Fresh back from vacation in the Okanagan, not sure if this is where this should go but seems like only forum it would be suitable for. I only visited a few of the box stores up there as I get sick of being jumped on as you come through the door and asked 100 questions to see what can be sold to you and having to be rude to get them to stop following you! Hopefully this helps people, I was getting rather frustrated continually finding stores not existing anymore and most don't have webpages.
The Purple Searhorse Pet Store, 5-590 Highway 33 West
Pet City, 5-3151 Lakeshore Rd
Animal House, 106-125 Highway 33 E
Total Pet, 3302 32 St
Pet Land, 5604 24th Street
AJ's Pets and Things, 3219 31 Ave
AJ's Pets and Things, 3300 Smith Drive Armstrong
Animal House, Unit#5 - 1050 10th Ave SW
Critters & Supplies, 271A Trans Can Hwy NE
Total Pet, 480 Tranquille Rd
I will say most if not all the stores in the Okanagan have prices that for the most part start at the highest prices we see down in Vancouver, of course I didn't make a list of prices or intentionally looked at them so I could be wrong. The few things I know I purchase or things that stood out, that is the tendency I noticed. We should consider ourselves very lucky with having stores in Vancouver such as we do like IPU, J&L Aquatics, King Ed Pet Centre, Aquarium West. Nothing in the Okanagan that I went to comes even close to these or others in Vancouver that I didn't just list.
Kelowna, by far had the best selection of stores from what I visit with The Purple Seahorse Pet Store being the highlight of all the shops. It seemed to me about half of the tanks they had were salt water with a wide variety of different fish in both salt and freshwater. My kids enjoyed looking at the Madarin Goby and Lion fish as well as having one of the birds every once and awhile say hello. Tanks appeared to be well cared for and was also the busiest of all the stores. Pet City, I believe it was the owner that was behind the counter when I was in the store. The tanks looked well taken care of, good lighting, strong and good looking stock. It was a smaller store and had a number of fresh water tanks and I believe a few salt. The store had a couple of medium/large pieces of driftwood/stumps which were rather interesting and if it was in Vancouver they'd have been bought already. Prices for driftwood seemed in line to what we are accustomed to and the guy at the store was telling me he could get pieces much larger then what he had as there were 2 sizes above what he had stocked! Animal House in Kelowna, walked in, walked around, seemed to be a number of staff working, never once even got a hello. Noticed a few dead fish in the tanks, the tanks did look clean and there was a girl doing some maintenance so I assume I walked in at the wrong time! This store was probably the smallest selection out of all in Kelowna.
Armstrong being a small town only has the one store with fish in it. AJ's pets and things. Lady working there that day shows she has pride in her job, had fun showing the kids different things, talking about her own fish and so on. Selection wasn't huge but was well maintained.
Vernon. I visited Total Pet back in May when I was up there for work. Employees seemed busy at the time talking about stuff that didn't seem important enough to listen to. I walked in looked around for a bit, stock at the time didn't seem to be very good, not many fish in some tanks, others seemed to be unhealthy. I managed to walk right out without a even a hi or bye even though I had to walk by 2 people at the counter both ways! On this trip to Vernon I visited both Petland and AJ's Pets and Things. Lets just say the car temperature reader was showing 38 that day, needless to say I almost told the guy in petland where to go as he continued to ask me questions to see what he could try and sell me when I kept saying "I'm just looking". They seemed to have a wide variety of fish, fresh and salt water, prices on some things seemed to be through the roof and kids stayed in the air conditioned car with mom so I didn't stay to long. Quick glance tanks were well maintained. AJ's pets and Things, I visited this one the day after the one in Armstrong, I wasn't expecting much but was pleasantly surprised. They had a large selection of both fresh and salt water and I was pleased to see things like "butterfly pleco" that I have never seen down in Vancouver. At least that is what it was called by the staff, trying to find the thing online it appears it may have actually have been a Hillstream Loach. Interesting looking though when there is 3-4 of them sucking on the glass close together. Only thing this store seemed to be missing was a selection of driftwood but it had just about every pet one could want in the store. It was the highlight of the Vernon trip, minus the heat!
Salmon Arm. Animal House, friendly staff, nice selection of medium to small driftwood at reasonable prices, was tempted to go back after lunch when wife wasn't looking and spend some money! Tanks seemed well taken care of, they had good prices on some new tank setups from the looks of it for "members". The biggest downside was to me the only good looking/interesting fish were obviously dyed and rest of the stock was just decent regular stock you'd see most places. Critters & Supplies, once again very hot day wife and kids stayed in the car. Tank room was stuffed with display stock and so on, made it tough to look at some of the tanks without almost getting down on hands and knees. Seemed to have a large selection of fresh water, I don't recall seeing any salt water but it was hot in the store and with the difficulty getting around the fish room I didn't stick around. They did have a nice big tank with a huge Pacu in it I believe though.
Kamloops. Total pet was a quick stop in after lunch on the drive home to Vancouver. Staff was really busy when we went in, after a quick look at the fish tanks the kids lost interest and started focusing on other things in the store. Prices seemed to be rather high on few things I noticed but I guess when it is the only store in probably 100km or more it is to be expected. Some tanks looked well maintained, others looked like they were neglected, few dead fish here and there, fish feeding on dead fish and so on, I assume it was just due to how busy they were at the time. I just noticed that apparently Animal House has a store located in Kamloops as well, not far from Total Pet. Missed it on this trip.
I'm sure I didn't get around to all the stores especially the big box stores but they are usually the same anyways. If anyone knows of any other stores in the Okanagan maybe they can post them here so in the future myself or others can stop in and see them. If there are any questions feel free to ask and I'll see if I can remember =)