For many families around the country, buying their first pet can be a big step. Some will be excited about introducing a new arrival to the family, but others may feel nervous about which type of pet will best suit their lifestyle. For those taking their first steps into pet-parenthood, fish can be the perfect place to start. Offering a low-maintenance and educational experience, there are many reasons why you and your little ones will love fishkeeping. Why fish are fin-tastic for kids Everyone knows that pets, such as dogs and cats are easy to bond with, but you may be interested to hear that fish are too! Scientists have found that goldfish are able to remember and recognise human faces1, making it easier for children and fish to get to know each other. Despite many people thinking fish also have a three second memory, they can actually remember events from up to five months before2, meaning they may come to know friends and family members too! What’s more, children can enjoy interactive feeding sessions with their fishy friends through foods such as Tetra FunTips, which can be stuck to the inside of the aquarium glass allowing children to watch their pets feed up close. Tetra’s Minions themed aquariumis the perfect tank for a fishkeeping beginner. As well as being 30L in size, the aquarium comes with everything a budding fishkeeper needs to get started, from fun decorations to a Tetra EasyCrystal filter, food and water care products. Research also shows that goldfish have tetrachromatic vision allowing them to see colours more vividly than us humans3. So, little ones can be as creative as they like when it comes to making the perfect home for their new pet. And, why you’ll love them just as much! If you’re a busy family who are looking for a hassle-free, low maintenance pet, fishkeeping may be the answer. Not only are aquariums available in a range of sizes and styles allowing them to slot easily into the home, but they also provide numerous lifestyle benefits with fishkeepers claiming that fish create a relaxing talking point in the home and they help them to sleep better4. Probably why nine out of ten fishkeepers would actively encourage others to invest in an aquarium. With seven being the most common age for kids to get their first pet4, fish are a great way of making your little ones feel really grown up by providing them with the responsibility of looking after new family members in an easy and engaging way. Plus, fishkeeping can have a positive impact on their school development helping to improve social skills, encourage cognitive development and even help them to meet or exceed teacher’s expectations compared to those without pets4! To help even the youngest of fishkeepers find their feet with their family, Tetra’s Fish Expert Dave Hulse has given his top tips on how to get started.
Dave’s top tips for first time fish keepers
· Choose your fish wisely– As you begin your fishkeeping journey, it may be easier to go with a cold-water fish as these are often easier to take care of. Goldfish are one of the most popular fish among beginners, and with 300 varieties available, you’ve got plenty to choose from. Just make sure you speak to your local retailer about which is best for your aquarium. · Prepare your water– Not many fishkeepers realise that, whilst perfectly harmless to us, tap water can be poisonous to our fishy friends. When setting up your aquarium, it’s important to use water care products that remove any harmful chemicals. Tetra’s AquaSafe makes tap water safe for fish by immediately neutralising harmful substances, whilst Tetra SafeStartcreates a biologically active environment to allow the fast introduction of fish into a newly set up aquarium. · Decorate for a stimulating environment–Just like us, fish like their home to look good too. By decorating your fish tank, it will not only give your fish an attractive and stimulating environment to live in, but it will look amazing in your home too!