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If your children are asking you to get a pet and you just don't have the time you would need to dedicate to a dog or a cat, you may like to think about getting them some fish to look after. Fish tend to be less demanding than other popular small pets like hamsters, guinea pigs or gerbils and it's a great way of teaching children about responsibilities. With this said, looking after pet fish and making sure their tanks are kept immaculately clean, is very important but it won't need doing as often as a hamster cage or other type of hutch!
One of the most important factors when considering buying some fish to keep as pets, is to make sure you choose very easy maintenance ones but which need a little bit more than just having to throw some food in for them every once in a while. The other factor is to make sure you invest in some hardy fish avoiding any species that are too delicate and which may die which could cause a bit of an upset in the home.
It is always nicer to have a few fish swimming around in a tank rather than just a single one. Not only will they provide more entertainment if there are a few species in the tank but it means children will have more fun watching them and looking after their pets. However, you need to make sure the tank is big enough to accommodate the amount of fish you decide to get and that the fish get on with each other and not end up fighting!
It's always a good idea to involve the children right from the word go and this includes them getting in on the act where research is concerned. When it comes to choosing the sort of tank and fish they would like to keep, they need to know from the word go what your budget is and how hard an aquarium would be to look after properly. First and foremost, it's important to explain to the kids that freshwater fish are a lot easier to look after than salt water fish.
You need to choose easy maintenance yet colourful fish because they will keep children more interested in their pets for longer. However, the key to successfully keeping fish is to choose species which are known to be hardy. Goldfish are great but if you add some variety, this will make the tank that much more interesting all round.
When it comes to the platy, these delightful fish are a great choice for first-timers because not only are they very hardy little fish but they come in many varieties. The other advantage is you can keep platys with a good selection of other species of fish which includes the pretty swordtail even if the tank is quite small. Platys are friendly, active and like to be kept with a few pals. They are what is known as live-bearing fish which means they hold eggs in their bodies and give birth to free-swimming young fish. They are omnivorous and will eat fish flakes so they are easy maintenance on the food front too.
Swordtails are lovely looking fish that are fun to watch. They too are live-bearing and similar in shape to a platy or guppy. They come in a variety of colours and will certainly do their bit to liven up a tank in a really nice way, they not only add a touch of colour but excitement to the tank which helps keep children interested in their pets for longer.
The fancy guppy is a very easy maintenance and hardy little fish which makes them a great choice for first-time owners. They also make a great addition to a tank and get on well with other fish like swordtails and platys. Guppys like to be in groups and are very adaptable characters that can happily live in a variety of tank conditions which includes brackish water. They come in lots of colours and are fun to watch as they play in the plants and other things you place in their tank environments.
Choosing a good sized aquarium and then taking the time to do a little research on the type of fish your children would like to keep as easy maintenance pets, is very worthwhile. Setting up a tank can be great fun as long as you make sure you choose the right type of plants, gravel, filters and anything else you might need which all needs to be done before you buy the fish. Aquariums in a child's bedroom are a great fun feature. Keeping fish as first pets teaches kids a little about responsibility which is a great lesson they will be benefit from and which will stand them in good stead when they get older.
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