Can Betta Fish Eat Goldfish Food: Things To Know (2021)

Can Betta Fish Eat Goldfish Food: Things To Know (2021)

Having the bettas and goldfish in the same tank enhances the interior decor of the room by providing a beautiful and colorful view of the tank.

Bettas are the best and low-maintained fish to keep in the tank. In case of a shortage of betta food or plenty of goldfish food, one question quickly strikes your mind.

Can betta fish eat goldfish food?

Can you feed betta fish goldfish flakes?

The answer to this question is hidden in the fact that if it can fulfill the nutrient requirement of betta fish. Bettas are picky-eaters they can eat a diverse variety of food.

But to keep betta healthy, you need to provide them a complete and well-balanced diet full of nutrients. Diet has a major role in the activity, growth, and swimming of betta.

So in this post, you will get the fact-based answer to your question.

Can Betta Fish Eat Goldfish Flakes

To the point and simple answer is yes, betta fish can eat goldfish flakes.

They can digest it and can survive on goldfish flakes. But the problem is that the betta fish cannot get the necessary nutrients from the goldfish food.

Basically, the goldfish food does not accomplish the carnivorous need of betta fish. Betta fish need high protein content in their diet. On the other hand, goldfish food is made up of fruits and vegetables.

Bettas can survive on goldfish flakes but cannot thrive. It will create mineral deficiencies in the bettas fish. In short, you can feed betta fish goldfish flakes occasionally, but not as a staple diet.

Recommended: what can you feed betta fish

Why You Should Not Feed Betta Fish Goldfish Flakes

Food is meant for the supply of nutrients to the fish. Either you feed flakes or pellets to betta fish, it must be full of nutrients. You should not feed betta fish goldfish flakes because both fishes differ in their dietary requirement. This table will help you to understand the difference.

Difference between betta and goldfish:

Betta FishGoldfish
Bettas are carnivorous fish.Goldfish is omnivorous fish.
Betta is tropical fish.Goldfish is cold-water fish.
Betta basically eats worms, daphnia, and mosquitos in the wild.Goldfish basically eat a veggie-based diet of plants, fungi, algae, and some animals.
Betta fish need a high protein-based diet.Goldfish need a more carbohydrate diet with plants.

What Happens if You Feed Bettas Fish Goldfish Flakes

Now, you have a complete idea of that betta fish can eat goldfish flakes and why you should avoid it. But there some concern points to be kept in mind while feeding goldfish flakes to the betta.

Bettas have a very short digestive system specifically designed to digest the protein-based diet. But if the Betta doesn’t get enough protein in the diet, serious health issues can occur.

Affects the size of betta: Protein is essential for building muscles during the growth years. If the betta doesn’t get enough protein in their diet, their size can be reduced. Dwarf betta will be smaller in size and with weak bones. If you observe that betta is not growing properly and is smaller in size, you must check and correct their diet.

Develop serious health issues: Betta fish can eat goldfish food but at the cost of their health. They can prone to many diseases like bloating, constipation, or swim bladder disease.
Lack of protein in the betta fish diet may lead them to stop eating. This can even cause stress to the betta.
You can also observe the change in the behavior of betta. To find protein for their food, bettas can attack other small fishes in the tank. In a nutshell, the wrong and poor protein will seriously affect the health of betta.

What do Betta Fish Eat in The Wild

To mimic the natural environment for a betta in the tank, you must have an idea of what do betta fish eat in the wild. Naturally, bettas are found in the tropical and shallow waters of Asia. They eat most of the meaty food in the wild.

Insects Larvae: Betta fish readily eat insect larvae in the wild habitat. Most insects come to the surface of the water to lay their eggs. Like mosquitos, they lay their eggs on the still water which becomes the food for betta fish. Betta either waits to eat the larvae or eats up the adult mosquito.

Crustaceans: Besides insect larvae, betta also eats small crustaceans like daphnia, brine shrimp, or scud. These small crustaceans are highly beneficial for betta and supply a major protein content to their diet. Even the constipated betta can be treated by feeding daphnia.

Bloodworms: Bloodworms are a great source of fat and proteins for bettas. Generally, bloodworms are the larvae of midge fly. In wild, bettas eat bloodworms to fulfill their carnivorous nature. These bloodworms keep the fish active by triggering their hunting mode.

Fruit Flies: Common fruit flies or Drosophila Melanogaster also become the food of betta fish. The fruit flies are a great source of protein and other nutrients. You can easily buy these flies from the store, or you can make their cultures at home.

Small Fishes: In addition to other foods, bettas can also eat small fishes in the pond. They are carnivorous, so they don’t have a problem in preying the small fishes for their food.

What Should You Feed Betta Fish in the Tank?

So betta fish can eat goldfish flakes in case of need. But what should be the best diet for betta fish? Betta being a carnivorous fish needs meat and a protein-based diet. You can feed betta with a diverse variety of food, from live food to flakes.

Live Food

You would certainly want to know that if you cannot feed betta fish goldfish flakes, what will be the choice then.

Live food is the best food to feed the goldfish in the tank. Live food keeps betta fish active and healthy.

They fulfill their protein diet. A versatile variety of live food for betta fish is available in the market, you can buy them. But if you are more concerned about betta fish health, you can culture the live food in your home. Of course, it will be time-consuming and messy, so buying will be the best option.

You can feed the above-mentioned live food to bettas fish in the tank, that they eat in the wild. Daphnia, mosquito larvae, or bloodworms will go a good hand to supply the protein content to betta fish.

Frozen Food

Live food will be costly, so you can choose frozen food. Frozen food is highly nutritious as same of live food. Only the moisture of live food is removed to preserve it.

The additional benefit of frozen food is it is free of bacteria or parasites. Before feeding the frozen food to the betta fish, soften the food to make it easily digestible for betta fish.

Provide frozen food to betta fish twice or thrice a week to accomplish protein needs.

Freeze-Dried Food

Freeze-dried food is also free of the risk of causing diseases in betta fish. You should defrost the sufficient quantity of freeze-dried food, that you need for one time. Don’t refreeze the defrosted food as it can develop bacteria in it. Buy the freeze-dried food from a reputable store to ensure its quality.


Pellets are more nutritious than flakes. They provide all the essential nutrients to the betta fish. If you are going to buy pellets, check the nutritious count of the pack. It must have a sufficient quantity of proteins. Two to three pellets a day will be enough for betta fish.


Most betta fish keepers prefer to feed flakes as they are cheap. But the flakes are least nutritious with fillers in their ingredients. You should alternate the flakes with pellets and live food to keep the fish healthy.

Bottom Line

Betta fish can eat goldfish flakes, but it will not supplement essential nutrients to the betta. If you run a shortage of betta food, you can feed betta fish goldfish flakes. But it should be occasional or in case of need. Don’t make it a staple or regular diet of betta fish, it will create protein deficiency leading to many diseases. If you observe behavioral changes like an attack on other fishes or stress, alter the goldfish flakes immediately with pellets or live food. Your betta fish is sensitive to food, provide them a balanced diet with high protein content.


Can Goldfish Eat Betta Fish Food?

Just like betta fish cannot thrive on goldfish flakes, goldfish cannot also put up with betta fish food. The betta fish food is of high protein content. Goldfish cannot digest the betta fish protein food that can cause constipation. Prolonged constipation leads to swim bladder disease and ultimately death occurs.

Will Betta Fish Kill Other Fishes?

Betta fish are known for their fighting nature. They can fight any other fish for food, and the fight can last for about 15 minutes. Betta can nip the fins of other fishes including goldfish. Feeding low protein food can cause the betta to attack other fishes harming them but not killing them.

How Do You Now Betta Fish is Happy?

Feeding a balanced diet with protein content makes betta fish happy. If the betta is swimming actively and has open fins with vibrant color, it means that betta fish happy. If you want to keep betta active and healthy, don’t give them goldfish flakes regularly.

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