How to Keep Fish Alive and Thriving in Your Aquarium

how to keep fish alive

Fish are a beautiful addition to any home.

A pet fish can stay with you for years. The environment in which you keep your fish directly affects their lifespan.

Wondering how to keep fish alive for a long time? Follow our guide below. We’ll cover everything from basic care to how to keep a fish alive while on vacation.

Keep reading to learn more!

1. Food

Maintaining your fish’s health requires adequate nutrition. Most fish-owners kill their fish through overfeeding. Fish should finish their food in about two minutes or less, otherwise, they’ve been fed too much.

The type of food and portions are unique to each fish. Buying high-quality coral food and fish food is the key to keeping your fish and their environment in optimal condition.

2. Cleaning

Fish tanks require delicate but consistent maintenance practices to keep fish thriving. We’ll cover proper maintenance and filtration here.


You’re going to want to do an easy 15% water change frequently. This means you won’t have to dump everything out of your fish tank. But you will be removing toxic buildup.

Remove some of your old water and replace it with clean new water. Avoid any harsh chemicals during this process as they can kill your fish.


Proper aquarium filters will protect your fish. There are three steps to the filtration process: chemical, mechanical and biological. You’ll need different tools for each type of filtration, all of which are available at a pet store.

3. Aquarium Habitat

Aquarium fish are no different than wild fish. There are certain do’s and dont’s of aquarium keeping. Most tend to what a fish would enjoy in the wild.


The ideal aquarium temperature is 76° to 80°F (25° to 27°C). This is a strict range as if the temperature becomes too cool, the fish will die. An aquarium water heater will keep the temperature in the correct range.

The temperature does vary by fish though. For example, 72° to 84°F is best for how to keep a Betta fish alive. Know your fish species and adjust.


Never place your aquarium in direct sunlight. Never place your aquarium near airconditioning or heating units, even fireplaces. These units will disturb the temperature.


Give the fish adequate space to swim freely, as they would in natural waters. Overcrowding your aquarium can cause your fish to become unhealthy. This also means buying the right size aquarium for the amount of fish you plan to own.

Natural Cover

Fish need space to swim and cover to hide. As you’d naturally find rocks and corals in the ocean, fish in aquariums expect the same. Place some rocks and plants where fish can play, hide, and sleep.

4. How to Keep Fish Alive While on Vacation

Fish require much more maintenance than you might have expected. Like any pet, they can’t be left alone for too long. You can phone a friend or ask a family member or neighbor to care for your fish.

Alternatively, you can find an automatic fish feeder or vacation feeder.

The Guide on How to Keep a Fish Alive

That’s how to keep fish alive for a new fish owner! It might seem like a lot of work at first, but you’ll develop a routine. Follow the guide above and your fish will swim for years to come!

Now that you’ve got some insight on making sure your fish are happy and healthy, check out our article on the best fish for beginners.

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