Any experienced and proper Goldfish keeper will tell you why Goldfish bowls are a bad idea. Even a child should able to understand why. But sadly, There are many would not accept the fact Goldfish are not for bowls. You will hear some say they had Goldfish in bowls for years without a problem and the fish were happy and healthy. Most of them probably didn’t know what breed of Goldfish they had. This is pretty much like let a human to live in a 10 x 10 room in their whole life. When you don’t have a choice you can’t do anything about it. Those poor Goldfish have the same fate. There are so many reasons they might die from an accident or mistake which wouldn’t kill them in a Goldfish tank. Also, a Fish which keeps in Goldfish Bowls would never reach their natural size.
Goldfish Bowls Origin
Goldfish never meant to spend their lives in bowls. This has happened after a misunderstanding. In China where Goldfish were first created, they kept them in ponds. But time to time they have put them in Big bowls to show visitors or in events like parties just as decorations. It was never used as permanent housing. But Europeans who show them for the first time thought Goldfish live in fish bowls. So They started making Goldfish Bowls to keep Goldfish. With time these bowls got smaller and smaller.
When it comes to fish and fish tanks size does matter. Most types of Goldfish grow big. Especially if you have single tail breeds like Common Goldfish, Comet Goldfish, Shubunkin etc. Thai Oranda Goldfish breeds grow large too. All these types of Goldfish can grow over 6-8 inches easily. This won’t happen in a Goldfish Bowl. You can find photos of fish which lived years in Goldfish Bowls and you will find most of them look small and also look deformed. Goldfish are adaptable fish they do their best to survive with what they have. But that doesn’t mean they deserve it. A Betta fish would do better in a bowl but personally, I wouldn’t recommend that either. A Betta should have at least 5-gallon tank and A Twin tail goldfish should have at least 10-15 gallon tank. Single tail Goldfish need more space so a bigger tank.
Goldfish Bowls Get Dirty Too Fast
Goldfish are known to eat a lot and poop a lot. They don’t have stomachs or never get the feeling “Full” (Read About it Here). So Bio load increase way too fast and you need to clean the bowl way too often. There are filters for Goldfish Bowls but these are not 100% successful. These filters make the bowl even more crowded for the poor goldfish. Still, you have to clean water too often to get rid of all toxic chemicals like Ammonia etc.
Best Goldfish Tank Setup?
If you want Goldfish but don’t have much space then start small. First, if a Goldfish Pond is an option you can take then go for it. Most types of Goldfish can survive in a pond. If you can’t have a pond then buy go for smaller Breeds of Goldfish. First, decide on how big the tank you buy can be. If it’s just 20 gallons then you should only have one fish. Preferably a Ranchu, Telescope Goldfish, Rykin Goldfish etc. If you can have a 40 gallon tank then 2 Goldfish can be housed even a 3 if you have a good filteration system. But don’t buy those big single tail breeds of Goldfish like Common Goldfish, Comet Goldfish, Shubunkin etc. A small tank will make their lives miserable as well as yours because you will have to clean the tank too often including mess job of cleaning filters.