Long time friends of ATM, Laconia Pet Center, is our latest Shark Chums spotlight! Like ATM, Laconia Pet Center is a family owned and operated business with a keen eye on the aquarium hobby.
The Laconia Pet Center Story
Located at 1343 Union Ave in Laconia, Laconia Pet Center has become a landmark in the Lakes region of central New Hampshire, the store has been in the Varnum family since 1974 and at the same location for all but 6 of those years. Bethany Varnum Stockman and her brother Brett Varnum are the second generation to own and operate Laconia Pet Center. “We are a full line pet store,” says Bethany, “and we carry a complete line of everything that is needed to take care of any kind of pet.” “Laconia Pet Center is especially known for the health and selection of livestock that we offer,” adds Brett. “We are especially proud of our fish room, where we carry a complete line of tropical fish, both fresh and salt water. We also have a large selection of birds and small animals. We do not carry dogs or cats, although we have everything that is needed for them in the way of foods, supplements and toys.”
In 1980 Ted purchased land and built a new store at the present location. “The store is 4,000 square feet,” says Brett, “and at the time Dad said he didn’t know how he would fill all that space. Now we wish we had twice as much room.” Bethany and Brett literally grew up with the store. “Both Brett and I worked in the store from the time we were eight years old,” says Bethany.” We started by cleaning fish tanks and the birds and small animals, and by the time we were in high school we were working Friday nights, weekends and vacations.” Brett adds that, “The pet business is 24/7 and constant work, but Bethany and I really love it, and we can’t imagine doing anything else.”
How have ATM products worked for Laconia Pet Center?
We love the ATM products! Colony is our best selling live bacteria supplement. Cycles tanks like no other. Agent Green is excellent and works just as the label says.
How has Laconia planned for the growth of the aquarium hobby in the “Tanked” era?
We’ve seen an increase in awareness of the aquarium hobby ever since Tanked started. It’s nice to see customers coming back into the hobby after being inspired by the show. Here at the store we have increased our number of “ready to go” fish tanks for sale. These tanks are fully setup and functioning with fish and plants (even a few salt water ones too) established in them, this way all the customer has to do is buy it and bring it home. This eliminates the chance that they may get discouraged during the normal “cycling” of a newly established tank. The tanks are completely balanced and ready to go.
Laconia Pet Center
1343 Union Avenue
Laconia, NH 03246