Petco shouldnt carry live reptiles

cswan19

New Member
I went into Petco to get a new misting bottle, and as always walked over to take a look at their live reptiles. I came across a pink bellied swift that looked a little..... wrong to say the least.

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At first I hoped the little guy was just a very very strange sleeper and stood looking for any signs of life... no such luck. I tapped on the glass quite a bit and nothing.

The worst part is when I went and told what I think was the manager he just kinda shrugged it off and went on to help the next customer.

This kind of crap really makes me sorry for their animals. (or as they think of them, merchandise)
 

Saldarya

Established Member
You should post that pic on their Facebook page along with your experience in general. If the mgr had shown concern Id say let it go as it does happen. But the disregard is what really pisses me off.
 

Dgood

Established Member
I did the same thing the other day :( I am realitivly new to chameleons so I went and got one from the local reptile store I purchased my female jacksons chameleon out of three other chams they had. I went back a couple days ago and there was a poor little baby veiled laying in the corner :(:( I asked him if he was even alive he picked him up and he barley was moving and he just took him to the back and i havent seen hm since :(:(I wanted to buy him and take him home because that's exactly what they are to them merchandise nothing more than something to be sold :( makes me sad every time I think about it :(
 

rcdrivertim

New Member
Call their district manager and inform him. They do not need nor want this kind of publicity. I go to Petsmart here and there manager does care. Make sure you call for their district manager though.
 

Lathis

Chameleon Enthusiast
The big box pet stores shouldn't carry live animals, period. They have them only to sell impulse supplies at inflated prices.

Walk through their bird aisle and look at all the birds with crusty noses and vents from over crowding and lack of cleaning...then notice all their poor little deformed feet from only one size perch.

I needed an emergency replacement UV bulb and was a CetPo (name changes to protect the guilty) recently. They had this sad looking Jacksons male who was super dehydrated. The lack of anything to climb, bark for substrate, the water bowl with dead meal worms in it, and the bowl of lettuce were physically hard to look at. I complained to the manager who was like "Yeah, I know all that, but this is how we have to do it."

I cannot support buying animals from them, but I will say I feel horribly guilty for leaving him there...
 

Tatertot

New Member
I've had the exact same issue with the petco about 45mins from here. I have a friend who lives in the same town that the petco is located and he actually finds live reptiles tied up in mesh bags in their dumpster out back. The first time he found 2 juvenile iguanas tied up in a mesh bag in the middle of summer on top of all the other trash. He went in to tell the manager and they didn't care at all. He's found tortoises, bearded dragons, veiled and Jackson's chameleons, baby monitors, corn snakes & ball pythons since then. Some alive some had passed. Now he goes everyday after he gets off work and right after they close to check.
Petco just doesn't care.
Our local pet warehouse when I go in they know me as the reptile guy because the first time I went in there were 3 male crested geckos housed together 2 dead the other dieing so I got the manager and he told me that they don't have anyone working there who knows much about reptiles so I told him about the care of the reptiles I knew about that they had. Since then they've gotten better but the manager still has a thousand questions everytime I go in lol.
Petland has been the best in my area though. Since they opened a couple years ago they've had people in each area that actually know what their doing and are knowledgeable. The reptile guy even knows about the different chameleons and owns a managerie himself.
 

Coded

New Member
I have noticed that the local petsmart has worse housing setups than the local petco.....but they are both sub-standard for some of the reptiles they are attempting to keep/sell.
 

cswan19

New Member
I've had the exact same issue with the petco about 45mins from here. I have a friend who lives in the same town that the petco is located and he actually finds live reptiles tied up in mesh bags in their dumpster out back. The first time he found 2 juvenile iguanas tied up in a mesh bag in the middle of summer on top of all the other trash. He went in to tell the manager and they didn't care at all. He's found tortoises, bearded dragons, veiled and Jackson's chameleons, baby monitors, corn snakes & ball pythons since then. Some alive some had passed. Now he goes everyday after he gets off work and right after they close to check.
Petco just doesn't care.
Our local pet warehouse when I go in they know me as the reptile guy because the first time I went in there were 3 male crested geckos housed together 2 dead the other dieing so I got the manager and he told me that they don't have anyone working there who knows much about reptiles so I told him about the care of the reptiles I knew about that they had. Since then they've gotten better but the manager still has a thousand questions everytime I go in lol.
Petland has been the best in my area though. Since they opened a couple years ago they've had people in each area that actually know what their doing and are knowledgeable. The reptile guy even knows about the different chameleons and owns a managerie himself.

Wow... that leaves me mind blown. why/how would someone do that? I mean how could they not feel terrible. I honestly cannot believe it. It totally pisses me off. :mad: Poor creatures... Wish there was a way to make it stop.
 

SaintJimmy

Avid Member
I've had the exact same issue with the petco about 45mins from here. I have a friend who lives in the same town that the petco is located and he actually finds live reptiles tied up in mesh bags in their dumpster out back. The first time he found 2 juvenile iguanas tied up in a mesh bag in the middle of summer on top of all the other trash. He went in to tell the manager and they didn't care at all. He's found tortoises, bearded dragons, veiled and Jackson's chameleons, baby monitors, corn snakes & ball pythons since then. Some alive some had passed. Now he goes everyday after he gets off work and right after they close to check.
Petco just doesn't care.
Our local pet warehouse when I go in they know me as the reptile guy because the first time I went in there were 3 male crested geckos housed together 2 dead the other dieing so I got the manager and he told me that they don't have anyone working there who knows much about reptiles so I told him about the care of the reptiles I knew about that they had. Since then they've gotten better but the manager still has a thousand questions everytime I go in lol.
Petland has been the best in my area though. Since they opened a couple years ago they've had people in each area that actually know what their doing and are knowledgeable. The reptile guy even knows about the different chameleons and owns a managerie himself.

Wichita Reptile Rescue?
 

DanSB

Avid Member
Petco is responsive in my area. I have the district managers direct line and use it if a store manager isn't responsive, but honestly the stores in this guys district are pretty good.

Log a complaint on the feedback section of their website explaining the issues you saw and they should take actions to correct. If not keep logging complaints, someone in the corporation does care. If this kind of thing is frequent someone will get replaced...

Lodge a formal complaint on the corporate website. If you neglect that important step all your complaining will help very little.
 

Lukie Pookie

New Member
If anyone has heard of PJs Pets they are pretty similar. I went to go see their reptile section and I came to see an extremely dehydrated chameleon in any extremely dirty enclosure. It was very saddening. I went to go seek help at the Ontario SPCA to no avail. They can only help you if the accused party has multiple accounts of animals in poor condition. PJs probably did but I am not well versed in really any other animal to know. Really discouraging
 
I bought my first chameleon there because it was the only one and i felt bad. I know that's why these places survive most of the time but I just couldn't walk away. Needless to say he had a respiratory infect and MBD. It wa pretty spendy at the vets but I'm glad I did it
 
I also confronted their " reptile specialist" in regards to their housing and she got an attitude with me and then I asked her how many of their animals dye a month and she wouldn't "disclose" that information. It's seriously sickening
 

juice28

New Member
Now in defense, I used to work at a petco in Maryland, off of rt 1 in halethorpe and i can say that our store was amazing(usually lol) i worked aquatics and reptiles though and our entire staff was very animal friendly and knowledgeable and we did not hesitate to redo an enclosure to fit the needs of animals or to pull them off the floor if they werent looking so hot and there are ALOT of guidelines they have to follow because its a corporation that the small local stores dont have to for legal matters, I learned all the back end stuff and was amazed at how much red tape was involved but ts one of the few places i know with a 30 day return policy if yourfish dies and 15 days on livestock..dead or alive and that was usually extended if you bout something that got sick a week later and you bring it in so we know about it well send itto the vet and getthe meds and everything on us if you wanted to keep it..there arent many local stores that would do that. We had one of the larger stores, bout the size of a regular wal mart and I would have people who drove an hour just to come to our location because we kew or stuff, we always had quality stuff and more on the exotic side and we were honest with people.. many times we told people not to by this or this is what going on with it, you can get it but im forwarning you, (example) this tokay is new so he looks good but hes very lethargic, not aggressive at all and isnt eating. I will say though that the general stigma is that petco is the satan of stores but after working there i realized that its a corporation with hundreds of stores just about everywhere. I think corporate could use much better breeders because some of the we had wasnt necessarily garbage because it was unkept but some of our animals would come in already on the decline and we spent alot of time and extra hours and money(store money) with outrageous vet bills for some of the live stock and it is a retail store like most stores.. its not a zoo the cages arent meant to KEEP animals just house them temporarily. We had everything from GTP's to tegu's and a pretty nice salt water section which is rare for a petco and pet smart doesnt even carry SW livestock. as pet owners we know a well managed store when we enter it its not hard to tell. I would trust an animal from a petco but im not just going to buy anything lol. Im going to check it out at petco the same way i would at the local reptile hut or fish store..something looks good is healthy etc id grab it petco or not. ive passed on plenty of livestock at the top rated local store for somethong at a petco and vice versa. I just would not down an entire chain because of a few bad stores thats like saying dont go to a Mcdonalds they always have cold fries..just my opinion though
 
Well every store isn't horrible, my local one just got better because someone who works their is very knowledgeable and also works at a local wild life animal education place where they house various animals from tegus to cougars. So I trust that they are taken care of but whomever worked their prior was a nightmare and didn't know her head from her a**
Being a sales rep... i know if i were to snap at a customer like she did to me I would be blacklisted. Not only is it poor manners but its just ignorant not to take advice when I know she had no clue what she was talking about when she couldn't even remember the species of chameleon they carried
 

Lathis

Chameleon Enthusiast
I agree with you Juice. Absolutely there are great people working out there in pet stores of all sizes who genuinely care about the best possible care of their animals.

My big issues with big box pet stores:

1. A general lack of care because it is just someone's part time job and taking proper care of numerous animals day in and day out is a chore

2. Corporate policies that are outdated or downright incorrect which tie the hands of more knowledgeable employees who would like to provide better conditions for the animals (overcrowding, enrichment, cleanliness, comfort, etc).

I would argue these ideas are the root of everyone's frustrations with pet stores. There are definitely no quick solutions.
 

juice28

New Member
I agree with you Juice. Absolutely there are great people working out there in pet stores of all sizes who genuinely care about the best possible care of their animals.

My big issues with big box pet stores:

1. A general lack of care because it is just someone's part time job and taking proper care of numerous animals day in and day out is a chore

2. Corporate policies that are outdated or downright incorrect which tie the hands of more knowledgeable employees who would like to provide better conditions for the animals (overcrowding, enrichment, cleanliness, comfort, etc).

I would argue these ideas are the root of everyone's frustrations with pet stores. There are definitely no quick solutions.

i totally agree with you..and we had a good staff.. the hiring manager had a zoo and if you were just looking for a job.. he wouldnt hire you..not unless it was for freight and register work... my distract manager wh has never owned anything more exotic than a cat would come do her walk through and be like, this needs to be done like this or this bedding for this animal is out of regulation and id reply to her.. do you want me to keep the bedding regulation or do you want me to keep the animals alive and as healthy as possible so they sell...cuz i can switch it but they will go downhill and wont sell and the store WILL take a loss when they start dying...then she would just look at me with nothing to say and walk away..but we always got 98-99% on our scores lol
 
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