How Long Do Goldfish Sleep? {Everything You Need To Know}

Are you wondering if your goldfish is getting to little or to much sleep? Do you know how long goldfish sleep?

Do they sleep during the day or night? Where do they sleep?

Find out everything you need to know below.

How Long Do Goldfish Sleep

While humans require 7-9 hours of sleep per night, goldfish only need a few hours of rest each day.

These sleepy and fascinating creatures take cat naps throughout the day and night. But have you ever noticed their sleeping pattern? Goldfish tend to sleep with their eyes open, which can make it difficult to tell if they are actually sleeping or not. To ensure they get enough rest, it’s important to turn off the aquarium light at night.

Goldfish, being aquatic animals, are known to be sleepy creatures. They typically sleep at night, just like humans, but their sleeping patterns are different due to their swimming nature.

In fact, some goldfish have been known to take naps throughout the day instead of sleeping for an extended period at night, especially when the aquarium light is on.

How Long Do Goldfish Sleep

So how long do goldfish actually sleep? On average, they take cat naps for about 8-10 hours a day as part of their sleeping pattern. It’s important for their overall health and well-being to get sufficient rest in the tank water.

Understanding how many hours your goldfish spends sleeping can help you create the perfect environment for them to thrive in. By providing them with a lot of time in the dark to rest and relax, your pet will be happier and healthier in the long run. Ignoring their need for rest can make them sick.

Goldfish Sleep Patterns

Short Bursts of Sleep Have

you ever wondered if goldfish sleep a lot? Unlike humans, goldfish do not have a regular sleep pattern. They tend to rest and take short naps throughout the day and night, sometimes even taking cat naps during the daytime. However, if your goldfish is sick, it may sleep more than usual.

Environmental Factors

The sleeping patterns of goldfish can be affected by environmental factors such as light, water temperature, noise levels, and the need for sufficient rest. For example, if your goldfish tank is located in a noisy area or exposed to bright light for extended periods, it may disrupt their sleep cycle and prevent them from getting the necessary amount of rest.

No Deep Sleep or Rapid Eye Movement (REM)

Goldfish do not experience deep sleep or rapid eye movement (REM) like humans. Instead, they go through different stages of sleep cycles where they are still alert enough to respond to their surroundings. This is because they need to be able to swim away quickly from potential predators at any time.

Sleeping Habits

As a goldfish owner, it’s essential to understand your fish’s sleeping habits. You should provide them with an aquarium that mimics their natural environment as much as possible. This means ensuring that the water temperature is suitable for them and providing enough hiding spots for them to rest in.

How To Tell If Goldfish is Sleeping

If you are a goldfish owner, you might wonder how long your pet sleeps and how to tell if it’s sleeping. Although goldfish do not have eyelids, they still take rest breaks throughout the day. Here are some ways to tell if your goldfish is sleeping:

Look for Stillness

A sleeping goldfish will be still and may even lay on its side or bottom. It won’t move around as much as it does when it’s active. If you notice that your fish is staying in one spot for an extended period, it may be taking a nap.

Observe Gills Movement

Check out the movement of its gills. A goldfish rest will have slower gill movements than when it’s awake. The gills of a sick goldfish will move less frequently and more slowly than usual during a goldfish nap. However, a healthy goldfish will also exhibit slower gill movements during rest.

Check Coloration

Goldfish can change their coloration depending on their mood, health, and environment. When they sleep, they may become paler in color than when they’re awake.

It’s essential to understand that goldfish need a healthy amount of sleep to maintain good health and well-being. Lack of sleep can affect their immune system, growth rate, and behavior patterns.

Tips for Ensuring Your Goldfish Get Enough Sleep

Provide a Quiet Environment with Minimal Disturbances

Just like humans, goldfish need a peaceful environment to get enough sleep. Noise can disrupt their sleeping patterns, and they may not get enough rest. Therefore, it’s crucial to keep the tank in a quiet place away from any loud noises or disturbances. If possible, avoid placing the tank near TVs or speakers that emit sound.

Ensure That the Tank Has Adequate Lighting During the Day and Darkness at Night

Goldfish need sufficient light during the day to stay active and healthy. However, too much light can be disruptive to their sleep patterns. Therefore, it’s essential to provide them with adequate lighting during the day and darkness at night. Experts recommend keeping the tank lights on for 12-14 hours per day and turning them off for 10-12 hours at night.

Avoid Sudden Changes in Light or Noise Levels

Sudden changes in light or noise levels can be stressful for goldfish and disrupt their sleeping patterns. It’s essential to avoid sudden changes in light or noise levels whenever possible. For example, if you need to turn on a bright light suddenly, do so gradually over several minutes instead of all at once.

Maintain High Water Temperature

Goldfish are cold-blooded animals that rely on water temperature to regulate their body temperature. A high water temperature can cause stress and disrupt their sleeping patterns. Therefore, it’s vital to maintain a consistent water temperature between 65°F (18°C) and 75°F (23°C).

Use Plants as an Indication of Rest Time

Plants are an excellent way of indicating when it’s time for your goldfish to rest. When plants stop producing oxygen during photosynthesis at night, this is an indication that your fish should sleep too.

In addition to these tips, there are other ways you can ensure your goldfish get enough sleep.

Factors that Affect Goldfish Sleep

Water Temperature, Quality, and Oxygen Levels

Goldfish are cold-blooded animals that are highly sensitive to their environment. The quality of water in which they live can significantly affect their sleep patterns. High ammonia levels, for instance, can cause stress and disrupt their sleep. Therefore, it is crucial to maintain the appropriate water conditions to ensure a healthy sleeping environment for your goldfish.

Water temperature is another critical factor that affects goldfish sleep. These fish prefer temperatures between 62°F and 72°F (16°C-22°C) but can tolerate temperatures as low as 41°F (5°C). Temperatures outside this range may cause stress and affect their sleep patterns.

Oxygen levels also play a vital role in goldfish sleep. When oxygen levels are low, goldfish tend to spend more time at the surface gasping for air instead of sleeping peacefully at the bottom of the tank. Therefore, it’s essential to maintain good water circulation and add an air pump or filter to increase oxygen levels in your aquarium.

The Presence of Other Fish or Predators

Goldfish are social creatures that enjoy being around other fish. However, too many fish in one tank can lead to overcrowding and competition for resources such as food and space. This competition causes stress among fish and disrupts their natural sleep patterns.

Predators such as cats or birds can also cause stress among goldfish by constantly stalking them from outside the tank, disrupting their sleep cycles and REM sleep. The fear of being attacked by predators makes it difficult for goldfish to relax and get enough rest during their sleep cycles, including the important REM sleep stage.

Feeding Schedules

Feeding schedules can also impact goldfish sleep patterns. Overfeeding your fish before bedtime may cause digestive problems that keep them awake at night. It’s best to feed them small amounts several times a day rather than one large meal before bed.

Importance of Proper Sleep for Goldfish

Adequate rest is essential for maintaining good health and immune function in goldfish.

Just like humans, goldfish require adequate sleep to maintain their overall health. When they sleep, their bodies can focus on repairing tissues and strengthening the immune system. A lack of proper rest can lead to stress, illness, and even death in extreme cases. Therefore, it’s crucial to ensure that your pet goldfish get enough quality sleep.

One factor that affects a goldfish’s ability to sleep is water quality. Poor water quality with high levels of ammonia or low oxygen levels can cause stress and prevent them from getting the rest they need. Therefore, it’s important to maintain clean water conditions by regularly testing the water parameters and performing necessary water changes.

Regular sleep helps them conserve energy needed for growth and reproduction.

Goldfish are constantly growing throughout their life cycle, and they need plenty of energy to support this process. Proper rest in sleep cycles helps them conserve energy needed for growth and reproduction. Without enough rest in sleep cycles, they may become lethargic or sickly, hindering their development.

To help your goldfish get adequate sleep, make sure they have a comfortable environment with suitable hiding places where they can feel safe and secure during sleeping hours.

Lack of proper sleep can lead to stress, illness, and even death in extreme cases.

If goldfish don’t get enough quality sleep or experience interrupted sleeping patterns due to external factors such as noise or light pollution, it can lead to chronic stress that weakens their immune system over time. This makes them more susceptible to diseases such as fin rot or fungal infections that could be fatal if left untreated.

Therefore, it’s important to provide your goldfish with a quiet environment free from distractions during sleeping hours. You may also consider using an aquarium cover or dimming the lights at night to simulate natural lighting conditions in their habitat.

Do Goldfish Need Light at Night

Goldfish are popular pets that require proper care and attention to thrive. One aspect of goldfish care that is often debated is whether or not they need light at night, which can disrupt their sleep cycle.

Talking Points

  • No, goldfish do not need light at night to survive or thrive.
  • In fact, too much light at night can disrupt their natural sleep patterns and cause stress, even for sick goldfish.
  • Providing 8 hours of darkness per day is recommended.

Goldfish are diurnal creatures, which means they are active during the day and rest at night. While they do require a certain amount of light during the day to help regulate their biological processes, they do not need light at night to survive. In fact, too much light at night can disrupt their natural sleep patterns and cause stress.

If you keep your goldfish in an aquarium with overhead lighting, it’s important to turn off the lights at night to give them a chance to rest. This will also help prevent algae growth in your tank by reducing the amount of time that your aquarium lights are on.

Providing 8 hours of darkness per day is recommended for goldfish. This can be achieved by turning off your aquarium lights before you go to bed and turning them back on in the morning when you wake up. If you have trouble remembering to turn off your tank lights, consider investing in a timer that will automate this process for you.

In addition to providing a period of darkness each day, it’s also important to ensure that your goldfish have access to adequate hiding places within their tank. This will allow them to retreat from bright light if they feel stressed or overwhelmed.

Do Goldfish Dream

Pet goldfish are fascinating creatures and are often the first choice of many people who want to keep fish as pets. However,Many pet owners wonder if their goldfish dream like humans do.

No Scientific Evidence That Goldfish Dream

There is no scientific evidence to suggest that goldfish dream like humans do while they are asleep. While it is true that goldfish sleep, they do not experience REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep, which is the stage of sleep where dreams occur in humans. Therefore, it can be concluded that goldfish do not dream.

Sick Goldfish May Sleep More Than Well Ones

It’s important to note that sick goldfish may sleep more than healthy ones. If you notice your pet goldfish sleeping more than usual or lying at the bottom of the tank for extended periods, it could be a sign of illness. Some common illnesses that cause lethargy in goldfish include swim bladder disease and fin rot.

Sleeping Habits of Well Goldfish

Well goldfish typically need around 8-12 hours of rest each day, but they don’t sleep continuously like humans do. Instead, they take short naps throughout the day and night. It’s also worth noting that unlike humans who prefer darkness while sleeping, goldfish prefer light even when resting.

Do Goldfish Lay on the Bottom of the Tank to Sleep

Goldfish are known for their vibrant colors and playful behavior. However, have you ever wondered how long do goldfish sleep? Many people believe that goldfish don’t sleep at all, but this is a common misconception. In fact, goldfish need rest just like any other living creature. But where do they sleep and how can we tell if they are sleeping?

Yes, it’s common for goldfish to lay on the bottom of the tank to sleep.

It is normal for goldfish to take naps during the day or night. When they sleep, they often lay on the bottom of the tank. This may cause concern for some fish owners who may think their fish are sick or dead. However, this is a natural behavior and nothing to worry about.

They may also rest in plants or other structures in the tank.

Goldfish enjoy having places to hide and explore in their tanks. Therefore, it is not uncommon for them to rest in plants or other structures such as rocks or caves. These areas provide a sense of security and comfort for them.

Laying on their side or back is also normal.

Another interesting fact about goldfish sleeping habits is that they sometimes lay on their side or back while sleeping. This may seem unusual, but it’s perfectly normal behavior for these fish.

Do Goldfish Sleep During the Day or Night

Have you ever wondered if goldfish sleep? If so, do they sleep during the day or night? This is a common question that people ask when owning pet goldfish.

Goldfish Sleeping Habits

Goldfish do not have a set schedule for sleeping. They can sleep both during the day and at night. However, they tend to be more active during daylight hours and may nap more frequently at night. The reason for their daytime activity is due to their need for sunlight to activate their gills which allows them to breathe properly.

Environmental factors can also affect their sleeping patterns. For example, if your goldfish tank is in a room with bright lights on all day long, it may disrupt their natural sleeping cycle. Therefore, it’s essential to provide them with an environment that mimics their natural habitat.

It’s important to note that goldfish don’t have eyelids like mammals do; instead, they have something called a nictitating membrane that covers their eyes while still allowing them to see. This means that even when they are resting or napping, they are still aware of what’s happening around them.

How Many Hours a Day Should a Goldfish Sleep

If you’re wondering how long goldfish sleep, the answer isn’t as straightforward as you might think. Unlike humans who need 7-9 hours of sleep per day, goldfish don’t have a set amount of time they should be sleeping each day.

Goldfish tend to take short naps throughout the day and night as needed. They may even appear to be sleeping with their eyes closed, but they are still alert to movement and sounds around them.

To ensure that your goldfish is getting enough rest, it’s important to provide a quiet environment with minimal disturbances. This means avoiding loud noises or sudden movements near their tank.

Another factor that can affect how much sleep your goldfish gets is the ammonia levels in their tank. High levels of ammonia can cause stress and make it difficult for fish to rest properly. Make sure to regularly clean and maintain their tank to keep ammonia levels at a healthy level.


In conclusion, goldfish sleep patterns are essential for their overall health and well-being. It is important to ensure that your goldfish get enough sleep by providing them with a conducive environment. Factors such as water quality, temperature, lighting, and diet can affect their sleep. Goldfish do not need light at night to sleep, but they may require darkness to regulate their circadian rhythm. While there is no evidence that goldfish dream, they do lay on the bottom of the tank to rest. Goldfish tend to sleep during the day and night, and they should ideally get around 8 hours of sleep per day.

To ensure that your goldfish gets enough restful sleep, make sure you provide them with a clean and comfortable environment. Avoid disturbing them during their sleeping hours and maintain optimal water conditions in the tank. By taking care of your goldfish’s sleeping habits, you can promote their overall health and happiness.


1) How can I tell if my goldfish is sleeping?

Goldfish tend to be less active when they are asleep. They may also hover in one spot or lay on the bottom of the tank motionless.

2) Can lack of sleep harm my goldfish?

Yes, lack of proper sleep can lead to stress and weaken your goldfish’s immune system over time.

3) Should I leave the lights on at night for my goldfish?

No, it is best to turn off the lights at night so that your goldfish can regulate its circadian rhythm properly.

4) What factors affect my goldfish’s sleeping patterns?

Water quality, temperature, lighting conditions, diet, and stress levels can all affect your goldfish’s sleeping patterns.

5) Do different types of fish have different sleeping habits?

Yes, different species of fish have unique sleeping habits based on their natural habitat and behavior patterns.

6) Can I train my goldfish to sleep at a specific time?

No, you cannot train your goldfish to sleep at a specific time. However, providing them with a consistent environment can help regulate their sleeping patterns.

7) How many hours of sleep does my goldfish need per day?

Goldfish require around 8 hours of restful sleep per day to stay healthy and happy.

Table of Contents


Hello, I'm Jason. I'm the guy behind I volunteer at my local fish shop and I created this site to offer tips and advice on the fish I care for.