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Author Topic: "Happy" Fish  (Read 13052 times)
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Tanks: 10 gallon: Betta, Harlequin Rasbora 20 Gallon, Black Phantom Tetra, Kuhli Loaches, Ghost shrimp, Panda corys, emerald corys
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« on: February 19, 2012, 02:01:01 PM »

Lately I've noticed this term.. Happy fish. For me it strikes a bit of a nerve, to be precise in a term where its.. "my fish are in a situation they really shouldnt be but other people do it so theyre happy"  To me this is a misconception and myth. It is a bit far fetched to know if a fish is happy. To know a fish is thriving. Yes. But, to assume it's happy..argue with advice that is given. Best stop, may not be the place for it, but i still think this term is a pitfall trap for some new fish keepers, that dont rejust want something pretty to look at. When I get a thank you note and a gift basket from my fish, saying how happy they are to be here. I'll be more open minded. Smiley

The ability to love and be loved is the greatest gift.
Pat Mary
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« Reply #1 on: February 19, 2012, 02:16:42 PM »

In my mind, a person new to the hobby doesn't think of words such as "thrive".  That person is trying to convey his or her thought that the fish in question seem to "thrive" or maybe "live".  I take the word in the context of the thread and go from there.

I will say, though, that some fish seem to be "happy".  I am thinking of loaches playing.  Surely they wouldn't play if they weren't happy.  Dogs don't.  I know the brain is much larger in dogs than in fish but in an animal, everything is relative.

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« Reply #2 on: February 19, 2012, 03:39:10 PM »

Healthy, thriving fish make the hobbyist happy, not the other way around  happy

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« Reply #3 on: February 19, 2012, 08:22:18 PM »

I think I am missing the point of this thread. Are you saying you dislike it when a newcomer to the hobby describes a fish as happy to get around the fact that they are not fully meeting that fishes needs? Or are you just saying that the adjective "happy" does not suit a fish? If the latter, sure we could argue that they lack the sentience for the human concept of happiness but I think that in a relative sense they possess similar capacities for fulfillment and satisfaction. I, like Pat Marry, think the term analogous to "thrive" when I read it on this thread. Personally, I'd be bothered if someone used either "thrive" or "happy" to describe a fish being given improper care.
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« Reply #4 on: February 21, 2012, 12:55:30 AM »

In my mind fish do have different personalities and temperaments. Maybe a person perceives a fish to be happy if it's healthy, growing and thriving. < That's all good.

Now if a person thinks a fish is happy living in a soap dish then I don't agree.


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« Reply #5 on: February 21, 2012, 08:53:04 AM »

What, none of your fish talk to you???

I agree with the comments here regarding thrive and happy!  I do think "happy" is a very human term and in regards to the life of a fish, if it is thriving then surely it is "happy"?

Obviously most species we keep within the hobby / passion would naturally be within massive groups and in massive water volumes .. but surely if your fish are thriving then to some extent they are "happy"?

Anyway, good topic Smiley

Fish ... Fish .. and more FISH
« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2012, 12:30:03 AM »

To me--if one believes that fish can understand suffering--then they can experiance other emotions.BUT what do i know?
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