Why Is My Guppy Not Eating? (8 Common reasons)

As fish keepers, we face several problems and unusual behavior of our fish, one of which is fish not eating food. So, why is my guppy not eating food? Let us find out.

Stress is the primary reason behind your guppy fish not eating food. Other reasons are expired food, poor water conditions, and illness. Ensure feeding your guppy high-quality nutritional food and providing good water quality and adequate water parameters to prevent such issues.

There are ways to make your guppy eat, which we will discuss below in this article. So, let us read this article and know all about it.

What does guppy typically eat?

FoodServing QuantityNo of Times
Veggie pellets One pinch at a time2-3 times a day
Brine shrimpOne pinch at a time1-2 times a week
Mosquito larvae10-15 pieces2-3 times a week
Blood WormsOne pinch at a time1-2 times a week
Tubifex WormsOne pinch at a time1 time a week
This table shows the ideal dietary requirement of guppy fish.

Also read: Best Food For Guppy Fish.

Reasons why guppy is not eating?

There can be various reasons behind your guppy not eating food. However, some of the most common reasons for guppy not eating food are:

  1. Poor water condition
  2. Low or high water temperature
  3. Expired food
  4. Your guppy is sick
  5. Your guppy is in labor.
  6. Stress
  7. Bored of one type of meal
  8. Overfeeding

Poor water condition

Inadequate water conditions can be the leading reason for your guppy not eating their food. Therefore, we recommend at least 50 percent water change on a weekly basis.

Not changing the water can spike ammonia, harmful bacteria, and a poor oxygen source for your guppy.

All these problems will make the worst environment for your guppy to live by a time.

Soon, your guppy will start showing changes like losing appetite, or they will get sick. Also, a spike of ammonia will make your guppy breathe in ammonia or swallow things that have a large amount of ammonia, resulting in ammonia poisoning.

These are some signs which will make you know that your guppy is going through problems:

  1. You will see physical injuries
  2. Your guppy will lose its appetite.
  3. You will find your guppy losing color, or there will be a visible stain or mark.
  4. Your guppy will gasp for air near the water surface.
  5. Clamped fins as a sign of parasitic infection

Changing the water regularly and installing a good filtration system will prevent all the above problems and your guppy.

Low or high water temperature

Guppy will not feed on food if there is a low temperature, as the low temperature will lower the metabolism level of your guppy, and your guppy will not eat food in such a situation.

Your guppy will also not feed on food if there is a high temperature. Guppy will need their ideal temperature for being normal and destress as low, or high temperature will make them stress out.

Also read: What Is The Ideal Water Temperature For Guppies?

Expired food

Feeding expired food to your guppies is not a good take. However, guppies will feed on expired food if you will not give them much of an option, but many of them will avoid eating the expired food as much as they can do.

You will see your guppy not giving much of an interest when you serve them food. Your guppies will nibble on the food but will not completely eat it.

You will find it by the food left as waste by your guppies.

Your guppy will not show these kinds of behavior before there is any problem going there.

So, after seeing this behavior, all you have to do is find out the reason behind it. Look if food is the actual problem or there is some other problem your guppy is facing.

There can be various reasons behind your guppy only nibbling on food and not eating it. For example, your guppy may have lost its appetite, is sick, or inadequate water condition is why your guppy fish is not eating anymore.

You can know if your guppy is going through any of the above problems as there is a sign like an odd swimming pattern or showing no interest; your guppy will be less energetic and show signs of illness.

If you find out that none of the above problems is why your guppy is not eating, go for the food you are providing your guppy.

Make sure to provide your guppy with good quality food. Always purchase food from the reputed stores that keep good quality food rather than cheap quality food.

If you are feeding your fish commercial-grade food like pellets or powdered food, look out for the quality of food in the first place.

Live food is the best food to prevent your guppy from any food problems.

Your guppy is sick

Guppy with sickness will affect the normal behavior of your guppy. For example, your guppy will not eat if they are sick and going through some problems.

There are various illnesses from which your guppy can go through; some of these are

  1. Dropsy
  2. White spots
  3. Fin rot
  4. Swim bladder disorder
  5. Bent spine


Dropsy is a common disease in fish that is caused by bacterial infection. It aims at the liver and kidney by infecting it, resulting in the abdomen filling with the liquid that cannot get out. As a result, your guppy will suffer from a bloated belly and will have trouble swimming.

Also read: How To Treat Dropsy In Guppies?

White spots

This disease is also common as dropsy around fish. The good thing is that it is detectable as your fish will have white spots all over their body. Also, if treated in the early stages, it can be recovered.

Remember that if this disease is not treated early, it can also be a critical condition for your guppy.

Tail, fin rot

The bacterial infection causes fin or tail rot. Also, the fungus that grows on the nibbed fin can explain the rotten fin and tail. Inadequate water condition and ammonia burn can also be the reason for rotten tail and fin.

If the fins and tail are not damaged but have started rotting, it is because of bacteria, and if the fins and tail are damaged and are rotten, then it is because of the fungus.

Also read: Will My Guppy Tail Grow Back?

Swim bladder disorder

Swim bladder disorder is a disease that makes it difficult for your guppy to swim. Poor water conditions and stress can be the reason behind swim bladder disorder.

Also read: Why Is My Guppy Moving Up And Down?

Bent spine (Scoliosis)

The bent spine can be because of a genetic defect or environmental factors. Your guppy will not be able to swim with a bent spine.

Also read: Guppy With A Bent Spine.

Your guppy is in labor.

After mating, the female guppy takes up to 20 to 30 days to release her fries.

It is completely normal if your pregnant guppy is not eating during that period.

All you need to do is detect it early and move your pregnant guppy to a separate tank.

Your pregnant guppy will be normal again after releasing the fry.

Also read: Why Is My Pregnant Guppy Not Eating?


Stress can also be the reason for your guppy not eating.

Now, your guppy can get into stress because of various reasons:

  1. Whenever you bring a fish from the fish shop to your home, your fish get stressed out because of unusual movement, and it takes time to get back to normal after moving them into your aquarium. So give your guppy some time to be normal.
  2. Whenever you clean your aquarium by changing water or using the fishnet, your fish get into stress for some time, and at this time, they will not eat anything you serve. 
  3. Disease or injury can be the reason behind your fish not eating food.
  4. Angry tankmates can be a reason behind your guppy fish not eating food.
  5. Continued water changes will make them come into stress.

Guppy into stress will result in having a weak immune system and will lose its appetite. These all can make your guppy so vulnerable to several infections and diseases.

Also read: What To Do If My Guppy Is Stressed?

Your guppy is bored by one type of food

Usually, your guppy gets fed up with one type of food getting every day. So change your guppy food; at least serve them 2-3 types of food in a week.

You can feed your guppy mosquito larvae, veggie pellets, and bloodworms.


Overfeeding will make your guppy lose interest in food, and they will no longer feed on the food you serve them.

Serve your guppy one time a day only, or you can also serve them every alternate day. Serve them one pinch of food and watch how much time they eat them all.

Doing this will give you an average calculation of how much quantity you should serve your guppy in a time.

Also read: Can Guppy Die From Overfeeding?

How to make my guppy eat?

For making your guppy eat food, you have to know the exact problem they are going through, which makes them not eat food.

The most common reason for your guppy not eating food is the poor water condition and inadequate water temperature.

Look for any injury or disease your guppy is going on. You can detect the disease by the signs we have discussed above in this article.

If any of these is not a cause, your guppy must be pregnant or under stress.

How long can guppy survive without food?

A healthy guppy can survive for two weeks without food. But, this doesn’t mean that you make it a regular timetable of serving your guppy food one time every two weeks.

If you are out on vacation or some other emergency has occurred on which you have to leave your guppy for a couple of days, then there is nothing to worry about your guppy as they can survive without food for two weeks.

Also read: How Long Can Guppies Go Without Food?


There are various reasons for your guppy not eating food, of which the most common reason are poor water conditions and inadequate water temperature.

Make sure to provide your guppy with a good water condition and an adequate water parameter.

Reference: ResearchGate, NCBI

Recent Posts