How to Have Fun With Your Goldfish | PCH.com

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How to Have Fun With Your Goldfish

September 16th, 2011 Pets

Most people don't associate goldfish with doing anything other than eating and swimming. Let's face it - when it comes down to it, those tiny aquatic creatures are often thought of more as an accent piece rather than faithful companions. Believe it or not, it's actually possible to train goldfish to learn some tricks if you have the time and patience to spare.

Goldfish have extremely short attention spans, with most only lasting for about four to nine seconds. They also have relatively poor short-term memory, yet can recall important things that happened in the past. Since food is probably the easiest form of positive reinforcement for animals, training a goldfish works best with treats.

Goldfish have been taught to swim through hoops, follow a light, respond to music and even play soccer. Sounds pretty unbelievable right? It's a lot easier than you think - as long as you have the right tools and a treat that satisfies your fish's appetite, the process should be relatively simple.

The best place to begin is to have your fish to swim through a hoop by attaching a treat to a stick and encouraging him to eat from it. Once he associates the stick with food, try leading him around the tank and eventually training him to tackle larger obstacles. You may be surprised at how little time it takes before Flipper is impressing your friends.

Those looking to embark on this endeavor should search for training videos, accessories and feeding wands. And remember, tasty treats include blood worms - even peas! Ask your local pet carrier for advice and make sure you don't overfeed your companion. If accomplished correctly, you will in fact be able to teach an old fish new tricks in no time.