SAN TAN VALLEY, AZ - You've heard of cat rescues, dog rescues, even reptile rescues, but have you ever heard of a goldfish rescue?
A San Tan Valley man and his partner started the Golden Hearts Goldfish rescue out of their home a few months ago, and they've already rescued more than 250 goldfish and koi from homes all over Arizona.
Cody Bos co-founded the rescue and said his passion comes from his hobby of aquariums.
He learned there was a need out there to re-home both goldfish and koi.
Bos said the goldfish, unfortunately, have the bad reputation of being a cheap fish, something you can win as a prize at a carnival, but in reality, they are very smart fish.
"They have such a personality, and a lot of people don't think about that. They actually are very smart, very beautiful fish. You can even teach them tricks, which is really cool," Bos said.
Most of their rescues stemmed from people who felt the fish had become too large for them to care for. They had outgrown their fish tanks.
"A lot of people don't realize they can grow so big. You see them in the store, and they're tiny little guys, they can actually grow quite a bit," Bos said.
The rescue has taken in 250 fish so far, and re-homed 25 of them. They live in 14 large tanks in Bos's home, others in collapsible pools in his backyard.
Bos said he gave each fish a name to suit its personality.
"We have Jaws; we have Nessie, we have Sushi. Then there's Bobo. He actually has a tumor on the side of him. He's going to need a special home; he has special needs, so he's going to need extra special care," Bos said.
Like most rescues, Bos said they vetted those who were interested in adopting their fish very closely, as they wanted to make sure they went into good homes.
"We want to make sure the person re-homing the fish knows what to expect and is prepared for it, so we will ask a lot of questions," Bos said.
The fish they rescued also came from homes where people were draining out backyard ponds and wanted to get rid of koi, or those who had moved away, leaving the fish behind to die.
"Oh, it just breaks my heart. A fish is very, very reliant on someone to take care of them. They have to have someone to feed them, take care of the water, they just can't take care of themselves," Bos said.
If you would like information on the Golden Hearts Goldfish Rescue, you can head here.
You can also email the group at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Another koi rescue that is still active throughout Arizona can be found here.