Yeah I am in a similar situation to you and could not get back to the pet store in time I think 24 hours is pretty unfair...... a fish can still be at an incurable stage when purchased and survive a good 2-3 days
Thanks...I hope my little guy makes it. I named him Fruity because of his pineapple coloring, but my husband said we should change it to Lucky or something like that if he makes it. lol. Fruity/Lucky has been so lively so I'm hoping I caught the illness in time.
I'm going to have to stop looking at the bettas in the stores unless I know I can take one home with me. Right now my hands are full with the 2 I have and seeing multiple sick fish makes me sad. My husband said if I keep buying bettas I'm going to turn into the "crazy fish lady" lol.
Unfortunately the main bettas that become sick here are the fancy HM etc because they are more expensive to start with they tend to sit in the shop so basically their own waste for a lot longer than the cheaper types VT CT etc which sell more quickly.
Basically if you want to rescue a betta here it is probably going to cost you $30-$55!!!! Not a cheap investment but it is still hard to say no at times, I once bought a very sick metallic melano HM for $50, he was so unwell that he cost me $100 to treat and almost died several times, at one stage I actually had to put the food into his mouth because he could not move....... it was about 6 months of constant treatment and water changes I was in tears of frustration and sadness at times but in the end he did recover to a certain degree, he had pretty major swim bladder issues and had stumps for fins but he lived to be about 2 years old and seemed quite happy and had a huge appetite.
I get how you guys feel. A while ago I got the "Betta rescue" bug, and took home a bunch of sick Bettas. I only got one of them for free (from a local shop ran by young people who obviously didn't give a crap about the fish) and the rest I paid full price for. I found out that the official rule for Petco (not sure about Petsmart) is that they can't sell a sick fish, and have to "treat" it themselves. Some managers will override that, but most won't. So I decided instead of dooming the fish to sit in the back and die by mentioning that it was sick, I would just buy it and take it home. I understand that they will just replace it with another poorly treated fish, and that it's just paying them for being cruel, but not buying one fish is not going to stop them from stocking Bettas. I don't go to Petco anymore (as I'm not rescuing Bettas currently and refuse to spend money on larger purchases there) and rarely go to Petsmart. But if I started rescuing again I would only go to buy the fish, not the accessories since that is how they really make their money. So I say if you see a fish you feel the need to help out, get it! It can be a really rewarding experience to see the transformation if you are able to get them healthy again.
I am going to try and say this with great carefulness, because animal rights is something I feel very strongly about. Please forgive me if I don't do this perfectly.
It is a wonderful thing that people have the empathy and kindness to want to help any animal they see suffering. That impulse is so important to how we all deal with each other, animals, and the entire world. Each of you who have made a positive difference in an animal's should be commended.
But. When you buy an animal, you contribute to problem. You continue the cycle. The reason most petstores don't carry puppies anymore isn't because the business owners found out about the horrible conditions and breeding practices at puppymills. It's because, through investigation and education, the public stopped buying them. The same holds true for bettas. Until it makes no financial sense to stock them, the abuse will continue.
To a certain extent, buying fish from stores that keep them poorly only encourages the continuation of the same practices. Stores don't care if people are buying bettas out of outrage, sympathy, or admiration, just that they are buying.
In the animal rescue world, paying any money for an animal that is given up is absolutely not OK. These animals aren't rescues. They are purchases. And the continued commoditization of animals leads to horrible abuse. Whether it's puppymills, chicken farms, or bettas in cups, if money is changing hands it is never good for the animals.
If you got this far, I appreciate you listening. If you would like more info on how to address the issue, please feel free to pm me and I will try to point you in a useful direction.
Like I said, I think you are all great people for wanting to protect such a beautiful and abused animal.
VJM, although what you said is hard to hear, I think it is something that needs to be considered. On the one hand (as seen in my previous comment) I think taking in a sick Betta and getting it healthy and giving it a happy life is great, and keeping the purchases to just the fish themselves isn't going to make a huge financial contribution. But on the other hand (like I said) it leaves room for more fish to be put in a bad situation and won't have any impact on how the store treats the Bettas. The conflict (at least for me) is that every single life matters, and every animal deserves a healthy and happy life, but taking in that one fish doesn't do anything to help Bettas as a whole, and just allows for further mistreatment. Man, now I'm not even sure what my opinion is on the subject.