How to Feed Your Goldfish? How Often & How Much?
Having a goldfish at home is a fantastic thing, especially for those who have aquariums and love having fish around. You get to spend time with it, put in a glass vase filled with water and walk around with it and do other cool stuff.
Now that you are conversant with the great benefits that come with having a goldfish, you need to understand that there are fundamental pillars to ensuring that it is healthy.
One of the things you need to do is feeding it properly. I know many people are not conversant with such issues, but that should not trouble you anymore. Here we will show you how to feed your goldfish.
What Do Goldfish Eat?
Goldfish will eat almost anything you feed them, though there are foods that they prefer. You need to feed them a complex and balanced diet in order to keep them health.
Below are some food types you should feed your goldfish with:
This is a unique feed specially made for goldfish. In one way or another, it may seem similar to other fish feeds, but it has some differences.
One of these differences is the fact that it usually contains less protein and more carbohydrates than the regular fish feeds.
That is why it is highly recommended that you pick goldfish food that meets the specific needs of your goldfish instead of just picking generic “fish food.”
Goldfish food usually comes in the form of pellets or flakes. You can choose either of the types depending on a wide range of factors which include;
- How easy is it for you to clean the aquarium in case the goldfish do not eat all the feeds? This is because when you go for the pellets, you may find that they may sink to the bottom, and this may hinder the cleaning process. Therefore, the pellets end up polluting the water, which is not suitable for your goldfish.
- Size of your goldfish. Sometimes, the pellets are too big to fit into the mouth of your goldfish.
- Do you open the tub frequently? If you open the tank every now and then and for a long time, then you should consider going for the pellets instead of the flakes. The reason is that flakes can lose some nutritional value once they are exposed to air.
If you want your goldfish to feed on live foods, then you should consider going for blood worms. One of the reasons why blood worms are an excellent choice is that they are super digestible.
In essence, a goldfish cannot have trouble digesting the worms. Furthermore, they are a great source of protein for the goldfish.
If you want to keep your goldfish healthy, active and help it grow properly, you should give it cooked rice. The thing to take note of here is the fact the rice needs to be prepared properly.
If the rice is not cooked correctly, it will expand in the goldfish’s digestive tract, and this could yield catastrophic results.
For the sustainable growth and development of your goldfish, you need to switch up the food it eats once in a while. Part of switching up the meals is incorporating leafy greens into the diet.
Some of the common leafy greens fed to goldfish are: kale, spinach, and lettuce.
Another meal that is great for your goldfish is peas. Peas are a great source of fibre for goldfish, and this helps in reducing constipation. Before feeding peas to your goldfish, make sure that they are peeled.
How Often Should You Feed Goldfish?
The amount of times you feed your goldfish plays an active role in determining whether or not it thrives in the place you have put it in, or it dies. With that being said, you should always feed your goldfish 2-3 times a day.
How Much Should You Feed Goldfish?
When feeding your goldfish, you should keep in mind that goldfish do not have stomachs; this then means that they cannot get full like human beings.
Therefore when you keep adding food into the fish tank, the goldfish will keep on eating as long as there is food available. The fact that they keep eating even past the required amount is what is dangerous.
Therefore, you should not overfeed your goldfish as it will result in the blocking of intestines and eventually indigestion. Overfeeding may also make the goldfish have swimming bladder problems.
Other than that, you may contaminate the tank water with excess food that the goldfish cannot consume, and this is hazardous to its health. Underfeeding your goldfish, on the other hand, may lead to nutritional issues and hunger problems. If you are not careful, your goldfish may die.
You can use the rule of thumb to help you determine the right amount of food to give your goldfish. Give the goldfish only the amount of food that it can feed on in under two minutes.
Alternatively, you can choose to give your goldfish food that is the same size as its eye. It is important to note that when the temperatures are low, you should limit the amount of food you give your goldfish.
This is because fish are homoeothermic and are less able to digest food at low temperatures.
While we are still talking about the amount of food you should give your goldfish, it is normal for you to pour a little more than enough food into the tank and the goldfish fails to eat it all.
If such a scenario occurs, make sure you clean the tank after the feeding session to avoid polluting the water. The best thing to do is to feed your goldfish just before a water change, as you can get rid of uneaten food and other waste as you replace the dirty water with clean water.
How Long Can Goldfish Go Without Food?
You may be planning to go for a vacation or travel away to see your loved ones in another part of the country, and you are worried about the welfare of your goldfish.
If you are travelling for less than two weeks, then you should not worry at all. This is because goldfish can go for up to 14 days without food and still be okay.
In case you are travelling for a more extended period than 14 days then you should ask your friend or neighbor to look after your goldfish or at least ensure that the fish is adequately fed.
Not everyone owns a goldfish or knows about goldfish feeding, so try to give the person as much information as possible. You can tell him/her about the foods to use, the times to feed and probably how to clean the water tank.
Why Goldfish Not Eating?
Goldfish are always hungry and they can eat as much as you feed them. However, if they don’t want to eat, you should pay attention, because there could be some problem going on.
Swimming Bladder Infection
The swimming bladder is the gas-filled sac that is located near the fish’s digestive tube, which helps the fish balance upright in the water.
Therefore, when your fish is not eating, you should observe it for some time. If you notice that the goldfish is swimming sideways or rolling onto the sides, then there is a high possibility that the fish has a swimming bladder infection.
Swimming bladder disease is usually caused by overeating. When the fish overeats, fats develop around the internal organs, and this then makes them press onto the bladder. When the bladder is pressed upon, the whole fish’s equilibrium is thrown off, that is why the fish starts moving sideways.
Avoid feeding your goldfish for about 48 hours so that the whole digestive tract can clear out. If the fish is still swimming irregularly, then you can give it something rich in fiber.
The best option, in this case, would be peeled peas. Makes sure you cook the peas properly and provide it to the fish. The fiber will smoothen things out, and the fish will be back to normal in no time.
Poor Quality Water
The water your goldfish stays in play a significant role in determining whether or not your goldfish will eat. Goldfish usually prefer more lukewarm water of about 74 degrees.
Any slight changes in temperatures may make the goldfish uncomfortable, and this may translate to it not eating at all.
Another thing that may make the water uncomfortable for the fish to live in is high nitrate levels. As a goldfish owner, you should keep in mind that goldfish excrete more than the tropical fish.
Therefore, the waste leads to an increase in the nitrate levels, which make the goldfish feel very poorly. What you can do is acquire an aquarium test kit that will help you monitor the nitrate levels and ensure that they have not exceeded the required levels.
You can see that having a goldfish is not just about the happy moments and the amazing things that come with it; there is actually a lot that comes with feeding and caring for a goldfish.
First and foremost, you need to know the types of food goldfish eat. When trying to feed your goldfish, you can start by giving it goldfish feeds which are bought from a local store.
Goldfish also feed on leafy greens, cooked rice and peas. Your goldfish should be fed at least 2 -3 times a day to facilitate its proper growth and development.
You should try as much as possible not to overfed the goldfish nor underfeed it. The best thing to do is use the thumb rule where you give it only the amount of food it can finish in two minutes.
A goldfish can survive for up to 14 days without food and still be okay, but any longer is detrimental to its health. If you see that the fish is not eating there might be a problem.
One of the reasons is that the quality of water is poor. It may be because of a swimming bladder infection.