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Betta Fish Depression

Updated on December 28, 2011

Is my betta fish depressed?

Betta fish depression is something that many people have discussed on and off over the years. In my own fish, I have definitely seen betta fish that are listless, lying near the bottom of the tank and showing no interest in anything. There are a few times when bettas get depressed like this. The most common one I have encountered is after pulling the male betta from a spawning tank.

The betta really gets focused on caring for his eggs then baby bettas, then suddenly you remove him after the betta fry can care for themselves. Afterall you don't want him eating any of the babies!

So you can tell if your betta fish is depressed if you see that it doesn't do much, hardly swims, lets his colours fade, and hardly even eats. These are a sure sign that you have a case of betta fish depression on your hands!

Keep reading below to find out how to treat your depressed betta fish!

Avoid Letting Bettas Get Depressed

Quick tip before moving onto how to treat betta fish depression. The best medicine is preventative medicine. To help prevent your betta fish from getting depressed, try to ensure it has the optimal conditions at all times.

This basically means clean fresh water changed at least weekly (more if you have the fighter fish in a bowl/small container), and a varied diet that includes live foods, frozen foods (bloodworms are great frozen fish food), and a high quality betta pellet!

What To Do To Help Cure Betta Fish Depression

If you are convinced that you have a depressed Siamese fighting fish, then the next question you may be asking is how you can cure depressed betta fish. Luckily, there are a few different techniques you can try out to help bring your fish back to its usual enthusiastic self with bright colours!

the first thing to do is ensure you have clean water for your fish. This is perhaps the most important aspect of keeping bettas healthy. Try doing water changes every other day and as usual make sure you use a small betta tank heater to keep the water temperature in the proper range for tropical freshwater fish. This is usually around 80 to 82F for bettas.

Finally, you need to help stimulate your fish to see if you can get it flaring again. A small mirror is the easiest way to do this. Try flashing the mirror at your fish a few times per day. Within a few days your fish will probably come out of its betta fish depression!

Siamese Fighting Fish Care

How else do you help your depressed betta fish?

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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Sounds like it! Bigger tank and fresh water would do the trick. Do you have the water at 80f? Did you read the whole page ere?

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Hey guys, I have a betta and I'm not sure if he is depressed or not-he has been acting very tired lately, he isn't as eager to recieve his food, and he seems to hide in his plant between the "stems" per say and sitting at the top. I would like some help on what to do, p.s he has a 1/2 gallon tank from Pet Co.

    • clefty profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Canada

      Hi there Smart And Fun. Thanks for the kind words. Sounds like you have a typical fun betta on your hands!

    • SmartAndFun profile image


      6 years ago from Texas

      Hi Clefty, nice hub! I just wrote a hub about betta fish today, too! Our betta has not been depressed, but he was doing a little fin biting, I think out of boredom. I got him some extra plants and a "floating betta log," which he loves. I also moved his tank next to a 10-gallon tank that has some tetras in it. They can see each other and entertain each other. And my son has been feeding him by holding the food up over the water and letting him jump for it. He really seems to like that, too.


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