View Single Post
Old 01-19-03, 09:02 PM   #3 (permalink)
rattekonigin
Member
 
Join Date: Apr-2002
Posts: 412
Great topic, Fred!
One hypothesis I have regarding this particular subject is that people purchasing animals from these breeders/dealers hear a couple of good things about them and automatically assume they do good business and practice good husbandry without ever really looking into it further...I mean, how many people, when they decide to purchase a reptile, actually ask to see the breeder/dealer's facility? I know this isn't always possible, like when acquiring animals from across the country...but it's always good practice to know if the animals you're buying were kept well...
When people buy dogs from reputable breeder, they are encouraged to visit the breeder's home and see the conditions in which the animals are kept...and this practice isn't limited to dogs, even fancy rat breeders suggest that one should always inspect the husbandry practices of the breeder before you buy the animal...
I have yet to hear this sort of advice offered in herpetocultural circles...Most people never see the facilities in which their animals are born and raised, they either purchase the animal at an expo, or have it shipped, or arrange to meet the breeder at a different location...So, when they get this animal, and it thrives in their care, they assume that the breeder/dealer was keeping it well...but just because the animal thrives under someone else's care and doesn't show any signs of disease or mistreatment doesn't mean that it wasn't kept in a feces ridden cage with dirty water...as we all know, reptiles take longer to develop "symptoms of bad husbandry" than their mammalian cousins....
The people who get a "raw deal" and end up with a diseased animal from such a breeder (which may very well be an infrequent occurence despite deplorable conditions) don't always tell many others about their bad experience with that breeder...
Sometimes, when they do try to offer their opinion, they are quickly and efficiently shot down (and verbally attacked) by that breeder's many staunch supporters, many of whom haven't necessarily had business dealings with the breeder themselves, but are backing this breeder because they happen to be aquaintances or partners, or have heard the glowing reviews and refuse to believe there might be a less than perfect facet to their practices (Here's where the politics come in!)...
I have seen this first hand on a number of occasions in public reptile forums (even this one)...
So, that's my 2 cents...
rattekonigin is offline