A bigger responsibility

It’s Not Just a Fish logo. Image from injaf.org.

Stop for just second and think about yourself as a fishkeeper. I’m going to assume if you’re reading this, that you keep fish, specifically cichlids. I want you to think about what that means. No, seriously, stop and think about your responsibility.

When you commit to purchasing (or breeding) fish, you take on the responsibility of a living creature. Whether you maintain one tank or 20, it’s still the same. And it’s no different, fundamentally, than keeping any other caged or penned living creature (e.g., parakeet, hamster, snake) that you have, pet or otherwise. Whatever creature it is, it depends on you for survival. Think about that. That is an enormous responsibility.

I post this because I too often see and/or read about fishkeepers who treat that responsibility trivially. It isn’t trivial. I’m reluctant on my site to be preachy or judgmental, and I don’t do it often. However, keeping fish should be treated no differently than the responsibility you have keeping other pets. I understand the relationship between humans and dogs or cats. I’ve had both. It hurts more when you lose a pet dog or cat. It should, but I won’t get in to the reasons for that. Nonetheless, you should consider your responsibility for providing a quality living environment for your fish the same as you would a dog or cat. Fish deserve your commitment just the same.

I’m not endorsing the site, but I will say It’s Not Just a Fish has some interesting information that newcomers to the hobby might find helpful. Though they promote best practices and conservation in fishkeeping, I haven’t gone through their whole site, so I can’t speak to all of their content or its accuracy.

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