PetSmart / awful company
I went to this Petsmart location several months ago, and was horrified at the condition of some of the animals I witnessed. The hermit crabs there were non active, probably because of the filth and lack of food, clean water or a humidity gauge. The sponges inside the crab habitat were actually brown with mold, probably had never been changed. I had bought 2 pet hermit crabs from this store who died within 2 months, despite my attempts to rehabilitate them were not in very good health to start with.
Most crabs get a pretty rough life to start with - imagine being plucked off a nice beach somewhere that you lived on for a good 5-20 years, having your comfortable shell home broken off your back and shoved into an itchy painted shell, then shipped off to be neglected/abused in pet stores or mall kiosks and being sold to live in some cramped plastic Kritter Keeper box.
Being that I'm a really big animal lover of all kinds, whether furry or scaly, big or small; I always take a look at the little critters whenever I stop by a Petsmart, even if its just to run in for some dog food. What really ticked me off and caused me to write to the corporate office was a dead hamster inside one of the cages, curled up in a small metallic bowl. He appeared to be drowned, on his back with his little feet curled up. Now I saw this poor guy on the same day that I saw the terrible conditions inside the hermit crab tank. My husband and I immediately called over an employee, who didn't really seem shocked or phased by it at all. His reaction was most like a nonchalant 'oh, sorry about that' as he is scooping this little dead critter out of its cage. I did ask the employee what was in those bowls, if it was water and if he had possibly drowned. He told me they were just using the bowls to give the animals carrots and other treats.
As soon as I got home, I set out to write them a concerned letter. I received a pretty cookie-cutter response, albeit quickly, from their corporate office telling me they will inspect and make sure this store is treating its animals well and taking proper care of them. I do want to say most employees at the store are very nice people, it appears to be a very clean environment in the store and the vet/grooming department are excellent. I actually take my dog to both. My biggest concern is the welfare of these small animals being overlooked.
I went in again today to pick up some dog food and happened to go by the fish section to check out if they actually had improved the hermit crabs living conditions. It appeared to be in the same shape, they had not even bothered to put in the humidity gauges that they sell right there. Their own employees will tell you when you buy a hermit crab that you must have one for them!
I really do hope that they will do something about this, but it doesn't seem so likely since I have already wrote and received a generic response from corporate. I know there are some really nice employees working here, but whoever is in charge of caring for their small animals and hermit crabs needs to be reprimanded or replaced for the welfare of the animals. I do not even care about the money that it cost me for the pets that died, I am most concerned that these poor creatures are living in such poor conditions.
I just wanted to warn people not to buy pet hermit crabs from here because they will just die, if you are lucky it will still be under their warranty so you can come back and get another sick diseased crab, or you will be left with the heartache of losing a pet. I am pretty sure my crabs died from the bad conditions they came from at this store. I can say this pretty confidently, because I have been keeping pet hermit crabs for a 2 1/2 years now, I am very well educated in the subject or herpetology and keeping crabs. I also have 3 crabs that did not come from Petsmart still living happy lives.
I learned my lesson the hard way about this, so please heed my warnings. Please everyone interested in crabbing or buying a hermit as a pet for your child, check out the environment the crabs are in thoroughly. If the crabs aren't very active, the tank is dirty with feces or small bugs (mites), or there is no food/water/salt water and extra shells for the crabs, don't buy one! Thinking you can save these poor guys will only cause the store to order more, and sadly the crab will probably die in a month or two after you are attached to it. I tried so much to save my crabs life and I just couldn't do anything, he was doomed from the start.
I will never buy pet crabs from here again, and all that I did have from this location died. My hope is that in posting this I will save someone from buying a crab, or a crab for their kid that is going to die in a month and cause them heartbreak. Or even if a store manager at this location could see this report and actually do something about it. I am sending this into corporate once more and if I get the same response, I will call this store personally and try to talk to someone in management.
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