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The tag is currently applied to a broad set of questions, but I think some of them (especially different fish in aquariums) shouldn't be tagged with it.

Regards concerns about households containing multiple pets of the same or different species and their interactions.

While an aquarium technically is part of a household, I don't think this tag should be used when mixing different species in a constrained enclosure.
The tag itself carries a strong notion of pet-human interaction, due to the word families.
I still have a hard time describing why I think those aquarium question don't fit, but I

One idea would be to remove the "same species" aspect of the description, I think most of these questions should be tagged with the respective pets tag. Maybe the tag is not really useful at all, it doesn't add value to a lot of questions.

Some examples:

How can I prevent my dogs from scooting?
How can we make putting one of our two dogs to sleep easier on the remaining dog?
How do I prevent my cats from urinating everywhere?

Tags are only useful if they describe something specific. Currently it is possible to tag every question that involves more than one pet with it. I doubt we want or need such a tag.

  • I'm not a fan of it, but I've been applying it based on how it was defined. I have no attachment to the tag, but while I do think it is awkward, there appears to be some need for it where other tags might not apply. – JoshDM Dec 6 '13 at 5:20
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It doesn't seem like a very helpful tag to me. Other tags, including , , and ,1 seem adequate (depending on what the actual issue is with multiple pets). And, of course, the questions are tagged with the species involved. If I were trying to solve an issue between a cat and a dog, I'd look for "dog", "cat", "behavior", "socializing", etc -- it wouldn't occur to me to cast it as a multi-pet problem.2

1 I'm not sure those are exactly the tags we want in that space either, but that's a bigger question requiring more thought.

2 Sure, I'm just one user. We each are. :-) We don't have search data that will help with this, I'm pretty sure.

  • I like the concept of what you are trying to address, but you have introduced a few issues within one post, so -1 as I don't agree with all of it, but a verbal +1 to let you know I can see your points. Hope this makes sense (and I am trying to be nice, as I have atrocious people skills, so if this comes out the wrong way I apologise in advance!) cheers – user87 Dec 6 '13 at 3:57
  • The adequate tags (i-p, socializing, dominance) seem designed for particular situations where a pet is being introduced, socializing techniques are necessary, or dominance is apparent. I would consider killing mpf, and replacing much of it's current use with maybe a "pet-interaction" tag, and removing it from the rest. pet-interaction would be defined to exclude questions where socialization/dominance/pet-introduction are used. – JoshDM Dec 6 '13 at 5:23
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    @JoshDM, what are some questions where pet-interaction (as you've scoped it) would be appropriate? In general I'm leery of tags with usage guidelines like "this tag fits this question but don't use it because of some other tag" -- if a tag fits people are going to use it, and if a tag applies too broadly then it's not very useful and we should consider refactoring. – Monica Cellio Dec 6 '13 at 13:54
  • Any where two pets are not getting along and the owner of the question can't attribute it to dominance. Socializing is, IMHO, pets interacting with pets outside the normal group, and the pets are beyond the scope of "introduction" at this point. – JoshDM Dec 6 '13 at 14:31
  • I understand "socializing" more broadly (and including pet-human interactions), but I admit it's vague. (Many of our tags are; it happens in young beta sites. :-) ) – Monica Cellio Dec 6 '13 at 16:28
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Just addressing the point about aquariums: I've seen it used for questions about keeping multiple fish species in one tank, and I agree it's not clear or helpful there. These questions often deal with topics that I don't think someone with a question* is likely to be interested in, like finding common environmental conditions, pet-on-pet predation, etc.

Some examples:

These are all tagged ; there are plenty of similar questions that are not, like Besides water quality, what should I consider before adding more tropical fish?.

I'd recommend we use something like for these instead. The common term for a tank with multiple species is a community aquarium so that might make more sense as a tag, though it might be more prone to misuse on questions where the species mix isn't really relevant.

*For the record, I think the tag is too ambiguous in general. It's not clear to me whether it's describing pet+pet interactions or the human-family side of having pets or what.

  • If you can find a use for community-aquarium (let's call it what it is), identify some existing qualifying questions. Tags are intended to relate questions to each other, and I agree that the current questions tagged m-p-f do not seem to have any proper inter-connectivity other than the tag itself. – JoshDM Dec 6 '13 at 19:33
  • @JoshDM Right, updated with examples. I'd be happy with community-aquarium as long as nobody else has a strong objection. – toxotes Dec 6 '13 at 20:02
  • or community-aquariums (plural). Not sure what the right pluralization for a tag is; we have dogs, etc. – JoshDM Dec 6 '13 at 20:37
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    I'll go with community-aquarium singular -- seems we tend to use plural mainly for animals. – toxotes Dec 7 '13 at 13:58
  • Well, that solves the fish issue. Please edit the tag wiki. – JoshDM Dec 7 '13 at 16:55
  • I did -- the edit is still pending review. – toxotes Dec 7 '13 at 18:09
  • Blame the new header. When there were more important items than general reviews pending, we used to have a glowing dot up there. It's gone with the new header. – JoshDM Dec 7 '13 at 21:11

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