Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Training Our Pet Fish

My youngest daughter desperately wanted a fish for her birthday. We complied since we already had an aquarium from our last foray with sea creatures. That's an easy gift. After being schooled by some Petsmart workers, we decided on a Betta fish.

As soon as we got the fish set up in his new tank the first thing my daughter did was give the fish a sex change. We bought a male, but she deemed him Rosebud and he was now a girl. (Not sure it's that easy, right Caitlin?)

So Rosebud has been happily swimming away in his (her) tank for the past month or so. And my daughter has realized that having a fish is not as much fun as she thought it would be. But she's an optimist, so she has decided that she just needs to teach Rosebud some tricks.

I tried to explain that fish don't typically do tricks, but she was insistent. So we went to YouTube and found that yes there are videos about training your Betta fish to do tricks.

You can teach them to jump--I quickly nixed that idea as I worried about it jumping out unnoticed to its death. You can teach them to follow your finger around the tank. You can teach them to swim through a hoop.

She wants her fish to swim through a hoop. So we have been working on this for days and seriously we cannot get Rosebud to go near the hoop, much less swim through it. And all I keep thinking of is the line from Madagascar 3 where the tiger says, "Make the hoop smaller." Hopefully someone gets that reference.

But most importantly, does anyone have any fish training tips?


  1. Trust YouTube to spoil it all! Usually with animals you train using treats with each step towards the desired behaviour but with fish that could be lethal!

    Maybe you could put the hoop in just before feeding tome and then sprinkle food on the other side to encourage the fish to swim through to get to it.

    Good luck!


  2. Sorry but no tips here but that is persistence from your daughter! I never knew you could train fish but it sounds fun, good luck! Thanks for linking up to #justanotherlinky xx