How to Feed Betta Fish When on Vacation?

Excited to go on a vacation?

It is finally the time to relax and have the time of your life without worrying about work. However, make sure that your betta fish is in excellent condition while you are on a holiday.

The good news is there are a lot of ways to ensure that your betta fish is being taken care of. This also means that they will welcome you again once you return from your trip. In this article, we will enumerate ways on how to feed betta fish when on vacation.

Ask some help from a family member/friend

This is probably the best way to guarantee that your betta fish will not die from starvation. This will also give you peace of mind and less stress for your betta fish. Remember that if you provide them detailed instructions and they follow it, then we won’t have any problem.

  • Provide step-by-step instructions on how to feed your betta fish.
  • Use a pillbox for proper food allocation. Label it and put food pellets in each labeled day (4-6 pellets per day).
  • Make sure to only give out the regular amount of food; never add an extra as this might overfeed your betta. There is also a possibility that it will not eat the food and will only fall to the bottom. These could only pollute the water and might cause an ammonia spike harming your betta fish.
  • If you will be away for a longer period, it will also be helpful to teach them about changing the water and cleaning the tank.

What if a family member or a friend is not available?

Feed them with the regular portion before leaving and do the same straight away when you get back. Do not overfeed them to compensate for the days that you will be away. This will only lead to waste and can cause harm to your betta fish, as mentioned above.

Use an automatic fish feeding device

Use an automatic fish feeding device
Automatic fish feeder standing on the aquarium cover.

Automatic feeders are the best solution to ensure that your betta fish eats well without asking for help from anyone. Depending on the device, you can stay out for weeks or even a few months. Automatic fish feeding devices are easy to use and are available online or at your local store.

These automatic fish feeding devices can set up a feeding schedule and the amount of food your fish will consume. However, quality feeders come at a high price. Cheaper versions might only release food once a day.

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So if you have specific requirements, better to make a search and go over the features of fish feeders online or in your area. This might cost you much, but this will ensure that your betta fish is eating properly while you are on vacation.

After your purchase, test your device first. A defective feeder will harm your betta. Remember, it is better to spend on a high-quality device than lose your beloved betta.

Cheaper versions can work well too, especially if you are away for just a few days. But make sure that it at least lets the moisture out. Soft foods will not sit well with your betta.

However, this is not only the factor your betta fish needs to survive. Your betta fish needs regular water changes. Most containers need water changes once a week, while smaller tanks require a couple of water changes in a week.

Maintenance of filters and other tank devices are a must as well for the well-being of your betta. Unless you can address these concerns, it is better to not leave your betta fish for too long.

Make use of food blocks

If you are going to be away for just a couple of days or less than a week, food blocks are a good option. These are compressed fish food that dissolves into your tank.

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There are a lot of varieties of food blocks on the market for you to choose from. Make sure you select the best ones made for your betta fish. Some food blocks available out there is not an ideal source for bettas.

These food blocks breakdown gradually in the water and provides small amounts of food pellets to your betta. This way, you can ensure that your betta fish is eating regularly until you return.

However, there are some downsides to this option. There is a possibility that the food will not be released equally and could cause your fish to starve for days.

These also have water and waste issues. Food blocks can cause water clouding and can get your water dirty. It can alter the pH level of the water and can cause ammonia spikes.

But these will not be a problem if you have a large tank and a reliable filter.

Use a feeder fish

If you can get your hands to a fish fry, then this can also be an option. You can add a good amount of fish fry in the tank. Enough to feed your betta fish but not grow it into adolescence.

Make sure you have a large tank. A small container may not provide enough space for the fish once the fry grows.

However, this can only work for a short period.

There is also a possibility that the betta fish will not eat the feeder fish even if it’s a betta fry.

Fast your betta fish

In their natural habitat, betta fish can go as long as two weeks without eating. So if you are only away for 2-3 days, then not feeding your betta will be just fine. You need not ask people for help or look for products to ensure they are eating adequately.

But remember that after 3 days, your Betta will enter starvation mode. This will stress them and can lead to sickness, so make sure to not go beyond these days.

However, this is not advisable for older bettas. This will only work for young bettas, as they have the strength to handle fasting.

Other considerations

Food is not the only thing to consider when you are planning to leave your betta for days.

  • TankClean your tank properly and change the water before you go. Don’t forget to clean your filter as well and check its tubing.
  • Water Temperature — Your bettas need to have a water temperature of 76-81 degrees Fahrenheit. If your location is warm, then you somehow need not control the temperature. However, for cold areas, you need to have a heater. Make sure that your heating device is working and is set up accurately.
  • Lighting – Check your aquarium lighting system before you leave. Bettas need light, but you should not keep it on for too long.
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Final Thoughts

There are a lot of ways on how to feed betta fish when on vacation. Just be wary of the method you will use, as this will affect your beloved bettas. While they can go as long as two weeks without food, it is long enough for them to die from starvation and lack of nutrition.

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