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How to Feed Fish while on Vacation

how to feed fish while on vacation

When you start fish keeping as a hobby, the responsibility of feeding the fish and making them happy inside the aquarium is always a priority. And this responsibility will always be there even if you are away from your home for a much-needed vacation. What will you do to the fish while you are away?

As a responsible hobbyist, you must learn how to feed fish while on vacation. Even if you are far away from home for a few days, there are still various ways to feed your precious fish, even if you are on holiday.


A Fish Sitter Can Help

One way to feed your fish while you are on vacation is to ask the help of a fish sitter. If there is a babysitter, a fish sitter can also take care of your fish while you are away. A fish sitter is someone that will have to attend to your fish needs while you are away from your house.

The possibility of having someone to check on the fish and your aquarium is always an option for you. The fish setter will be responsible for feeding the fish, provided they will be trained before you leave. They can also check the filtration system of your aquarium and the overall health and water quality of the aquarium.

It is also essential to tell and remind the fish sitter not to overfeed your fish. Inform them that any excess amount of food that the fish will not eat can contaminate the water. If you can, you can measure each meal into small containers and instruct the fish sitter to use one single container per meal.

Another option is to use a plastic dispenser that comes with a compartment for the food allocation each day of the week. You can actually put the food requirements before you leave so that the responsibility of the fish sitter is only to give it to the fish. Doing this step will prevent overfeeding since the right amount of food is already allocated per compartment.

Use Vacation Feeders

The simplest way to feed your fish while you are on vacation is to use vacation feeders. Vacation feeders usually come in two types: the first one has the fish food in gel form, while the second type has the fish food built in a calcium block.

These vacation feeders usually come in 2-day, 7-days, and 14-day sizes. So, depending on the days you will be away from your home, you can use the right size that fits your fish’s needs.

But how do vacation feeders work? Each block will slowly dissolve in water to release particles of food that the fish will eat. The best thing about this food is it includes natural ingredients which should meet all the nutritional requirements of the fish while you are away.

However, the vacation feeder only works in an aquarium with a filtration system. Water circulation is vital to dissolve the calcium block into food particles for the fish to eat. Never use this method if you only have a fish bowl or a non-filtered aquarium.

Lastly, when using the vacation feeder to feed the fish, you need to ensure that you put enough for all the fish in your aquarium. However, I prefer to underfeed the ish while I am away instead of overfeeding them, which is a more significant issue without your presence in the house.

Using Automatic Feeders

using automatic feeders

When learning what to do with fish when you go on vacation, you also need to be familiar with automatic feeders. An automatic feeder is a device that automatically feeds the fish using a predetermined time. They usually come in battery-operated or electric plug-in models.

The common thing about these automatic feeders is the presence of timers which will be set to dispense the right amount of fish food throughout the day. There is a part in the opening of the food dispenser that will be adjusted to provide the needed amount of fish food per meal time.

Automatic feeders are programmable so that they can feed the fish once or twice a day, depending on your preference. It can also be set up to work for up to two weeks, depending on how many days you will be away from home.

When you are on vacation, you can easily adjust the timing and the amount of food that will be dispensed. But make sure that the food dispenser of the feeder is complete and enough or the number of days you will be away.

How Long Can Fish Survive Without Food

Another option is not to feed the fish while you are away. But how long? In most cases, the fish in your aquarium will be just fine, especially if the aquarium has been running for quite some time. Fortunately, freshwater fishes can survive for several days without a meal.

Please note that an adult fish can survive a week or two without eating a meal. But the young fish do not have enough fat storage to survive several days without eating. They need to be fed to survive.

However, that does not mean you can skip this fish’s meals while you are away. Again, it is your responsibility that the fish is still well-feed while you are away on a long holiday. Food is not the only concern because you will also need to check on the filtration, the water heater, and the aquarium’s lighting.


You don’t need to starve the fish in your aquarium when you are on vacation. In fact, there are many ways how to feed fish while on vacation, and the methods we presented are very easy to do and follow. The most important thing is to keep feeding your fish while away. They do not need to suffer while you are enjoying your vacation.

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