How To Treat Constipation In Goldfish? (Causes+Prevention)

Goldfish will eat as much you serve to them even if they are not hungry. Such behavior of your fish leads to overfeeding, making your fish constipated. So, what can you do to treat constipation in your goldfish? How to treat constipation in goldfish? Let us discuss this below:

In general, you can treat constipation in goldfish with the help of Epsom salt. In addition, serving blanched peas is also beneficial in treating constipation in goldfish. You should always provide high-grade food and avoid overfeeding to prevent constipation in goldfish. 

Let us dive into the article to learn about the causes and symptoms of constipation in your goldfish. In addition to this, we will also learn how to treat constipation in your goldfish.

My goldfish is suffering from constipation

Constipation is a condition caused when your goldfish cannot digest their food, further leading to a swollen abdomen of your goldfish.

Poor tank conditions and improper diet plays an essential role in making your goldfish constipated.

However, constipation is curable within 2-3 days with proper medications.

There are many symptoms of constipation in your goldfish discussed in the below article.

Symptoms of constipation in goldfish?

Here are the symptoms of constipation in goldfish:

  1. Lethargic
  2. Refusing Food
  3. Stringy Feces
  4. Swollen belly
  5. Clamped fins
  6. Lack of fish waste
  7. Hard to swim 

Lethargic:

If you detect the sluggish behavior of your goldfish, it indicates that your fish is constipated. 

Goldfish are active swimmers, but you will see them swimming slowly in the tank when your fish is constipated.

Refusing food

Your goldfish refusing food is a clear sign of constipation. 

Your fish will not prefer to eat anything when constipated as its digestive tract is full. 

Stringy feces

Stringy feces in your goldfish also indicate constipation. 

A healthy goldfish’s feces will always sink to the substrate, whereas the feces of a sick goldfish will hang from them.

Swollen belly

Swollen belly in your goldfish also indicates constipation in your goldfish. 

When your goldfish get constipated, it becomes hard to digest their food, leading to a bloated belly. 

However, many other causes like dropsy or swim bladder disease can lead to a bloated belly in your goldfish.

Clamped fins 

Clamped fins are a situation when your fish’s top or dorsal fins are closer to its body.

Constipation can also make your goldfish fins clamped.

However, there can be many other reasons, like stress or swim bladder disease behind the clamped fins of your goldfish.

Lack of fish waste

Goldfish are messy fish that produces a lot of waste in the tank. 

However, if you discover a lack of fish waste in the tank, it indicates that your fish is suffering from constipation. 

Hard to swim

Your goldfish finds it hard to swim due to its swollen belly. 

However, many other reasons like swim bladder disease and bent spine can make it challenging for your goldfish to swim appropriately.

The above were some symptoms of constipation in your goldfish. Let us learn about the causes below.

Causes of constipation in goldfish?

Here are the causes of constipation in your goldfish:

  1. Poor water quality
  2. Overfeeding
  3. Low-grade food
  4. Poor diet 
  5. Inadequate water parameters 
  6. Lack of exercise
  7. Swim bladder disease

Poor water quality

Poor water quality is a common reason behind constipation in your goldfish. 

Poor quality water can make your goldfish stressed, further weakening the immune system. A weak immune system then makes your goldfish constipated.

In addition to this, poor water quality can lead to several other significant issues in your goldfish.

Overfeeding

Overfeeding is the most common reason behind constipation in your goldfish. 

Goldfish don’t have a stomach to digest; they extract the nutrients from the food through their intestines. 

Overfeeding can lead to digestive issues, making your fish constipated.

Overfeeding can also lead to a lot of waste in the tank, further leading to a spike in the ammonia level in your goldfish tank. 

A spike in the ammonia level can cause significant health issues to your goldfish, like burning gills.

Low-grade food

Low-grade food can also lead to constipation in your goldfish. 

Low-grade food can cause blockage and weaken your goldfish’s immune system, further leading to constipation in your goldfish.

Poor quality food is the root of several health issues in your fish.

Poor diet

Poor diet also leads to constipation issues in your goldfish. 

Goldfish are omnivore species that require veggies and meat for proper growth and development. 

You should always provide your fish with a diet that holds a mixture of every nutrient required for them to grow properly.

Inadequate water parameters

Inadequate water parameters can also lead to constipation in your goldfish. 

Too cold water can slow down the metabolism of your goldfish, making it challenging for your fish to digest its food, further leading to constipation.

However, this is a case of a pond goldfish. When the water temperature drops below 50 °F, pond goldfish prefer to hibernate and don’t need to eat until the water gets warm. 

Poor insulation in your indoor goldfish tank can lead to slower metabolism, leading to constipation in your goldfish.

Lack of exercise

If your goldfish is swimming around in a small space, it indicates that they are not getting enough exercise in the tank, increasing the chances of constipation in your goldfish.

Goldfish are active swimmers who require enough room to swim freely and stay fit and active.

Swim bladder disease

Swim bladder disease leads to significant issues inside your goldfish, further leading to the swollen abdomen of your fish. 

The swelling can further put pressure on the digestive system of your goldfish, leading to constipation.

However, constipation can also be a reason behind swim bladder disease in your goldfish. So, you must find out the exact cause before providing treatment to your fish.

Can goldfish pass away due to constipation?

Constipation is curable with proper treatment. However, non-treatment can make your goldfish come under critical conditions and pass away.

You should not take constipation issues lightly as it can lead to severe other health issues in your goldfish, making them suffer from pain and pass away.

As soon as you detect constipation in your goldfish, it would be best if you start the treatment of your goldfish without any further delay.

How to treat constipation in goldfish?

Here are the ways to treat constipation in your goldfish

  1. Fast your goldfish
  2. Provide them A Pea
  3. Epsom Salt

Fast your goldfish

Fasting should be the first treatment provided for constipation to your goldfish.

It will be advisable to make your fish fast for 2-3 days to treat constipation.

Fasting provides many health benefits to your goldfish, like it helps to clear the digestive tract of your fish.

Feed them a pea:

Blanched pea is the best way to treat constipation in your goldfish. 

In addition, peas are a rich source of fiber that helps aid many health issues in your goldfish.

You can prepare peas for your goldfish in the following steps.

  1. The first step is to blanch the pea. You must ensure not to overcook or undercook the pea. As in both cases, the veggie might lose all its nutrients.
  2. After blanching the pea, the second step is to remove the skin of the pea and keep it aside, as you should not feed it to your fish. You should provide the insides as it is a rich source of fiber.
  3. Finally, provide half a pea to your goldfish and make them fast for 24 hours. 

It will be advisable to do this 2 to 3 times to cure the constipation of your goldfish. 

If peas fail to treat the constipation of your goldfish, then you can apply the below treatment.

Epsom Salt

You can also use Epsom salt to treat constipation issues in your goldfish. You can apply Epsom salt to your goldfish tank in the following steps.

  1. The first step is to place your goldfish in a hospital tank.
  2. The second step is to take some tank water in a container.
  3. After you take the tank water, the next step is to put Epsom salt in the container and mix it thoroughly with the tank water. ( 1 teaspoon for every 5 gallons of water)
  4. The final step is to add the water back to the tank and make your goldfish fast for the entire day.

Epsom salt helps treat many health issues like internal parasites in your goldfish. 

Avoid adding excessive Epsom salt to the tank as it can cause health issues to your fish and affect the plants’ growth in the tank.

It will be best to remove the chemical filter before adding the Epsom salt, as the chemical filter can eliminate the salt from the tank.

Make sure not to dose the same water twice with Epsom salt.

Once you have performed the Epsom salt treatment, we advise you to leave your fish in the tank before performing a 100% water change.

We advise you to read all the information provided by the manufacturers before adding Epsom salt to your goldfish tank.

The above were some ways to treat constipation issues in your goldfish.

How to prevent constipation in goldfish?

Here are the ways to prevent constipation in your goldfish

  1. Avoid Overfeeding
  2. Provide a Good Quality food
  3. Provide a good size tank
  4. Maintain adequate water parameters
  5. Good water conditions

Avoid Overfeeding

Overfeeding is the root of several health issues in your goldfish, like constipation.

As goldfish digest their food through the intestines, overfeeding can lead to digestive issues in your fish.

To avoid overfeeding, you should always provide the amount of food your goldfish can consume in under two minutes. 

It will be advisable to make your goldfish fast every couple of weeks to keep their digestive tract clear.

Also read: What Happens When You Overfeed Your Goldfish?

Provide a good quality food

You should always provide high-grade food to avoid blockage in your goldfish.

Goldfish are omnivores species that depend upon veggies and meat for their proper growth and development. 

Your goldfish diet should mix all the essential nutrients required for their well-being. 

Let us know about a good staple diet for your goldfish with the help of a table.

Goldfish DietServing QuantityNo. of times
Goldfish DietServing Quantity No. of times
Veggie Pellets A pinch2 times a day
Zucchini ( Blanched)One small piece3-4 times a week
Leafy greens ( kale, spinach, lettuce)A small piece of leaf3-4 times a week
Mosquito Larvae12-153-4 times a week
BloodwormsA pinch3-4 times a week
Brine shrimp A pinch3-4 times a week
The above table shows the ideal dietary requirements of goldfish.

Also read: What Do Goldfish Eat?

Provide a good size tank

You should always provide a good size tank for your goldfish.

A big size tank will help your goldfish get enough exercise, preventing constipation issues in your fish.

A small tank will not provide enough room for your fish and further leading to stress and other health issues in your goldfish.

Let us learn with a table much goldfish you can place in a 10-gallon tank.

Types of GoldfishMinimum SizeMaximum SizeIn a 10-gallon tank
Fantail Goldfish6 inches (15.24 cm)8 inches (20.32cm)1-2 small goldfish
Common Goldfish4 inches ( 10.16cm)14 inches (35.56cm)1-2 small goldfish
Comet Goldfish2 inches (5.08cm)12 inches (30.48cm)1-2 small goldfish
Sarasa Goldfish4 inches (10.16cm)14 inches (35.56cm)1-2 small goldfish
Shubunkin Goldfish9 inches (22.86cm)18 inches (45.72cm)1 small goldfish
The above table shows how many goldfish you can keep in a 10-gallon tank.

Also read: How Many Goldfish Can You Keep In A 10-Gallon Tank?

Maintain adequate water parameters

Inadequate parameters can lead to significant health issues in your goldfish.

Too cold water can weaken your fish’s immune system, leading to constipation.

You should always provide adequate water parameters for the well-being of your goldfish.

ParticularsGoldfish
Water Temperature68-74 °F
PH level7.5
The above table shows the ideal water parameters for goldfish

Also read: What Is The Ideal Water Temperature Of Goldfish?

Good water conditions

Poor water quality can lead to significant health issues in your goldfish like loss of appetite, stress, and constipation.

Poor quality water weakens the immune system of your goldfish, making it challenging for them to digest their food, further leading to constipation in your fish.

Goldfish are messy fish that produce a lot of waste that can spike the ammonia level in the tank, leading to severe health issues in your fish.

In addition to this, poor water quality can also lead to a drop in the oxygen level, making your fish gasp air at the water surface.

Therefore you should always provide good quality water to your goldfish to avoid health issues.

Conclusion:

  1. Constipation is a condition caused due to indigestion, further leading to the swollen belly of your goldfish.
  2. Stringy feces, clamped fins, and sluggish behavior are some symptoms of constipation in your goldfish.
  3. Poor water quality, overfeeding, and low-grade food are common causes of constipation in your goldfish.
  4. You can prevent constipation by providing good water conditions and high-grade food to your goldfish.
  5. Your goldfish can pass away if you provide no treatment for constipation to your fish.
  6. You can treat constipation with the help of Epsom salt and by feeding blanched pea to your goldfish.

Reference: ResearchGate

Recent Posts