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Breeder Vs Pet store

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Re: Breeder Vs Pet store

Postby entrancedbymyGCC » Wed Feb 02, 2011 7:57 pm

Well, my local store sells those things, but they don't push them. Big chains are a lot more all alike than small stores, but they still are IMO strongly influenced by the management and staff they actually have.

I don't worry too much about taking disease home from the birds that are there. 1) they actually consistently appear healthy, I've never seen a bird that appeared ill there 2) Scooter came from a year there very healthy 3) the cages are completely enclosed behind glass walls and you can only make contact with the birds if you get staff to unlock the door that allows access to the back of the cages. I also always wash my hands before I handle my own birds when I've been out anyway.

In addition I don't buy things there that can't be washed unless they are in sealed containers -- I actually worry less about the birds in the store than I do about the people who may have been handling the bird toys. The bird specialty stores I shop at, I'm really just as careful. They typically have birds out and about, plus the people handling the stuff not only have birds at home for sure, but they often bring them to the store with them. I think the potential for contamination there is actually higher, even though they are "better" stores.
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Re: Breeder Vs Pet store

Postby lotus15 » Wed Feb 02, 2011 8:09 pm

Wow, that definitely doesn't sound like the local petcos/smarts around here. In any case this is more my paranoia than anything else. I don't buy things from even really awesome bird stores near me if they have birds. I think more people probably agree with you.
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Re: Breeder Vs Pet store

Postby greymatter » Thu Feb 03, 2011 3:58 pm

I used to work for a large pet store (right out of college), and it was an good experience.

Our birds were fed a pellet based diet, we spent about $100/week on fresh fruit/veggies/pasta/protein foods/beans/etc. for their daily bowl of fresh foods, and their cages were scrubbed down daily, papers changed 2-3 times for caged birds, 6 times a day for the babies in pens. Our bird purchaser rocked, and we had a close relationship with two awesome avian vets in case we had any issues (i.e. bacterial infection, clumsy birds, etc.), and we went to the Parrot Symposium every year.

We were anal about selling our babies (i.e. Joe Schmo comes off the street, no prior pet experience, no research wanting "That Red bird, and he has to talk!" - Joe Schmo would be given a reality check, and required books reading list...Joe Schmo rarely returned), and had 2-3 people to play with the birds throughout the day. And toys...did they ever have toys!

I also butted heads with the District manager who was all about the numbers, not the actual feelings of the birds, and our awesome bird purchaser always had our backs.

I finally left when I was exhausted working 3 jobs to keep myself just below the poverty level. It was the toughest decision I ever had to make at that time, and I heard over time that our purchaser left...which made me sad, as that meant the birds best interest may no longer be at the top of the priority list.

Now if we see birds in pet stores, there's only one local one which actually feeds its parrot a decent diet - the remainder feed them garbage, and expect a rope on a Pear Link to be a "fun" toy.

I bought Merlin from a local breeder, Rosco from my breeder friend, and Stryder was my last baby from my white faced cockatiel pair before I rehomed them to a breeder (they made adorable babies, but Clark Kent Day job meant I could no longer hand feed).

Our pet store birds rocked, but the prices were double what they were purchased for. Double.

I have seen some birds for a small percentage higher priced than they would be at a breeder's - if they were well taken care of & loved, then they would be a logical choice.
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Re: Breeder Vs Pet store

Postby Natacha » Sun Feb 06, 2011 7:29 pm

greymatter wrote:I used to work for a large pet store (right out of college), and it was an good experience.

Our birds were fed a pellet based diet, we spent about $100/week on fresh fruit/veggies/pasta/protein foods/beans/etc. for their daily bowl of fresh foods, and their cages were scrubbed down daily, papers changed 2-3 times for caged birds, 6 times a day for the babies in pens. Our bird purchaser rocked, and we had a close relationship with two awesome avian vets in case we had any issues (i.e. bacterial infection, clumsy birds, etc.), and we went to the Parrot Symposium every year.

We were anal about selling our babies (i.e. Joe Schmo comes off the street, no prior pet experience, no research wanting "That Red bird, and he has to talk!" - Joe Schmo would be given a reality check, and required books reading list...Joe Schmo rarely returned), and had 2-3 people to play with the birds throughout the day. And toys...did they ever have toys!

I also butted heads with the District manager who was all about the numbers, not the actual feelings of the birds, and our awesome bird purchaser always had our backs.

I finally left when I was exhausted working 3 jobs to keep myself just below the poverty level. It was the toughest decision I ever had to make at that time, and I heard over time that our purchaser left...which made me sad, as that meant the birds best interest may no longer be at the top of the priority list.

Now if we see birds in pet stores, there's only one local one which actually feeds its parrot a decent diet - the remainder feed them garbage, and expect a rope on a Pear Link to be a "fun" toy.

I bought Merlin from a local breeder, Rosco from my breeder friend, and Stryder was my last baby from my white faced cockatiel pair before I rehomed them to a breeder (they made adorable babies, but Clark Kent Day job meant I could no longer hand feed).

Our pet store birds rocked, but the prices were double what they were purchased for. Double.

I have seen some birds for a small percentage higher priced than they would be at a breeder's - if they were well taken care of & loved, then they would be a logical choice.



And sadly, if I'm not mistaken, you worked for the pet store chain that no longer exists, having been bought by a larger corporation..

I used to love that pet store. Wouldn't have bought a bird there myself, seeing the mark-up and that the species I was interested in were bought by a (then) local breeder, which I could have gone straight to myself...
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Re: Breeder Vs Pet store

Postby captwest » Sat Feb 19, 2011 12:13 pm

Well, guess i'll go out on a limb and offer my opinion,I'm a breeder, small time so i don't have push my birds out the door and have time to really spend the time with my babies and sell a bird like i would want to buy.Word of mouth sells most of my birds and being there for my customers, after the sale is very important. Another aspect is that mom/pop breeders are very attached to their babies and only want their babies to go to a good, well informed owner who knows what is involved in owning that particular bird.There are many other reasons for buying from a local ,small breeder such as being able to visit and see the condition of their operation and asking for local references and vets ,etc. Now all that being said i sell unweaned birds to a local bird store who also breeds, but prefers to hand feed their birds and learn their personalites and such, to help match bird to owner.I also sell a few weaned zons to other local pet stores but only on consignment, the birds are on perches out in the open and are exposed to many people which realy helps socialize young zons at an early age ,these "pet store" birds tend to make great pets with very few behavioral issues such as biting and onepersoness. These birds also seem to pick their owners because they usually take to someone or not.Of course being on consignment i can rotate birds or take them back if they do have behavioral issues. With all of these stores that sell my birds i supply my card and email ,and encourge new owners to contact me. I would suggest that when buying a bird it's worth a lot to know the breeder and to speak with them, even if your buying the bird from someone who they are supplying.Of course there are a few bad apples in every barrel and a little research can help you make better decisions. Any breeder who dosen't have time to talk to you dosen't have time to take care of their birds or just dosen't care.
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Re: Breeder Vs Pet store

Postby TheNzJessie » Sun Feb 20, 2011 1:32 am

i have been put off pet stores since i was turned down from a job at one because i had had experience with animals before and they want someone they can train (apparently) i think it was more that they dont give the animals what they want and they want a daft dimbo who doesn't have a clue whats going on


i would go breeder all the way over chain pet store
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Re: Breeder Vs Pet store

Postby GlassOnion » Sun Feb 20, 2011 2:01 am

TheNzJessie wrote:i have been put off pet stores since i was turned down from a job at one because i had had experience with animals before and they want someone they can train (apparently) i think it was more that they dont give the animals what they want and they want a daft dimbo who doesn't have a clue whats going on


i would go breeder all the way over chain pet store


That makes me angry very much.
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Re: Breeder Vs Pet store

Postby patdbunny » Mon Feb 21, 2011 11:34 am

captwest wrote:small breeder such as being able to visit and see the condition of their operation


I have to give an opposing viewpoint here. I'm not currently MAP certified, but I'm moving in that direction and would like to be. Part of that entails being a "closed" facility. Biosecurity - One factor is no strangers visiting my property, especially if they own birds.

Also theft is a very real concern. I myself have had my african grey stolen out of my yard. I know of other larger aviculturists in San Diego county that have had thefts of some very valuable birds.

People visiting is also very disruptive to the breeders. I've recently had to move a few pairs to another part of my property because my own family's traffic patterns I think were too disruptive.

I'm not a petshop or a commercial facility that's open to the public. I don't allow people to come and just visit to see my animals. People who come over to get a bird from me stay in the living room only which is where I have my available birds. I know a lot of reputable breeders that won't allow people to just visit and see the birds and facilities for security and biosecurity reasons. So don't eliminate a breeder simply because they won't let you come over and tour their set up.

Everything else I agree w/ Captwest - references of prior purchasers, vet references, a breeder who's willing to spend time and speak with you, etc. I met some lady a few weeks ago and spent an hour talking birds with her and she's not even buying anything from me. All of my buyers don't have to think twice about emailing me or calling me with their questions.

My biggie is don't buy from a pet store or breeder that's trying to sell you a fearful or aggressive biting bird and tells you either A) It just needs to get to know you or B) It's a baby and just needs to be socialized. Whoever's trying to sell the bird should have been working with it to make it nice and pet quality.
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Re: Breeder Vs Pet store

Postby captwest » Mon Feb 21, 2011 10:07 pm

Yes your right , i don't have my breeders out for the public display, the babies are on the dining room table and people don't "tour " the property , hell i try to stay out of their sight.
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Re: Breeder Vs Pet store

Postby patdbunny » Tue Feb 22, 2011 2:09 pm

Didn't mean to be contrary or antagonistic, Captwest. Just wanted people to understand that it's not like going to a puppy breeder where you try to see the parents.

Especially with the latest report of END in Tijuana, I'm being extra careful right now. In 2002/2003 several counties in So.Cal. went on lockdown.

Are you in Florida? Doesn't Florida have a few cases of END right now?
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