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Can Betta Fish Get Fat? [Reasons and Remedies]

Can Betta Fish Get Fat? [Reasons and Remedies]

The most prevalent aquarium fish that many prefer is the Betta fish. This is primarily because of their bright color, beauty, and hardy characteristics. It is common to notice one of your Betta becoming fat and bloated more than once. At first, it may get you worried. 

There are many kinds of fishes, be it saltwater or freshwater. With freshwater types, you might have probably seen these a lot in aquariums: the comet goldfish, the fancy guppy, or the eye-catching ember tetra

Before you take your betta fish to your nearest veterinarian, you should find out whether they are sick or pregnant. I investigated and researched the question: can betta fish get fat? And, if yes! What causes bloating or obesity in Betta fishes? 

Typically, betta fish become fat and bloated due to pregnancy, in which they spend more time hiding and become aggressive towards other tank mates. They also developed a gravid spot. Other causes for betta fish to be fat can be constipation, dropsy bacterial infection, overfeeding, and protozoal infections. 

As we move forward, I will tell you how to differentiate between a pregnant betta fish from a sick one. If your betta fish is sick, I will help you by giving you a few tips to ensure that the problem gets resolved and addressed as soon as possible. Let’s first talk about: Can Betta Fish Get Fat? 

Can Betta Fish Get Fat?

Yes, betta fish can get fat; sometimes, it can be intentional. You can be overfeeding your bettas, or your fish live in an environment with scarce resources to keep them stimulated, resulting in more fat deposits. They can also be pregnant or suffering from an underlying disease. 

However, fish, like betta fish, rarely experience issues like scarcity, especially if their owners are diligent and careful. It also begs the question: why are some betta fish fat? Are they pregnant? Or do they merely overeat? These are some questions many first-time aquarists ask, but they fail to get any help.

 In humans, overeating and pregnancy are significant causes of obesity. Therefore, comparing this factor with fish isn’t wrong. With Betta fish, finding the exact cause of sudden bloating or fatness with so many factors to consider isn’t going to be easy, though. 

5 Reasons Why Does My Betta Fish Have A Big Belly

5 Reasons Why Does My Betta Fish Have A Big Belly

#1. Pregnancy.

If your betta fish is a female with a swollen belly, she is pregnant. There is nothing to be worried about because your female fish’s abdomen is filled with eggs rather than fat deposits. 

There is nothing wrong in suspecting a better face to be pregnant once they gain weight. A better fish usually lays eggs. Her belly is likely to be filled with x. Better fish or very easy to breed because they are very well blessed with retaining can retain sperm and become pregnant later when the surrounding conditions suit them. To ensure your betta fish is pregnant, look for the following signs. 

5 Signs Of Pregnancy In Betta Fish

  1. You will first see that your betta fish will appear healthy and normal. 
  2. She might have difficulty swimming due to having eggs in her abdomen.
  3. She may eat less because of a loss of appetite when she is about to give birth or near delivery time. 
  4. She may search for the right place or hide a lot to lay her eggs. 
  5. The gravity spot of your fish will look larger and black when it fertilizes its eggs.

When it comes to pregnancy, you don’t need anything extra to do or to get. Ensure you feed the right food quality with enough time to betta fish. Make sure to have patience because your betta fish will be delicate. 

Remember that even if your betta fish is pregnant, it doesn’t necessarily mean she is about to lay her eggs. It is essential to eliminate all possible causes or decorations that may stress your betta fish and prevent it from laying eggs.

#2. Dropsy

Another reason for your betta fish to be fat is dropsy. It is typically a fish disease common in aquarium fish and is generally caused by Aeromonas. In this disease, water and other fluids in the aquarium accumulate with your betta fish tissues and body, giving them an obese appearance. Their gills may also stand out. 

It is essential to look for dropsy disease signs in your betta fish. These infections can lead to an extreme fluid buildup within your betta fish’s abdominal cavity, causing bloating and sudden death. Before you associate your betta fish fatness with obesity, check for dropsy’s symptoms. 

5 Signs Of Dropsy In Betta Fish

  • Loss Of Appetite
  • Stringy Feces
  • Swollen Anus
  • Pale Gills
  • Lethargy 

Dropsy is one of the most deadly and frightening diseases that kill most fish coming in contact with it. Nowadays, it has been seen many aquarists kill their fish that develop dropsy. The reason for them to do this is explained as they want to keep their cute bettas from additional suffering. 

Like many other diseases that can cause your betta fish, dropsy can also damage the internal organs. Below are some steps to treat your betta fish suffering from dropsy. Make sure you provide enough care by following the steps below.

How To Prevent Dropsy In Betta Fish?

  1. Firstly, quarantine your fish that is suffering from dropsy to another aquarium.
  2. Consider giving your fish an epsom salt treatment. Just add one teaspoon to one tablespoon of epsom salt for each gallon of water.
  3. Now feed your betta fish with high-quality protein-rich food in a moderate amount. 
  4. You can also add some antibacterial medications like API Melafix or the one prescribed by your veterinarian. 
  5. Make sure you are changing the tank water frequently. 

#3. Overfeeding

With beginners, overfeeding happens all the time. Fish like bettas; they keep eating if you keep feeding them. Therefore overfeeding can be the primary cause of weight gain in your bettas. Overfeeding is known to cause rapid weight gain in Betta. And, weight is often associated with more challenges. 

The very harmful fact about overfeeding is the quantities of leftovers in the aquarium’s water that produce waste and the concentration of nitrates & ammonia in their tank. Therefore, you should always check the water parameters of your Betta’s tank periodically from time to time. 

If left unchecked, the leftovers will lower the oxygen and pH levels, weakening your betta fish’s immune system. They will be vulnerable to many health concerns like fun rot, discoloration, etc. 

The waste and leftovers will clog the filter and increase mold manifestation. Deterioration of the aquarium’s condition and water parameters can cause improper digestion in betta fish. 

This will likely cause your betta fish to suffer from health issues like swim bladder disease and constipation. Since your betta fish has such a complex body, you must be very careful when feeding your bettas. It doesn’t take long to destroy the overall balance of your aquarium creation and cause disease to your fish. 

#4. Constipation

Do you know that constipation can also cause bloating in betta fish? When your betta fish suffers from constipation, it will produce either little or no waste. And when it makes waste, its poops trails and rugged. 

The most common cause of constipation has been noticed to be overfeeding, infection, or inadequate diet. The condition isn’t merely an inconvenience. Very soon, your betta fish suffering from constipation will stop eating altogether. And if it is left untreated, it could cause sudden death. If you notice stringy feces, I recommend taking it to your local veterinarian.

  • Bloating

You might also mistake bloating for obesity in betta fish. Bloating is a fish disease caused by parasitic, viral, or bacterial infections. If your betta fish is stressed, it is likely to have a weakened immune system. 

If you notice any symptoms in your betta fish mentioned below, take it to the vet. 

5 Symptoms Of Betta Fish Bloating 

  • Scales standing out on 
  • Appetite loss 
  • Trouble breathing 
  • Stringy faces that are white  
  • Red marks on its body


Will Bettas Overeat?

Yes. Bettas Can Overeat. Betta fish will keep eating if you keep feeding it. The bettas are likely to overeat if extra & tasty food is offered. If you overfeed your betta fish, it will cause obesity.

Is My Betta Fish Pregnant or Fat?

If your betta fish has a gravity spot and spends most of its time searching or hiding, she is pregnant. She will have a big belly and a round belly filled with eggs. She will also act normal. 


Betta fish can appear fat if it suffers from obesity, bloating, constipation, or dropsy. Betta fish can also get fat if you over-fed it. The overfed betta fish is likely to become slower and less active.

I tried my best to answer the question: can Betta fish get fat and 5 reasons why my betta fish have a big belly? 

If you like this article by then, please consider sharing it. Sharing is caring; your one share can help many people discover why their fish get fat and die. In addition, it will also appreciate and motivate us to write more. Do check other articles written by us on betta fish care. See you in the other piece, till then, take care and goodbye.