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Old 01-01-2010, 09:54 PM   #1 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Orange County, New York
A Betta Rescuers Rant

There are total of three rescues in my care at this time. All were suffering some kind of infection due to poor water quality and conditions . As many betta lovers know something is just not sinking in with petshops and many other people in this world when it comes to the proper care of bettas. Delusions that bettas are happy in tiny, cold, unfiltered bowls have been widely spread throughout the world. In pet stores all over you see poor bettas suffering in tiny cups, so filled with rotting food and feces that they have trouble breathing, their tails are rotting off, and the water levels are so low sometimes that the poor fish have to lay on their sides just to stay covered. I have seen bettas kept in cups so tiny that they are forced to keep their bodies curved, the cups are too small for them to do something as simple as straightening out mad.

I don't know what's worse, how they're kept in stores or how people are told to keep them at home. It's commonly said that bettas love being in small spaces, that they're unhappy in anything bigger then like a 1/4 gallon, and they don't need filters or heaters because they're very hearty fish and are very hard to kill. The facts are that none of those statements are true. Bettas originated from rice paddies in southeast asia. These rice paddies may be shallow but are realitivly large and the bettas are free to swim from one to another. They are not confined to little 1/4gallon circles, so what makes people think thats what they would be happy in? rolleyes

I am on a mission to educate people throughout the country about the proper care of bettas. I will be running a rescue and rehabilitation center for these little guys and I will begin with educating local petstores around me.

I have been looking around a bunch of different forums reading pages and pages of people griping about how badly bettas are treated. But I have yet to see anyone say they're going to go out there and do something about it. Anybody can sit at a computer and complain that something is wrong, but unfortunatly there are very few people in this world that ever do more then just sit and complain. If you don't like the way these fish are being treated then go out there and do something about it. Complain to the stores, type up betta care sheets and hand them out, write a letter to the place in question and explain exactly what they're doing wrong and how to fix it.

I know this one girl, Not going to mention names, lets just call her Sally, and she is the most dedicated person to this cause that I have ever met, shes set on saving the world and i wouldn't be surprised if she succeeded, I hope to be like her, to help these wonderful little fish like she has and to be and inspiration to other bettas lovers like she has been an inspiration to me.

So next time you see a poor little betta in a filthy cup and it makes your heart break, dont go home and sit on the computer and sulk about it, get out there and do something to help that fish and any others that may pass through that store!
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Old 01-01-2010, 10:12 PM   #2 
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Join Date: Aug 2009
You're preaching to the choir my dear. I'm fairly sure that anyone on the betta forum is already aware of much of what you've said and annoyed by it as well (I know I am).

The only thing is, we can gripe and complain to these stores as much as we like but at the end of the day the only thing that they're truly concerned with is their profit. Unfortunately, they'll love it if you buy up all of their sick bettas... and they probably won't do anything to change it unless they find out that it would actually improve their sales to sell healthy happy fish. The best thing we can do is to not give these stores our money and let them know precisely why this is the case... as well as spreading awareness.
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Old 01-01-2010, 10:48 PM   #3 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Orange County, New York
You would be amazed at what one person can do if they try! I was appalled by how my 2 local walmarts were treating their bettas, so I did something about it. I printed up care sheets and informational pamphlets, I hung the care sheets up by the bettas and put a stack of pamphlets by them every day for over 2 weeks. I checked on both stores every day, talked to people interested in purchasing a betta, and called the managers of both stores every single time there was something wrong with the bettas.

It took time, persistence and almost getting kicked out a couple times, but in the end I got one store to post an informational care sheet permanently by the bettas (with all the correct info, I checked it personally) and they also cut their order by 1/2 so they were no longer getting more bettas then they could reasonably sell or take care of.

The other walmart actually stopped selling bettas all together!

One person can make a difference, you just have to be willing to try!
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Old 01-01-2010, 10:57 PM   #4 
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That sounds like some good progress. Power to you.

I certainly will lecture my fellow betta-keeping dorm mates about proper care whenever the opportunity arises, but I haven't got the time or the resources to hound the pet stores and such.

I think that what's best for me at this point is just to do right by the bettas and other fish that I currently keep.
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Old 01-01-2010, 11:02 PM   #5 
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Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Earth
the pamphlet idea is great, i want to do that. I wouldn't get kicked out of the store seeing as no ones in the section to stop me >.<
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Old 01-01-2010, 11:39 PM   #6 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Central Texas
I have complained at my Meijers store about the way they keep their bettas in 2 inches of water.That was fairly recently. I haven't been there for awhile to check on things. I complained to customer service. Next time, I'll ask for the manager.
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Old 01-02-2010, 02:46 AM   #7 
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Location: South Australia, Australia
I've been in a few stores were they are kept in a wine glass, with gravel & a plastic plant (or about 10 females in a jar!) I loudly comment about how this is disgusting, and talk to who ever is with me about proper care. I've actually seen one person put down their little tank they were going to get, and look at a decent size one! I recently saw a store talking about how they believe that all animals deserve decent homes & how all their animals are happy in the store etc, and I was very tempted to send a letter outlining how keeping a betta in a glass and selling them like that is not having 'happy animals'
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