Why Is My Betta Fish Laying On Its Side?

If you’ve ever had a betta fish, you know that they are delicate creatures that require special care. So, if you come home one day and find your betta lying on its side at the bottom of the tank, it’s understandable to be concerned. After all, this isn’t something that you see every day. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at some of the possible reasons why your betta might be lying on its side and what you can do about it.

What causes a betta fish to lay on its side?

The three common reasons why your betta fish lay on its side are: Stress, wrong tank conditions or swim bladder disease which affects a fish’s ability to control its buoyancy. As a result, fish with swim bladder disease may have difficulty swimming or may float to the surface of the water.

There are a number of possible reasons why is your betta laying on Its side? and most of them don’t require any effort to solve the problem.

Lack of oxygen

Lack of oxygen is one of the most common betta fish ailments. If your betta fish is laying on its side at the bottom of the tank, it is likely due to a lack of oxygen. There are a few things that can cause a lack of oxygen in betta fish tanks, such as over-crowding, poor water quality, or lack of filtration. Most betta fish require at least 3-5 gallons of water, so if your tank is too small, it may be time to upgrade. Be sure to also regularly clean your betta fish tank and replace the filter cartridge every 4-6 weeks. By taking these simple steps, you can help ensure that your betta fish has a healthy environment with plenty of oxygen.

Poor water quality

Bettas do require clean, filtered water in order to stay healthy. Poor water quality is one of the most common causes of betta fish illness, and it can often lead to bettas laying on their side at the bottom of the tank. If you notice your betta fish behaving this way, it is important to check the water quality immediately and make sure that the water is clean and well-filtered. By taking good care of your betta fish and providing them with clean water, you can help them stay healthy and happy for years to come. Thanks for reading! 🙂

Nitrite and Nitrate Poisoning

Many betta fish owners believe that their fish are simply “lazy” when they see them lying on their side at the bottom of the tank. However, this behavior can actually be a sign of nitrite or nitrate poisoning. These chemicals are commonly found in tap water, and they can build up to dangerous levels in a betta fish’s tank if it is not properly filtered. When betta fish are exposed to high levels of nitrites, they often become lethargic and may even stop eating. In severe cases, nitrite poisoning can cause betta fish to lay on their side and eventually die. Fortunately, this condition is relatively easy to prevent by using a quality water filter and performing regular water changes. If you think your betta fish may be suffering from nitrite poisoning, please contact a veterinarian as soon as possible.

Cold Temperatures

If you’ve ever noticed your betta fish lying on its side at the bottom of the tank, it’s likely a sign that the water is too cold. Betta fish are tropical fish and prefer water that is around 78 degrees Fahrenheit. When the water temperature drops below this level, betta fish become sluggish and may even stop eating. In extreme cases, betta fish can develop Fin Rot, a condition that results in the deterioration of the fins and tail. If you suspect that your betta fish is suffering from Cold Water Syndrome, it’s important to take steps to raise the water temperature. Heaters are available for purchase at pet stores, or you can try placing a bowl of hot water in the tank to slowly raise the temperature. With a little care and attention, you can help keep your betta fish happy and healthy.

Infection or illness

This can be a sign of a serious health problem, it is important to remember that bettas are often prone to laying on their sides when they are sick or injured. If your betta is displaying other signs of illness, such as lethargy, loss of appetite, or abnormal behavior, then it is likely that it is suffering from an infection or illness. In this case, you should take your betta to a veterinarian for treatment. However, if your betta seems healthy and is simply taking a nap on its side, there is no cause for concern.


This may not be the most comfortable position for them, it is their way of dealing with their stress. There are a number of things that can cause betta fish to become stressed, including changes in their environment, lack of food, or even too much attention from their owners. While betta fish are resilient creatures, it is important to try to minimize their stress as much as possible. One way to do this is to provide them with a peaceful and stable environment. Another is to make sure they have plenty of food and hiding places. And lastly, avoid handling them too much. By taking these steps, you can help your betta fish stay healthy and happy.

Pregnancy or egg-laying

Many betta fish enthusiasts may not know that when their betta fish starts to lay on its side, it could be a sign of either pregnancy or egg-laying. When bettas are ready to lay their eggs, they will often look for a secluded spot in which to do so. This can sometimes be mistaken for a betta laying on its side due to sickness. However, there are a few key differences between the two behaviours. For instance, bettas that are about to lay eggs will often build nests out of bubbles and plantmaterial, whereas bettas that are sick will not exhibit this behaviour. Additionally, bettas that are sick are often lethargic and have no appetite, whereas bettas that are preparing to lay eggs will still be active and have a healthy appetite. If you think your betta may be about to lay eggs, you can provide her with a suitable spawning medium, such as Java moss or medium-sized gravel, in which she can lay her eggs. Once she has laid her eggs, you will need to remove her from the breeding tank as she may eat them.

Wrong Tank Mates

One of the most important things to remember is to choose the right tank mates for your betta. If you don’t, your betta may become stressed and start to lay on its side.

There are a few things to keep in mind when choosing tank mates for your betta. First, bettas are territorial creatures, so it’s important to choose fish that are not aggressive. Second, bettas prefer calm waters, so avoid fish that are known to be messy or cause a lot of water movement. And finally, bettas need warm water, so make sure any potential tank mates can tolerate the same temperatures.

If you take the time to choose the right tank mates for your betta, you’ll be rewarded with a happy and healthy fish that brings joy to your home.

What should you do if your Betta laying on Its Side?

The first thing you should do if your betta fish is laying on its side is to check the water conditions. Bettas need a specific pH level and temperature to be healthy, so if these are not correct, it could cause the fish to become lethargic or lay on its side.

-If the water quality is good, then you should consider whether your betta has been stressed recently. Movements and changes in home can often stress out bettas, leading them to lie on their sides until they adjust.

-If you’ve ruled out both of those possibilities, then it’s possible that your betta may be sick. Take a look at its scales and see if they are protruding abnormally or if there are any other signs of illness. If there is something wrong with your fish, take it to a vet immediately for treatment.

 -In Conclusion: If you have ruled out poor water conditions and recent stress as the reasons for your Betta lying on its side, then it’s time to investigate further into potential health problems through observation of scales and body condition; additionally review pictures/videos taken of symptomatic Betta behavior(s). Although this guide provides key points for caretakers when encountering a lethargic Betta fish, please always consult with veterinarian specialist services for proper diagnosis (and treatment) plan concerning one’s beloved aquatic pet(s).