How to Care for Your Goldfish

Home & Family, Pets
on May 5, 2014
Caring For Goldfish

Just because you can’t pet it doesn’t mean it’s not a pet. These tips from The Aquarium Guys will help your goldfish be happy and healthy.

Tank size. Goldfish should not be kept in bowls or jars. They need to be put in an adequate size tank. The general rule is to provide 10 gallons of water for each goldfish. This may seem excessive at first, but goldfish grow. They’re fish. They like to swim. They can’t swim if they have no room.

Tank placement. Goldfish are cold water fish. They have no need to tan, and they don’t need a tank full of algae. Keep the tank out of direct sunlight. Sunlight promotes the growth of algae and heats up the water. Placement near vents, doors and windows can cause harmful fluctuations in temperature. Make sure the tank is placed close enough to outlets in order to plug in lights and filters. Tanks are heavy once they’re full, so make sure the tank is placed on a sturdy table or stand.

Tank setup. Rinse the tank with plenty of water. Everything that goes in the tank should be rinsed thoroughly, even if it’s new. Wash the gravel thoroughly. Place decorative rocks, ornaments and other decorations in the tank before filling it. Provide hiding places for the fish. Hiding reduces stress. Most goldfish can survive in tap water, but a tap water conditioner might not be a bad idea. If you opt for tap water, let it run for about 30 seconds before you use it for the tank. Fill the tank about halfway, readjust anything that may have been disrupted by the flow of water and continue filling it until it’s about an inch from the top.

Acclimate the fish. Although life at the pet store isn’t the most glamorous life, getting taken from that home and transported to a new home can be a shock. Goldfish are sensitive to light, so place the clear bag full of water inside a paper bag when you bring it home. Float the clear bag in the aquarium so the water temperature can adjust. Add a little tank water to the bag every few minutes until the bag contains mostly aquarium water. Then, open the bag and welcome the fish to its new home.

Goldfish care. The water in your aquarium needs to be changed regularly. Remove and replace about 25 percent of the water weekly. Let the new water set out about 24 hours so it can get to room temperature. A properly fed goldfish is livelier, healthier and happier. Specially formulated goldfish food can be found at pet stores. Flake food, because it floats, is easier for the fish and for the person responsible for cleaning the tank. Feed the fish only as much as they’ll eat in a few minutes and remove excess food, which will pollute their environment. If you clean the filter regularly, the tank should remain clean.

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