09-02-2007, 06:02 PM
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Alot of you have made some good points where it really does come down to a bit of time talking to the people working. Something i would suggest for ya'll is to be generally nice and understanding. I work in a fish department of a pet store. I got the job because i ended up going in there about 4 times a week for a good 6 months untill on of the owners asked me to start working(at that point i was helping customers while getting my own stuff). One thing i can point out is if you are at a good store and someone doesnt know something they will tell you. I cant pretend to know everything about fish and i highly doubt there is anyone in the world that could tell you every little thing there is about every fish, especially considering the fact that new fish are constantly being discovered and entering the fish trade. Also alot of things can be opinion, such as what type of filter is the best. When i am working, if i dont know something i tell the person, many times i have actually looked up on the internet about fish with the person. I can also tell you that most of the things i have learned about fish are just from talking to customers that are experts on one specific type of fish and love talking about them.
Someone mentioned it earlier where they will go in to get one or two things and end up talking to the workers for hours, thats because something that alot of people forget is that they ARE people. Now granted that can be a huge understatement because i have met many many people i hate, yet assuming that people working at LFS or petsmart/co really is unfair. Im sure many of you know the saying for what assume means, so lets refrain from it.
When it comes down to it, all pet stores are different because of the people that work in there. Some of you have said that you have great success with the fish franchises while in my area they are all horrible. Think of it this way, what goes around comes around. I myself have thrown people out of the store, written in big letters "NO RETURNS" on peoples receipts, refused to give fish to people and im sure many other things i cant remember when people have acted as jerks. Now on the other side, i have many repeat customers that i have become friends with and on many it is an automatic 10% or more discount with everything they buy. Do your research, ask questions, be nice and your fish buying experiences will be much more enjoyable.
Someone also mentioned something about warrenties, my store offers a 5 day return policy on most fish. Some we have no policy. We do make exceptions though, for example if a fish has been breathing heavily on the bottom ever since it was introduced into the tank we sometimes replace them. But from my experiences if a fish is going to die because of the lfs it will usually happen within a couple of days, so warrenties arent really the thing to be looking for. More so the appearence of the fish, ask the conditions of the water, how long it has been there, probably a couple i cant think of right now. Stuff like algae on the tank, even a dead fish every so often should be noted but also look at it this way. In my store we have around 150 tanks and thats small. We have 3 employees including myself. Imagine taking care of 50 tanks yourself, it isnt the easiest thing. Also it sounds bad but fish will die and if you are getting in a few hundred fish (not sure how many we actually get in a week) you are bound to lose one or two. So make note of it but dont lose all faith because of a death. I wish we didnt lose fish but it is inevitable.
Sorry if that was a long rant, im bored at my other job so have been kinda rambling.