Skip to content

6 Reasons Not to Keep Pet Fish

  • by

There are numerous advantages to keeping fish as pets, in my opinion. They’re fun to keep and teach you a lot about biology, chemistry, and ecosystems. However, there are drawbacks, and you should carefully consider whether they are the right pet for you. Fish are incredible, but they aren’t for everyone.

This article examines the disadvantages, with the goal of outlining the difficulties, so that proper consideration can be given before you or your child obtain your fish and tank. If the disadvantages do not deter you, you should proceed with your plans. When properly cared for, fish make fascinating and entertaining pets.

6 Drawbacks of Keeping Fish as Pets.

  • It is more expensive than you think.
  • They are long-term companions.
  • It takes time to set up your tank.
  • Aquariums necessitate routine maintenance.
  • Vacations necessitate preparation.
  • They lack tactile and interactive elements.

Each disadvantage is discussed in greater detail below.

1. It Is More Expensive Than You Think

It’s a well-known fact that pets are expensive, whether you’re buying them, paying for their food, health care, toys, or other accessories like collars and beds. Fish is no exception, but the costs are frequently understated.

There is the initial outlay for the setup, which includes purchasing the fish and aquarium, as well as other specialized equipment (a 29-gallon setup can easily cost more than $500). Then there’s the ongoing expenditure, which is usually proportional to the size of your tank and the number of fish you keep.

Food is obviously an expense, but there are other considerations and necessary items of equipment that are easily overlooked. These are some examples:

  • power for the air pumps, filters, heaters, and lights
  • a gravel vacuum for cleaning the tank’s bottom,
  • a fishing net, as well as
  • a water conditioner for water purification.

2. They are long-term companions.

As with all pets, it’s easy to love and care for them when they’re new, but the challenges can become more difficult when the fish loses their novelty value, especially for children. A well-cared-for fish can live for ten years or more, depending on the breed. It is critical to recognize this and remain realistic.

3. It takes time to set up your tank.

Cycling your aquarium is a process that must be completed before adding fish. It entails putting your tank through the nitrogen cycle. This can take weeks, but it is necessary if you do not want your fish to become ill.

The procedure can be aggravating. It is, however, required because it increases the population of beneficial bacteria required for breaking down the bad chemicals produced by waste, such as fish poop.

4. Aquariums necessitate routine maintenance.

Fish require more than just regular feeding. There are numerous tasks that must be completed on a regular basis if you want to keep your fish in a healthy environment. You will be required to perform the following regular chores:

  • changing the tank’s water,
  • filter cleaning,
  • vacuuming the aquarium floor, and
  • washing the tank’s walls.

You should also test the water on a regular basis and monitor the levels of ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates, as well as the pH, KH, and GH. The chemistry of your water is critical to the health of your fish.

Smaller tanks can be more problematic than larger ones because negative effects manifest much faster in smaller volumes of water when problems occur. Unfortunately, in situations where the water chemistry or temperature changes in a matter of hours or even minutes, the fish can die before you have a chance to fix the problem.

5. Vacations necessitate preparation.

Many pets can simply be left with friends or relatives when you go away, or at a business that specializes in pet care, such as dog boarding kennels. Portable fish tanks are uncommon. That means you’ll need someone to come to your house on a regular basis to look after the fish while you’re away.

Few people are qualified for this position because aquarium maintenance necessitates the supervision of an experienced individual. Otherwise, when you return from your vacation, you will find a tank full of sick or dead fish.

Note: If you move frequently, this can be a problem for the same reasons as stated above. Aquariums and their associated setups are simply not meant to be moved.

6. Fish are not tactile or interactive in any way.

Fish, unlike some other common pets such as cats and dogs, are both physically and socially isolated. You are not permitted to touch them, let alone pet, stroke, or cuddle them. Certain key words, such as their name, are understood by dogs and cats. Dogs can be taught to sit, lie down, come to you, and retrieve objects thrown to them.

Fish, while entertaining to watch, are not interactive. They will ignore you unless it is feeding time. I find their biology and behavior fascinating, but I’ve seen others, particularly children, become bored with them.