‘Bettas’ to ‘Die’ at Petco in Protest of Fish Sales

Demonstration Follows PETA Exposé Revealing Filth, Suffering, and Death at Petco Stores Across the Country

For Immediate Release:
August 14, 2019

Brooke Rosis 202-483-7382

Phoenix – PETA supporters wearing betta fish costumes will descend on a Petco store and “drop dead” on Thursday to mark #DontBuyBettaFish Day—a day of action for fish who are sold as “starter pets” to shoppers who aren’t prepared to meet their unique needs. The protest follows a recent PETA video exposé revealing that listless, sick, and dead bettas were found floating in cramped, barren plastic containers with low water levels at Petco stores across the country.

When:    Thursday, August 15, 12 noon

Where:    Petco, 2501 W. Happy Valley Rd. (near N. Black Canyon Highway), Phoenix

“It’s shameful that betta fish are suffering and dying right on Petco’s shelves,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “On ‘Don’t Buy Betta Fish’ Day, PETA is calling on Petco to stop profiting from the misery of these vulnerable little animals.”

In nature, bettas live in the shallow water of rice paddies, ponds, or slow-moving streams. But most betta fish sold in the U.S. come from breeding farms in Southeast Asia, and they’re often starved for days during transport to stores—and many die in transit. Scores of Petco customers have reported finding dead, sick, and injured bettas floating in filthy water on the store’s shelves.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind