I’ve recently uncovered a little bit of local drama involving a pet store and a few of it’s former employees. Local pet store, Super Pet World, had to issue a statement on their Facebook page claiming that false allegations had been made against the store by a former employee who was fired for one reason or another. The former employee, disgruntled by his or her employment status, has apparently founded a Facebook page where wild claims of animal freezing and other forms of poor treatment have been made.
Normally, I will stay as far away from these types of situations as possible, but I felt I had to step in this time. My involvement is due to a handful of reasons. For starters, I’ve come to know the owner of Super Pet World, and several of its current employees, on a personal basis. The store owner actually made the road trip with me to the DFW Nextwave event earlier this year and we really got to discuss a lot about the store and his personal stance on the hobby. The other main reason for my sharing of this story with the rest of the aquarium keeping world is the former employee has made ridiculous and potentially damaging claims, such as employees freezing kittens, and has escalated the situation to involve the local media. Some people who are total outsiders to the situation are even trying to get other organizations like PETA involved. Apparently, Fox news is interviewing both parties involved, and I will be there to offer my support to the store and its employees.
The main point that I want to get across by this post is that as an employee, former employee, customer, or uninformed outsider, your opinions affect other people and carry some weight. You may get mad at your local fish store and bash them all over the internet, but there’s nothing constructive about it, and legal action might be heading your way. Even though we have the freedom of speech, there’s still a personal responsibility that must be taken.
Prior to the store owner contacting the reporters at Fox, only the people making the wild claims were going to get interviewed. Fox would have run with the one-sided story and the local pet store would have had no defense. That situation could draw all sorts of negative attention, and even cause a severe decrease in business for the store. And given the current economic climate, it could force the store to go under. Fortunately though, the store owner got wind of the Fox interview and contacted the reporter to give his side of the story. I’m sure all of this won’t carry very far in the news media regardless of the outcome, but it’s still a situation that locals need to be aware of. It’s also something hobbyists should keep in mind the next time they decide to make up claims about a store because of a bad experience. There’s nothing wrong with getting mad and telling other people true facts about your experiences, just don’t exaggerate or lie about them.