Fish Aquariums: Perfect Pets at College

by DFS-Pet-Blog on January 13, 2012

Letting the fish acclimate

Letting the fish acclimate

**Guest post from Ellen B.**

When kids head off to college, it’s common for them to really miss their pets. I know my two kids do. Within the first few minutes of a Skype call, they both ask to see the dogs. They miss soft, snuggly Kobe, and cute, feisty Izzy!

To help fill the void for my pet-enthusiast daughter (Jamie), she recently set up a fish aquarium in her student apartment. Fish are extremely low maintenance, so it’s about the only pet that accommodates her busy college schedule (and one of the few pets typically allowed in student housing). Even though fish are not soft and furry nor do they chase a ball, she truly does enjoy her fish.


The tranquil effect of watching fish combined with her busy student schedule is perfect. Watching her fish glide serenely through the water acts as a great de-stressor. “As you sit and enjoy your aquarium, you will be amazed how the stress of the day’s activities vacates your mind and body.” (Source: The Benefits of Bringing an Aquarium Into Your Life)

She also likes having a pet to care for. Daily feedings is her time to take a little break and enjoy their beautiful colors, and bi-weekly water changes are made easy with a gravel vac. Two other reasons that a fish aquarium is good for students are that the aquarium does not take up much space and fish have very few expenses.

Jamie purchased a used 10-gallon aquarium that came only with lighting. On a weekend home, we had the aquarium experts at the local Drs. Foster & Smith Retail Store help us get all the other necessities such as filtration, a pump, fish food, and some fun aquarium decorations. If you’re thinking about getting an aquarium setup for a student, consider an aquarium kit that comes with everything you need.

Aquarium Setup:
It does take a little knowledge to set up properly a fish aquarium. Jamie watched this video that showed her step-by-step how to set up an aquarium, which made setup a breeze. After waiting a few days for the water to filter, she added a few fish.
She recently added 2 very cool glow fish to her aquarium.

She recently added 2 very cool GlowFish to her aquarium.

For now during her college years, fish are the perfect pet for Jamie, and maybe they are just the beginning of lifelong hobby. Plus, listening to her talk about her fish has given me an inkling to set up an aquarium. The more I learn about fish and aquariums, the more I realize that aquarium keeping is an amazing hobby.

(Here is a very reasonable aquarium kit that even comes with 6 glow fish!)

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Betty January 13, 2012 at 10:06 am

Great idea! My daughter is a freshman in college and sometimes I think she (almost) misses the dog more than me! Her birthday is coming up, good timing.

Select Aquariums February 12, 2012 at 2:13 pm

I agree that an aquarium is a great college addition. There is really something soothing abpout seeing the fish glide through the water. It also isn’t a high maintenance item.

iscribbler March 15, 2012 at 9:42 am

While I agree that fish are a great pet and can be “low maintenance” in comparison with a cat or dog, I don’t agree that fish are perfect for the college student that has a busy life and little time to care for the fish. Fish can be incredibly “high maintenance” (especially in the inital tank setup) and if you don’t allow the water conditions to maintain themselves, then you’ll have dead or sick fish. I love Jamie’s enthusiasm in the article, though. That gives me hope that these fish have a fighting chance in her tank. 🙂

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