Why Is My Betta Fish Not Eating? (Reasons+Treatment+Prevention)

Betta fish not eating is a matter of concern as if they don’t eat for a long time, they will become weak and prone to various diseases and parasites.

It is necessary to find the reason behind your betta fish not eating and fix it as soon as possible. So, Why is my betta fish not eating?

Poor water conditions, inadequate parameters, and stress is the primary reason for your betta fish not eating. Other causes include illness, poor-quality food, and overfeeding. Ensure weekly water changes, and provide your betta with a well-heated tank and good-quality food to treat such issues.

This article will discuss the reason for treatment and prevention behind betta fish not eating. So, let us get into it.

My betta fish is not eating.

There can be numerous reasons behind your betta fish is not eating.

Some of the primary reasons are poor water conditions and inadequate water parameters.

Other reasons include stress, illness, poor-quality food, and overfeeding.

Fish not eating indicates many issues in the tank, so finding the right issue and troubleshooting that problem is necessary.

There are symptoms your betta will show, which will help you find the reason behind their not eating their food.

There can be normal reasons too, like your betta is a picky eater or they are bored feeding on a particular food.

We will go through all these issues in detail and will try to find the reason behind your betta fish not eating.

Let us now discuss all the possible reasons and treatments in detail for your betta fish not eating.

Also read: Why Is My Fish Not Eating?

What are the reasons behind my betta fish not eating?

All these are the possible reasons behind your betta fish not eating:

  1. Your betta fish is living in poor water conditions.
  2. The water parameters of your betta fish tank are not adequate.
  3. You are overfeeding your betta.
  4. Betta fish is not interested in eating the food you provide.
  5. The food you are feeding is not good enough.
  6. Your betta is under stress.
  7. Your betta is suffering from illness.

Poor water conditions

Poor water conditions can be the primary reason for your betta fish not eating.

Bettas require a clean water conditions to thrive.

Even a little toxic chemical in the water can make them suffer from a life-threatening condition.

Living in poor water conditions will also make them come under stress.

All these issues will result in your betta fish losing their appetite and not having much interest in munching on their food.

How to fix this?

To ensure good water condition, regularly perform a weekly water change of at least 30-35%.

Make sure to treat the water using the water conditioner to eliminate chlorine, chloramine, and heavy metals from the tap water while doing a water change.

We recommend using the API water conditioner as it will help you eliminate chlorine, chloramine, heavy metals, ammonia, and nitrite from the water.

You can buy this product on amazon: API TAP WATER CONDITIONER.

Add a good filtration system with biofilter media to protect your fish tank from harmful toxins like ammonia and nitrite and also to keep the water clean from excessive waste.

ParticularBetta Fish Requirement
Water conditionClean water condition
Ammonia0ppm
Nitrite0ppm
NitrateBetween 10-20ppm.
This table shows the ideal water conditions requirement of a betta fish.

Regularly check the ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate of your betta fish tank and ensure to maintain ammonia and nitrite at 0ppm, whereas nitrate should be below 20ppm.

We suggest using the API freshwater master kit to check the ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, and ph level of your betta fish tank, as it shows the accurate result.

You can buy it from amazon: API FRESHWATER MASTER TEST KIT. 

Inadequate water parameters

Inadequate water temperature also is the primary reason your betta fish is not eating.

Betta fish are tropical fish and require warm water to thrive.

Also, a slight change in water ph level can make them suffer from a critical conditions.

Sudden changes in water temperature will make them come under stress and lose their appetite in the long run.

Providing your betta fish with adequate and stable water parameters is necessary to ensure their good health and longer lifespan.

How to fix this?

Consider adding a heater to your betta fish tank to ensure adequate and stable water temperature.

A heater will help you provide your betta fish with adequate and stable water temperature.

Regularly check your betta fish tank’s pH level and maintain it at a range between 6.5-8.

ParticularBetta Fish Requirement
Water temperature75-80 °F
Water pH levelBetween 6.5 and 8
Water TDS level250-280
Water hardness90-100ppm GH
This table shows the ideal water parameters requirement of a betta fish.

You can regularly check the water pH level by using the API freshwater master test kit.

Make sure to maintain the water TDS level between 260-280ppm.

Overfeeding

One reason for your betta fish not eating can be you are overfeeding them.

Betta fish have a stomach size of their eyes. They can’t eat much at a time.

Many betta owners end up overfeeding their fish, which results in betta fish not eating.

Overfeeding can make your betta fish suffer from gastrointestinal issues like constipation and bloating.

Your betta fish will not be interested in eating food as they cannot digest the previous one.

So, it is necessary to feed your betta fish in adequate quantity.

How to fix this?

To ensure you are not overfeeding your betta fish, provide them with 3-4 pellets twice a day.

Keep a 10-hour difference at least between the two feedings.

The same quantity goes for treats like freeze-dried, live, and frozen food.

If your betta is not eating all the pellets you are providing, then extract the remaining pellets from the tank.

Your betta is a picky eater.

Betta fish are carnivorous and feed on only meat-based nutritional food.

They feed on live foods like larvae and small invertebrates in their natural habitat.

It is possible that when you add a betta to your fish tank and provide them with pellets, they don’t find it interesting, and even they don’t consider pellets as food.

Also, breeders feed their bettas live or freeze-dried food to ensure their faster growth, and when you buy them from a breeder and offer them pellets, they will avoid eating them as they are not interested in pellets for now and require live food.

How to fix this?

To solve such an issue, start feeding your betta fish with live or freeze-dried foods like brine shrimp, freeze-dried bloodworms, or mosquito larvae, and introduce pellets with those foods.

Your betta will slowly start eating pellets with live foods and will find it interesting after some time.

Make sure that you feed them live food for some time just to introduce pellets.

Otherwise, it should be a treat for them, and consider feeding them such food one to two times a week only.

Poor quality food

One reason behind your betta fish not eating can be poor quality food.

Check the expiry date of the food you provide to your betta fish.

Also, look for the smell of the food, and if the smell is not like when you bought it, something is wrong.

If everything is okay and it smells fine, try changing the pellets’ brand.

Stress

Stress can also be the major reason behind your betta fish not eating.

Now, many factors can make them come under stress, such as inadequate water parameters, poor water conditions, nipping mates, small-size tanks, poor feeding, and illness.

Your betta fish will stay in one spot, avoid eating, and look weak when stressed.

Also, you must know that being stressed for a long time, fish will become weak and prone to various diseases and parasites.

How to fix this?

Ensure all these things to provide your betta fish with a stress-free environment:

  1. Provide them with clean and toxic-free water conditions by performing a regular water change and using a water conditioner while doing a water change.
  2. Ensure adequate and stable water parameters.
  3. Keep them in a heated tank to provide a warm and stable water temperature.
  4. Provide a regular food supply by feeding them once or twice a day.
  5. Keep them in a nano tank rather than a bowl to ensure enough space.
  6. Avoid keeping them with aggressive tankmates and instead prefer keeping them alone.
  7. Add live aquatic plants to your betta fish tank.

Illness

Illness can also be the reason behind your betta fish not eating.

Betta fish suffering from an illness will avoid eating as they will be stressed.

You can detect that your betta fish is suffering from an illness by these symptoms:

  1. Your betta fish will become lethargic.
  2. They will show unusual swimming patterns.
  3. Your betta fish fins will tatter or will look rotten.
  4. They will develop white spots on their body or fins.
  5. They will develop extended bellies because of constipation and bloating.

How to fix this?

Many issues can be solved by providing the right water conditions and adequate water parameters.

So, check the water conditions and parameters whenever your betta fish suffers from an illness.

Ensure that your fish has clean water conditions, adequate water parameters, and stable water temperature.

Some illnesses require medication, so consult your vet and provide your fish with the proper medication.

Newly introduced to the tank.

Another reason for your betta fish not eating can be they have yet to acclimate in the tank.

When you add new fish to your tank, getting familiar with the parameters, conditions, and hiding spots will take some time.

Once they are settled, they will start eating food, and till then, they will most probably avoid eating.

How to prevent my betta fish from not eating?

We all know that prevention is much better than cure, so we should always try to prevent our betta fish from such issues.

To prevent our betta fish from such issues, we have to ensure all these things:

  1. Good water conditions
  2. Adequate water parameters
  3. Stable water temperature
  4. Hiding spots
  5. Live aquatic plants
  6. Good quality food
  7. Avoid aggressive mates
  8. Provide stress-free environment
  9. Avoid overcrowding
  10. Keeping them in a good size tank (At least 5 gallons)
  11. Avoid overfeeding

Conclusion:

There can be numerous reasons behind your betta fish not eating, of which the primary reasons are poor water conditions, inadequate parameters, stress, and illness.

Providing your betta fish with good water conditions, adequate water parameters, and a stress-free environment will help you treat and prevent such issues.

Visit your vet if you see any kind of illness symptoms like spots, lethargy, or rotted and tattered fins that require medical attention.


Reference: NCBI, ResearchGate, Core.ac

Hemant

Welcome to housedpet.com. My name is Hemant, and I am here to solve every problem you get while having a pet. With years of experience, I can assure you that you will find every solution to your problem in housedpet.com.

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