Have you been considering pet fish and need just a little extra push to take the plunge? If so, I’ve got 7 great reasons that aquarium fish make excellent pets. If these reasons aren’t enough for you I’m not sure what else would be!
1. Your Health and Wellbeing
Have you ever been to an aquarium or been to a pet store and found yourself hypnotized by the fish? All of those colors and the gently flowing movement captivates us and draws us in.
But did you know that this simple act of admiration and focus is good for your health? It absolutely is, and I’m not just spouting my own opinion, science actually backs this up.
A study in the U.K. tested participant reactions to viewing fish in a large aquarium and found improvements in mood, blood pressure, and heart rate. Other studies have come to similar conclusions.
2. Quiet and Well Behaved
I love dogs and cats and have had them as pets my whole life, but there are some drawbacks. From accidents on the carpet, to chewed up chair legs, dogs can be a handful.
Cats aren’t off the hook either. Cleaning litter boxes and the occasional hairball gift are just a couple of the not so pleasant sides to cat ownership.
Oh, but fish on the other hand; no barking, chewed up shoes, or litter boxes to clean.
This is not to say that there aren’t any unpleasant sides to owning fish, but those are isolated and much smaller in scale.
3. Come in a Wide Variety of Shapes, Sizes, and Colors
One fish, two fish, red fish, blue fish. There are so many different species of pet fish available, it’s mind-boggling. There’s literally a fish for every home and personality.
Do you want to keep things simple? How about a 5 or 10-gallon tank with a betta fish or some neon tetras?
Are you more ambitious and want something exotic? Why not dive into the passionate pursuit of cichlid ownership or maybe even get some piranhas?
Let’s not forget that you can even add to the aesthetics of your property with a koi pond. These gregarious gems are the focal point of any yard they occupy.
The possibilities are endless and only limited by your imagination and wallet.
4. Can Be Left at Home Alone
While many fish species can interact with humans and even remember faces, they are just fine on their own. They won’t experience separation anxiety, as many cats and dogs do. As long as their water parameters are correct and they are fed, they will be just fine.
If you are gone for more than 2-3 days, you will however, need to find a way to make sure they get fed. Find a trusted friend or relative to feed them while you are away. Or, do like I do and buy a high-quality automatic feeder.
5. Don’t Need to Be Walked or Trained
While many of us do enjoy walking our dogs, this isn’t always an option. Many people are physically unable to walk their dogs as often as they require or at all. This can especially be true of the elderly. It isn’t fair to an energetic dog to keep them confined to a home or small apartment.
You can also forgo the sometimes frustrating obedience training. Unless, of course, you want to train your betta fish to jump through hoops (yes, you can actually train your betta to do tricks).
6. Don’t Require Much Space
A ten-gallon fish tank has a footprint of no more than 1 x 2 feet. Even a large 75-gallon aquarium only takes up 1.5 x 4 feet. Nearly everyone can accommodate a small amount of space for a fish tank regardless of their living situation.
While this is a great benefit to having fish, please do not go too small in tank size. A betta fish, for instance, needs more room than one of those cute little betta bowls can provide (5-10 gallons is recommended). So do your research to determine the right size tank for your fish.
7. They Make Great First Pets for Kids
Because fish are such easy pets to keep, they make great first pets for kids. A child can learn a lot about responsibility in the care of another life. Moreover, it can foster an interest in animals and the natural world around us.
As you have read, there are some pretty solid reasons for owning fish. There are more still that I didn’t even mention.
It is my sincere hope that reading this article has given you all the reason you need to give the fishkeeping hobby a go. It is a rich and rewarding endeavor in which you can delve as deeply as you desire!