Should You Keep Dwarf Gouramis In A Pair? [2 Ways To Form A Pair]

A dwarf gourami pair

Dwarf gouramis are often sold in pairs at local pet stores. So, do you need to keep them in pairs?

It’s not necessary to keep dwarf gouramis in pairs. They’re social fish that feel secure in large groups. You can keep a pair of male and female dwarf gourami together. You can also keep two female dwarf gouramis together. However, you can’t keep two males together as they will fight for territory.

Let’s learn more about this in detail now.

3 Combinations Of A Dwarf Gourami Pair

Dwarf gouramis thrive in a group of 4 or more. However, not every aquarist can keep a large group of dwarf gouramis due to space constraints. That’s why many aquarists prefer to keep them in a pair.

You can keep a pair of dwarf gouramis in the following combinations.

1. Keep A Male And A Female Together

A male and female dwarf gourami pair is the most common way to keep dwarf gouramis together. This is because a dwarf gourami pair is readily available in pet stores.

Male dwarf gouramis are also vividly colored and more attractive than females. So keeping a male and female dwarf gourami helps to brighten up the tank.

This also helps in breeding dwarf gouramis in the future. Since the pair has already bonded, you just need to condition them well before breeding.

2. Keep Two Females Together

Another option is to house two female dwarf gouramis together. Unlike males, female dwarf gouramis aren’t territorial toward each other. So they can co-exist peacefully.

However, aquarists usually don’t prefer a pair of female dwarf gourami because they’re not as brightly colored as the male dwarf gouramis.

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3. Keep Two Males Together

You can house two male dwarf gouramis together only if you have a large, well-planted tank for each dwarf gourami to claim its territory.

Large aquariums help to reduce territorial aggression because of their expansiveness. Some aquarists have been successful in housing a pair of male dwarf gourami in a large tank.

However, there is no guarantee that the two male dwarf gouramis will co-exist peacefully.

Dwarf gouramis are usually docile. However, male dwarf gouramis are territorial toward each other.

Hence, it’s not advisable to house two male dwarf gouramis in the same tank.

The majority of the aggression in the tank is due to territorial issues.

Male dwarf gouramis mark an area in the tank as their own. Whatever area they choose, they protect it and don’t allow other fish to invade their territory.

Territorial aggression is common amongst aquatic creatures. But it can sometimes lead to fights resulting in severe injuries.

2 Ways To Form A Dwarf Gourami Pair

Dwarf gouramis in a tank

Dwarf gouramis are easy to breed. However, forming a pair can sometimes be difficult and take time.

At least one male and one female dwarf gourami is needed to form a pair. However, it’s crucial to select the correct dwarf gouramis to form a pair.

You must also ensure that the chosen dwarf gouramis have good colorings and markings. It’s an indication that the dwarf gouramis are healthy and mature.

There are two ways to pair dwarf gouramis.

1. Purchase An Existing Pair

Purchasing an already formed pair is relatively easy as you don’t have to put in much effort.

You can visit your local pet store and watch the dwarf gouramis for some time.

The male dwarf gourami should chase and dart around in the tank while the female swims carefree. The male dwarf gourami should also swim close to the female.

If you see these things happening, you can purchase the pair and place them in your aquarium. You can decorate the tank with floating plants as the pair should breed in the future.

2. Let Them Pair On Their Own

Pairing dwarf gouramis in an aquarium is time-consuming and needs a lot of patience.

You can purchase a group of young dwarf gouramis and place them in the tank so that they stay with each other and form a bonding.

While placing a group of dwarf gouramis, you need to have the correct male to female ratio. The ideal male-to-female ratio is 1:3. That is three females for every male dwarf gourami.

You can monitor their behavior to determine whether a pair is formed.

Usually, you will notice the male dwarf gourami chasing a female for her approval. Once the female dwarf gourami is ready, the pair is formed.

The dwarf gouramis should be conditioned once they form a pair. Conditioning involves feeding various protein-rich diets so that the pair is in the best shape before they breed.

What Tank Size Is Required For A Pair Of Dwarf Gouramis?

Dwarf gouramis are small fish that grow up to 3.5 inches once fully grown. So they don’t need a large tank.

A 10-gallon tank is sufficient for a dwarf gourami pair. It will also have ample space to keep essential equipment like a filter, heater, plants, decorations, etc.

You also need to ensure that the dwarf gouramis are comfortable in their surroundings. A large tank will have enough space for them to explore their surroundings.

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Can You Keep Just One Dwarf Gourami?

It’s not advisable to keep just one dwarf gourami in the tank. Dwarf gouramis are social fish who feel secure in a group.

You should house a minimum of 4 dwarf gouramis together. Keeping a single dwarf gourami with no company can make the dwarf gourami feel lonely.

Loneliness can exacerbate its timidity. The dwarf gourami can withdraw and spend most of its time hiding in the tank.

Loneliness can also adversely impact its health as it’s more likely to feel stressed.

Continuous stress can further lead to depression, appetite loss, discoloration, weakened immune system, and susceptibility to various diseases.

In worst cases, stress for a prolonged duration can even be fatal to the dwarf gourami.