5 Pet Fish Care Tips for Loving Pet Owners

Fish Care

Fish are the third most popular pet in the United States, largely because of the assumption that they’re low maintenance. In fact, some people see their aquariums as decorative furniture rather than full ecosystems. 

Do you find that your fish are sick, low-energy, or dying not long after joining your home aquarium? Many fish owners aren’t providing the right environment, food, or stimulation for their finned friends.

Read on for five pet fish care tips that will turn the tides and give your fish long, happy, healthy lives.

1. Get a Bigger Home Aquarium

Almost every new fish owner underestimates how much space a fish needs. You’ve probably encountered the concept that you need one gallon of water per inch of fish, but this isn’t a good rule of thumb.

Space requirements vary based on the species, so always do species-specific research. For example, a single goldfish needs 20 gallons of water to thrive! 

2. Focus On Compatibility 

If you’re setting up an aquarium with multiple fish, always research compatibility before making your selections. Mixing and matching based on superficial qualities like size and color will lead to trouble down the line.

There are many breeds of fish, including the popular betta and certain subspecies of Anthias, that don’t do well with multiple males of the same species. Some territorial fish, like certain subspecies of cichlids, may wipe out other fish regardless of species. 

3. Provide a Better Diet

Fish food is inexpensive in general, but that doesn’t mean you should go for the cheapest brand. Plan to purchase new food every six months, at which point open food starts to lose most of its nutritional value. 

Try to avoid fish food that contains artificial colors and flavors, opting instead for natural ingredients. Learn about the frozen or live options your fish would enjoy as a treat. 

4. Maintain Water Quality

Few things matter more to the health of your aquarium than water quality. How you approach water quality maintenance will depend on the types of fish and water you have (i.e., freshwater tanks vs. saltwater tanks).

Water quality maintenance should involve a combination of filters, additives, and manual cleaning. Always keep a separate tank on hand in case you need to quarantine any sick or new fish. 

5. Create an Authentic Environment

Tank compatibility also matters because your home aquarium should mimic the environment your fish would naturally enjoy. For freshwater fish, this can involve rocks, reeds, and a steady directional flow of water. For saltwater fish, this can involve reefs and anemone.

In addition, create nooks and crannies where your fish can hide. Having a little alone time can keep your fish feeling safe and happy!

Commit to Better Pet Fish Care

Many people don’t realize how much work goes into setting up an aquarium and taking care of fish. Use this guide to commit to better pet fish care and support the health and longevity of your home aquarium. Looking for more ways to become the best pet owner on the block? Take a look at our pet section for more tips and facts that will up your pet care game. 

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