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Old 05-09-2013, 04:29 AM   #1
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Hello all!

Greetings, everyone!

My name is Heather. I currently live in Southern California, though since my husband is in the Navy I have lived many places. I also work for PetSmart, and I realize that some of you may not like PetSmart employees. I do try to provide the best information that I can to my customers, which is one of the reasons why I am on here.

As far as my fish keeping experience goes. My mom got me into aquariums at a very young age. My first tank was a 20G that she let me put a goldfish in when I was 6. If my memory serves me right, it was a Calico Ryukin. Poor thing ended up dying because my mom forgot to tell me the first rule of aquarium maintenance.... Never use soap to clean aquarium decor. Luckily, the aquarium was able to be used in the future, since there wasn't too much soap residue on the decorations when they were put back in. We just had to clean in a lot.

Fast forward to when I was an early teenager, I had a friend get me into betta breeding. That was definitely my favorite fish keeping venture. I'd sell the babies at a local fish store. Unfortunately, once I was old enough to have a job, it took away the free time I needed to keep up on cleaning the tanks for all of my bettas, so that had to end.

Few years ago, my then fiancť had just gone into the Navy and I was still at my mom's house. I helped her set up and maintain her pond and I also set up a 55G Saltwater tank as well as two 20G and also a 10G tank that I kept some Black Convict Cichlid fry that I brought home from work.

All of those had to be left behind once I was able to live with my husband. I went without any aquariums (besides 3.5G betta tanks). Now we're going to be stationed her for a while, and my good friend gave me his 65 G tank, which I am currently cycling. I posted about my proposed setup for that in the Freshwater/brakish water general forum if you want to check that out.
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Old 05-09-2013, 10:36 AM   #2
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Greetings JadeGreen, and welcome. I don't think it fair to say we don't like Petsmart employees, per se, but Petsmart is typical of a big box mentality, where the pattern is set by corporate. No deviation is allowed, and training for employees is minimal. It is believed it is easier if the employee doesn't have to make any decision, and all answers will be the same. So, I am sure that there are some knowledgeable PetSmart employees, as there are in some LFS, but it doesn't usually seem to be the case. I don't blame the employee. There are lots of retail outlets that employ people who don't really know what they are talking about, selling all sorts of products.
Regardless, you are welcome here, and can probably add some insight from the retail perspective.
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Old 05-09-2013, 10:45 AM   #3
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Old 05-09-2013, 12:12 PM   #4
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Thanks all.

Yeah, in my experience there's basic training given to those in the aquatics department... Especially to those who have never kept aquariums. But in some stores I've worked at, they won't even let you near the department if you don't have personal experience with it. Depends on the management team.

PetSmart does at least teach their employees not to answer a question if they don't know the answer. Unfortunately that doesn't take into account the people who think they know the answer but don't really. I always tell the newbies to do research online when they can. Especially when asked a question that we don't encounter too often. (How do I breed ....?, What is
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Old 05-09-2013, 03:50 PM   #5
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Hi Heather, its not the Pet Smart Employees, so much as most that work there were still in diapers when i had already been keeping fish for over 20 years, and their attitude that its my first visit to a fish store. However, i usually just smile and go along with their sales pitch, and buy what i want no matter what LOL. Its great to meet you and maybe we can help each other here
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Old 05-09-2013, 04:34 PM   #6
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Welcome! It's always nice to know that there are good big box stores with good employees! The petsmart closest to me is pretty good, and the fish people there are usually pretty knowledgeable, although it's been a long time since I've been in. It's about 45 minutes away. Last time I was in I was really impressed with the way the fish/reptile guy helped someone get all set up for a ball python even if it did mean I had to wait 45 minutes to get the two guppies I had gone in for. Happy to hear there are more former betta breeders here now! That's my current endeavor, and there are a few others trying right now too. Had my first spawn on monday although my male ate them all. Guess he needs some practice!
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Old 05-09-2013, 05:45 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alyxx View Post
Welcome! It's always nice to know that there are good big box stores with good employees! The petsmart closest to me is pretty good, and the fish people there are usually pretty knowledgeable, although it's been a long time since I've been in. It's about 45 minutes away. Last time I was in I was really impressed with the way the fish/reptile guy helped someone get all set up for a ball python even if it did mean I had to wait 45 minutes to get the two guppies I had gone in for. Happy to hear there are more former betta breeders here now! That's my current endeavor, and there are a few others trying right now too. Had my first spawn on monday although my male ate them all. Guess he needs some practice!
Yeah, sometimes the males will do that. I had one male who never got over it, so I'd had to take him out of the tank also. It's not preferable, but the fry can survive without dad there to take care of them. Luckily, he at least would place them in the nest, but he'd slowly eat them all once they were up there.
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Old 05-09-2013, 06:29 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JadeGreen

Yeah, sometimes the males will do that. I had one male who never got over it, so I'd had to take him out of the tank also. It's not preferable, but the fry can survive without dad there to take care of them. Luckily, he at least would place them in the nest, but he'd slowly eat them all once they were up there.
Exactly what mine did. I'll give him a few more tries but if he keeps it up I'll just pull him when I pull the female.
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Old 05-09-2013, 06:38 PM   #9
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Welcome to Aquarium Advice! Enjoy!
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