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Petland of South Point can help begin the fish hobby

SOUTH POINT — If you’re fishing for a way to add an ocean view to your home or office that will excite guests and patrons alike, then look no further than a simple aquarium.

“Some creative aquascaping can turn a standard 55-gallon aquarium into an

attractive centerpiece,” said Dwight Burk, Operator at Petland of South Point.

Petland offers a number of choices to those in search of a decorative aquarium.

Glass aquariums with black, oak, or walnut trim come in a variety of shapes — bow, corner, hexagon and rectangular — as well as sizes — 10-gallon up to 180-gallon.

Larger tanks are made available at Petland through special orders.

Larger is better

“The larger the aquarium the bigger impact it has on its viewers. Larger tanks also are easier to care for,” Burk said, adding that today 55-gallon and 75-gallon aquariums are commonly placed in homes and businesses.

Most aquariums require stands that can support the weight of the water they hold.

As a general rule, one gallon of water weighs 8 pounds, therefore a sturdy floor or foundation is needed to support the aquarium.

New hobbyists should always discuss aquarium set-up plans with a Petland pet counselor before taking an aquarium home.

Like the tanks that sit on them, aquarium stands are decorative, too, and styled to meet many tastes.

Stands come in contemporary black, and oak- and walnut- wood grain finishes.

Stands made to complement the aquariums are available, too.

Underwater secrets

While aesthetic appeal may be an aquarium purchaser’s first and only attraction, customers often are pleasantly surprised when they find what else they have added to their homes and offices.

“With an aquarium, you receive an interesting life-long hobby,” said Burk, explaining, “The fish, whether they are fresh or salt water, never cease to amaze and reveal to us many underwater secrets. It is like having a view to the underwater world.”

An aquarium in the home can be a family project, one in which children can learn responsibility and an appreciation for pets while caring for their aquatic friends.

In an office environment, an aquarium can soothe those who spend time watching.

“Studies have shown that watching an aquarium full of fish swim to and fro can lower a person’s blood pressure,” Burk said, referring to research done by the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine. “Many doctors’ offices have aquariums in their waiting rooms for just this reason.”

Therapeutic value

The mere act of decorating an aquarium is therapeutic to some. Aquascaping, as fish hobbyists call it, involves selecting plants, rocks, and decorations to create natural-looking niches for aquarium fish.

Hobbyists need to select pet-safe decorations at Petland as some natural rocks, for instance, emit minerals that can be toxic to aquarium fish. Seashells from the ocean should never be added to a home aquarium.

“A natural aquatic niche is made up of small nooks, crannies, holes, caves, rocks, driftwood roots and plants,” said Burk.

“Aquariums are fun to decorate, and it is very important that the tank be well-aquascaped in order to provide a proper environment for the fish.”

Petland notes that an undecorated tank can be very stressful to aquarium fish as they compete for food, space and hiding places.

“At Petland we recommend decorating home and office tanks heavily, providing plenty of niches for the fish,” said Burk.

Petland, Inc. is a franchise operation with more than 200 quality, full service, retail pet centers across the United States, Canada, Mexico, Chile, Japan and South Africa.

For more information on Petland, visit www.petland.com.