The Ethical Care and Proper Husbandry of Betta Fish

Betta Fish Mistreatment 

Betta fish, with their striking colors and elegant fins, often find themselves confined to small, inadequate containers/aquariums (especially those commonly sold in pet stores), perpetuating a cycle of mistreatment. In this comprehensive blog post, we aim to shed light on the serial mistreatment of Betta fish and emphasize the necessity of providing them with the proper care and living conditions they deserve.

The Myth of Betta Bowls:

Betta bowls, often touted as convenient and decorative, have become symbolic of the widespread misunderstanding of Betta fish needs. Contrary to popular belief, these small containers are woefully inadequate for the well-being of these vibrant and intelligent creatures.

1. The Reality of Betta Tank Size:

Betta fish require more than the tiny containers they are often relegated to. A suitable tank size is 15 gallons or more. Inadequate space not only hampers their physical health but also restricts their mental well-being, hindering natural behaviors like swimming, exploring, and interacting with their environment.

2. Filtration and Water Quality:

Proper filtration is essential for maintaining water quality in Betta tanks. Ammonia buildup in small, unfiltered containers can be lethal. A cycled filter and regular water changes are crucial to ensure a healthy environment.

3. Enrichment and Stimulus:

Betta fish are intelligent and curious by nature. To thrive, they require mental stimulation and environmental enrichment. Adding live or silk plants, hiding spots, and gentle water flow contributes to a more natural habitat.

4. Social Isolation:

While Betta fish are known for their aggressive tendencies toward other males, they are not solitary creatures in the wild. The misconception that Betta fish prefer isolation perpetuates their confinement to tiny containers. Careful consideration should be given to tank mates and adequate hiding spots to minimize stress.

Here is a list of species appropriate tank mates:

  • Snails
  • Shrimp
  • Dwarf frogs
  • Corydoras catfish
  • Tetras
  • Guppies
  • Clown pleco
  • Harlequin rasboras
  • Kuhli loaches.

Remember, the more fish you add the larger your tank will need to be.

Here is a list of INAPPROPRIATE species:

  • Angelfish
  • Tiger barbs
  • Cichlids
  • Goldfish
  • Gouramis
  • Red tail sharks
  • Fancy guppies
  • Puffers
  • Most reptiles & amphibians
  • Moray eels

5. Proper Nutrition:

A well-balanced diet is crucial for Betta health. High-quality pellets, supplemented with live or frozen foods, contribute to their overall nutrition. Overfeeding should be avoided, as it can lead to health complications. CLICK HERE to use our Betta Fish Nutrition Calculator.

6. The Importance of Heating:

Betta fish are tropical species and require a consistent temperature between 78-80°F (25-27°C). Proper heating is essential to prevent stress and maintain their immune system.

7. Regular Veterinary Care:

Like any other pet, Betta fish benefit from regular veterinary check-ups. Early detection of health issues is vital, and prompt treatment can make a significant difference in their well-being.


The mistreatment of Betta fish, perpetuated by misconceptions and inadequate care practices, must come to an end. As responsible pet owners, it is our duty to provide these beautiful creatures with the living conditions they deserve – spacious tanks, proper filtration, mental stimulation, and a well-balanced diet.

By dispelling the myths surrounding Betta fish care and advocating for their proper husbandry, we can contribute to a positive shift in the treatment of these remarkable aquatic companions. Let us strive to create environments where Betta fish can flourish, showcasing their vibrant colors and lively personalities in settings that mirror their natural habitat.

CLICK HERE to use our Fish Nutrition Calculators.


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Tailor the ingredients and quantities based on your animal’s specific needs, considering factors such as age, weight, activity level, and health condition.