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DJ Mix
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Joined: 21 Sep 2004
Location: Johnston County, N.C.

PostPosted: 2004.12.11(Sat)14:46    Post subject: At the LFS... Reply with quote

I had the rare privelage of meeting a knowledgable person working at a pet store here, in NC Very Happy . She was speaking with a woman who was purchasing fish. She asked questions such as "How big is your tank" and"How many/ what kind of fish are already in there" Very Happy . Then when the woman asked for more fish, she explained that when more than 5 fish were purchased at one time, then the warranty on the fish was null because there was a good chance of an ammonia spike and a loss of life would be imminent. The woman continued to purchase fish all the while explaining how they just did a MAJOR cleaning of the entire tank and filters Rolling Eyes ! The lfs worker then proceded to explain why that shuold never be done. All in all, over fifteen fish were sold to this purchaser Shocked .

I would like to thank this lfs worker for doing her best, and wish her lots of luck when that woman comes in, carrying a bag full of dead fish, demanding her money back!?!

Evil or Very Mad Mad Crying or Very sad Sad (insert explative) PEOPLE Exclamation
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Sahara22588
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Joined: 29 Mar 2004
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: 2004.12.11(Sat)16:04    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some people just don't get it. You know, if someone is sitting there telling you "Oh, you shouldn't have done that" or "That'll kill all your fish" and "You can't get anymore fish because you already have too many" and they still buy a bunch of fish and ignore everything you told them, they don't deserve to have money to spend on pets in the first place. Maybe animal cruelty laws should be extended to cover all animals people keep as pets, not just the furred ones...

Byez! Very Happy
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SLACkra
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Joined: 06 Feb 2003
Location: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

PostPosted: 2004.12.11(Sat)23:08    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am just happy that the person at the lfs actually did the right thing. I remember the old lfs I used to go to I actually heard the owner who I was somewhat friends with(good customer basically) deny this teen from buying a fish(he was 11-15) because he had an inproper setup or something like that. I hope that that persons fish don't die Sad but if they do remind the lady at the lfs to say "I told you so" Very Happy . my 2 cents
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MarkLehr
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Joined: 09 Dec 2004
Location: Taylorsville, KY

PostPosted: 2004.12.29(Wed)20:38    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would carry this situation a step farther. I do not think the LFS employee did the right thing. She should have refused the sale, which she has the legal right to do. By allowing this woman to take the fish home, she is definately killing the fish and is risking the reputation of the store. Had she refused to sell this lady fish, the long term good effects of a store with this reputation would far outweigh the one-time sale. Customers would have an increased trust and respect for the owner and employee.

We all know what is going to happen next. The fish will die. The lady will tell 10 of her closest friends that the LFS sold her bad fish. Then the lady will come back to the store and throw a huge fit in front of other customers. The other customers will be uncomfortable and unlikely to stay long.

I recall shopping at a LFS in my area and witnessing the owner refusing to sell a single Tiger Barb to a customer who refused to keep it in a school. I was very impressed. The money I spent there was far more than the customer lost would have ever spent. I trust that owner wants to do the right thing for me and her animals.

I encourage everyone to be active in this situation! When you hear a customer making a bad decision come to the help of the LFS and speak up. We have a right to protect the good employees & LFS! There aren't many to go around...
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Sahara22588
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Joined: 29 Mar 2004
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: 2004.12.29(Wed)21:02    Post subject: Reply with quote

K, have you ever worked at an LFS? I do, and trust me, it's not that easy. You can't just say "Well, I'm not selling you that fish b/c you're going to kill it" unless you're the owner. That's why you were impressed by the owner telling people they couldn't have the fish. If I tried to tell a paying customer that they couldn't have a tiger barb unless they bought 5+, I'd be out of a job and someone who wouldn't give as much of an opinion about the fish would be hired in to simply help move fish out of the store. That's what people are owning shops for; to make cash. As much as I would love to be able to tell every stupid and senseless "gimme any fish" type person that walks in the door that they can't have the fish they want b/c they'll kill it, I can't b/c I don't own the store.

What kind of rep. is the store going to get if they don't give fish to people? Nobody will want to go there. Customer A will be refused fish, will tell 10 of their friends, who'll tell other people, and so on. A store that won't give people the merchandise is worse than a store that will give people what they want whether they can manage it or not. The least the store employees can do is tell the people it's gonna die or at least not be healthy, and work as hard as possible to convince them to make a different purchase or get the correct equipment to manage what they actually want. If their fish does die anyway, when they bring it back and have a fit, we can say "We told you that would happen", "We explained that to you", "We told you that you couldn't manage that fish", etc. The other customers present will hear that the customer was helped, and killed the fish anyway. If anything, that would make the customers in the store want to listen to the sound advice of the employees more than the other guy who's bringing the fish back.

A general "good employee" is one that can do their job in the best way possible. The job of an LFS employee is to help customers and to sell fish. Therefore, a good LFS employee is one who would help the customer as much as humanly possible, and then sell them the fish that they chose.

Byez! Mad
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Marcos Avila
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Joined: 05 Feb 2003
Location: Hiroshima (JP)

PostPosted: 2004.12.29(Wed)22:28    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hehehe...as much as I sympathize and agree with Mark's position on the idealistic level, I will admit that right now I believe that employee did the absolute best thing she could do and I would fully support her decision to sell the fish anyway. As the hobby stands right now, refusing such business would probably mean helping to drive a store that has GOOD employees out of business while helping stores with BAD employees get more business.

For now, I do consider that a good store employee's job is done after he/she has properly advised the customer on the correct way to do something. You can teach people but you can't learn for them...

Note that this is already extremely rare, most of the advice given at fish shops is absolutely horrible and oriented towards getting the fish to "last" just long enough that the owner won't complain and come back for more.
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MarkLehr
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Joined: 09 Dec 2004
Location: Taylorsville, KY

PostPosted: 2004.12.30(Thu)12:35    Post subject: Reply with quote

You hit the nail on the head Marcos. I absolutely approach this topic from an "ideal" perspective. There is no doubt this is a great LFS employee.

However, I still stand by my opinion on this one. Yes, I spent 5 years working at an LFS. And yes I have personally refused to sell fish to specific customers based on the fact that they would definately kill the fish. I had an owner who believed that if you do what is right, then the business will come in the door. This has been one of the most succesful LFS's in the city and still running strong after over 20 years.

My specific situation occured when a customer demanded to purchase a damsel for her freshwater aquarium. However, in any extreme situation such as this, I would have had no problem turning a customer away from the store. For example, maybe a customer demands to buy a 5'' Oscar for a goldfish bowl. I would have politely said "no." Every employee at the LFS has as much power as the owner of the store is willing to grant and support.

Sahara, it is great to see LFS employees spending time on sites such as this. I appologize to you for all the people out there who will discredit your opinion just becuase you work for an LFS. The LFS bashing is sometimes justified, but there are clearly a lot of good pet shops & a knowledgable employees. Keep fighting the fight! We need more active & educated LFS employees like yourself...
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