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Old 07-20-2013, 11:58 PM   #1 
LinkLover
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Rescue from bad care or buy from good?

I was thinking about this earlier, and wanted to see what you guys thought. There is a local aquarium store that recently opened in Edmonds, WA (Aquarium Co-op, check them out!) that happens to have Bettas. They are still kept in small containers but have live plants, frequent water changes, and are very well cared for.

Now my question is this, is it better to rescue a sick fish from a store giving bad care, or buy a healthy one from a store that gives good care?

Initially I thought immediately that the latter was the best idea, but then I got to thinking. The ones in the store who keep them healthy are more likely to go to a good home because they're in a local specialty fish store, where most customers are probably knowledgeable. And the unhealthy fish in some chain stores are more likely to go home with someone who might not give proper care. However, supporting local stores that provide good care for their animals is important, and I think it's a great thing to do. And the chain stores will keep filling those empty spaces with more fish that won't be treated well, which just keeps the cycle going (although one person who quits buying their fish won't make an impact). With so many pros and cons, the right answer doesn't seem as clear, at least to me.

So, which do YOU think is the better choice?
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Old 07-21-2013, 12:12 AM   #2 
OSagent23
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I'm gonna through names out there for this discussion. No offense to anyone who works there

Petsmart and petco will never discontinue their purchase and selling of betas in small unlivable cups. I've been to both store at different locations throughout the country. I'm in the military so I've been to quite a few states.

Some places take care of their betas some do not. Do I support it, the answer is flat out a big fat NO.

I strongly recommend supporting local fish stores. That store is their living and life. If you find a place that takes care of their live stock it's because they care and that's how they feed their family.

Buy local.
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Old 07-21-2013, 12:50 AM   #3 
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I think you should buy from the local one. I know you might feel bad for the sick fish but buying them would mean supporting the chain stores.

For me, there is no place with good homes for bettas and to be honest Petsmart's cups are probably the best from what I myself have seen in my area (once I went to a store and the bettas were in TINY square spaces and most were dead).
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Old 07-21-2013, 01:01 AM   #4 
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In my experience when you rescue fish depending on how bad they were, they tend to not live as long as one who was never sick, I really have to want the specific fish if I am going to rescue it, I get attached to them and just won't adopt them out, that being said I want them around for as long as possible and I have to have a tank or room for them
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Old 07-21-2013, 02:13 AM   #5 
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In my experience when you rescue fish depending on how bad they were, they tend to not live as long as one who was never sick, I really have to want the specific fish if I am going to rescue it, I get attached to them and just won't adopt them out, that being said I want them around for as long as possible and I have to have a tank or room for them
I agree. I have done rescue before and my sick weak rescues never live as long as the ones that are healthy right when I get them. I did have a walmart fish with almost no tail live to be 2 years old. But my healthy first fish lived to be 10 years old.

I think everyone should rescue a fish at least once. If you know what it takes to make them better.
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Old 07-21-2013, 04:48 AM   #6 
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Support your local store. They should be rewarded for taking good care of their fish instead if you giving your money to people who will just use it to replace the fish with 10 more in the same condition. I know it's hard to leave sick fish in those conditions but as long as people keep buying them they will continue to treat them that way.
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Old 07-21-2013, 05:37 AM   #7 
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I think the best thing to do is to buy from whatever place takes the best care of their animals. That could either be your local pet store, or it could be your local Petco/Petsmart. To say that all local pet stores take excellent care of their live animals would be false - I have been to quite a few where that was not the case (thankfully, they have all closed.)

If you happen to notice that bettas are getting good care at a big name pet store, tell a manager. Compliment them and let them know how much you appreciate the care the employees are putting into these fish. Hell, call corporate and tell them, too! If you happen to notice a lot of sick and dying bettas? Complain like there is no tomorrow (but try to be respectful.) A lot of people may say "oh well they won't do anything" but that isn't always the case. The manager may or may not take you seriously, but its better than not saying anything at all.

Personally, I almost always buy from Petsmart. There are no local pet stores near to me that sell bettas. Petsmart is a 10 minute drive and the betta cups are always clean, at least at that particular store. I have never seen dead bettas, or dead fish in their tanks.

As for rescuing, I think that that is a somewhat personal decision, and I don't think it should hinge on how long the rescue fish will live. The point is that you gave it quality of life in the time it had left. As someone else mentioned, the big name pet stores are likely never going to stop selling bettas in mass amounts, regardless of whether or not we "boycott" them, so it doesn't really matter either way. Do what pleases you.


Edit: I'd also like to stress the importance of educating people on the proper care of bettas. The condition that bettas are subjected to at times in pet stores are awful, but to me, it is even more awful that someone will bring a betta home and not give it the proper care when it is in their power and responsibility to do so. Some people will be hardheaded, but others will listen if you approach them kindly. Saying "Hey, I know some ways that you can take better care of your betta so he will be happier!" is a lot more effective than saying "Oh god you horrible person, how could you even -fathom- keeping a betta in less than 2 gallons? ANIMAL ABUSER!"

Last edited by Saber; 07-21-2013 at 05:45 AM.
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Old 07-21-2013, 08:47 AM   #8 
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If they give me the sick Betta for free I may take him or her, probably, but I have stopped purchasing fish from places who do not care for them as they should. Makes no sense for me to gripe about the care these stores are giving & then I purchase their poorly cared for fish.
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Old 07-21-2013, 10:02 AM   #9 
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If they give me the sick Betta for free I may take him or her, probably, but I have stopped purchasing fish from places who do not care for them as they should. Makes no sense for me to gripe about the care these stores are giving & then I purchase their poorly cared for fish.
Exactly - all "rescuing" a fish does is subject another to the same conditions, accomplishing nothing. Actually, it's worse than nothing - it's counter productive to the goal of better care.

I know it probably makes you all feel good to "rescue" a fish, but if you REALLY cared about this problem you would not support it....


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Old 07-21-2013, 10:11 AM   #10 
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If you are looking for a betta that you LOVE and want to keep for as long as you can, start with one that really attracts you and that is HEALTHY.

Rescues, for me at least, are fish that I would like to help but not necessarily keep as a pet. I try to rescue and rehome. I have kept some rescues. Also not all rescues are deathly ill. Some just have fins missing or are in danger of getting sick because they have been on the shelf too long.
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