Do Goldfish Need a Friend? 10 Best Tank Mates for Goldfish

Do goldfish need friends? While research shows that many fish species—including goldfish—experience improved mental and physical health when kept with tank mates, the answer is not cut and dry.

To complicate things further, some of the most common schooling fish kept as tank mate with goldfish can be dangerous or even fatal if not paired correctly.

Luckily, several safe and compatible tank mate options are available to keep your beloved pet interesting, active, and healthy in their home aquarium.

Do goldfish need tank mates

So, do goldfish need companions? And what are the 10 best tank mates for goldfish? Read on to find out!

Will a Single Goldfish Be Lonely?

No, it is very unlikely that a single goldfish will be lonely. Goldfish do not possess the cognitive abilities to recognize and experience feelings like loneliness or boredom. They are simple creatures who respond to their environment based on instinct alone.

However, if you want a gold fish companion, feel free to purchase another one so they can coexist peacefully.

Do Goldfish Need a Friend?

Does my goldfish need a friend? Goldfish are more than just a colorful addition to any aquarium; they’re also social creatures! When kept in groups, these beautiful animals can be observed engaging with one another.

For their well-being and overall happiness, it’s highly recommended that at least two goldfish share the same tank – now, who doesn’t love having friends?

Can a Betta Fish Eat Goldfish Food

In addition, having a new tank mate can help your fancy goldfish with their physical and mental health. Goldfish living in community tanks with other fish experience less stress, more activity, and a healthier appetite.

Now that you know the answer to “Do goldfish need a friend?” let’s go over the best goldfish tank mate.

The 10 Best Suitable Goldfish Tank Mates

Dojo Loach (Misgurnus Anguillicaudatus)

This peaceful bottom feeder fish are excellent tank mates for goldfish. Dojo loaches stay relatively small, reaching a maximum size of 8 inches, and will help keep the bottom of your tank clean by eating uneaten food and debris.

Hillstream Loach (Sewellia Lineolata)

They’re an ideal tankmate for goldfish because of their habits and thrive in lower comet goldfish temperature Celsius. The main aquarium types are sometimes called tiger shelf streams or golden rings butterfly sucker.

White Cloud Mountain Minnows (Tanichthys Albonubes)

White Cloud Mountain minnows are tiny fish that require quick catches to keep from escaping the mouth snout of hungry and curious goldfish. This tiger-like creature truly deserves the respect of hobbyism. This plant thrives at temperatures similar to gold.

Zebra Danios (Giant Danio Rerio)

Zebra Danios are small fish with rapid movement and easy tolerance for temperature as golden fish. You must be careful because adult-hungry goldfish can eat these fish. They have been very quick and fast compared to the other goldfish. This species can be mixed easily and incredibly dangerous, but Dannos are incredibly quick in kicking and can easily outrun Goldy.

Banded Corydoras (Scleromystax barbatus)

Banded Corydoras are American catfish. These fish are social and must be kept in as small groups as possible. There is peace there. Their stomach is flat, their head is steeper, and they use their hammers to find food on their bottoms. This is one great small, cleaner fish that is very entertaining.

Bristlenose Pleco (Ancistrus sp.)

The bristle nose pleco is one favorite among hobby-based tanks and goldfish tank mates. This is largely not expected for the goldfish. They have short whiskers and are covered by a platelike scute that protects the fish against predators or smugglers. The majority are darker brown or black-gray colored, although the spotted species have more exotic varieties.

Hoplo Catfish (Megalechis Thoracata)

The Hoplo catfish is a good option when it weighs more than 55 liters. This is the beautiful freshwater catfish of the same class with appealing marks. It feeds throughout the day, so there’s plenty of pleasure in watching it. They are shy, so if you want the most active activity, you need 2-4 groups.

Rubbernose Pleco (Chaetostoma sp.)

If you don’t like bristle nose pleco mustache but still want an awesome-looking armored catfish for goldfish tankmates, the rubbernose pleco may be best for you. They can grow to 6 inches long and act the same, grazing on algae. These calm freshwater fish are harmless but not harmful for keeping goldfish safe.

Dwarf Gourami

Dwarf gouramis are peaceful and colorful fish that make great companions for goldfish. They prefer cooler temperatures that many other tropical fish need, making them an ideal goldfish tank mate.

Rosy Barbs (Pethia conchonius)

This active and hardy barb species can be an excellent addition to the goldfish tank. They come in bright red, orange, and yellow colors with striking black edges. The rosy barbs are also quite social, so if you keep six.

Weather Loaches (Misgurnus anguillicaudatus)

Weather loaches are great tank mates for goldfish! They have a furry-looking body and can reach an impressive size of up to 8 inches. Though they are generally peaceful, they may become aggressive if kept in too small a tank. They prefer cooler temperatures and help with the clean-up crew.

Do Goldfish Get Bored?

Does a single goldfish get lonely? Goldfish are not the most social creatures but benefit from having a compatible tank mate.

If you have a single goldfish, you can provide enrichment through toys, treats, and other environmental changes.

Goldfish need stimulation and interaction to stay active, so keep them occupied with interesting activities.

What Fish Can Live with Goldfish?

While goldfish have a very nice appearance and recognizable quality, they are also an excellent addition to local tanks. Peaceful and playful golden fish will thrive across different kinds of fishes. However, it can sometimes be complicated to preserve community goldfish habitats.

The most difficult part of creating a flourishing community for this fresh fish is selecting a goldfish mate. Goldfish are different from other tropical fishes in the trade. This means that the characteristics of potential tanks should also be considered. See what’s important.

What Makes An Ideal Goldfish Tank Mate?

Goldfish are a popular pet, but many people need to learn how to care for them properly. With the good goldfish tank mates, goldfish can become lonely and relaxed. This can lead to health problems and shortened lifespans.

By following these simple rules, you can choose the perfect mate for your goldfish and ensure they live a long and healthy life.

Here are the basic rules for choosing a new tank mate for goldfish.

Swimming Speed & Activity

Goldfish are a variety of swimming styles. For instance, comet goldfish moves very fast. Ideally, you want a fast swimmer who avoids getting in trouble. Goldfish, like bubble-like goldfish, can go more quickly.

Live In The Same Temperature Range

You should check that your potential goldfish tankmate can live in the same temperature range. Goldfish can be considered cold waters.

Most aquarium fish come from tropical regions worldwide, which can tolerate heats up to 80 degrees Celsius.

Keep them at a minimum temperature of 75 C, or even kill them at some point. Aquarium fish such as bettas, platyfish, bristlenose plecos, other freshwater snails, gouramis, and angelfish require a temperature near 80°F.

Large Enough Not To Be Eaten

Fish is an easy animal. When one looks into a fish tank, he believes there must also be something to put in a goldfish’s mouth.” And the more goldfish you get, the more roommates look for snacks.

Goldfish have no appetite at all. They have no intentions of acting mean, but if they can find anything edible in their mouths that they can also get into their tank, they have smaller fish that live in the tank.

Your goldfish tankmate will weigh 3-4 inches (8.75 to 10cm). It will help them avoid being considered snacks.

They Need A Peaceful Temperament

Although they tend to take smaller tanks, they are considered extremely serene fish. They tend not to bite the fin or act aggressively.

They can’t keep putting pressure on others if they start bullying the fish. It has a long tail that can be used by almost every tiger and tetra fish known in the world for its finned fin.

Also, any animal you put in a goldfish tank should feel peaceful. If not, the goldfish will likely die. They are not allowed to be crowded by predatory creatures such as Jack Dempsey or convicting cockatoos.

Do Goldfish Like to Be Alone or in Pairs?

Goldfish are perfectly acceptable to be kept alone, although they prefer to have other fish species around. If you plan on keeping two or more goldfish together, ensure they are the same species and similar in size.

It is also important to provide plenty of space in the tank so that each fish has enough room to swim around. Try to keep the tank populated with other compatible fish that can provide companionship for your goldfish.

Goldfish are social creatures, so they should be kept with at least one companion. The more space in the tank, the better; this will help reduce stress and promote a healthier environment. With some patience and careful selection.

Can Goldfish Live Alone?

Yes, goldfish can live alone. They are quite hardy and can survive without other fish for extended periods. Goldfish don’t need to be in a school or group to thrive; instead, they prefer more space and private areas as it reduces stress levels.

The best living conditions for goldfish include a large tank with plenty of hiding spots and moderate water flow so that oxygen is distributed evenly throughout the entire tank.

Eating habits could also change when goldfish are kept alone; typically, their food intake will decrease due to less competition for food in the tank.

Keeping a single goldfish gives you more control over how much food you give them at once, making it easier to ensure they get enough nutrition while staying healthy.

What Size Tank Do I Need for 2 Goldfish?

A 20-gallon tank is the recommended size for two goldfish. This will provide enough space for them to swim and live comfortably, as well as allow access to plenty of oxygen-rich water.

A larger tank also gives more room for decorations like rocks, plants, and gravel, which can help reduce stress and promote natural behaviors in your fish.

To ensure proper water circulation and quality, a 20-gallon tank should also include a filtration system, such as an external filter or hang-on-back (HOB) filter.

Do Goldfish Get Lonely If One Dies?

Goldfish are social creatures, so they can get lonely if one dies. They thrive in the presence of other fish and can become stressed out if they are kept alone, especially if the goldfish tank is too small.

If the only one goldfish dies, it’s best to replace it with a compatible species of similar size to keep your tank populated. This will help reduce stress levels and promote a healthier environment for the remaining fish.

It is also important to ensure the goldfish tank is adequately sized for the amount of fish you keep, as overcrowding can result in the spread of disease and anxiety among your fish.

Can I Put a New Goldfish in with My Old One?

Yes, you can put a new goldfish in with your old one. However, it’s important to make sure the two fish are compatible, as goldfish can be very territorial.

Be sure to quarantine the new fish for at least two weeks before introducing it to your old one. This will help ensure that diseases or parasites in the new fish do not spread to your existing tankmates.

Do Common Goldfish Need Tank Mates?

Do goldfish like friends? Yes, Common Goldfish will benefit from having a new tank mate. Since they’re a social species, other goldfish make great companions for them in the aquarium. Common goldfish need to be kept in two or more groups for comfort and stress reduction. They should also not be housed with aggressive fish that may try to harm or eat them.


Do fish need friends?

Do fish need companions? Schooling fish like companions for safety and stress reduction. Solitary fish may not need “friends” but benefit from tankmates of their own kind.

Should i get my goldfish a friend?

Does a goldfish need a friend? Yes, goldfish can thrive with a friend in a large tank (at least 55 gallons). They’re social fish and enjoy company. But avoid overcrowding! Upgrade your tank and filtration if needed before adding a buddy.

Do goldfish need a companion?

Do goldfish need a partner? No, goldfish do not require a companion. They can live happily on their own, as long as they have appropriate care, a suitable environment, and proper nutrition.

Do goldfish need to be in pairs?

Goldfish are social fish and thrive in groups, not just pairs. Aim for at least 2-3 in a tank large enough for their adult size (20+ gallons per goldfish).

Do goldfish need a bubbler?

Do goldfish need bubblers? Goldfish don’t necessarily need a bubbler if your tank filter creates good surface agitation. This movement helps oxygen dissolve in the water. However, a bubbler can be beneficial for tanks with heavy fish loads or low water flow.

Do goldfish need a filter?

Does a goldfish need a filter? Yes, goldfish need a filter! It cleans their water and removes harmful toxins they produce. While possible to maintain a tank without a filter, it’s much harder and requires very frequent water changes.

Do goldfish want friends?

Goldfish are social creatures and can benefit from having companions. While they don’t form the same bonds as mammals, they do enjoy the company of other goldfish.

Do goldfish need other fish?

Goldfish are social and benefit from having tank mates. They can live alone, but providing company can improve their well-being. Choose peaceful fish compatible with goldfish cooler water temperatures.

Do goldfish like bubbles?

Do goldfish need bubbles in their tank? Goldfish may not directly enjoy bubbles, but the water movement bubbles create can be beneficial. It helps oxygenate the water, which goldfish need to breathe. A well-maintained filter can achieve this too, so bubbles aren’t essential for happy goldfish.

Do goldfish need tank mates?

Goldfish aren’t lonely, but tank mates can be enriching. Choose carefully! Avoid small fish goldfish might eat and aggressive fish that could bully them. Consider tank size and water temperature for compatible tank mates.

Can goldfish be kept alone

Yes, goldfish can survive alone. But, they are social fish and thrive with tank mates. Companionship keeps them active and reduces stress.

Can you have just one goldfish?

Yes, you can keep a single goldfish. They don’t get lonely, but thrive in larger tanks (20+ gallons) with good water quality. For a stimulating environment, consider adding tank decorations.

Do fancy goldfish get lonely?

Fancy goldfish aren’t lonely like us, but they thrive with tank mates. They’re social swimmers and enjoy the company of other goldfish. Consider tank size and goldfish compatibility before adding friends.

Do goldfish need light at night?

Do goldfish need light in their tank? No, goldfish don’t need light at night. Like us, they benefit from a regular day/night cycle to regulate sleep and hormones. Keeping aquarium lights off at night promotes good health and vibrant colors.

Are goldfish happy alone?

Goldfish can survive alone, but they thrive with companions. They are social fish and enjoy the interaction. Consider keeping at least two goldfish in a tank large enough for them to grow comfortably.

Are goldfish solitary?

Goldfish aren’t solitary, but they don’t form deep bonds. They swim together for stimulation and can thrive alone in a large tank. However, keeping them with compatible tank mates can improve their well-being.

Do you need a heater for goldfish?

In most indoor tanks, a heater isn’t essential for goldfish. They tolerate a range of temperatures. But, if your room gets chilly (below 65°F), a heater can stabilize the water for their comfort.

Can comet goldfish live with betta fish?

No, comet goldfish are not good tankmates for betta fish. Their differing needs in temperature, tank size, and temperament can lead to stress, fin nipping, and even death for the betta. It’s best to keep them in separate aquariums.


So, do goldfish need friends? Research if you’re considering adding more fish to your goldfish aquarium. Different species have different requirements for care and habitat, and not all fish are compatible with one another. By learning about the best tank mates for goldfish, you can provide a safe and healthy environment for all your aquatic friends.

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About Me

I am the founder of, a devoted wife and mother, and an avid fish enthusiast. My aim is to assist fellow fish lovers worldwide in understanding how to properly care for and breed their pet fish.

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