Goldfish can go 8 to 14 days without eating. Instead, they forage in their tank and eat algae during this period. Goldfish may occasionally consume plants and insects depending on the quantity and amount of algae present in ponds. 

Even though goldfish don’t eat every day in the wild, if they become accustomed to feeding two or three times per day, going for an extended period without food might be harmful. 

How often should you feed your goldfish?

If given the opportunity, goldfish are voracious eaters who won’t hesitate to eat until they become sick. They benefit from multiple small meals throughout the day rather than just one, which is why.

You should give your goldfish tiny amounts of food three to four times a day. The majority of fish keepers, however, have obligations related to their jobs or families, so feeding twice daily – once in the morning and once in the evening – is more typical.

Just give your goldfish as much food as they can swallow in two minutes to prevent overfeeding. 

How do I know if my goldfish is hungry?

Your pet captive goldfish will become accustomed to its feeding schedule, and skipping a meal can leave your pet hungry and possibly irritable. However, even if you know the maximum amount of time your goldfish can go without eating, it occasionally still exhibits signs of hunger. It will do so in a variety of ways, some of which are listed below:

  • Your goldfish is hunting for food if it swims in parts of the tank where it normally avoids swimming. However, if it starts digging in the substrate, pay close attention because this indicates that it is hungry and trying to find food. 
  • You could be confused if fish suddenly start scavenging or investigating the top of the aquarium when they generally don’t. However, these signs point to your fish being hungry and looking for food. 
  • Another indication that your goldfish is starving is if it acts aggressively or eats quickly. They certainly eat swiftly, but if you notice that one is eating more quickly than usual, it was presumably starving for a while. 
  • Your goldfish may need to eat if you notice it moving slowly or acting lethargic for an extended period after not receiving enough food.
  • When hungry, certain fish tend to harass and fight their tank mates. However, this behavior does not always indicate hunger; various factors can trigger aggression. 
gold fish varieties in fish tank

What should you feed your goldfish?

Live, frozen, and freeze-dried feeds should be fed to your goldfish, including bloodworms, cricket, mealworms, brine shrimp, ghost shrimp, daphne, and other organisms; shedding your fish the right things is crucial if you want them to grow and thrive.

Goldfish are opportunistic feeders; they won’t stop eating as long as the food is available; however, you can manage their feeding craze. If you don’t, your fish can die from intestinal problems brought on by overfeeding.

Remember that your fish will produce more water the more they consume and that waste produced in huge quantities might poison your tank. In addition, these chemicals have the power to kill your fish and spread several diseases. 

Therefore, for your fish to enjoy a healthy life in your home, it’s essential to understand how they eat and discover which foods benefit them.

Which human food can your goldfish eat?

You can feed your goldfish food in addition to fish food. If you properly prepare them, you can feed your fish a range of human meals. Before providing them to your fish, you should also prepare all of the following according to the directions: 

  • Shelled peas – Remove the skin off shelled peas and use small pieces to feed your fish.
  • Leafy greens – Your goldfish can eat spinach, lettuce, chard, kale, and other similar vegetables; however, slice them into little pieces beforehand.
  • Cooked rice – A suitable food source for fish, but only in moderation – you don’t want to overfeed your pet.
  • Broccoli and corn – Be sure to cook or microwave the broccoli and corn before dicing them and serving.
  • Carrots and zucchini – You must peel, boil or microwave, and then dice the carrots and zucchini.
  • Cucumber slices – Before giving your pet any cucumber slices, boil or microwave them.
  • Grapes – Great fruit for your goldfish, but you must first skin and cut the grapes before serving.
  • Slices of orange and watermelon – Excellent additions to your goldfish’s diet, just like grapes. Before serving it to your goldfish, make sure to slice them thinly.

Frequently asked questions

Can goldfish go a day without food?

A goldfish can indeed go without food for a day. However, in some circumstances, such as when the water temperature in your tank is below 50° F or above 90° F since its metabolism is far too sluggish to digest food, it is advised to skip feeding your fish for one day. 

How do I know if I’m feeding my goldfish enough food?

If your goldfish is not swimming upside down, you feed it enough. When a goldfish swims in that direction around the tank, it indicates swim bladder problems brought on by malnutrition. 

Can you overfeed a goldfish?

Yes, given how quickly they consume food, goldfish are more likely to be overfed. If you overfeed them, you risk serious repercussions like swim bladder illness, lowered immunity, and occasionally even death.


Goldfish are wonderful pets and are relatively simple to maintain. Both are keeping goldfish and under- and overfeeding them are simple processes. First, feed them the right food at a predetermined time to prevent under and overfeeding.

Call in a fish sitter or purchase an automatic feeder if you intend to take a holiday. A goldfish can go without food for two weeks; any longer is cruel. Always remember the golden rule: feed your goldfish every three to five minutes.