Buyer Beware......

vin

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This may not be the place for this post, but I felt that for the beginners out there like me, it was worth putting here....

I was at a Petco store today in Hamden, CT looking for some plants....I happened to overhear a woman ask the man working in the fish dept. if they had any algae eaters.....

The man asked - "what size tank?" to which the woman replied "20 gallon......"

He marched her right over to the Common Plecos and said - "This will do the job."

Now I often resist butting in, but I couldn't help myself. I chimed in with the old, "Are you sure you want that fish? They will do a great job, but get very large and will outgrow that 20 gallon quickly if well fed......You might want to try one of these guys instead. They stay small and will do a great job keeping your tank clean".....and pointed to the tank of Otocinclus.

To which fishman replied - "Those are catfish. She wanted an algae eater."

I said "OK, they are catfish species, however they are algae eaters......some of the most efficient around and will fare better than a Common Pleco in that small tank. And even then they should really be in a larger tank which is why I only suggested one."

Unfortunately, she bought the Common Pleco........

It just goes to show you that they may work there, but they don't necessarily know what they are talking about.
 

EmpPleco

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wow she bought the pleco anyway.. what a waste of time..

it's really a shame
 
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vin

vin

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My gut feeling is that she went with the Pleco because he is a big, cool looking fish as opposed to the shy little Oto....which in my opinion is a cool looking little fish...The Pleco she bought was about 4" long...It wasn't hard to figure out that it was already too big for her 20g.......

It really is sad.
 

Marc

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Grr.. well, I guess if I ever go there I could make sure nobody else is gonna get told something wrong... That's one of the reasons I don't like Petland Discounts, PetCo, etc... most of the people they hire just don't know anything about fish..
 

newbie101

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That's too bad > Good for you for speaking up though. Nobody would listen to me anyway though if I did because I'm only 13 :-\
 
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vin

vin

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That's OK Emma, as long as you're sure of what you're talking about, you shouldn't be afraid to offer some friendly advice. I tried, but unfortunately for the poor fish, the lady didn't want to listen to me.......
 

Jon

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yeah petco people often don't know what's good for your tank and some times I feel like they try to sabotage you... a while before when I started out (like 5 years ago then I quit and started again) the salesman sold me angelfish and stuff for a 3 gallon tank that I had just bought and didnt tell me anything about cycling or what...

I was so dumb lol but it seems like a lot of the time you can't trust pet store people... they will try to sell you fish that will not work well so you buy different fish or they won't be knowledgeable enough to help you

that's the great thing about this site... share the knowledge so we all benefit.
 

newbie101

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angels for a 3 gallon?! > > That person shouldn't have even been working there >
 

Jon

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lol that's what I'm saying. they are either ignorant or asenine.
 

Deus

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Even thought the answers I get here sometimes frustrate me (I WANT MORE FISH!!) I still trust it more than in the store where they said I could have 9 fish (6 barbs and 1 Siamese Fighting fish and 2 bottom feeders) in my 8 gallon tank..
 

jim55379

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Yes I thing most of the time they are just employees hired for a job and probably know nothing about fish. I know the wallmart people don't know much. But that's ok becuse I learned a lot from this site and dont' need their knowledge just their cheap prices and thank god for the 90 day fish guarrantee which I know of NOBODY who offers this except Wall mart.
 

Deus

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but I was very disapointed because it was at a recommended place and it's more expensive than anywhere else!
:'(
 

Butterfly

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Good for your speaking up. Frequently if the speaking up is done respectfully and knowledgeably (is that a word? ) people will listen or take a second thought. But it was her decision, although a bad one and you did all you could. GOOD FOR YOU!!!
This is the biggest reason why we do research before buying fish. Impulse buying or a store employe who hasn't a clue can get you into big trouble(don't I know it!).
Carol
 

beckers4oranges

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I had a similar experience the other day...except it was with a cichlid and an angel fish...at petco there's a girl there who is 19 working in the aquatics....she was going to sell a family an angel fish...with a red devil...I went up to them and asked how big is ur tank and how many do u have? they replied one tank at 20 gallons...I told them that's too small of a tank for that guy...I then asked if the angel was food for the red devil... the girl asked if I knew anything about fish and I told them that that red devil isn't named devil because it likes pink bunnies and rainbows... it will kill basically any fish and I pointed to a few that it wouldnt...then I said I wouldnt recommend this guy unless ur tank is at least 40 50 gallons.... so they ended up buying two angles...and they asked me more questions about fish...

so that's my heroic fish saving story
 

EmpPleco

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gj Beckers

I am a little shy, so I would have a hard time telling someone not to buy something (I guess I would if I really felt the need to). However, that's why I like my LFS. They make sure you are buying the right fish, asking tank sizes, tank mates, compatibility, and they even take note of what fish you have bought previously and suggest foods that most of the fish in your tank will like I always catch them telling people that "I would not recommend this fish, because....."

So I got lucky
 
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vin

vin

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All you could do is be polite about it and offer what you could. I even tried to wait until the salesman went away, but the situation never presented itself again.

I had a similar situation with ferrets as well. People spreading the nasty rumors of them eating babie's fingers and ears and how they all smell and bite. When atcually quite the opposite is true......
 

RoboDude

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Emma said:
That's too bad >  Good for you for speaking up though.  Nobody would listen to me anyway though if I did because I'm only 13 :-\
Emma, you're not the only one . . . ( I'm only 10!!!!)
 

RoboDude

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I've also had a similar sort of thing happen at Walmart. An old lady came and asked for something to eat algae, and the worker told her to get a Chinese Algae Eater. I butted in and asked what size her tank was . . . and she replied, 10 gallons. I said to her, Madam, you can't get that fish, it grows huge! But of course, the worker chimed in, Excuse me, young man, she was looking for an algae eater. She went ahead and bought it, of course! When a "little kid" tries to tell anyone anything, it just goes through one ear and out the other!
 

EmpPleco

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OH !!! that doubly stinks because CAE's don't even eat algae!!!!!!!!! that just stinks
 

newbie101

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my problem exactly
and when I asked for some ghost shrimp they said they didn't have any (but I looked and they did) so I said "Do you have frogs or anything that could go in a 1/2 gallon tank?" and she showed me the guppies and platys. I said "I don't really want those because they are tropical fish." So she says "Oh they'll be alright, I have 2 in a bowl and they're fine." > > >
And yes I did find the ghost shrimp thank goodness
 

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