Betta Fish Poll Results: What Do You Think of Pet Store Betta Cups?

Please don’t drink me, originally uploaded by funky_cheetah.

The final results for the Betta Fish Poll: What do you think of Pet Store Betta Cups?

54% (31 Votes) Way too small to be humane
42% (24 Votes) OK for a short time
0% (0 Votes) They’re fine. Bettas don’t need much
3% (2 Votes) Huh? What cups?

This weeks poll (located in the column to the right) is Where do you buy your betta fish? Let us know where you like to buy your bettas. In this betta fish poll, you can answer more than one if it applies.

**Hey Readers** If you are reading this after the polls have closed feel free to add your opinion in the comments. We love to hear what you think.

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Christie F is a Betta splendens hobbyist that enjoys spending time caring for her fish and helping new betta keepers learn the ropes. More posts by:

4 Comments for this entry

  1. Artgal says:

    I have 4 rescued cats and now have 7 what I consider to be rescued Betta's from both Petco and Walmart. I always let the management know what I think of their fish keeping, as I hate finding sick and dead fish on their shelves. I found 7 dead Bettas the other day at Petco, and several sick ones too. Their staff give conflicting advice, most saying it doesn't matter what temperature they are kept at and I have had to suggest that some of them actually READ the books they carry on Betta keeping or do some research on-line, as I did when I started out. One girl actually said that Bettas can't survive in big tanks as they die when they put them in the larger tanks with the other cold water fish!!

    I have one Betta (my first) in a 5 gallon tank with heating, two in 2 gallon tanks with heat, and I have had to compromise with 4 one gallon tanks for the rest as I have no room for bigger tanks, my thinking they are better off like that for a while until I can rethink my space with luck, than where they were. All but the first one I bought had slight problems – one has torn fins, two have slightly deformed tails with twists in (I guess from early cramped keeping?) the rest were looking a bit sorry for themselves but not on their last legs. All have fresh plants, gravel, some form of rock or similar ornament but I take care npot to make the tanks too crowded, and I try to keep them all at around 72 degrees F.

    Walmart seem to have cleaned up their act a bit since I started calling the manager over and complaining but Petco are short staffed – no excuse in my book. I told them they should treat them better and check them ALL every day at least once a day. I HATE going in either as I always feel that I am on the horns of a dilemma, walking past them and their uncertain futures. Then the potential new owners often have no instruction how to keep them and I have found myself daring to give advice. Even worse, I see them bought for tiny children as pets by parents who know nothing and buy on a whim.

    I regard the cups as an awful way to keep fish. Unfortunately I don't see how one can get legislation passed to ban them.

    I also have two 10 gallon tanks with 3 and 2 rescued goldfish respectively … to think I wanted to have Gouramis – that will have to wait until I get a bigger house!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Artgal, I agree with where you stand on the subject of keeping bettas. I think it's plain sad when I walk down the fish isle at a pet store and see these poor fish lying on the bottoms of little cups and looking like their lives don't matter to the world. When I picked out my first betta, I wasn't sure why they acted that way because every time I had ever seen a betta, it was in that same situation and was lying in a cup. You know something's gotta be inhumane when you wonder if the fish you've picked out is dead before you pay for it! And as if this kind of treatment isn't bad enough, look at the products on the market for keeping "happy" bettas. Those peace lily vase things, various fish bowls, and betta display cases with a liftable opaque divider so you can watch them fight each other on either side of the transparent one! I think many people trust that the pet stores know best how to care for animals and accept the way they see bettas as the "norm." That has to be how this has been left to continue on. One thing I have seen my local family-owned pet store do that I like is put the female bettas together in a community tank with one or two other types of compatible fish and put the males in separate specimen containers (I'm referring to the plastic boxes that hang on the sides of tanks that they use to help them bag the fish). They hang the specimen containers on the inside of the large fish tanks holding other tropical fish so the bettas get the benefit of the heat, but also can't fight each other. I've seen this set up with two bettas per large tank – one on either end. I figure it's temporary, cost effective, and not too boring for the bettas since they are still somewhat part of a real aquarium. Plus, I trust that this pet store takes pretty good care of them because I have never seen any dead bettas there, nor have I noticed waste in their living spaces. I just hope that the bettas I don't buy go to good homes. Not to say I'm an expert on bettas, because in all honesty, I'm a newbie, but unlike many average shmoes out there, when I spot a problem with my fish, I work to fix it by spending time, spending money on supplies, treatments, live foods, etc., and by educating myself through research. Just by knowing some basic information about the fish, anyone can provide them with the proper care and a good home. I think what pet stores ought to do is send their fish home with pamphlets outlining the fishes' basic needs like how much space they should have, what to feed them, and how to maintain a healthy environment for them to live in. It also would be good to at least touch upon behavior, breed history, and the symptoms of common illnesses. If you can buy non-living things with manuals that tell you how to use them properly, why shouldn't living things that depend on proper care come with manuals? So keep informing those pet stores – it's a bold move, but someone's got to stand up for bettas! :-) I've been taking the more subtle approach by simply not giving them (I mean the mall pet store I got my first betta at) my business. If they don't make enough money selling bettas, they will stop carrying them. I am proud to support my local pet store and am happy to report that the employees there are much more helpful and knowledgeable. In fact, after talking with the employees there, I don't think they would have even been hired if they didn't already own and care for several different critters! Therefore, I encourage the readers on this site to buy local, 'cause it's "betta"! (Pun intended.) By the way, your fish with deformed tails could be from too many generations of inbreeding, I think. I read that bettas can be bred with their siblings for up to five generations before new blood should be introduced to the line. My best guess is that wherever you got your deformed bettas, the breeders did not bother to do this and eventually started creating fish with deformities.

  3. Anonymous says:

    i would "rescue" more bettas if i had the time/money but i do my part by only giving my local pet store my business

  4. Anonymous says:

    In reality, it would be very difficult for the pet stores to offer individual bettas for sale in multiple larger vessels that can only house one fish. Clearly, however, the cups should be only for very short term use. If the stock wasn't so large(the store near me normally carries a ton of these fish at any given time)AND if the bettas were maintained properly, it wouldn't be so bad…for the SHORT term. I, too, struggle with being practical and passing those by that seem to desperately need some decent care. My son has stated that I am trying to save the world…one betta at a time!

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