Rite Aid Drops Cruel ‘Teddy Tanks’ at PETA’s Request

Betta Fish Prisons Will No Longer Be Sold by Retailer

For Immediate Release:
March 16, 2015

Shakira Croce 202-483-7382

Camp Hill, Pa. – A request from PETA, whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way,” has sparked a welcome change by drugstore giant Rite Aid, which has agreed not to sell Teddy Tanks—stuffed animals with tiny barren tanks in their stomachs, meant to hold betta fish. The decision follows on the heels of similar moves by other retailers—including Target, Eckerd, Walgreens, and Albertsons—that, for humane reasons, no longer sell imprisoned fish and frogs.

“Rite Aid’s kind decision to drop this appalling product demonstrates that compassion and good business go hand in hand,” says PETA President Ingrid E. Newkirk. “A cramped, unlivable bowl is no place for sensitive, curious fish, and PETA is calling on other businesses to follow Rite Aid’s lead.”

It’s only in recent years that studies have shown that fish are social, sensitive animals with unique personalities and that they feel pain, just as dogs, cats, and humans do. Researchers have discovered that fish can recognize individuals, use tools, and maintain complex social relationships. Fish communicate with one another through a range of low-frequency sounds and grieve when family members and companions die. Betta fish are native to Asia, where they live in the warm, shallow water of rice paddies, ponds, or slow-moving streams. When relegated to cramped, barren bowls, they are deprived of all that’s natural and important to them and suffer from stress.

For more information, please visit PETA.org.

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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