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Dwarf Gourami with Betta: Best Friends or Deadly Foes?

Dwarf Gourami with Betta

Since Bettas are incredibly territorial and recommended, these fish are not put in a community tank. However, a few fishes one can put a Betta with, but Dwarf Gourami is not one of them, and here is why you should not put Dwarf Gourami with Betta.

Gouramis are related to Bettas. They are both from the Anabantidae family. As these fish come from the same family, they are not always considered compatible tank mates. They could be aggressive towards one another and fight each other often. 

Sometimes they are housed together and live well together, but it is always better to be safe than sorry. Considering how aggressive Dwarf Gouramis are, it is best not to house them together. 

While some sites that share information about Bettas have listed Gouramis as peaceful fishes housed with Bettas, many Betta enthusiasts and hobbyists have noticed Gouramis exhibiting aggressive behavior. So it is better to not house bettas with gouramis. They may be from the same family, but they are not at all compatible tank mates. 

Dwarf Gourami with Betta in a Tank

Dwarf Gourami

Both gouramis and bettas being from the same scientific family, exhibit similar characteristics and behaviors. They both are stunning with very bold, aggressive, and territorial behaviors. Like poles that repel each other, the case with these two groups of fish is no different.

The aggressive nature of gouramis varies from species to species. The dwarf gouramis are said to be the most aggressive of all. They won’t even hesitate to kill the bettas if they have to. Most of the disputes the bettas and the gouramis share will be territorial. Since gouramis are much larger and faster than bettas, they can quickly nip at the bettas’ fins until they have left their territory, even though they both are equally aggressive. 

Can Female Bettas Be In A Single Tank With Dwarf Gouramis?

female betta

Some websites share false information that female bettas can tolerate gouramis and can be in the same tank.

The argument they provide is that the female bettas are less aggressive than their male counterparts. This is only a myth, and in some cases, female bettas can even be more aggressive than males. 

When the topic of dwarf gouramis with bettas comes up, most people are unaware of how gouramis can get much more aggressive than bettas due to their larger size. So no matter what the gender of the betta is, gouramis which are much stronger than the bettas, will outcompete them and even kill them. Some aquarium enthusiasts and hobbyists may have had long-term success pairing bettas and dwarf gouramis together in one tank, but it is recommended not to make them tank mates. 

Can you keep a Dwarf Gourami with a Male Betta?

Dwarf Gourami with male betta

So far in this article, we have been dealing with how a Gourami should not be kept with any type of betta irrespective of their gender. So even before we dive further into this topic, the answer should already be obvious.

The plain and simple answer is a NO. One should never put a Gourami with a male Betta as males are even more aggressive than females. If they show this aggressiveness to Gouramis, they will work considering how Gouramis are bigger, and Bettas could get seriously injured or even killed.

Also, Read | Best Safe Way Transport A Betta Fish In A Car

Are Betta Gourami Hybrids Real?

Hybrids result from genetically similar organisms of the same genus mating to create a mixed offspring that is usually sterile. Bettas and gouramis come from the same family Anabantidae. They also have similar features and behavioral patterns. So it is only natural to think that hybridization is possible with them. 

Hybridization, like mentioned above, is only possible with organisms that belong to the same genus. Even though the scientific families of both the bettas and gouramis are the same, they belong to different genera.

Betta fish belong to the Betta genus, while most aquarium gouramis species, including dwarf gouramis, come under the Trichogaster genus. Thus, even though they belong to the same family, their relationship is not close enough to create offspring. 

However, some hobbyists who were successful enough to grow dwarf gouramis with bettas in a tank together have shared their experience of having observed pairing characteristics between them. This is a sporadic phenomenon considering the fact that it is very rare even to get gouramis and bettas to be in a single fish tank. 

Can Dwarf Gourami eat Betta food?

As Bettas and Gouramis belong to the same family, caring for them is also very similar. This applies to the food they consume. Both Gouramis and Bettas like Flakes and Pellets of the appropriate size. They can also be fed frozen food.

Are There Any Other Good Tank Mates For Bettas?

Betta fish are generally known to be solitary fish as they do not enjoy being mixed with other species in their fish tank. However, there still are a few fish and invertebrates that can be put together with bettas in an aquarium with some extra considerations. Some of the possible choices include

African Dwarf Frogs

A betta fish and an African dwarf frog will do fine in an aquarium setting which can hold 10 (37.9L) or more gallons of water. The fish tank must be set in such a way that it is easy for the frog to reach the surface to breathe. However, the feeding time can be difficult as one will have to make sure that everyone gets enough food to eat. 

Like in most cases, the compatibility of an African dwarf frog with a betta in the same tank will depend a lot on the fish’s personality. If the betta is too aggressive, it is better to let them be alone in the aquarium. 


Many aquaria and fish enthusiasts have found success in keeping bettas with shrimp in the same tank. But sometimes, the bettas will just end up eating all the new shrimp overnight. The personality of the betta plays a major role in determining whether one can find success in growing them with shrimp in the same aquarium.

Sometimes, making bettas follow a high-quality diet will make them not want to snack on shrimps. So this is another factor that determines whether one can find success in holding bettas and shrimp together in a single tank. 


The safest and probably the best option for a companion for a betta in the same aquarium are snails. Snails are too big for bettas to feed on. They are also useful organisms as they can help keep the aquarium clean. However, it is recommended to only have one or two snails per 5 gallons as they are bigger organisms that tend to make quite a lot of waste. 

Dwarf Crayfish

The compatibility of a dwarf crayfish and a betta fish together in a fish tank depends a lot on the personality of both the fish. But many hobbyists have successfully paired the two in an aquarium, so it is not impossible. While setting up the aquarium for the pair, it is best to set it with the crayfish in mind by providing enough hiding spots. 

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Dwarf Gourami with Betta FAQs

Here are a few questions we hear when someone keeping Dwarf Gourami with Betta.

What are good tank mates for Dwarf Gouramis?

Rasboras, Platies, Catfish, Tetras, Mollies, and swordtail are ideal tank mates for Gouramis. Mystery Snails and Amano Shrimps can also be added to the aquarium with a Gourami.

Can Dwarf Gourami live with angelfish?

If the Angelfish one owns territorial and aggressive, it might not be good to put both angelfish and gourami in the same tank. That being said, generally, both these fish get along pretty well.

Does gourami need an air pump?

They do not need an air pump as they are labyrinth breathers and can take oxygen from the water’s surface.


There are many stories of hobbyists successfully pairing dwarf gouramis with bettas in a single tank, but it is an infrequent phenomenon. With both having very aggressive personalities and territorial nature, they are the kind of fish that can never be together.

The larger size of the gouramis gives them an upper hand against bettas, making them be the ones to kill the equally aggressive bettas. So it is better not to attempt holding dwarf gouramis and bettas in a single tank.