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4 Reasons Why Can Betta Fish Go Blind?

can betta fish go blind

Betta fish is a famous yet mysterious creature. There is still so much we do not know about the vastly demanded aquarium fish. For instance, many betta owners are concerned that their betta fish turn blind. This begs the question, can betta fish go blind. Let us find out.

Answering the question, can betta fish go blind? The answer is yes. However, the degree of blindness and loss of eyesight may vary. In most cases of betta fish going blind, betta fish suffer only partial blindness or lose sight in one eye only. Common causes for betta fish blindness include moon eye, eye infections, cataracts, physical damage, etc. While few of these are treatable, most of them are permanent. Therefore, you must take utmost care of a blind betta fish.

Can Betta Fish Go Blind?

Can Betta Fish Go Blind

As previously stated, there is a chance that your betta fish may go blind during its lifetime. However, complete blindness is an uncommon occurrence. There may be many different reasons behind betta fish losing its eyesight.

Thus, if you are wondering can betta fish go blind, the answer is yes. Determining the cause behind the blindness is relatively easy but essential. Even though, in most cases, blindness is irreversible, in other instances, such as infections may be treatable. Therefore, determining the root cause is essential.

Here are some probable causes for your betta fish going blind.

Moon Eye

Moon Eye betta
Can Betta Fish Go Blind with moon eye

Mooneye, or as it is more commonly termed as dragon eye, is a mysterious yet common form of blindness that may affect your betta fish. The moon eye does not affect the betta’s eye at all. It refers to when there is an overgrowth of scales that spread over the eyes of the betta fish.

Such unwanted overgrowth of scales over the betta fish’s eyes compromises its vision, reducing its eyesight. Mooneye can affect either or both of the eyes. The mysterious aspect behind moon eye disease is that no one knows the real reason behind why this phenomenon occurs.

Some experts suggest that such sudden growth of scales over the eyes of the betta fish is protected from infection. It is said that after the eyes of the betta fish have been infected; its immune system forces the growth of scales over the infected part as a precautionary measure. However, no one knows for sure what is the definite cause.


Cataracts in betta fish

The cataract is perhaps the most common and inevitable ailment that may happen to your betta fish. Like human beings, cataract affects the eye of the betta fish, which causes partial or complete blindness. A silver lining about cataracts is mainly seen later in a betta fish’s lifetime.

Thus, if you think betta fish can go blind, then cataracts may be the possible cause of the blindness. There is not much you may do to cure cataracts, and there is a high chance your betta fish has it if he is three years or older. Extra care needs to be administered to survive a cataract-afflicted betta fish.


Betta fish are highly susceptible to various kinds of parasitic and bacterial infections. Among such conditions, some of them may also affect the eyes of the betta fish, leading them to go partially or, in rare cases, completely blind.

The most visible symptom of eye infection affecting your betta fish includes the clouding of the eye. In most cases, these infections are treatable if the tank conditions and water parameters are favorable. If the water quality is not desirable, it will only worsen.

If your betta fish is old, then cataracts may be why betta fish go blind. Infections generally occur during the initial stages of betta’s life. There may be other symptoms of the disease as well that may, including lethargy and loss of appetite.

Physical Damage

Can betta fish go blind from physical damage? They indeed can. Therefore, you need to be careful what you are adding to your betta tank and how it may affect your betta fish. Creating a safe and habitable environment for your betta fish must be your number one priority.

It may so happen that your betta fish damaged its eye by colliding with some sharp tank object. If not treated quickly, this injury may further increase the chances of the development of infection in your betta fish. If the damage is severe, you cannot do much about treating it. In that case, extreme care must be provided to the injured betta fish.

Taking Care Of A Blind Betta Fish

Having answered the can betta fish go blind question, now we may discuss precisely how much care must be given to a blind betta fish. The answer is a lot. Feeding a blind betta fish may prove to be tricky and overwhelming. Here are some things you must look for while caring for a blind betta fish.

  • You must keep your betta fish alone without any tank mates to increase the probability of survival.
  • Consider using a sand-based substrate rather than gravel.
  • Remove any objects that may possess sharp edges or hard surfaces that may harm your betta.
  • Properly schedule the feeding time and use tweezers or drop the food at the exact location.
  • Make sure the water parameters and tank conditions are adequate.

Therefore, can betta fish go blind? Yes. They can. However, complete blindness is a rare occurrence, mainly treatable blindness caused by infections.

FAQs On Can Betta Fish Go Blind

How to identify a blind betta fish?

If your betta fish keeps colliding with the tank objects, swims in one particular area for more extended periods, or cannot float freely, your betta fish may be going blind.

What causes cloudy eyes in betta fish?

The cloudy eye is a symptom of an eye infection affecting your betta fish. It may develop due to unfavorable water conditions inside the tank. Your betta fish eye color change can also occur.

Can betta fish survive with one eye?

Yes. Betta fish can survive with one eye. However, extra care must be given to such a betta fish.

Final Thoughts

So, can betta fish go blind? A betta fish can go wholly or partially blind for various reasons, including moon eye, cataract, physical damage, infection, etc. In most cases, the damage is irreversible. However, your betta fish may survive if sufficient care is given to them.