Fish are easy pets --- no barking, no shots, no chewing on the carpet. Granted they aren't much fun on walks, and playing frisbee with them in the park is out of the question. I have seen goldfish who were trained to retrieve, but really, who has time for that?
In one respect, watching an aquarium full of fish can be almost as calming as petting your dog but whether fish qualify as actual pets, I am not really sure. As a kid, I made it a habit to ask for a dog but somehow never was able to seal the deal. I did, however, make pets of just about everything else I could drag into the house --- frogs, turtles, rabbits, birds, snakes. Aquariums, on the other hand, were an easy sell. I had plenty of those, usually until I got bored with cleaning them or until all the fish died.
Since then, I have had a fish tank in one form or another. My latest tank has had just one lone Black Widow Tetra fish in it for quite awhile now. After most of the other fish eventually died, I had been meaning to give him (her?) some company but I just never seemed to get around to it. After awhile, the little guy seemed content so I let him have the tank to himself.
Well, after happily being in my fish tank for over 5 years now, yesterday the lone guy finally succumbed to old age. 5 years is a long time to have one fish and yet he never wrinkled. I wonder, do fish get wrinkles? I think he was the oldest fish I ever had ---most were lucky to make it a year. I can't say it is like missing a pet dog --somehow we never bonded that way-- but I do go to the tank now out of habit and expect to see him greet me there waiting for his fish flakes. Alas, the Black Widow Tetra has left me a widower. That, or a case of empty tank syndrome, I suspect. I'm not sure which but if fish have a heaven, at least I hope now the little guy has some company.
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