? That's not really to grow... its just... like... food for fish." My mouth dropped. Classic! Do these employees receive any training whatsoever?

Then, during my long wait to get an apple snail (I was THIS close to sticking my hand in and picking out the one I wanted by myself), I overhear a man asking another employee whether he can keep tetras in his 50 degree 55 gallon tank. 50 degrees! He said all his silver dollars had died and he cant heat the tank because of the expense. The employee, thankfully, told the customer that he'd kill tetras or any other tropical fish in that tank. I actually went over to him later and told him that he absolutely needs a heater in that tank, and I gave him some advice on cooler water fish and plants....

Overall, an amazing experience. Truly classic.
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post #2 of 31 (permalink) Old 12-03-2007, 06:42 PM
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I try to have selective hearing most of the time.
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post #3 of 31 (permalink) Old 12-03-2007, 07:46 PM
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...can't afford to heat the tank? Who is this joker. Shouldn't buy a 55 gallon tank if you can't afford the damn heater.

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post #4 of 31 (permalink) Old 12-03-2007, 08:07 PM
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Sounds hard to understand the heater being the expense. One of the cheapest things to add and what did he keep his house at if the tank ran 50. I know with my home tank I had a heater break and it stayed above 70
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post #5 of 31 (permalink) Old 12-03-2007, 08:07 PM
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hehehe

yep, classic

Compatibility between species is usually another big downfall for them. I always refuse any help they offer too.


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post #6 of 31 (permalink) Old 12-03-2007, 08:32 PM
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meh it's easy to laugh at people with less knowledge than you but it's not like anyone was born with aquarium know how. And big chain pet stores are not specialized and do not pay to hire knowledgeble empoylees. They compete by selling things cheaply I'm not sure what the surprise is here. If you don't like that don't shop there but those stores are under no obligation to do things differently. And let's not pretend that big chain stores are the only ones giving out incorrect information anyone who has done this long enough knows there are plenty of smaller guys who are just as bad.

Sorry if this is heavy handed but I get tired of reading snarky posts basically stating the obvious that those of us who dedicate a lot time reading and posting about fishkeeping know more than those who don't. Something like getting a heater may seem obvious but really it's not unless you've been told or researched it.

Additionally being in this hobby and spending money on it I think means accepting that there are many fish which are going to die mostly from incorrect care. You can't be offended or upset and then continue to put money into the industry. These "uniformed" hobbyist result in high enough volumes allowing prices to be much more reasonable then they otherwise would be.

Fish will go to people who will cause their death who then buy more fish and do the same. Yes it sucks and it's unpleasant to think about but we all benefit.
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post #7 of 31 (permalink) Old 12-03-2007, 08:51 PM
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Maybe we should come up with a plantedtank.net forum sponsored "recommended reading fish keeping primer" -

One or two pages at the most- send it off to these big chain stores and hope they make their people read it- or even better, leave them for free on the counter and let people take them home- throw it in the bag with any new tank purchase. I bet they would consider it. Just simple things-

basics on what is a nitrogen cycle,
required water temps for tropical fish vs. goldfish,
don't swing your pH
Most fish will eat any other fish they can fit in their mouth, and some species have eyes bigger than their stomach.
No more than 1" of fish per gallon of water (I know, I know, but we have to start somewhere)
Most disease is caused by bad water conditions, the best way to stop your fish from getting sick is keep their water clean, and if they get sick, proper water changes are just as important as medication.
And a quick recommended list of places online to come for fish help, and maybe a list of fish that are appropriate for different tank sizes, a little chart where neons can go under the 10 gallon column, and koi and clown knives go under the 55 and up column.

The plural of anecdote is not data
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post #8 of 31 (permalink) Old 12-03-2007, 09:00 PM
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I think it would be worthwhile if there were enough people who cared to email the corporate office and ask them to have such a flyer aviable for free in their fish section. I would highlite that the more success new hobbyist have the more likely they are to stay active generating more return business. If you wanted to include a samle form that would work as well. It would probably take 100 people or so doing the same to get noticed and it may not work but atleast you're doing something active.
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post #9 of 31 (permalink) Old 12-03-2007, 09:06 PM
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^ That is actually a great idea. I'd be willing to sign some kind of petition or something, if one were to be circulated.
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post #10 of 31 (permalink) Old 12-03-2007, 09:10 PM
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I don't think petitions are very effective. better to come up with a generic email which everyone sends. Volume counts!

here is the link for petco
http://www.petco.com/content/contact...any&nav=17#top

also if people are really serious about it, I would also send an email to PETA stating what you want (informational brochure included with fish purchase) and why. I don't agree with everything they do but there is really no denying their influence
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post #11 of 31 (permalink) Old 12-03-2007, 09:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeremy in OR View Post
If you don't like that don't shop there but those stores are under no obligation to do things differently.
.
ever heard of morals or ethics?
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post #12 of 31 (permalink) Old 12-03-2007, 09:45 PM
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I'm trying to figure out how this guys tank stays at 50 degrees. Does he really live in a 50 degree house?. If you keep your thermostat at 68 degrees, your tanks should stay at 68 degrees......DC
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post #13 of 31 (permalink) Old 12-03-2007, 10:01 PM Thread Starter
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Church - These incidents did take place in a Petco, and the store actually does have a stand with basic fish-keeping fliers and pamphlets on each of the most common species. I really can't bash the corporation as a whole since I was pleasantly surprised that they offered free information for customers. It looks like the company beat you to it. I'm not sure that every store has the pamphlets, but the one I shop at does, which is great. Every chain petstore should have free information for customers. The only thing I can fault the employee for is calling corkscrew val fish food

Fishscale/TX - In my conversation with the 50 degree-tank guy, he said that his heating bill went up by almost 40 dollars a month when he was heating the tank, so he had to unplug the heater. I can't see how that's even possible. The tank's got to be in an unheated porch/sunroom to get that cold.

Jeremy in OR - You're right on many points. I'm all in favor of large chain pet stores, especially given that numerous products are much cheaper when purchased in bulk. I do think that there's a place for smaller LFS's as well. And honestly, I've seen some of the most disgusting diseased tanks at small local owned pet stores. Rather than attack the national chains as a whole (I like them!), I was merely sharing shopping experience. And, I wasn't offended or upset, really, I was amused. If that makes me callous or a bad person, I don't know, but I was amused nonetheless. I did try to educate the one customer, who was very very nice, and was genuinely interested in keeping his last fish alive. I just think that a grown adult fishkeeper with a 55 gallon tank, and someone who works in a pet store (even if its for $7 an hour), should take a few minutes to read up on what it is they're buying or selling. I'm not talking about children here. But again, I totally see your points and agree with you overall.
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post #14 of 31 (permalink) Old 12-03-2007, 10:07 PM
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Ok... 40 dollars a month heating a tank is impossible..Everything seems impossble.

One month in.
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post #15 of 31 (permalink) Old 12-03-2007, 10:35 PM
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I really dont understand why this topic is always resurrected every so often. I think we all know that the knowledge at alot of the stores is sub-par and if it is...why shop there and support them? The main problem I have with large stores is that they drive the good pet stores out of buisness. One of my favorite stores about 5 minutes from me is in almost ruins because a Pet Supplies Plus opened up down the road a year ago. I think this is a never ending topic that is almost useless to debate it all has been said before.

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