Gloomy about Petco.


I am thinking of indulging myself in an episode of MTS, so I have been browsing in and out of local pet shops recently.

I'm beginning to think I maybe need to limit myself to looking at the hard ware, and just stay away from the tanks completely. I visited a small PetCo today, and was just cringing at the state their tanks were in. Massive overfeeding (what looked like a quarter cup of food dumped into a tank with 4 fish in it (small hatchetfish, I think - it wasn't labeled), swarms and swarms of tiny snails, and dead fish *everywhere*. Dozens (and long dead at that) in the feeder tanks, and others in the fish tanks with "sale" labels on them.

And two nets, one large and one small, propped in a bucket to one side -- which you look at , and know they are using to pull out dead fish (when they bother) and bag fish for sale, including those poor feeder comets and rosie-somethings.

I kept thinking about asking for the manager and asking if they had a dedicated fish person, and if not, did they want one? It was a hideously depressing outing.


Every store is different. The Petco near me has tanks with water that is crystal clear, and very healthy fish in all of the tanks. The manager there knows fish and fishkeeping very well, and actually gives helpful and correct advice. I guess it all depends on the management at the particular store, and how seriously they take their tanks and fish.


I'm so sorry your outing was so bad. Maybe they really do need a good fish person wouldn't hurt to ask. The petco we go to sometimes is really nice. They have one person to order and to keep up with the tanks.


Our Petco is also great. They take care of their fish with much care.


I've seen the same thing as others here. Even among big chains, each store is different. There's a PetSmart that's not in the greatest neighborhood, but they've got at least one great fish guy. The tanks are immaculate.
The Petco near me is unbelievably beautiful. The only problem I've seen is that a pair of Oscars they got as juveniles are outgrowing their tank, but at least one of the employees is worried about this and trying to fix it.
On the downside, there are a few PetSmarts nearby that aren't so great, and the experience is about as depressing as you say.

I like the idea of seeing if they need a good fish person.
  • Thread Starter


It's nice to hear the the problems I saw aren't endemic to PetCo -- it is a much smaller older store, and I think loses a lot of business to the glossy big-box versions up in town "center". I think they primarily sell dog and cat stuff -- they've got a good selection in large animal foods and needs.

It is very tempting to check on the fish person situation - but I'm not really a great fish person myself. I know about how to keep my 10 gallon clean and happy, and that's about it. Maybe after next year, when I'll have more time to really dedicate to my fish.

Sparkling Diamonds

Yea, the Petco near me isn't the best. The feeder fish tank is probably a 50 gallon, but divided and they all only get a third of the tank. All other tanks are murky, and over stocked. And it really is quite sickening to see the "sale" signs, like those are the fish that people don't want, so they knock them down to clearence prices. Not to mention, all the dead fish that are looming at the bottom of the tanks, and the almost dead ones hanging out in the corner of the tank, possibly infecting all the other fish in the tank with their same disease. I completely understand what you're going through.

I went in with a friend of mine, who is an utter animal lover. She's also vegetarian, and doesn't drink milk, only soy milk. I went and was looking at the Bettas (since they're my first love) and she found on buried in the back, in water that was opaque and barely clear enough to see the white, deteriorating body of what once used to be a betta. She was absolutely discusted. As she dug him out, an employee walked by and said "Oh my, he's got some dirty water!" And my friend turned around and said, that's because the fish is dead!!! The person looked dismayed and took the cup and left us be, while my friend was completely disappointed with Petco.

In the meantime, I can't help but look at the Bettas.. Even though I already have two, and don't have enough room for another. I dunno, if I found one that stole my heart (again...) I might have to find another room, and i'd have to get another tank. I just can't help but look, y'know?

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