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Old 08-01-2013, 09:07 AM   #1
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Things that petsmart employees should know.

I recently got a job as a pet care associate at petsmart. My co workers are amazing and are pretty knowledgable about the fish and pets we sell.

*no we don't use the fish per gallon, or anything else like that or putting fish in a bowl. Or pairing aggressive fish with community.

We all have fish tanks of our own at our homes lol, and one of my co workers has 7!

I want this thread to be positive and nice, nothing negative about large chain stores.

But I wanted to collect some common info about fish keeping that would be useful when talking to customers and etc....

At the store I work at we don't carry any salt water... We do carry....

Common tropical freshwaters
Chichlids
Gold fish
Betas
Fire belly toads
Ghost shrimp
Crabs
African dwarf frogs
Mystery snails


Don't take me wrong, I know about fish, but I thought it would be a great idea to get ideas from a group of people, in case I missed anything.
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Old 08-01-2013, 09:13 AM   #2
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Found the thread now thanks.
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Old 08-01-2013, 09:14 AM   #3
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One word quarntine.
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Old 08-01-2013, 09:20 AM   #4
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The general rule for fancy goldfish is 20g for the first one, and 10g for every additional one
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Old 08-01-2013, 09:36 AM   #5
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Petsmart has pretty good guidelines and handouts. I wish they would offer more Nano Fish. But when I worked there, I always steered people away from the Plecos ( except dwarf species) and CAE's to the snails n Otos.

I usually sold 2 male Livebearers unless parents were clear that Petsmart probably would NOT take the babies.

The one I worked at knew almost nothing about live plants. On a Corporate level I wish they'd stop selling "Mondo Grass" as fully aquatic.

They need to have a better handout on Plant Lighting and difference between SW/FW in light spectrum.

Sounds like the OP is at a good store. I had people driving 2 hours to shop with me. Even a Petco manager got her fish from us
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Old 08-01-2013, 09:40 AM   #6
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I too work at petsmart. I DO hate the 24hour cycle rule but, I give them a little card that says www.aquariumadvice.com on it and tell them to read up on how to properly cycle
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Old 08-01-2013, 10:17 AM   #7
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I don't think we even sell plecos, or at least not very often.... When they do get them they don't sell them to people with small tanks. When I first started I went across town to buy mine, petsmart only would sell me a Otto. My first day in the floor some lady begged me to sell her a fancy gold fish so she could put it in a half gallon bowl... *face palm* she wouldn't listen to me about she couldn't..,,, but I at least got her to get a beta instead. Not that it's any better, I know some believe they need a bigger/ better set up,

Out fancy goldfish are to be sold to people with 29g... And we can also refuse to sell to whomever,
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Old 08-01-2013, 10:18 AM   #8
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Also snails will mutply. No matter how many you take out.
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Old 08-01-2013, 10:28 AM   #9
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Also snails will mutply. No matter how many you take out.
Not all snails. You have to know which do and dont.
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Old 08-01-2013, 10:30 AM   #10
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At least all the ones iv had have been like that.
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Old 08-01-2013, 10:37 AM   #11
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It's awesome that your store has such a knowledgeable staff when it comes to fish! You don't often find that in chain stores, but I think that is mostly because people start working there because they know lots about dog or cat care and then get put in aquatics or some other department they know next to nothing about. As far as good information to know, get to know the species you sell often very well so you can make good stocking recommendations. Tell people about sites like aqadvisor for making a stocking plan while they cycle their tank. Suggest a quarantine tank and explain why it is important even if the fish they buy look perfectly healthy now.
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Old 08-01-2013, 10:39 AM   #12
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You pretty much covered it all.
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Old 08-01-2013, 10:53 AM   #13
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I have a very nice local Petco with freshwater and saltwater and a few of the staff know their stuff so it's nice to have some responsible ones!
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Old 08-01-2013, 11:04 AM   #14
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I do like knowadglable staff. It makes the difrence from me shopping and not shopping here.
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Old 08-01-2013, 11:20 AM   #15
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I do like knowadglable staff. It makes the difrence from me shopping and not shopping here.
I agree!
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Old 08-01-2013, 01:18 PM   #16
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I agree!
I agree 100%
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Old 08-01-2013, 01:25 PM   #17
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I've only had a few issues with fish from Petsmart. My Petsmart keeps the tanks clean and the fish always look healthy there.

Once I was told that I couldn't have a blue ram with rasboras because the ram would eat them. Another time they almost wouldn't sell me white clouds because they were going to be in a tank without a heater. Petsmart sells them as tropical fish even though they are not.

For the most part I find their recommended tank sizes to be OK. Not great but certainly reasonable. On several occasions I have seen the sales associates upsell someone buying a goldfish from a sponge bob type tank to a 10 gallon kit. Still not ideal but much better.
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Old 08-01-2013, 01:26 PM   #18
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I would like to add how to treat for ich without the use of medications on that list.
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Old 08-01-2013, 01:30 PM   #19
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Actually the closest pet smart is 45 minutes awAy so I go to the closest peto which is more like 15 mins away.
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Old 08-01-2013, 03:48 PM   #20
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My two cents - be prepared for people who ask for your advice and then won't take it. You'll find yourself recommending a test kit, which they won't want to buy because its "expensive", and you'll then watch them spend twice as much on day glow decorations and such. They will think algae is the reason all their fish keep dying. Some will finally come in with water to test and be shocked that the ammonia and nitrites are through the roof because the water "looks fine". And then they will want to buy more fish to put in their tank anyway.

You will occasionally meet people who listen and really take your advice to heart, but an awful lot of the time you won't. Sad, but true.
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