05-01-2009, 11:40 AM
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LOL, Mark. I have two dogs (mutts), two cockatiels, and my S/W Tank.
We installed a fence that cost us well over a thousand dollars to keep the dogs in the yard. I had to install a $500 door to keep the dogs out of the bird's ROOM (that's right, they get their own room). I have had to install timers for the birds to put them on a lighting schedule, and gates around the house to keep the dogs in check while we're gone.
The Pet Budget is higher than the food budget. While I eat frozen and canned food, my fiance has spent twice as much on dog food for the natural stuff, to reduce scratching and shedding.
And my saltwater tank. We joke because last year I put twice as much into my fish tank as my IRA; $4000+ to get the tank up and running. A few dollars were mistakes that could have been avoided.
When I made the transition to saltwater from fresh, I bought a new tank, stand and all the accessories the Pet Supplies Plus manager could pawn off on me. For Freshwater these would have been fine. He sold me a Fluval 304 canister filter, 40 lbs of crushed coral, a glass hood and a regular flourescent light, like 24w. I went to my LFS and had to buy like 80 lbs of live sand, and let that cycle for 2 weeks. Then I bought 40 lbs of Live Rock and let that cycle for two weeks. Then I added a fish, a fairy wrasse. It was 3 weeks until I added a pair of percula clowns. 3 months after that I started putting softies in my tank with LPS a little while after that.
I ditched the canister shortly after joining this forum, and added a continuous siphon overflow and a 15 gallon sump with an eheim compact+ pump. I added a Seaclone 100 protein skimmer, and a 2x250w metal halide w/ 2x65w PC actinics. I recently purchased a 6 lamp HO T5 because the MH was too much power in my opinion, and I feel a need to try and be a little responsible about energy consumption. I also bought a new protein skimmer.
Both me and my fiance feel an importance to making sure our animals our comfortable and cared for, no matter what the expense (in our budget of course). I have learned a lot on this forum, and from my LFS. I wished I had researched more before buying the tank, as 1f2f always says, but unfortunately I joined the forum after I bought. I would have gone with a reef-ready tank, and would have saved a lot of trial and error. Now I know when I upgrade in gallons what to do and what NOT to do...but until then, I am happy with what I have.
Last edited by wake49; 05-01-2009 at 11:47 AM..