A Fish’s addiction to chocolate is off the scale!

August 3, 2011

Gary had to go to rehab, though he said no, no, no. With the help of experts, he’s now clean and happily swimming around at The Sea Life London Aquarium. You see, Gary is a giant Gourami fish and he’s been weaned off a diet of chocolate. I kid you not.

Giant Gourami fish eats kit kat

Apparently, Gary’s previous owner had been feeding him solely on Kit Kat chocolate – and he had turned to fat. The keepers at the London Aquarium took him in and said: “have a break, son, don’t have a Kit Kat” and slowly weaned him off the devil’s food by putting tiny pieces of crushed Kit Kat inside grapes. OK, this is clearly a revelation to me, if not to you, dear reader. I didn’t know fish liked sweet things, never mind Kit Kat and grapes. I had an aquarium when I was a young ‘un, and the fish in that tank did very well on that funny flaky smelly stuff that you shook onto the surface of the water. That’s what they eat. That, and worms. And plankton. And smaller fish. But Gourami fish like fruit, apparently, and it was our Gary’s misfortune to have the type of numpty owner who would feed him chocolate. He was chomping on the chocolate covered wafers like they were going out of fashion and soon ran out of belt notches, hence the spell in fish boot camp. Now he’s a lean, mean, swimming machine with no lasting damage.

But Gary’s not that unusual. His story highlights the problem of people buying pets without doing the necessary research. It soon becomes apparent that the pet is too big or too expensive to keep. It’s then either given away, or destroyed. The doe-eyed cutie in the pen, or the tank today, becomes the monster of tomorrow.

Do you know of any pets that have been fed unusual food? Did you feed them? Did your pet start off as one thing, but grew up to be something quite different?



  1. Ha. I love this. Hilarious.

    • It made me laugh because it was so random and a pure head scratcher, but I’m glad the story had a happy ending. Life really is stranger than fiction.

  2. This is another strong argument for why animals prefer to be raised in captivity.

    • What, the lure of a good chocolate? If they were going to do it, they should’ve gone for Green & Black’s. ‘Tis good quality chocolate, even if I say so myself.

  3. What would make someone consider doing that? I know you don’t know. I just have to get those words out of me.

    • I was thinking it, but you said it. Thanks, Oma.

  4. That makes me sad. A woman I worked with used to let her dog lick her ice cream and eat her pickles when she was pregnant.

    • Err… wasn’t she supposed to be doing that?! (shakes head in disbelief)

  5. Oh lord, i work in a vet’s office, where to start?
    There was the vegan who insisted her cat eat vegan as well and couldn’t understand why it was always sick. I’m sorry, get a parrot if you can’t stand the thought of feeding an obligate carnivore meat!
    Then there was the guy who fed his dog only chili and bone meal, again with the always sick.
    Don’t get me started on raw food diet people….

    People are weird, and some should indeed be banned from owning pets. My personal favorites though, are the always the ones with pets too obese to walk that say they can’t possibly put Foo-Foo on a diet, she’d cry too much and constantly pester them and be so annoying. Suggesting they take the pet for a walk or play with them in response to food begging receives blank stares.

    Then there is my mother, who used to pour any grease from her cooking over the dog’s food.

    I’ll stop now 🙂

    • Just picked my jaw up from the floor. What is it with vegans and raw food people? If they had a shark as a pet would they be feeding them tofu? For goodness sake, people, you have an animal in your home. It’s not a baby and it doesn’t share your values. Don’t make it suffer for your ideology. Feed it what it’s supposed to eat, or as you quite rightly said, get a different pet. Or, here’s a radical thought: don’t get an animal at all. Buy a tamagochi.

      Welcome to my blog!

      • I agree, if you want to be vegan by all means, it is your right! If you want a pet but want to feed it in the vegan manner, then get a bird, or fish, or guinea pig. Not a cat.

        I consider such people selfish to the extreme.

        And thanks for the welcome, I’ll seeing you around!

  6. People that treat their pets like children should be prevented from keeping animals. Or children.

    • Some people should be prevented from keeping children: that brings up a whole other subject. However, in terms of how you treat a sentient being, I don’t think the two are that far apart.

  7. Epic.
    Who knew kit kats could be fed to fish, I thought it was only kittens…
    (Oh what a terrible joke, I even grimaced!)
    Loved the post 🙂

    • That was shockingly bad, Silver, but it did make me laugh. Alas, I feel fairly confident that some tool somewhere in the western world will be feeding their kitten Kit Kat right now.

      • Maybe they should branch out and start feeding their fish or pets different chocolate bars; it would be hierachical, they’d start out with Kit Kats, then move up the field to Lion Bar, then once they’ve done that they could explore the Galaxy, take a trip to Mars and end up at the Milky Way, all before 8pm, at which they divulge into an After Eight. It would be a picnic!

        I’m sorrry I just really couldn’t resist!

        • Damn, you’re on fire… don’t stop now!

  8. Mmm, fish made of Kit-Kat *drools*

    • OK. Can I just say you are officially strange?

      Welcome to my blog!

  9. “Don’t get me started on raw food diet people….”
    For the record, us “raw food people” (at least those of us who work with a knowledgeable veterinarian and properly supplement the diet instead of just throwing a raw steak on a plate and calling it balanced) are striving to feed our pets in a biologically appropriate manner. I am surprised that someone who actually recognizes that cats are obligate carnivores has a problem with them eating clean, human-grade meat instead of commercial food that contains species-inappropriate ingredients like grains and all off the nasty things that by-products and meat designated as “not fit for human consumption” contains.

    “What is it with vegans and raw food people? If they had a shark as a pet would they be feeding them tofu?… Feed it what it’s supposed to eat, or as you quite rightly said, get a different pet.”

    Definition of canine (Merriam-Webster): any of a family (Canidae) of CARNIVOROUS animals that includes the wolves, jackals, foxes, coyote, and the DOMESTIC DOG [emphasis added]

    Definition of feline (Merriam-Webster): any of a family (Felidae) of CARNIVOROUS usually solitary and nocturnal mammals (as the DOMESTIC CAT, lion, tiger, leopard, jaguar, cougar, wildcat, lynx, and cheetah) [emphasis added]

    Definition of carnivore: an animal in the order Carnivora that subsists on the flesh of other animals.

    I can’t speak for vegans, as I believe anyone who attempts to feed carnivores (and especially obligate carnivores like cats) on a meatless diet is misguided at best and unintelligent at worst, raw feeders who do their research and feed a PROPERLY BALANCED raw meat to cats and dogs diet ARE feeding their pets what they are “supposed to eat.”

    However, people who don’t do their research and tries to feed a raw diet without knowing what they are doing is just as misguided and likely to harm their pets as vegans who tries to impose their lifestyle on a carnivore.

    • Hello Amber. Thanks for commenting on this post.

      I said what I did about raw foodists because I understood them to be within the vegetarian area the diet gamut, but of course there’s sushi and raw meat delicacies. Cats and dogs would be better off on a diet of real raw meat, rather than the tinned stuff, of that there’s little doubt. You won’t get an argument from me. Thanks for clearing that up. I look forward to future comments, if you choose to return.

      I haven’t changed my mind about misguided vegans, though.

    • Amber-
      As a person in the animal health field I’m a hugely not a fan of raw diets. I admit it. They are supremely difficult to do correctly, and the majority of people I encounter have not done the research on it so we get to see cats with vitamin deficiencies from eating unsupplemented muscle meat only. I’ve also seen many reports of children in the hospital from salmonella poisoning because of raw meat diets fed to the pets. Frequently the child never handled the pet’s food, but did have a habit of kissing the pet on the head or accepting licking from it. As it turns out that while a cat or dog will rarely have problems from eating salmonella tainted meat (because their digestive tracts evolved to handle it; well, cats more so than dogs) they will often develop colonies living on their ears and mouths.
      Meat “by-products” are not the horrors they are made out to be, they are mostly the organs that we western people cannot fathom eating, such as kidneys and lungs. They are also very nutrient dense, unlike muscle meat (and I’m pretty sure you already know that)
      “meal” is what you want to avoid in your pet’s food, that is where the true horror lies.
      Don’t get me started on the evils of dry kibble either.

      So long as a person knows they’re going to have to put a lot extra effort in to making sure their pet’s food is actually a balanced diet and supplement them correctly I personally don’t have issue with raw-food feeders. I just won’t pet those animals or cuddle them the way I do my other patients (which is not to say I won’t love on them and treat them with the respect I give my own pets, I just have more boundaries I won’t cross). I also will never feed my own pets raw because I don’t have the time, desire or need to do so. The food I give them keeps them happy and healthy, from my 14 year old to my one year old who was born as a medical disaster and would have died 8 months ago if not for some serious human intervention and canned food in his life.

      I am with you on the vegan thing still, it just hurts my brain that someone would think it was a good idea. They need to put the cat up for adoption and get a damn parrot or guinea pig.

  10. I do apologize for misinterpreting the meaning of your post. And while I have great respect for the vegan lifestyle, I am definitely with you about vegan/vegetarian diets for cats and dogs.

    • No need to apologise. It was a good comment.

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