You may have observed the goldfish gasping for air in the fish tank. Many people will not observe the fish in their tanks, but some of them will observe the fish for analyzing their condition. 

The goldfish will be gasping for air due to low oxygenation in the tank, goldfish will be staying at the top for gulping air every time. It was mainly due to dirty water and no oxygenation in the tank.

If your goldfish is gasping for air, then you are in the right place.

In this article, I will be sharing the problems of goldfish gasping for air and How to treat them well. So after reading this blog, you will be caring for the goldfish and cleaning the tank.

So let’s start.

Why is my fish gasping for air?

goldfish gasping for air

The goldfish will be gasping for air due to low oxygenation in the tank. You can see the goldfish staying at the top of the tank and spending a lot of time. The fish is not getting enough oxygen for breathing.

If you see the fish spending a lot of time at the water’s surface and trying to breathe, it was a sign of the fish cannot breathe at the bottom or tank.

Lack of oxygen

It was the main problem that every fish owner faces, The fish will struggle for breathing oxygen in the tank. But the main issue is the tank was low oxygenated.

The fish will be stressed due to the lack of oxygen in the tank. If you observe the fish staying at the top and gulping air from outside the tank then it was due to a lack of oxygen in the tank. Sometimes the goldfish show erratic movements or stay at one place for long time like a goldfish sleep.

Dirty water

goldfish gasping for air

The second reason is dirty water, If the water becomes dirty then you need to change it asap!.

You need to change the water once every week and clean the fish tank once every month for maintaining clean water. Otherwise, the fish will get stressed due to dirty water and struggle for breathing in the tank.

How do you oxygenate a goldfish’s water?

goldfish gasping for air

For oxygenation in the tank, you can use an air pump or filter for creating a flow. There are a lot of ways for oxygenating the water.

  • You can directly pour some water from a certain height for generating oxygen. 
  • You can change the water completely and provide fresh water in the tank.
  • You can use an air pump or aquarium filter for generating oxygen into the tank.
  • You can plant some live plants in the tank for converting the carbon dioxide into oxygen.

How do you manually oxygenate water?

goldfish gasping for air

For oxygenation of the water manually, you can use a clean cup with water filled and directly pour it into the fish tank.

While pouring water directly, you need to look at the fish staying away. Otherwise, the fish will get damaged due to the high force of the water.

You will be thinking, how will pouring water from a distance will increase the oxygen in the water? If you pour water into the tank there will create a water flow and enhance the oxygen from outside.

The water flow will convert carbon dioxide into oxygen. It was the way for generating oxygen manually into the water.

How do you know if your fish is struggling to breathe?

goldfish gasping for air

The goldfish will struggle for breathing due to various reasons. Sometimes they will be stressed and start breathing rapidly.

If they breathe rapidly due to stress, you can see some erratic movements shown by the goldfish.

The second way to know the fish is struggling for oxygen is through the fish will spend a lot of time on the water’s surface. The fish is looking for a way for breathing the air. 

Sometimes, the fish will be laying at bottom of the tank in a way of upside down. Then You need to suddenly change the water and provide a good air pump and water flow for the fish.

If you see the fish doing the above situation, then check the water test to know the water temperature, oxygen level, and ammonia spread in the tank.

Why are goldfish gasping for air after water change

The goldfish will be gasping for air after the water change because the fish get stressed and change in water parameters.

The sudden water change will make the fish stressed, but there is no problem because after some time the fish get relief from stress.

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How to treat the goldfish

In these situations, you need to care for the goldfish otherwise they will die so fast.

The low oxygenation in the tank will make the fish’s health low.

For preventing the goldfish from gasping for air( Low oxygen), you need to do below things.

Proper Maintenance 

goldfish gasping for air

In this section, you need to change the water in the tank once every week. You can remove 80% of the water and refill it with fresh water. 

The second thing is, you need to clean the tank once every month for increasing the oxygenation in the tank.

Proper Filteration

goldfish gasping for air

You need to provide proper filtration in the tank and check the filtration is working properly. Clean the filter cartridge every two weeks for gold filtration.

Sometimes the waste will be stuck in the filter and proper filtration will not be done.

Proper Feeding

goldfish gasping for air

It was the important section, you need to feed the goldfish according to time schedules because overfeeding in the tank will make a lot of waste.

So the tank will get dirty due to a lot of food waste and the fish will be struggling for oxygen. The food waste will spread ammonia and nitrite in the water. 

Wrapping up

Now you know the reason for goldfish gasping for air and how to treat them. If this article helps you to sort out the problem. Share with friends and family.


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