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Siamese fighting fish competition adds a punch to Hong Kong Pet Show

The “Hong Kong Pet Show 2024" returns on Jan. 25 with Hong Kong’s first-ever “IBC International Betta Show 2024” organized by the International Betta Congress, a worldwide union of Betta-lovers and breeders. 

Over 600 Siamese rumble fish from different countries are displayed at this year’s Hong Kong Pet Show for the global competition. The event is supposed to raise awareness on the conservation of fighting fish, otherwise known as rumble fish or betta.

A member of staff prepares Siamese fighting fish all over the world for the Hong Kong Rumble Fish Competition
Teasing the fighting fish with wooden sticks to encourage confrontation is one way to get scores at the tournament.

Eddy, one of the staff members in charge of the “IBC International Betta Show 2024”, said that Betta competition in the world has changed.

“Nowadays Betta competition is no longer the same as before. We are now focusing more on their appearance,” he said. 

A trophy for the first “IBC International Betta Show 2024” in Hong Kong.

Before the start of the competition, all fish are separated into different groups based on their fins, breed, and colour. Then, a demerit point system is used to grade their score. It is expected to have 600-700 competitors before the registration deadline.

“We hope that through this competition people could be aware of the increase of Betta breeds now and more people will know about them,” he said.
Hong Kong Pet Show 2024 is bigger than in previous years, with more than 650 booths and offering all kinds of products, pet food, and pet insurance.

But Gary Chiu Wai-lam, the Management Director of one of the exhibitors, Kangaroo Pet Nutrition, thought there were 10 percent fewer visitors to this year’s pet show on day one compared with last year.

“Since we are agents for other pet shops, joining the pet show gives us a channel to tell our customers what our products are about and the advantages of different products.”

Daisy Pun, the director of 1363 Natural Pet Home, is an exhibitor who hasn’t joined the pet show before.

“Big exhibitions can help us attract new customers to our shop and allow us to promote information about healthy pet snacks to more people,” said Pun.

A visitor, Chiara Wong, came to the exhibition with her dog and spent around $2000.

“The prices are more friendly and have discounts here. I also get to know more small brands,” Wong said.

The pet dog of Chiara Wong, one of the visitors.

“The venue was bigger and there were more things to shop for last year. Lots of brands that set up stores last year are not here this year,” she said.

Apart from pet food, pet medical-related merchants also participate in the exhibition.

OneDegree is a pet insurance company and has participated in the Hong Kong Pet Show since 2021.

"The biggest change we've seen in recent years is more people are asking us about pet insurance," OneDegree deputy chief executive Emily Chow Mei-wa said.

"Technology is advancing, and people nowadays pay more attention to pet health, so people are spending more money on pets' medical treatment," Chow added. 

Entry to the exhibition is free for senior citizens, people with disabilities, and children under one metre tall.

The exhibition will run from January 25 to January 28 and the price of a ticket is HK$30. 

《The Young Reporter》

The Young Reporter (TYR) started as a newspaper in 1969. Today, it is published across multiple media platforms and updated constantly to bring the latest news and analyses to its readers.


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