Walmart and Their Fish Tanks


I have never been a fan of large retail chain stores that specialize in pet supplies and livestock. My frustration, anger, and disgust is mostly pointed at Petco, but a recent trip to Walmart has really redirected those feelings. I apologize in advance for the poor quality cell phone images.

Walmart Aquariums Freshwater Aquariums

Walmart Aquariums Freshwater Aquariums

In short, I was in Walmart purchasing some things and happened to walk by their aquarium setup. The scene was horrific. Not only was there fish food covering the bottom of every single aquarium in the system, but dead fish were scattered about. And I’m not just talking a freshly dead fish. These were the bony remains of dozens of fish. Some of these casualties were fresh, and there were various degrees of decay. Despite all of the rotting bodies, each of the tiny aquariums were packed full of fish. There were at least 20-30 fish per aquarium, and some tanks had aquatic frogs and crabs.

After my jaw-dropping experience, I then realized that Walmart fish tanks don’t ever go without illumination. Most Walmart stores are “Supercenters” and are open 24/7. I’ve been in various Walmart stores at various times, and every time I went in the aquarium lights were on. Of course this kind of lighting doesn’t even remotely resemble natural settings, so this is also an issue I have.

So, if you’re looking for another large retail chain to boycott, I suggest Walmart. As soon as I get done sharing my disgust with you, I will be emailing them, asking them to quite carrying livestock altogether.

If you would like to contact Walmart with your feedback, please visit this link:


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  • Josh Hammond

    i have also noticed this. I normaly get my fish at petsmart and small independantly owned fish shops in raleigh NC, but when my filter cartridge needed changed i went to the closest store that carried them, walmart. As i was browsing through the pet section i noticed oscars with ick, and finrot, unable to swim, dead fish, and exess food and waste, and of course I got off work at 2 am and went after, the lights were still on. I have since not purchased anything from walmarts pet section.

  • Jack Crow

    hi! i live in griifin GA and every day after school i walk to walmart and take care of their fish for them (cleaning the tank feeding and medicating in some cases. walmart is an empire and they will not shut down anything that makes them money. the best we can do is help the fish.

  • Sarah

    Hi Brandon,
    I'm actually writing an article about this for my journalism class right now. I as well think it's incredibly inhumane and screams animal cruelty on every level.

    I was wondering if I could have permission to quote you from parts of this blog for my article?


    • go right ahead. i have no issue with you quoting our article. and good luck with your paper. if you need any ideas, let us know.

  • Deb

    walmart is awful for that – ive made several complaints to them

  • Ikongod22

    I have seen this too.  My complaint was sent. Thank you for the reminder.

  • Blakemkelley

    I live in Edmond, Oklahoma and it’s sad to say the same problem is happening at both of our supercenters

  • Whats in a name?

    I guess non of you guys know what the Aquarium fish business is all about.. There is no way in hell that anyone who has a pet/fish store can keep all their tanks clean at all times.. Yes, there will be dead fish, and if you dont attend to them in 2-3 hrs, they can turn out to look like they are decayed but its actually other fish that have nibbled bits of the dead corpse.

    These fish are born on these conditions and only know these conditions.. They only get to live in luxury in our houses.. Nothing can be done to this industry so stop worrying and try preventing other things from happening within our own species

  • Peggy Ann Thomas

    Ive stopped all SF Bay Area WAlmarts from selling puffer fish