Petco and Bearded Dragons
The PETCO corporation must reform its standards of care of bearded dragons. Petco is currently serving as a standard bearer of corporate irresponsibility. Many hobbyists worldwide care for bearded dragons. Petco has picked up on the rising trend of “beardie” ownership. Unfortunately, in their haste to profit from the sale of these wonderful pets, Petco has made a negligent and abusive farce of supplying, training, and otherwise readying its employees for their care. The online “beardie” enthusiast community is replete with tales of trips to Petco in which deplorable conditions for young dragons are described. They usually include but are not limited to: • Sand substrate for baby dragons, which is known to cause potentially fatal intestinal impaction (even the supposedly digestible calcium-based kind) • Inadequate temperatures, not exceeding 85 degrees in most cases, when young dragons require around 100 degree temperatures to properly digest food • Overcrowded enclosures • Clearly sick, lethargic, or injured dragons These issues are caused by a complete lack of expertise and correct information among many staff members. Far too many Petco employees have been reported as having woefully inadequate training and knowledge of bearded dragon care. Not only does this incompetence endanger the beardies under Petco’s roof, it follows the customers who purchase these animals home and further imperils these innocent creatures. Misinformation is a plague as deadly as any virus to exotic pets, and Petco seems to be a hotbed of it. It is in Petco's interest both professionally and morally to seek competent consultation and train Petco employees in the PROPER care of bearded dragons. Until this is done, Petco will continue to be recognized as proprietors of animal abuse and examples of irresponsibility.