Just went to a PetSmart in Whitby, Ontario today to pick up some Stability, Prime, as well as a wheel for my sister's hamster.
I noticed that they stocked a meter-long, by 2 ft deep shelf with little cups of bettas...
I was so disgusted that I almost returned what I purchased.
Three shelves, each one with at least 20+ bettas in little bowls. At least 60 or more bettas, all the way to the wall. How do they even get light, or even food? I hope the person in charge of the department takes care of all of them.
What more, their little bowls are within 2 meters from the entrance doors. It's winter now! The constant door-opening is gonna make them sick!
So yeah... Because of that, I've decided to look for a tank divider for my Top Fin 10 gallon, so I can at least try to save one of them :'(
the petsmart i bought ONE betta from had them in these little...... cube-things. it was like a long tank, with lots of dividers, but the tank was only half a foot tall and really long. the water went into the first compartment, ran all the way to the last compartment ,and into a thing in the back room. it was neat, but if one betta got sick ,they all did. :/ the betta i got from there died that night. >.>;
There is another petstore where I got Neon and Velvet (R.I.P.)
It's this place that has pretty small cups. The store itself is freezing, and they usually have 0-30 males, and the same with females.
It may sound bad, but surprisingly it isn't. All of the fish are very healthy and active for such a situation, and the cups are kept very clean. The Bettas don't appear fat or skinny, so they obviously get fed perfectly. Unfortunatly the cups get stacked /= But at least they cup holes in the lid (the cup and lid has no holes, so there is one that they cut in on the lid..)
Another LPS keeps 10-15 males at a time, and 1-4 females at a time. They sell beautiful Bettas and have pristine water and are SUPER active for cup-Bettas. The females are kept in a sorority tank, if they're getting used to eachother they live in cups floating, but they all get released once they're ready. They also ask about your setup to make sure that it's good for the fish you buy c=
ANOTHER pet store... petco. They keep... eh... kinda decent care of their Bettas. A little over half usually have pristine cups, are very active and healthy looking. The others are dead, coated in fungus and/or mold, very sick, and in terrible condition. It doesn't make sense... but some of those Bettas were obviously there forever. I know this because There was a female I wanted and I saw it and returned 3 weeks later and she was still there along with the others and still pretty healthy. So I guess their health gets worse the longer they're there, so a bunch probably stay for months. The VT's most likely die there.
One more LFS. Just one. It's a military pet store, and the Bettas are really sad.
They only keep a few at like 60 degrees. There are a few males and only 4-5 females at most, all in cups. They all sit there and don't move unless you move the cup. Once I saw a male who was sprawled out on the bottom of his cup tilted on his side but still alive )=> Poor thing was dying. Those Bettas also have a high rate of inflamed gills, popped eyes, and rotted-fins.
And you get to wondering how the hell some shops can legally remain in business the way some animals are treated.
This one shop we discovered up the coast, was tiny and run out of a done up storage shed. the shop was BEAUTIFUL clean well laid out and oh i wish it were closer :( the fish were all happy healthy and maintained
Neither of my LPS have Bettas. One has a few betta supplies, but no live bettas. However, my local petsmart sells bettas. They're in little cups, but they're not stacked and always look bright and healthy, not sitting on the bottom or looking lopsided. I've never seen a dead one there. I often have to lean over an employee cleaning the cups in order to look at the fish on the shelf. The Petco close-by sells really young bettas... They never seem to be as bright and healthy, and I've seen dead ones sit on the shelf for a few days at a time. I tend to avoid that store and go to the petco that's further out of my way if I need to buy something that Petsmart doesn't carry. Unfortunately, one of the more knowledgeable Cory Cat people that I've met works there, so I do find myself stopping in occasionally to chat with her. I offhandedly asked her why her bettas were so much smaller than petsmart's bettas, and she got sort of defensive and said that it was best to buy them young, but had no explanation for why that was.