I used to really respect Hoffer's. Used to. It's very clear that the owner's have bitten off way more than he can chew, because the store and animal cages were completely filthy. Hoffer's has definitely been going down hill for the past few years, but I visited today and it was awful. The staff lacks customer service (though that's no news to anybody), and the animals are horribly cared for. It's borderline animal abuse. Sure, some of their store animals have nice roomy cages, but most suffer in small, overheated cages.The rats are overbred and stuffed into tiny cages where they are left with empty water bottles (the staff did nothing when I pointed it out) and are all laying on their backs gasping for air. There was actually a hamster that was on it's back, with an open, oozing abscess that took up most of it's stomach. The poor animal was still alive, and anybody with eyes could tell that it was suffering. I alerted an employee, and she responded "I can't do anything about it". I work at a chain pet store, and the second we see an animal showing any SIGNS of an illness/injury we rush them to the local vet. If a corporate chain store treats their animals better than you do, you should change the way you do things. I was also disappointed by their fish department. In the past, that had been Hoffer's pride and joy. I was sad to see it a complete unorganized mess, with highly undereducated staff members. It looked like all or most of their saltwater tanks had been empty, and their freshwater stock was lacking. The only redeeming quality of this visit was seeing their rescued tortoises having free roam of their outside garden area. Though all of their shells were pyramiding (a sign of poor health), I hoped that was because Hoffer's rescued them from a bad situation. Aside from that, I'm sad to say that Hoffer's is no longer considered a good place to purchase animals.