An Introduction of the Fishtacular Kind

A cat, a dog, three fish… at what point do we get to start calling ourselves a menagerie?

You may remember that, a few weeks ago, after sorting through all the junk that was left over at my parents’ place from our university days, we rescued Mark’s fish tank. He spent some time cleaning it, set up all the bits of equipment, filled it with gravel, water, bits of fake plants, and driftwood and then let it sit for a couple weeks, allow it to filter and settle. Then, we went to PetSmart. After a half hour chat with their ridiculously knowledgeable fish expert, we came home with four little neons and kerplunked them into their new home.

Why neons?

Apparently, they’re hardy little critters. They can handle the harshness of a brand new tank, can take whatever chemical imbalances may exist while the filter figures itself out. They may even be able to survive through a little tank neglect! They didn’t require a heater, so were fine to put in while we figured out that situation. And, they were cheap! At a dollar each, if we happen to kill them, there’s no huge investment to mourn over.

In fact, less than a week later, we found one floating belly-up among the plastic tips of the fake plants.

Why four?

Well, that was the most our fish expert recommended putting into a brand new tank. I can’t fully remember the reasoning, but it sounded like a good one, so we went with it.

What would we do without our fish expert?

The tank sits in our living room, on a dresser that was the perfect size to place beside our couch. It makes it all a little cramped, but it’s comfortable and these little guys are fascinating to watch as they sprint around their tiny tank at top speed. One of Mocha’s new favourite things to do is sitting on the arm of the couch watching them, batting at the glass with her paws.

Come to think of it, she probably gave that dead neon a heart attack.

I wish I had gotten around remaking this dresser as I did its pair before we set a heavy fish tank full of water on it. If I’m honest with myself, I know it will not likely not happen for a very long time, if ever. At least it’s giving us a little more storage to hide our clutter away.

Yes, the castle is on its side. The bubble machine pushes it up all the time and the fish don’t seem to mind, so… neither do I.

Friends with fish tanks! What do you have in your tank? Have you ever tried photographing them? So hard, trying to catch them at an almost still moment.

0 thoughts on “An Introduction of the Fishtacular Kind

  1. A couple cats, a dog, a lizard…whatever! What's four more little fishies in a happy home?
    I get so much back from all our pets (well maybe not Ozzy, the lizzard of Oz, but my son sure loves him). Don't you just love coming home to that wagging tail? It's like cheap therapy to have a good dog in your life. Plus, your dog thinks you are awesome, even when you don't! xo

  2. So glad you ended up setting up the fish tank. I agree, it's fun and relaxing to watch them swim about. We have two smaller goldfish, a comet and a common, which do not require a heater either. "Agent Orange" and "Nemo" are quite hardy if 'dirty' fish.
    Yes it is hard to photograph them well. Here is a shot of our basic 5 gallon tank setup. We will be moving our fish to a new home shortly where the tank will receive a decor upgrade (new gravel and faux plantlife). The larger purple-tinged rocks are some that the kids and I found in a dry creek bed one day that have crevices where their mineral nature shines through. They are all pieces of a larger rock that broke open. The shipwreck is one my six year old just had to have as he is really in to shipwrecks, pirates, and buried treasure. Agent Orange is in the lower right looking and 'talking' to me. Nemo, named by my three year old daughter, is swimming away at the left, the other 'fish' is his reflection. I believe I used an 'action' shot setting to get the fish sans blur.

  3. Yes! Our pets mean a lot to me. These fish… they're a little less snuggly, so they're still working their way into my heart. But I would argue that it's pretty hard to have too many pets…

    (Well. Within limits, anyway.)

  4. Loving the new fish tank in your house! that's so fun! My best friend has a fish tank in his house and it's so entertaining watching them swim. However, the downfall is….cleaning it! It grows really ugly algae when you leave it out a week or 2 w/out cleaning it properly.

  5. Right now we have two fairly large gold fish and 4 of the 9 neon tetras we started out with a few years ago. I always like to have an uneven number of fish – somehow I think it looks better when they swim in a group. And yes, I've tried photographing them too. So thankful for digital cameras! That way I can take loads of pictures to get one half decent one. Enjoy your aquarium! I think one of the reasons they often (used to) have them in doctor's waiting rooms is exactly because they are relaxing to watch.

  6. I don't have a fish tank anymore, but I used to have a single beta fish. It was very pretty to look at, and the dog used to love to watch it swim. There were a few times he tried to chase it and was quite confused that it couldn't go further than the edge of the tank. 🙂

    I decided to get rid of the tank after about a year, when my fish (who I had named 'Sushi') passed. I hated cleaning the tank and often got B to help me because the fish would try to escape during the cleaning process. I didn't like touching the fish when it inevitably escaped.

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