Why Petco?

Discussion in 'More Freshwater Aquarium Topics' started by GibbyMcGibz, Jul 17, 2017.


Did the employees at your petco ask you if you cycled your tank?

  1. Yes

    3 vote(s)
  2. No

    39 vote(s)
  1. GibbyMcGibz

    GibbyMcGibzValued MemberMember

    Recently I went to my local petco to do some browsing and ended up getting more gravel for my tank. I was checking out and she asked, "What fish do you have in your tank" , I told her I didn't have anything currently because I was cycling my tank. To my surprise she knew what I was talking about and we started a convo about people not knowing how or what cycling a tank is. I forgot to ask her, but , Why don't they tell people this stuff? I used to have betas and no other employes told me about this when I had no clue what it is. Does anyone know why?
  2. FishFish221

    FishFish221Well Known MemberMember

    Petco and other large chain stores focus on dogs and cat item, not fish. Some might know, but most won't because they never tell them about it and that the employees are here to make money.
  3. mclemente06

    mclemente06Valued MemberMember

    They get lots of people every day that come in and buy fish, they aren't told to tell people about the nitrogen cycle because Petco is a chain pet store that focuses on profits, not the safety of the fish that leave the store, so the employees don't bother. I can't really blame them, it is a shame they don't tell people though.

  4. JesseMoreira06

    JesseMoreira06Well Known MemberMember

    I wouldn't just say it's only large chain pet stores but even most LFS dont bother to give the right information. Most are just in it for the money.

    I had one employee from a LFS tell me "sir is this your first tank" I replied "no I have 7 tanks why?" he said "ohh I was going to let you know you had to wait 3 days before adding fish" I then started a conversation with him regarding that and he had no idea what the nitrogen cycle was , his boss just told him to say that. So as owners or managers their not even giving out the proper information to their employees.

  5. mclemente06

    mclemente06Valued MemberMember

    Wow, that's awful. Even the Petsmart employee I talked to when getting my neons knew what the nitrogen cycle was.
  6. smee82Fishlore VIPMember

    Also most employees look like their still in school and probably dont really care.
  7. Over ItWell Known MemberMember

    I actually have had employees at Petco ask me if my tank was cycled and when I was getting my Fantails they asked me what size tank I was planning on putting them in. When I told her she was like "oh good! You'd be surprised by how many people wanna put them in small tanks or bowls". I told her that, no in fact I would not be surprised at all.

    One thing I have noticed is that the good employees are not appreciated so they end up leaving sooner or later.
    I will admit I frequent Petco, Petsmart and my LFS way too much, but the few good employees that actually know a lot about fish are not appreciated at all. In fact they get in trouble for talking too long with someone even though they are talking about which fish that person should or shouldn't get or tank size etc. They also get pulled away from caring for the fish way, way too much so the fish suffer.

    Just as an example the other day I went in to get my Dwarf Gourami. I had to wait 45 mins to get the fish because the guy who is supposed to be in the fish department kept getting called away for other stuff.
    Then when I went back the next day cause I had to return one the Gourami's I had picked up they still had fish sitting in one of the tanks in the bag. They had been in there for over 24 hrs and no one had bothered to take them out. No idea how they were still alive. Right away when I saw that I knew the guy I usually work with wasn't there that day and I was right. Some people really should not be working with animals period, but the stores also need to treat their employees better.

    In case anyone was wondering I told a girl working there right away and she got them out of the bag as soon as I told her. The problem is I shouldn't have had to tell anyone.
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2017
  8. NavigatorBlack

    NavigatorBlackFishlore VIPMember

    If someone tells an employee of a chain pet store that they are starting a tank cold, then he or she should explain it. But if someone wants to buy fish and that's all, why bother? You can't take too long on one customer or the boss may get on your case, and (this is important) a lot of people get angry at the cycle.
    Yup. They get angry at inconvenient ideas. They want fish and they want them now.
    You learn to get out of their way. Deliver an inconvenient idea, and you get the "I'm buying a fish, not taking a course" smirk.
    If the customer takes the direction of really wanting info, then any decently knowledgeable person will share. But too helpful makes for stressful days.

    Watch what happens on the forum when you say something true that contradicts the plans of some new posters. They talk around you as if your post never appeared, or they inform you that you are giving unnecessary info. Here, from behind a computer, it's nothing, but face to face, it is very unpleasant.
  9. JesseMoreira06

    JesseMoreira06Well Known MemberMember

    you hit the on the head especially with that last paragraph!!!
  10. KimberlyG

    KimberlyGFishlore VIPMember

    We have an angel at one of our local PetCos. She always asks what size tank we have, etc. (Well...not me any more, now she just asks "What now?"
    I always ask for the strangest things. lol. It all depends upon the employee.
  11. Hego_Damask

    Hego_DamaskValued MemberMember

    While there are a couple of knowledgable employees at my local petco, there is one lady in the fish section who didn't know what a fishless cycle was & treated me like some moron for attempting such a thing
  12. KimberlyG

    KimberlyGFishlore VIPMember

    :( Yes it does happen. That is why I go to the PetCo that is actually the 3rd furthest away from me. This girl's course of study is microbioloyy. I will probably be switching PetCos when she starts at her university next fall.
  13. -Mak-

    -Mak-Fishlore VIPMember

    Some employees also specialize in different things. One of my local Petcos has a young guy working there who knows a huge amount about reptiles, and you can easily tell that's his passion and probably his hobby at home. He was also decently knowledgable about fish, but he didn't get as excited about them like he did the reptiles.
  14. OP

    GibbyMcGibzValued MemberMember

    Thank you all for your input. I was very curious to hear your encounters at petco or any chain petstore. It seems it varies.
  15. scarface

    scarfaceFishlore VIPMember

    Never and I don't mind it at all. I think it would only confuse people, as there is only a limited time you can spend on each customer. If I worked at a fish store and was required to educate each customer who was unaware about the cycle, I would hate working there. Honest.
    Sometimes their fish are not in the best condition and the employees ignorant, but regardless, I still like them. They're convenient and enjoy seeing the occasional oddball fish they get in. I'm rather carefree about a lot of my interests though.
  16. Rainbowfish27

    Rainbowfish27New MemberMember

    My local petco has a guy who's a fish guy and actually helped guide us into a better decision. We had actually started a fish in cycle with 3 mollies. After a few weeks my fiancé wanted to get more fish ...my fiancé is bipolar so I don't like to go back and forth much but the knowledgeable worker helped me steer him from getting more fish until after cycling. I'm new to fish keeping but I've done a lot of research. We had initially gotten 4 mollies and after 1 died that 1st night I was devastated and started doing research.
  17. DHIWZ

    DHIWZValued MemberMember

    If I tell you about the cycle and what you need to do, you go home, I don't get a sale and you won't come back for at least a few weeks. Profit margins for pet stores (especially ones specializing in fish) are among the thinnest of any industry, so you have to be willing to either overcharge or take shortcuts if you want to make any money at all. Since Petsmart's model appeals to the average (poor) consumer who just wants a cheap pet they can't do the former (most LFS on the other hand will not take shortcuts and thus have to overcharge for their products--ever notice how their stuff is always more expensive?). As a result they have to adopt practices that end up screwing over the consumer--selling you too many fish, or a pleco for a 1 gallon bowl, or neglecting to tell you to cycle. Unfortunate, but the only way that the manager can go home and feed his wife and kids at the end of the day.

    In summary Petsmart and Petco do these kinds of shady things because that's how they can lower prices on their products and corner most of the pet industry. Don't like it? Don't shop there.
  18. BeanFish

    BeanFishWell Known MemberMember

    Chain pet stores dont focus on fish and often times dont train their employees because fish are just a secondary attraction. If chain stores actually trained their employes and cared for the fish the prices would sound borderline nuts to everyone.
    If you come saying "This is my first tank, I want help" I can see how the employee must talk about the nitrogen cycle but if someone just comes and says "I want that fish" It will probably be awkard and maybe even annoying for the customers to get asked about their tank size, stocking and parameters.

    In an rational world no one should ask about your tank size or mention the nitrogen cycle because you would have acted as a responsible petowner before hand and already know about that stuff.
  19. JesseMoreira06

    JesseMoreira06Well Known MemberMember

    While I do agree with what most are saying , I don't see why as an employee you can't talk for an extra two seconds to ask a simple question , if I walk in "can I have a common pleco" employee should ask " what size tank do you have" I answer "ohh a 30g" an employee should then state " sorry common plecos get over a foot long and need a much large tank can I suggest a bristlenose pleco which would be perfect for your tank"...No one is asking for a 1 hour conversation but I'm sure there's ways to do things and do it right and still make a few bucks. The way I look at it if I'm going to open up a a fish store it's because I have the passion for fish , I'm not going to open a mechanic shop if I couldn't care less about fixing cars.

    but I do agree costumers should do their own research before walking into a LFS.
  20. Over ItWell Known MemberMember

    Ok so I have to make a little adjustment to my previous post.
    As some of you have read I got 2 Dwarf Gourami's the other day at Petco. The guy I usually work with and used to really like was the one who suggested I get 2, he said they get lonely if there is only one and I thought, "ok, maybe he's right cause I've never had Gourami's before". I did remember reading that they usually don't get along with other Gourami's, but I knew there were some that did get along with each other.

    This has happened a couple times, but this one really made me mad. I took back one of the Dwarf Gourami's after everyone told me they would fight once they got a bit older and it was very obvious they did not enjoy each others company.

    Well I went back today to look for some different algae wafers and he saw me and said "so I saw a Gourami that was in the bag from being return, was that you?" I told him, yes it was because they didn't get along. He got so mad!
    First it was his fault for telling me to get 2 and then he gets mad cause I return one when they don't get along??? Like I said this has happened before. Sometimes fish are supposed to do well together and get along, but just because they are supposed to doesn't mean they will. I should never be made to feel bad about returning fish that aren't working out. I want happy, healthy tanks. Why would I force fish to live together who really don't want to. All that leads to is sickness and death.
    Anyways I guess even some of the better employees aren't that great.

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