Chain Pet Store vs. Local Pet Store - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
 
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post #1 of 9 Old 02-06-2012, 06:55 PM Thread Starter
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Chain Pet Store vs. Local Pet Store

I am looking for young dwarf gourami and was wondering the age old debate. Should I lean towards a chain store like petsmart or should I look into a local pet store. I went to the local store for the first time recently and noticed the tanks are maintained a little worse than the petsmart I have shopping in. Also, the fish were alot larger, or older. There was many full grown fish in the store vs. petsmart where most of the fish are small, and young. I was looking for outside advice and stories to see where I should maintain my business for fish keeping.
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post #2 of 9 Old 02-06-2012, 07:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mgreen View Post
I am looking for young dwarf gourami and was wondering the age old debate. Should I lean towards a chain store like petsmart or should I look into a local pet store. I went to the local store for the first time recently and noticed the tanks are maintained a little worse than the petsmart I have shopping in. Also, the fish were alot larger, or older. There was many full grown fish in the store vs. petsmart where most of the fish are small, and young. I was looking for outside advice and stories to see where I should maintain my business for fish keeping.
If I were you I'd get a young one from petsmart. First, watch the fish and make sure they are swimming normal and acting normal. Inspect them for any infections or diseases.
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post #3 of 9 Old 02-06-2012, 07:10 PM
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The chains are always going to beat the local store insofar as price goes on supplies and accessories. Additionally, I had the same experience you had with the fish at a well respected local mini-chain (about 3 stores). I hate to say it but, if I had to pick one, I'd go with Petsmart. The sad reality is probably that the fish at the local store have been there a lot longer. You need to know your stuff more at the chains...you're less likely to get experienced advice.
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post #4 of 9 Old 02-06-2012, 07:20 PM
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In my personal case, I would go to my LFS, because they're awesome about everything. But in your case a chain store would be better. Just like someone said above, if the fish look healthy and are acting normal, then your good.

55 gallon planted tank, starting over!!!( looking crappy, needs a major rescape)
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post #5 of 9 Old 02-07-2012, 08:53 AM
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I am looking for young dwarf gourami and was wondering the age old debate. Should I lean towards a chain store like petsmart or should I look into a local pet store. I went to the local store for the first time recently and noticed the tanks are maintained a little worse than the petsmart I have shopping in. Also, the fish were alot larger, or older. There was many full grown fish in the store vs. petsmart where most of the fish are small, and young. I was looking for outside advice and stories to see where I should maintain my business for fish keeping.
I won't tell you what to do as that is your choice, but I want to say that you can't tell the condition of water by looking at it. Sparkling clear water can be loaded with deadly toxins, bacteria and parasites. You also can't go by how clean the glass looks on a tank. Algae is a food source for allot of fish and it benefits their diet to have it present. Scrubbing all of it from the tank is not doing many fish a favor.

Before buying any fish, I tend to go several days in a row to study the fish and see if any seem to have progressive health issues. If any do seem to have health problems (and there always seems to be some in any crowded tank) I watch to see how fast the problems are progressing and if it seems to be spreading thru the population. There's always an attrition rate for each tank and I like to try and figure out what it is before buying. Keeping fish healthy for long periods of time (weeks or months) in a small, undecorated tank is pretty difficult. There's something to be said for shops that can do it. It's not that difficult to get new fish every week to stock the tanks with, and then hide the 50% mortality rate from the public.
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post #6 of 9 Old 02-07-2012, 05:00 PM
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Agree with most of what's been posted, but everyone has overlooked that you specifically mention Dwarf Gourami. The store itself is not the issue, it is where these fish come from.

As it notes in our profile, the safest bet with this species is to only buy from a local breeder, or a store carrrying fish supplied by a trusted local breeder or similar.

I would point out that many "good" stores now refuse to even carry this species, unless they can ensure the source is reliable.

Byron.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #7 of 9 Old 02-07-2012, 05:24 PM
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All the PETCOs around me offer 30 day guarantee. That is where I have been getting most of mine.
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post #8 of 9 Old 02-07-2012, 06:06 PM
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All the PETCOs around me offer 30 day guarantee. That is where I have been getting most of mine.
Thgat's fine, but if you check the profile of the dwarf gourami you willnote that this fish is a known carrier of dwarf gourami iridovirus, which is untreatable. It is now known that it can spread to other species. In 2006 almost 1/4 of the fish being exported from Singapore were found to be carrying this virus. I believe i read that it can be latent in the fish for some time.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #9 of 9 Old 02-07-2012, 06:28 PM Thread Starter
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Ok, thanks for all the great responses. So now I am aware that this species tends to carry a certain disease and I need to be careful with that. I have been using Petsmart and I think I am going to continue unless I have a bad experience there, things are cheaper and surprisingly I am getting better advice there than at the local pet store. Thanks everyone.
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