How Do I Know If My Betta Fish Is Eating?

By | February 14, 2020

Betta fish are relatively easy to care for as compared to other pets and even other fish. But what and how they eat plays a big role in their well-being. So it’s important to know how to take care of its dietary needs. They’re extremely easy to care, so make sure you feed it the best betta fish food and you’ll pretty much not need to worry about anything else related to your betta fish.

Appetite-related questions are the most common when it comes to Betta fish. Overfeeding is a very common issue. They need to have a protein-rich diet as they are primarily carnivores. You also have to feed it the food of high quality. It’s very easy to get confused as to what food you should buy for it, and that’s why we’ll help you decide on the basis of the information given below.

Their Diet

How Do I Know If My Betta Fish Is Eating?

These fish are insect-eating carnivores, and even though many have a notion that they can survive on plant roots alone, it is wholly untrue. The best food for betta fish is a protein-rich diet without a lot of fiber.

As it is difficult to make live food the main part of your fish’s diet, it’s the most convenient and healthy to feed it pellets, frozen and live foods and flakes, each of high quality.

They have very short digestive tracts and thus do not process corn and wheat, also known as filler food. Feeding them filler foods can make them bloated and cause other digestive issues like constipation. Fillers provide no benefit nutritionally to the betta fish, who just excrete it out as waste. Therefore it is important to steer clear of filler foods and give them food containing some fiber and moisture in order to aid their digestion.


Pellets are the most common food given to betta fish by their owners. It is considered the best betta fish food you can feed it. Good quality pellets will contain less amount of fillers and more protein. Some pellets expand after they’re put into water. If you own those types of pellets then you should soak them first before feeding so that you do not misappropriate the portions and overfeed your fish. This is especially necessary if your betta fish likes to pounce at food as soon as it is put in the tank.

Freeze-Dried Food

How Do I Know If My Betta Fish Is Eating?

Freeze-dried food is also great because it introduces some of a betta’s natural diet into its routine, however, it cannot completely replace them, as freeze-dried foods are produced by removing moisture from the food and adding fillers to give it better shelf life.

It should be soaked in water before feeding it to your betta fish so that it can absorb some moisture, otherwise, your fish could end up constipated or bloated. This type of food is, however, free of bacteria and parasites.

Betta Flakes

You can buy flakes specifically made for betta fish at the store too. It is important to note that they cannot eat any other fish flakes as only betta fish flakes will provide it with adequate amounts of protein.

They often refuse to eat these flakes and the flakes can be found in the water. This means that you are overfeeding the fish despite its appetite, and you need to put less amount of flakes into the tank.

How often to feed a Betta fish?

How Do I Know If My Betta Fish Is Eating?

A lot of the times even the instructions given on the food packets can be misleading. Their suggestions often lead to ill-health for the betta and deteriorated quality of water. The betta ends up overfed and the whole ordeal produces a lot of waste.

Adult fish are to be fed once, and the babies, or fry, are fed twice. Since the stomach of a betta fish is the size of its eye, they do not need to eat a whole lot, but that would depend on the level of activity your betta does during the day. Their fish have a greedy nature and will try to eat how much ever you feed them, and hence, indigestion and constipation is a very common complaint amongst betta fish owners. In extreme cases, it might cause obesity, bladder issues, or even death.

These fishes are to be fed very little, as much as 2 or 4 pellets, twice a day at the most. Most people make Sunday a fast day for their betta fish to maintain digestive health and in order to not overwork their bodies. A betta fish can go without food for almost two weeks, so it’s always better to not feed it than overfeed it.

Won’t Eat?

How Do I Know If My Betta Fish Is Eating?

Betta fish can be picky eaters, and this can happen due to many reasons. Sometimes, they’re just undergoing stress and hence they do not eat due to that.  They normally resume their usual eating habits once it adjusts to its surroundings.

Water colder than 76 degrees Fahrenheit can also cause your fish’s loss of appetite, due to slowing down of their metabolism.

Sometimes they also start eating less as they become older. This is natural in their course of life, and it is best left alone at such a time.

Sometimes, a betta not eating might indicate that it is sick. Quite like humans, they also do not feel like eating a lot when sick. When none of the other causes given above exist, it is best to take it to a vet and get it tested for illness or disease so that it has a chance of recovering in time. Once a betta fish is nursed back to health, it will resume eating as it normally did.

Sometimes a betta fish will simply spit food out of its mouth. That is a sign for you to change the brand or type of food you’re feeding them because they’re picky eaters sometimes.

Feeding a betta can be tricky business, but it still is a great fish to have as a pet, mainly because of how low-maintenance and cost-efficient they are as compared to other more conventional pets like dogs, cats, or even goldfish.