Updated: Apr 24, 2021
At the forefront of the United States pet industry are a handful of companies that bring in billions of dollars each year. While these retailers compete for profit and influence, they also bear the responsibility of promoting appropriate and humane pet care practices -- a balancing act where profit will often hold more weight than pet wellbeing.
The Betta fish caresheets from these top retailers give very different guidance on what the minimum aquarium size for a Betta should be. The number two US pet retailer, Petco, recommends a minimum tank size of 0.25 gallons, while the number one retailer, PetSmart, suggests 3 gallons minimum. Which approach puts the Bettas first?
The people who read caresheets are looking to give their Bettas quality lives, and they trust the guidance from these leaders. It is unfortunate that some companies are using their caresheets as a way to mislead consumers and maximize financial opportunities.
The literature from industry leaders has an impact on the bigger picture of fishkeeping and our cultural understanding of Betta fish and their needs. If any of the top retailers updated their minimum tank size recommendation (ideally to 5 gallons) it would build momentum which we can use to demonstrate a movement away from pervasive Betta-care misconceptions.
Please consider signing this petition for Petco to update their minimum tank size recommendation: https://www.change.org/Petco-Betta-Min