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"Finding Dory" makes an impact on pet stores

Posted at 6:38 PM, Jun 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-22 12:37:32-04

More than a decade after Disney Pixar's “Finding Nemo” made a splash on the silver screen, the sequel "Finding Dory" is making waves of its own.

“It brings awareness to conservation and nature,” David Goodrich, manager at Mystic Blue Aquarium told 7 Eyewitness News.  

Goodrich was in the business back in 2003 when a clownfish named Nemo swam into our hearts and sent curious movie goers, of all ages, streaming into pet stores.

“Everyone wanted a clown fish,” Goodrich says.

Researchers coined this uptick, an almost sudden fascination with clownfish, the "Nemo-effect." In this latest installment, the star of the show is a blue tang fish, a fish Goodrich says cannot be bred in captivity and requires more attention and care than its predecessor.

“People see a tank and want a Dory like it’s just as easy as throwing salt into an aquarium and keeping the fish when in fact it is a lot more serious.”

So serious in fact that Goodrich says when shoppers ask about the fish they do their best to insure the nearly foot long, coastal water native is going to a good home.

“It's something that if somebody wanted one we would almost interview them as far as their experience. We would definitely would not sell one to any beginning hobbyist.”

Similar concerns surfaced after other Disney blockbusters, including the 1996 remake of the animated classic 101 Dalmatians. Animal rights experts say that film spurred breeders and puppy mills to saturate the market in the months following its release.

And now, 20 years later, as a new generation of movie goers fall in love, it’s best to keep in mind that it takes a lot of work to create that story book ending.