Can Betta Live With Dwarf Gourami?

Gourami fish and betta fish both belong to the group of labyrinth fish. Labyrinth fish can live in low oxygen water. 

Even though Betta and Dwarf Gouramis both belong to the group of labyrinth fish, they look very different and can not live together. 

Bettas are territorial and do well on their own, while dwarf gouramis are more docile and would probably get bullied by bettas. Keep reading to find out which tropical fish are the best tank mates for bettas and dwarf gouramis.

Which fish can live with bettas?

Bettas can live with other fish but not with other betta fish. Especially male Betta will fight other male Betta, often till one is dead. It is no coincidence they are also called Siamese fighting fish. Betta are an aggressive fish towards other bettas and other colorful fish they see as competition. Bettas are very territorial but docile to those fish it doesn’t consider a rival. 

betta fish, a snail eater

They do best with other fish that have small fins. Large finned fish with bright colors will cause the Betta to attack.

  • Feeder guppies are a great choice to live with bettas. They are small, and they don’t have large fins, so your Betta will be unlikely to try to bite them. The guppy is also no threat to the Betta.
  • The rasbora is a friendly and easygoing fish that gets along well with the Betta. They also both enjoy eating brine shrimp!
  • Neon tetras can live in an aquarium with your Betta even though their neon stripe goes against the advice of avoiding fish with bright colors. You should get more than one neon tetra, though, as they like to be in a school of 6-10. They also enjoy a tank that has a good amount of plants for hiding places, just like your Betta.
  • The clown pleco is a dwarf of the species and only grows to about 4 inches. It’s an algae eater and is very easy to care for.
  • The kuhli loach is a docile, eel-shaped fish that loves brine shrimp, just like your Betta. They mind their own business and need at least a 20-gallon aquarium to be comfortable.
  • Mystery snails can make a good companion for bettas because of their hard shells, which will protect them if the Betta takes an interest in them and wants to fight. They are also algae eaters.
  • Corydoras catfish are a good choice as betta tank mates because they are easy to care for and not aggressive. Cory catfish could grow up to 2.5 inches in length.
  • African dwarf frogs are also a good choice for bettas to live with as they are easy to get along with. They are very active, growing up to 2.5 inches in length. They also shed their skin every couple of weeks and then eat it! Yum!
  • Ember tetras grow to a little under 1 inch, and they like to be in a school of 4-6. Like bettas, they want a lot of plants, and they eat brine shrimp.
  • Ghost shrimp are great companions for bettas. Also called glass shrimp, they are hard to see in your tank as they are translucent! They love to keep the aquarium clean by eating up all the little bits that make it dirty. The same goes for Amano shrimp.

Female bettas can live together in a “sorority” in a large tank that is at least ten gallons. They should, however, be watched as sometimes one may become aggressive, and you will have to move it to an aquarium by herself.

SevenSeaSupply - Male Halfmoon Betta - Assorted Color - Live Aquarium Tropical Fish…

Male betta and female betta who have just mated will need to be separated soon after. The male will chase the female away from the eggs that have been laid in a bubble nest, and if the female does stay around the eggs, it will only be a matter of time before she begins to eat them.

You can also have a betta in an aquarium by itself. The size of the aquarium should be at least 2 gallons and have plenty of plants and hiding places.

It’s essential to make sure you never put an aggressive fish with a betta.

Which fish can live with dwarf gouramis?

Gouramis are easygoing fish, for the most part. Female Gourami are okay to live together because they do not become aggressive. However, male Gourami can become territorial when it’s breeding time. Here are some good tank mates.

  • Upside down catfish are a good choice for living with dwarf gouramis because they like to hide, they want lots of plants and aquaria with sandy bottoms.
  • The tiger barb is another good choice because it likes similar water temperatures and eats the same thing that gouramis eat. It also enjoys a lot of plants.
  • The common pleco is a bottom-feeding catfish and generally keeps to itself at the bottom of the tank, while the Gourami tends to stay at the top of the tank.
  • Rosy and pearl danio are calm aquarium fish, and they would be great companions for dwarf Gouramis. They also enjoy lots of plants, similar to the gouramis, but they stay in the middle of the tank, and the gouramis prefer the top of the tank.
  • Harlequin rasbora are nearly identical in needs to the dwarf Gourami. They both eat the same foods, and they like lots of plants. They also enjoy the same water temperature, and they come from the same area in Asia. 
  • Tetra are another species that would get along well with gouramis. They like the same plants and foods, and they love to hang out in the middle or bottom of the aquarium while the gouramis are at the top.
  • Zebra loaches will do well with your dwarf gouramis because they like to stay at the bottom of the tank so that they won’t have a lot of contact with the gouramis. They also don’t get very large and hide just like Gourami does.
  • The sailfin molly likes a lot of the same things the Gourami does, like temperature, hiding places, and eating the same meals. They also hide from each other, so there shouldn’t be any drama between them.
  • The pineapple swordtail is another fish species that would be a good companion for the dwarf Gourami. It’s not looking to get into a fight, and it loves to swim, so be sure to put it in a large tank with a cover because it’s a jumper as well.
  • The discus could be a companion for the Gourami, although it’s not the first choice of many. It can get territorial at breeding time and eat different foods than the Gourami, but they could be friends with a bit of extra work.
  • The cory catfish could also be a good tank mate for the Gourami because it likes to hang out at the bottom of the aquarium, avoiding the Gourami at the top of the aquarium.

Quinn's Fins- Neon Royal Red Dwarf Gourami- Flame Dwarf Gourami

Can bettas or dwarf gouramis be in a tank by themselves?

Bettas can be in a tank alone, and they are perfectly fine to live by themselves. Some people think they might be lonely living alone, but if they are given a big enough aquarium with many plants, they will be happy, and if not, they will get bored.

Dwarf gouramis will need to be kept with other freshwater fish, or they will hide in their tank and get lonely, and they could also get stressed. They are considered social fish and need to be a part of a pair. On the other hand, some say that they will not be lonely alone and will be fine.

It would be best not to pair them with an aggressive fish; that would be a bad idea. The Betta can be fierce, so they are not recommended to go to the same aquarium with Gourami.


My name is Jaap, and I am a passionate shrimp and fish enthusiast. I rediscovered my love for this hobby with my son and want to share our knowledge and tips with you on this aquarium blog. We cover topics such as setting up and maintaining an aquarium, feeding and breeding your shrimp and fish, and creating the perfect environment for them to thrive.

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