Nancy L asked in PetsFish · 1 decade ago

OMG what is wrong with Wal-Mart why are they selling betta's like easter eggs?

I went to our local WM today and was astounded when I saw a display of Betta fish for sale in pretty easter color boxes. They had a least 150 plus of the sweet little fish all ready to go. Why in the world would they do this. I walked over to the fish area and told an associate that some of the fish hardly had any water in them . She said that she had so much to do it would take her too long to tend to all of them. Some of them only had about 1 inch of water and their fins were sticking out.

What can be done about this craziness. I have heard of children getting rabbits and ducks for Easter but now Betta's. What is your opinion.


17 Answers

  • Suzi
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago
    Favourite answer

    You are so right. It's horrible, and it's the same problem in every Walmart store.

    Years ago, while shopping for kitty litter - I discovered the bettas. I was appalled at what I saw in one store. Over half of the 50 cups had dead fish, the other half were struggling to stay alive in less than 1" of putrid water. What was even worse, was that several cups had more than one male, and they were ripping each other apart.

    I called for employee assistance. The employee explained to me that all of the fish, including the bettas, were maintained by the vendor company, as Walmart only pays for fish that are sold, not the ones that die. The only responsibility that Walmart claimed, was to sell the fish - not tend to them. She would not give me the name of the fish company.

    My complaints to the management were ignored.

    Against my better judgement, I bought all of the cups with more than one fish. Spent the drive home trying to shift my car while breaking up fights with my fingers.

    The bettas lived for a very long time, I still had several of them, 5 years later. But I never bought another. I may have saved those 14 fish, but I didn't help their cause. Buying them only meant that more fish would take their place. Walmart made a profit, and so did the fish company.


    Walmart should stop the sale of all fish, or pay to have them properly maintained. The problem is - no one seems to care. What disgusts a few of us, goes largely unnoticed by everyone else. I'm sure many people do notice, and just don't care - or worse, think that it's acceptable.

    Sadly, the value of pets is rated on a scale...and fish are at the bottom. It's not acceptable to see dead puppies or kittens in any pet store, but no one thinks twice about dead fish.

    For those who do shop at Walmart and are disgusted by this, don't be afraid to confront the issue. Walmart probably would do something if enough people complained, or threatened to take their business elsewhere. It doesn't help the atmosphere of their store, or their bottom line. It's obvious that they don't care about the fish - but they do care about potential loss of $$.

  • 1 decade ago

    I know how you feel. When I look at my two betta boys(in their divided ten gallon) I can't imagine them back in the cup of water I found them in.

    Bettas cost the store about 25 to 40 cents each. Even if they're only five bucks, that's a huge markup, and when you tell customers, "All you need is a vase..." That's a lot of sales.

    The stores leave customers uneducated, uneducated people kill their fish and buy new ones more frequently, the stores make more money. It sucks.

    Save the bettas you can, educate the people who want to listen. Think good thoughts for the rest of them. God knows the stores won't change.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Well, when it comes to animal rights, fish tend not to have legal protection like cats and dogs do. However, Walmart is a profit driven company. I bet if the fish didn't sell very well and they received letters of complaint, perhaps there would not be a repeat of this next year.

    A tangent: My mom told me about the 'peeps' they used to get at Easter, which were little chicks that had been injected with dye in the egg so they were assorted pastel easter colours. Peeps usually only lived for a couple weeks, because the dye messed them up and they would die.

    And incidentally, it looks like you're not the only person upset about Walmart's treatment of fish:

  • 1 decade ago

    I think giving any pet as a holiday "novelty" gift is sad. But asside from that the condition that the fish were in is what concerns me. Those fish need to be properly cared for. If the clerk didn't have "time" for them than another clerk needs to do it. I would have insisted on speaking to a manager. If you didn't want to do it in front of the clerk then you could have gone to customer service and asked there. Another idea is to just call the store and ask them to please check on the situation. Then I would go the next day to check it out myself. The clerk may have the attitude that they are "only" fish. If that's so then they are in the wrong department. Sadly I don't think there is much that can be done about the craziness in general. As long as the public continues to buy these pets the retailers are going to market them. Kudos to you for caring enough to speak up!

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  • 1 decade ago

    Money. Greed. Male Bettas splendens are beautiful fish, and many people believe they can be kept in a small, plain container, with no heater. Like many think about those cute little goldfish in this way. Unlike goldfish, Bettas are tropical and require a more species oriented diet. Like goldfish, they'll probably die within a short period of time. Stores like WM don't care, they've made their buck (or 2, or whatever).

    Bettas are for sale like this year-round, so this doesn't really surprise me. If more people were informed, they would probably not buy them without knowing something about them. But that's too difficult.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    You really shouldn't torture yourself by going there. You know that whenever you go to the fish section of walmart you're going to see mistreated fish. The only people who would buy fish at a place like walmart are the ones who saw finding Nemo, and decided it was a good idea to get a clown fish and keep it in a freshwater bowl and then wonder why they die. They are going to have a short life expectancy anyway.

    Edit: You guys do realize that if you start "rescuing" fish from walmart, you'll be improving their profit, and encouraging them to submit more fish to that treatment. People who have the faintest clue about what they're doing do not get their fish from walmart. If they bought the fish from somewhere else, they would mistreat them and kill them anyway. Stores can only educate a person that knows how limited their own knowledge is and asks questions. The vast majority of the people who buy fish from walmart don't fall into that category.

  • 1 decade ago

    You think thats bad - I was in a shop the other day and they had "Betta Babies" which are a betta fry (about 4 mm long) in a sealed baby bottle - long can a fish like that go without food?

    The drive to make a buck might be the most evil one of all

  • Anonymous
    4 years ago


  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago



    I mean, I hardly qualify Walmart as the right place to be selling pets.

    But the fact that they don't even bother to attempt keeping the fish alive is really disgusting.

    Plus, why in the world would they need to have so many beta fish in stock?

    It's difficult to imagine 150 people wanting beta fish from one store around the same exact time.


  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Sadly, Bettas are given the respect of Goldfish, if not less.

    Perhaps you could've complained to the manager on duty, saying that the Bettas were in water levels too low.

    I mean, if they're going to sell a living animal, they should have someone working to keep them in decent condition!

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