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Old 11-01-2012, 03:57 PM   #1
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"Sacrificial" Fish

So I thought pet stores had run out of ways to make me sick until today, when my little cousin who I've been trying to guide in the ways of fish-keeping (and failing) announced that she purchased three "sacrificial" fish to cycle her 2.5 gallon tank. I took a look and realized that they were danios, and after arguing with her and her mother for the longest time, her mother told me that "It is a 20 cents no-good ugly fish that's life has no value and is going to die anyways so who gives?" Finally I left the Facetime, telling them that I won't take part in sacrificing innocent lives for no good reason.

My little cousin kept blaming the pet store for telling her to buy them, but I told her that she shouldn't have bought a fish without researching it first. I'm just about done with trying to teach her the right way of fish-keeping, the sane, kind way, and am about to give up hope that pet stores will treat all living things fairly.
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Old 11-01-2012, 04:08 PM   #2
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Not to fuel the fire here, but I would not overly blame a pet store. It is still ultimately up to the consumer to know what they are purchasing. I can see you are upset at the consumers as well though. Unfortunately, there is not much you can do about an attitude like that. Perhaps once they see the fish swim around, they will get attached and care more. I must say that flagrant disregard for life upsets me as well. But, that disregard may not be shared by the store. After all, fish-in cycles can be done relatively easily without hurting the average fish. And your relative may have just been upset because you disagreed and she felt guilty. People do tend to exaggerate when they are upset.
You could offer to help them do a fish-in cycle and then offer to take the danios once it is cycled. Not ideal, but better than some other options.
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Old 11-01-2012, 04:35 PM   #3
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I know fish-in cycles can be done easily. If it was anyone else I would've felt a little better about this whole situation. In fact I'm currently doing one myself. But my little cousin, frankly, is not a good fish-keeper and won't do it properly. I've stressed to her for a long long time now about how to do a fishless cycle. That information seems to go right out her other ear. And she leaves three hours away so driving there everyday to assist with the cycle wouldn't be realistic. Anything I tell her from my own home would be ignored. I do blame her a little bit more than the pet store. I am pissed at the pet store for labeling danions "sacrificial fish" though. And I doubt they'll get a bigger tank for them. Even if she wanted to, her even crueler mother wouldn't let her (no offense to my aunt but after what she said I've lost a lot of respect for her). This whole situation is just awful to me.
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Old 11-01-2012, 04:40 PM   #4
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I understand. I am sure I would be frustrated as well. I am just saying that the reason any store can exist at all is because people buy from them. Also, you are getting your relatives version of the story and sometimes things can be a little skewed.
It is too bad they live that far away from you. Try to keep in mind that your influence may still affect your cousin. It is good that she has somebody telling her about fish keeping who cares about fish.
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Old 11-01-2012, 05:00 PM   #5
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i see this a lot at one lfs around here. i dont think the owners like me very much,ive managed to convince a few people to leave and go to a different(much better)one. but as absolut said,you cant completely blame the store
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Old 11-01-2012, 06:08 PM   #6
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How old is your cousin? Frankly, she is probably getting her mindset from her parents. If they don't care and act as if it is blase, she is going to do the same, depending on how old she is. I've seen this many times on a chinchilla forum I was apart of with younger kids, and working in a pet store with rabbits, hamsters, etc.
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Old 11-01-2012, 09:17 PM   #7
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She's pretty young, only eight. She probably has a good reason for deciding to ignore all my advice. I never sugarcoat anything with her, which her mom does to her all the time. She decided not to cycle her tank with her previous betta fish, so I told her an ammonia spike would kill the betta after she told me she didn't have a test kit or plan to do a proper fish-in cycle. You can imagine how angry her mom got at me O_O But I'm not going to sugarcoat anything. Then she'll never learn.

Wish I could save the danio, but her Mom would never let me give it a proper home, she's so headstrong and certain that it's a worthless living being.
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Old 11-01-2012, 09:55 PM   #8
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If that is the case, then, with her mom, it's a lost cause until she decides she wants to do what is right by the animals. It's unfortunate, but there's nothing you can do about it except tell her when she is ready to do things the right way, to come to you
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Old 11-01-2012, 09:59 PM   #9
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Whoa- 2.5 gallon? I'd reccommend that she get rid of all fish, add a bunch of RCS and maybe a nerite snail or ramshorn, and call it a day. You should get a pretty 'silent' cycle with that.
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Old 11-02-2012, 05:43 PM   #10
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I'd never trust her with shrimp. They require really clean water right? She can hardly maintain a hardy betta fish in there because she decided that cycling isn't necessary and whenever I'd tell her that ammonia spikes would kill her fish her mom would tell her otherwise. It's definitely a lost cause. I'm done helping her until she's willing to listen and do things properly. That poor danio will be dead any day now, as the other two have already died. When she's ready to listen then I'll lend my support and assistance. I've wasted a year and a half already. And all it got me was having to watch mistreated danios get killed. Sigh...
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