Animals from Pets at home.(27 Posts)
I was in there a week or so ago buying supplies and they had some truly gorgeous Rex rabbits for sale. Now to be clear I am not in the market for rabbits but they were stunning and I admired from a distance.
But it got me thinking, years ago I swore I would never buy an animal from them as I had read that their welfare standards were really not good...but that was years ago...I'm still dubious but am I being unfair? Reviews and opinions seem to be mixed.
Once again, I'm really not buying an animal so totally hypothetical...I will however not hear a word against their Wainwright's dog food range. Looks at gorgeous shiny sleeping Lab.
What does the Mumsnet (small pets) jury think?
Not sure about the bunnies but their fishes often look very sick and sometimes there's dead ones floating about.
Any fish I bought from there didn't live long.
My exh mate worked at one. . Wouldn't repeat what he claimed happened to bunnies that aren't sold while small and cute.
DD and I visited 2 petshops today (buying hay etc) neither of them P@H
Both had guinea-pigs and rabbits.
First one had fairly decent sized cages.
I have seen the cycle of new piggies move in, and the older ones bumped into another cage (one was the absolute double of my GP8)
I don't want to imagine what happens to the unsold. I'd guess the sows go back in for breeding though.
My sow is what I call a typical PetShop pig. Bred for looks mainly, very pretty tri-colour.
All our pigs are ex Rescue. I have no doubt some of them started life in a Petshop like P@H .
Part of me (tiny part) thinks if I bought one now I'd save it going through the chain of events that might take it via Rescue (though I know some will end up there, most will hopefully be loved family pets)
Same with Gumtree hobby breeders.
But all it does is fan the flames of "Well one litter of 4 pocketed me £80, I'll do that again" and it is fairly easy to spot the hobby breeders on Gumtree etc.
Some of my pigs have taken a while to settle, one of them (GP5) was a little toad right to her last breath (awww) Maybe if she hadn't been through her life experiences she'd have been different?
Most worrying i the discrepancy between stores. I've seen some good advice given and some frankly shit advice
I ended up with a bunny from them. She was ex-stock, no longer small and cute, so they'd put her up for adoption so she was free with a free spaying voucher... I needed a grown-up bunny as a companion for our other bunny so it was a total win! (She seemed to be perfectly happy and healthy, although I was a bit concerned that they just gave her to me without any checks). I don't think I'd buy a pet from them though.
I did buy a bun from a pet shop once, wasn't deliberate, went in to shelter from the rain and we kind of fell in love.
She was sick too though. Had a brain parasite which we were able to get treated (my vets are the dog's bollocks) and some abscesses. Not the healthiest bunny,
but OMFG, I loved her.
Oh dear. Not good so far. I suspected as much.
I was very taken with the Rex rabbits I must say. However I'm not one to buy just because they are cute...I'm more likely to take the old, grizzled, rejected one. I have form.
My DH likes to visit the rescue hutches in our local Pets at Home...I could have a bunny a week if I wanted!
I tell my DD that the cute petshop animals will morph overnight into stroppy, entitled spoiled lardarses like our guineas.
"But we only have the RSPCA 5 Minimal Guidelines" they protest.
What like a Pighouse, several veg a day, company, freedom to hurtle through clean hay, secure grazing and devoted pigmums.
And a Guinea-Pig Vet that they go to if needed.
I fell in love with a Himalayan rabbit last year. I resisted because my Himalayan guinea-pig (and her pigfriends) would cast judgey eyes at me.
I had 2 dwarf hamsters from pets at home. I wouldn't buy again. They are bred for profit and their health isn't considered. My 2 were very poorly.
I've been to some of the workshops that Pets at Home run for kids at weekend's and school holidays. The staff at our local store are absolutely great and definite animal lovers. I would be confident the animals in our local store are well cared for.
I do know that baby bunnies that aren't sold and are no longer cute and small move to their adoption section so get a home through that route. We adopted 2 rabbits from their rescue section that had been bought into the shop and abandoned as unwanted. They were very nervous at first but became lovely pets with a bit of TLC. Their rescue pets section helps a lot of animals and would be where I get any future pet from.
No rabbits from them then. Oh my goodness, the idea that when they are no longer small and cute they go for adoption. We have a local animal shelter and there are animals there with awful backgrounds and stories.
I had hoped for better.
I just had a conversation with my DH about the ill rabbit thread on here. My rabbit is a rescue. He is an only due to exceptional circumstances...pampered, loved, 7 years old this year and a complete diva! He would hate a companion now to share all the attention with! He is sulking right now because I need to replace his ball with a bell inside..bad mummy leaving him a whole day! Every now and then I think..."but this bunny looks so lovely..."
I'll stick with the rabbit rescue.
Avoid, avoid, avoid.
They come from rodent mills (the rodent equivalent of puppy farms) where they are bred in large numbers with no attention paid to taming or breeding for temperament / health. Each female will have litters almost continuously and will be kept in tiny cages that they never leave. Any disease will spread like wildfire.
No responsible breeder sells to P@H. This is because any responsible breeder will want to know where their animals are going and to check the owners out themselves first and ensure they're going to good homes. P@H, on the other hand, sells to anyone with a debit card, including those impulse purchasing with no prior knowledge of the species.
Unfortunately, I've had to buy two lots of guinea pigs from them. The first lot weren't a necessity as such, and to be honest I didn't realise they were coming from P@H as a friend picked them up for me. All died within two years; one was very poorly at a few months old and, although he lived the longest, he had special needs all his life.
My recent pair were more of a need: one of my old pair (who I'd got from a breeder) had died and my other girl was obviously lonely. I checked with her breeder (had stopped breeding) and the local (100 miles away) rescue, but to no avail. I even joined a few FB groups and the like but there were no sows within a few hundred miles, so P@H is was. They are ok, so far, but who knows? If I'd had the choice I wouldn't have got them from there.
I think it very much depends on the branch and the supplier. Some adore animals and treat them better than they treat people. Others don't care.
Stay well clear, we got a bunny from there our DD 1st pet the poor thing had to be put to sleep approx a week later. Vet said it was likely poorly when sold. I complained at the store they gave me a full refund of the cost of the rabbit and the vet bill.
I think it will depend a lot on the store, and they seem to have improved (slightly) since I was little, but I've never been impressed with our local store.
We went in for some emergency hay a few months ago (we try to avoid supporting them at all, if possible), and spotted a baby bunny who was really obviously in pain from his body language (hunched, breathing too quickly). We told a staff member, who went to pick him up, and the poor little thing was absolutely covered in his own mess and seemed to have a broken leg. I dread to think how long he'd been like that without anyone noticing. I really, really hope he got the treatment he needed.
My 18 month old pig is not well I noticed this afternoon that he couldn't walk properly - his back legs were sort of dragging a bit. He was also lying down outside of his Pigloo which he never normal does.
I rang the vet straight away and although they were fully booked they let me go and wait for a gap so I was seen quite quickly in the end.
The vet gave him an anti inflammatory and pain relief injection but said to give it a couple of days and see how he gets on. Examined him but said that he couldn't find anything obviously wrong. Said to give it a couple of days and then we could talk again if he still isn't better.
Brought him home and he is just sleeping although he has done lots of normal poos and has eaten some hay and also eaten some veg which I have just given him. He didn't wheek though when I opened the fridge
I read online about trying Osteocare liquid so will get some tomorrow.
He is in the kitchen where he lives in his cage and I've popped the heating on so he is nice and warm. I adore him, I'm so sad to see him just sleeping. Any advice gratefully received..
Oh no I've put my message here by mistake. I'll try and get it made into a thread of its own.
I can't resist checking out the rats in PaH every time but it makes me so sad to see the tiny tank they keep them in, rather than a nice big space that rats need. It does put me off buying from them, and I've also seen as many as 7 rats in a tiny tank. But part of me wants to take them all away .
We did buy our previous rats from a (different) pet shop and one was ill for nearly all of her life, but she outlived the healthier one by 6 months, who died just before she was 2 which is at the lower end of life expectancy. Next time I think I'd go down the breeder route.
My 3 year old bunny was from pets at home and she is perfectly healthy. Maybe it depends on store etc.
I have had all my guinea pigs from Pets at Home, which I know is not great. I totally would get some from a rescue, but there aren't any rescues near where I live. I've been lucky in that all our guinea pigs have been fine, and at least I can live in the knowledge that I give them a good life while they are with us. That's a question actually; if you want to avoid using these shops, but there aren't any rescues nearby and you want to avoid sites like Gumtree, do you just have to accept you can't get small animals? Would rescues only sell to people who live locally because of distance/travel issues or would it not matter?
I got a let rat from them when one of mine died. I usually get them from a breeder but couldn't find anywhere but p&h with the sex I needed. The rat wasn't friendly and scared of everything. The staff were obviously scared of them and just kept shoving the box in its direction until it finally got in. It wasn't a well animal and didn't live long at all and didn't seem to know how to interact with my other one. Maybe I was unlucky but wouldn't go there again for a pet
I won't touch hamsters from Pets at Home, no matter how cute they look as you are just encouraging the massive pet/rodent mills. Essex Breeders is one of their big suppliers and these people are all about volume. They don't care about welfare or health or good breeding.
No reputable breeder will supply somewhere like Pets at Home.
I also find the Pets at Home staff can be shockingly ignorant about the animals they sell. I made a formal complaint to one store after I overheard some very bad advice being given to a prospective buyer of a Chinese hamster. I was just fobbed off by the manager despite the advice being so bad that it would probably have resulted in the death of the hamsters being discussed.
Their inhouse vets aren't much better, in my experience. Over priced and no experience with exotics (which dwarf hamsters fall into) but very happy to take your money!!
Nope. I'm a rat owner and have never heard p@h or the other major one (can't remember its name now) give decent advice regarding rats. I couldn't stop myself once when one pet shop worker was advising the customer to buy hamster toys (tunnels and ball were mentioned!) for their new pet rats. I almost took one once as this poor boy had been left for weeks alone, I asked to hold it and it was terrified, poor thing nipped me when I gave it my hand for a sniff, the shop assistant shrugged and said that's why he hadn't gone 🙁 we weren't in a position to take on one who needed a significant amount of time at that point but I felt awful for him. Somebody else in my local rat community got him a few weeks later thankfully.
I think it very much depends on the store but on the whole they're a bit like animal wholesalers.
Having said that, I was recently to go into another Local pet shop which I had previously thought to be lovely (have never bought an animal from there though) which had a cat carrier sized cage on a table with a rabbit in it and a sign which read "receive a rabbit free if you buy a suitably sized cage." I thought that kind of practice had gone decades ago but it would seem not.
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