Want to keep a pet? What about a goldfish. A goldfish needs less of your time and care. It is easier to adjust to and provide a great means to relieve stress. Know all about goldfish care, read on.
Your child wants a pet? Why not go in for a goldfish?
No one is disputing the fact that a dog is man's best friend, but if you just look around you, you'll see that there are a lot less families with dogs than without. Not because a majority of the population hates pets, but because they know that once you get a dog, it's gonna be all over the place, running into things, barking. Dogs need to be toilet trained, taken for regular walks, bathed, cleaned, they shed hair all over your house, they smell ikky and are a walking tick-shelter! In spite and despite - dogs top the list of favourite pets - perhaps the unselfish manner in which they love you makes is all worthwhile. But if you'd rather take in a pet which is easier to adjust to, how about going in for a goldfish? True, you can't cuddle up with it while watching television and you can't expect it to run up aand greet you the minute you walk in that door, but goldfish sure provide their own brand of fascination. However, there are a lot of things you need to bear in mind. Keeping healthy goldfish is not as easy as most people think. If not taken care of, your goldfish may not even survive a week, but if well catered to, it can live a long, healthy life.
When buying a tank, go in for a standard rectangular one which allows the best surface area, not a novelty one. A goldfish bowl may look attractive but it is definitely not in the best interest of your fish. You've got to think about what's best for your fish, and not what looks good with your decoration scheme.
Keep in Mind
- Choose a large tank. Goldfish grow quickly when cared for well and they will need as much space as you can provide. A small tank or fishbowl does not provide as much space and may even stunt their growth.
- The tank should be able to withstand the weight of the water inside it. The deciding factor between a high-quality tank and a low-quality tank is in the thickness of the glass. Your tank is worth nothing if it should burst.
- Hoods help keep your tank's temperature even and prevent your fish from jumping out. Plus, your goldfish have no eyelids, so the sudden switching on of the lights can shock them, causing stress. Hoods help them adjust to the light
Place a few artificial plants or other decorations to provide a hiding place for your fish. This goes a long way in making them less stressed. Gravel at the bottom of the tank provides a place for plants to take hold. Beneficial bacteria, that counteract ammonia, also grow within the gravel.
You can fit incandescent or florescent lights in your tank, which will help you monitor the progress of your fish and the cleanliness of your tank etc. Fish sleep every night, so make sure you turn off their tank lights each night at roughly the same time.
- Change your water once a week or once in ten days.
- Replace only about 30% of the water in your tank at a time.
- Let the tap run for a few minutes before you fill the mug.
- Let it sit overnight so the chlorine dissipates, before adding it to your tank.
- Clean your tank once a month. Gravel should be cleaned with a siphon tube.
What you need to know about Ammonia
Ammonia is very dangerous, and you should ensure that the ammonia concentration should be as low as possible in your water tank. It is thus important to know what causes ammonia, so you can keep in under control.
- Ammonia is released by your fish and by the breakdown of fish waste.
- The more fish you have, the more will be the ammonia produced - another reason to have a large tank.
- Uneaten food.
- Dead fish. Thus, dead fish should be removed from the tank at the earliest.
- Decaying plant matter.
These are optional but help purify the water in the tank.
As we have seen, any uneaten food causes ammonia so feed your fish just once a day. If any food left uneaten after five minutes, fish it out of the tank and reduce the quantity of the next feed. Usually about two balls of fish food are enough per fish. It is important you clean your tank routinely to make sure no fish food is lying rotting in the tank. Goldfish can be fed a variety of foods. Cooked peas, soft romaine lettuce, potatoes, boiled spinach, worms or mosquito larvae can all be fed, but in moderation, as a supplement to the regular meal. Don't forget to remove the excess food as soon as possible.
Water test kits can be used to keep watch over the water's hardness, ammonia and nitrate levels. These kits allow you to detect problems before you are able to see them.
Goldfish are sensitive to bumps and loud noise so keep the tank away from all sources of such noise. Even tapping hard on the glass can frighten your goldfish. Go gentle, they're delicate creatures.
The pump takes air out of the room and puts it into the tank. Since it takes air out of the room, fumes like cigarette smoke and paint fumes would harm the fish.