Last update: November 29, 2022

15 Best Dwarf Gourami Tank Mates

Choosing new fish for an aquarium can seem like a challenging task, particularly if you are trying to put together a community that will all get along with each other. Dwarf Gourami are a very popular choice for any budding hobbyist, but what fish make good take mates for them?

We’re here to help you out. In this article, we’re going to explore some of the best options out there that will live happily and comfortably alongside your Dwarf Gouramis so that you know your tank is going to be a thriving, healthy environment.

Best Dwarf Gourami Tank Mates – What You Need To Know

Before we detail some of the top tank mate choices that you can go for, we need to go over what is important to understand when you’re making this decision.

As any fishkeeper will tell you, there are a lot of things to take into consideration when you’re bringing together different species of fish, and getting them wrong can have disastrous consequences.


Dwarf Gouramis are, in general, peaceful fish – but that doesn’t mean that they are completely safe to house with just anybody.

Due to their shy personalities, Dwarf Gouramis are vulnerable to more aggressive or territorial species, so you need to find a fish that has a calm and easy-going temperament. Some fish can be a significant threat to Dwarf Gouramis, and there are even species that should never be kept in a community of any kind.


Dwarf Gouramis are pretty small, and they generally get along best with fish that are a similar size. Larger species can view them as prey which is, obviously, a huge problem.


You need to make sure that the environment that you create for your fish allows for every individual to feed, move freely, and feel comfortable at all times.

If you do not have the correct setup, your fish can end up competing for resources and space, which means that someone will end up missing out and becoming unhealthy.

Parameters ; Tank Setup

No matter what species you are caring for, their tank setup is vital for their health and happiness. When selecting a tank mate, you need to know that they are able to thrive in the same conditions as your Dwarf Gouramis, and that you have enough room for them.

The water parameters that Dwarf Gouramis like are:

  • Temperature Range: 77°F-79°F
  • pH: 6-8
  • Water Hardness: 10-20 dGH

While two or three Dwarf Gouramis can be happy in a 10-gallon tank, you will need 5 gallons more for every additional fish that you are adding.

15 Best Dwarf Gourami Tank Mates

There are a lot of different fish that can get along just fine with Dwarf Gouramis, but we’ve come up with a list of the best options in terms of compatibility, easy-of-care, and their general tank needs. Let’s take a look at who your Dwarf Gouramis new best friends might be!

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1. Mollies

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  • Scientific Name: Poecilia sphenops, Poecilia latipinna, or Poecilia velifera
  • Adult Size: 4-4.5 inches
  • Compatible with: Corydoras Catfish, Danios, Tetras, Loaches, Barbs
  • Water Temperature: 70°F-82°F
  • Minimum tank size: 10-gallons for 3 individuals
  • Care Level: Easy
  • Origin: Southern United States down into Central America

Mollies are small tropical fish that are a very popular option among hobbyists. They are gentle in nature, attractive, and give birth to live offspring rather than eggs.

They get along well with most other peaceful and relatively small tropical fish, and there are a wide variety of different kinds of Molly that you can choose from, including the Sailfin Molly, Balloon Molly, Black Molly, and Dalmatian Molly.


  • Peaceful
  • Attractive
  • Variety of options


  • Males can be aggressive toward other males
  • Vulnerable to larger fish

2. Guppies

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  • Scientific Name: Poecilia reticulata
  • Adult Size: 0.6-2.4 inches
  • Compatible with:  Swordtails, Mollies, Platies, Corydoras Catfish
  • Water Temperature: 72°F-84°F
  • Minimum tank size: 4-gallons for 3 individuals
  • Care Level: Easy
  • Origin: South America

Another incredibly popular option that you will almost definitely have heard the name of, Guppies are cute, fun, and friendly fish to have in almost any tank. They are one of the most widely distributed tropical fish in the world and can now be found in practically every kind of freshwater.

They are known to be easy to look after and pretty hardy for their size, and they come in a surprising variety of shapes and patterns as well.


  • Easy to care for
  • Attractive
  • Hardy


  • Breed quickly
  • Prefer to be in a trio at least

3. Platies

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  • Scientific Name: Xiphophorus maculatus
  • Adult Size: 2-3 inches
  • Compatible with: Small Tetras, Rasboras, Corydoras Catfish, Snails, Bristlenose Plecos
  • Water Temperature: 70°F-77°F
  • Minimum tank size:  10-gallons for 5 or 6 individuals
  • Care Level: Easy
  • Origin: Central and South America

Like Mollies and Guppies, you can get a lot of different varieties of Platy Fish. They are generally peaceful and get along well with most other calm species. These fish can be pretty sociable and become more active and confident when they are in larger groups.


  • Variety
  • Sociable
  • Tolerate most tank conditions


  • Prefer to be in groups
  • Active and like elongated tanks

4. Swordtails

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  • Scientific Name: Xiphophorous helleri
  • Adult Size: 5-6.5 inches
  • Compatible with: Angelfish, Platies, Mollies, Kuhli loaches
  • Water Temperature: 70°F-82°F
  • Minimum tank size: 10-gallons for 1 individual
  • Care Level: Easy
  • Origin: North and Central America

Swordtail fish get their name from the distinctive elongated lower lobe of their caudal fin, which sticks out behind them like a long, sharp blade. The females, however, don’t actually have this distinctive feature.

These small freshwater fish are usually olive green with reddish-brown stripes, but a number of different color varieties have been bred over the years.


  • Single males can be happy alone in a community
  • Striking features
  • Friendly with a variety of tankmates


  • Known jumpers
  • Can overeat

5. Neon Tetra

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  • Scientific Name: Paracheirodon innesi
  • Adult Size: 1-1.5 inches
  • Compatible with:  Rasboras, Zebra Danios, Hatchetfish, Guppies, Angelfish
  • Water Temperature: 70°F-85°F
  • Minimum tank size: 10-gallons for 6/7 individuals
  • Care Level: Easy
  • Origin: Amazon basin of South America

One of the most iconic aquarium fish that you can think of, Neon Tetras are a vibrant and beautiful addition to any community. They are very small and like to be kept in a school of at least six individuals. These fish can become lonely and stressed without other Tetras around.

They are generally peaceful and friendly, but they can be aggressive when they are in too small of a group. While they do get along with a variety of tank mates, they can be vulnerable to larger fish because of their small size.


  • Vibrant
  • Exciting schools
  • Easy-going


  • Require a group of at least 6
  • Prefer dim light conditions

6. Chili Rasboras

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  • Scientific Name: Boraras brigittae
  • Adult Size: 0.6-0.8 inches
  • Compatible with: Cherry Barbs, Zebra Danios, Neon Tetras, Dwarf Pencilfish, Bettas
  • Water Temperature: 72°F-82°F
  • Minimum tank size: 6-gallons for 8 individuals
  • Care Level: Moderate
  • Origin: Southern regions of Borneo, Indonesia

A stunning little nano fish, Chili Rasboras are very energetic and playful aquarium friends. They are one of the smallest tropical fish that are typically kept in home aquariums and the males are known for their strong red coloring.

They can be very fun to watch as they are active in their schools, and they get along well in a peaceful community, though they can become victims of larger and more aggressive species.


  • Small and cute
  • Active
  • Peaceful


  • Known jumpers
  • Require soft water with a low pH, a dark substrate, and lush plantlife

7. Zebra Danios

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  • Scientific Name: Danio rerio
  • Adult Size: 1.5-2.5 inches
  • Compatible with: Ember Tetras, Platies, Swordtails, Kuhli Loach, Corydoras Catfish
  • Water Temperature: 64°F-77°F
  • Minimum tank size: 10-gallons for 5 individuals
  • Care Level: Easy
  • Origin: India, Bhutan, and Bangladesh

These narrow, torpedo-shaped fish are named after the zebra-like stripes that run down their entire bodies. Zebra Danios are active and playful and usually get along well with other compatible, peaceful fish.

Although they all have white stripes bordered in black, their bodies actually come in a variety of colors, including silver-green, blue, pink, and purple.


  • Distinctive
  • Eat almost anything
  • Active


  • Like to be in groups of at least 5, too many can be hyperactive and too few can be stressed
  • Prefer water on the colder side compared to some tropical fish

8. Cory Catfish

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  • Scientific Name: Corydoras
  • Adult Size: 1-4 inches
  • Compatible with: Mollies, Fancy Guppies, Platies, Swordtails, Neon Tetras
  • Water Temperature: 70°F-78°F
  • Minimum tank size: 10-gallons for 5 individuals
  • Care Level: Easy
  • Origin: South America

The Cory Catfish is a staple in a huge number of tanks around the world, mainly because they are so hardy and get along with so many other fish. They have calm, relaxed personalities and are very unique in appearance.

Corydoras actually have bony scales that armor their bodies and can have a variety of different camouflage colors and patterns.


  • Unique appearance
  • Calm behavior
  • Highly compatible with others


  • Relatively inactive during the day
  • Prone to some diseases

9. Angelfish

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  • Scientific Name: Pterophyllum
  • Adult Size: 3-4 inches
  • Compatible with: Boesemani Rainbow Fish, Corydoras Catfish, Praecox Rainbow Fish, Zebra Loaches
  • Water Temperature: 78°F-84°F
  • Minimum tank size: 10-gallons for 1 individual
  • Care Level: Easy
  • Origin: South America

Is there a more recognisable aquarium companion than the Angelfish? These stunning specimens are known for their arrowhead bodies and distinctive, flowing fins. They can also display many different colors and patterns.

While they are relatively peaceful and easy to care for, they can get into fights with other fish of their kind and are generally more relaxed when there are no other Angelfish in the tank.


  • Striking appearance
  • Active and impressive
  • Generally peaceful


  • Can be aggressive with other similar fish
  • Need a high-protein, high-fiber diet and live food to stay healthy

10. Bristlenose Plecos

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  • Scientific Name: Ancistrus cirrhosus
  • Adult Size: 4-5 inches
  • Compatible with: Neon Tetras, Platy fish, Guppies, Swordtails, Corydoras Catfish
  • Water Temperature: 73°F-81°F
  • Minimum tank size: 20-gallons for 1 or 2 individuals
  • Care Level: Easy
  • Origin: South America

A truly unique and fascinating fish, the Bristlenose Pleco is commonly known as a “suckerfish”. This is because they attach themselves to various surfaces with their powerful suction mouths.

These fish can easily be identified by the bristly tentacles that protrude from the front of their heads. They have flat bodies, wide heads, and bony plates, and most are a very dark color.


  • Compatible with many fish
  • Distinctive appearance
  • Help to keep the tank clean


  • Relatively inactive during the day
  • Mostly stay at the bottom of the tank

11. Siamese Algae Eaters

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  • Scientific Name: Crossocheilus oblongus
  • Adult Size: 5-6 inches
  • Compatible with: Barbs, Tetras, Danios, Angelfish, Mollies, Keyhole Cichlids
  • Water Temperature: 75°F-79°F
  • Minimum tank size: 20-gallon tank for 1 individual
  • Care Level: Easy
  • Origin: Southeast Asia, including Thailand and Malaysia

As their name suggests, Siamese Algae Eaters are very popular for their ability to tidy up your tank and get rid of excess algae that can build up over time. They will eat almost anything and they move around a lot too.

These fish are active and social, but they can also be relatively happy on their own. They are not often aggressive, but they can be very energetic and mobile.


  • Exciting and energetic
  • Help to clean the tank
  • Easy to feed


  • Can disturb calmer fish
  • Need considerable space to move around

12. Glass Catfish

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  • Scientific Name: Kryptopterus vitreolus
  • Adult Size: 2.5-3.2 inches
  • Compatible with: Kuhli Loach, Corydoras Catfish, Mollies, Swordtails, Guppies
  • Water Temperature: 75°F-80°F
  • Minimum tank size: 30-gallon tank for 5 individuals
  • Care Level: Moderate
  • Origin: Thailand

A fish with a very intriguing appearance, Glass Catfish certainly live up to their name. Their bodies are almost entirely transparent, so you can actually see their bone structure right through their skin!

They are also known as Ghost Catfish or Phantom Catfish, and they are free swimmers as opposed to the bottom-feeding catfish that many people are used to. With that being said, they do still prefer to spend their time near the lower portion of a tank.


  • Amazing appearance
  • Energetic schools
  • Relatively peaceful


  • Have particular needs when it comes to water parameters
  • Require a lot of space and lush plantlife

13. German Blue Rams

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  • Scientific Name: Mikrogeophagus ramirezi
  • Adult Size: 2-3 inches
  • Compatible with: Silver Dollar Fish, Bristlenose Pleco, Corydoras Catfish, Rubber Lip Pleco
  • Water Temperature: 80°F-86°F
  • Minimum tank size: 20-gallon tank for 2 individuals
  • Care Level: Intermediate
  • Origin: Orinoco River basin in Venezuela and Colombia

German Blue Rams are a popular and beautiful aquarium fish that are well known for getting along with others. They have yellowish-blue bodies covered in dots and other distinctive colored markings in red, yellow, blue, and black.

They are generally very friendly and peaceful, but they can get territorial during mating season. Males are more likely to be aggressive than females, so it is best to have more females than males in a group.


  • Mostly docile
  • Active but keep to themselves
  • Stunning patterns


  • Sensitive to water fluctuations
  • Vulnerable to fish tuberculosis

14. Pearl Gourami

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  • Scientific Name: Trichopodus leerii
  • Adult Size: 4-5 inches
  • Compatible with: Panda Corydoras, Kuhli Loach, Glowlight Tetra, Otocinclus Catfish
  • Water Temperature: 77°F-82°F
  • Minimum tank size: 30-gallons for 4 individuals
  • Care Level: Medium
  • Origin: Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia

Pearl Gouramis are one of a few Gourami varieties that can get along happily with Dwarfs, and they are very sweet and attractive. They have pale bodies covered in little white spots, with a notable black stripe running down their middle.

They are quite similar to other Gouramis in terms of their behavior and can become aggressive during spawning. Otherwise, they are usually a peaceful and gentle addition to a community.


  • Beautiful appearance
  • Can breathe surface air using a labyrinth organ
  • Build bubble nests


  • Particular needs in terms of plantlife, substrate, and water parameters
  • Can become stressed by large or overactive fish
  • Vulnerable to diseases

15. Zebra Loach

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  • Scientific Name: Botia striata
  • Adult Size: 3-4 inches
  • Compatible with: Yoyo Loach, Corydoras Catfish, Cherry Barbs, Neon Tetras, Odessa Barbs
  • Water Temperature: 73°F-79°F
  • Minimum tank size: 30-gallons for 6 individuals
  • Care Level: Easy
  • Origin: Southeast Asia and India

These remarkable fish are certainly noticeable in any environment, and they are calm and friendly too. Their entire bodies are covered by alternating stripes, which is what gives them their name.

While they are generally a peaceful species, Zebra Loaches like to be in a group of at least 6 and can become more aggressive and unpredictable when there are too few of them in a tank.


  • Distinctive appearance
  • Can live for 15 years
  • Hardy and low maintenance


  • Relatively inactive
  • Need a larger tank

Summary: Best Gourami Tank Mates

Now that we’ve covered the 15 best dwarf gourami tank mates, you’re ready to get out there and start building a peaceful, harmonized community of your own!

Remember to pay close attention to the care needs of any species that you are hoping to house together in a single tank, and ensure that your Dwarf Gouramis are only living alongside peaceful and non-aggressive fish that are around the same size to avoid any conflict.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can dwarf gourami live with other fish?

Dwarf Gouramis are relatively shy and peaceful fish. They can live comfortably with a variety of other species, although some males can be a little aggressive towards other Dwarf Gouramis of fish that look similar to them.  

Can dwarf gouramis live with other gouramis?

It is possible for Dwarf Gouramis to live together, and they generally like to be in small groups rather than on their own. With that being said, males can sometimes become overprotective of females and become aggressive towards other males, so it is usually best to have only one male in a group.

What is the least aggressive gourami?

The smaller Gourami species are usually the most peaceful and least aggressive, which include the Dwarf Gourami, Sparkling Gourami, Chocolate Gourami, and Honey Gourami.

Ian Sterling

Ian Sterling, founder of, began his aquarium journey over 30 years ago, driven by a deep fascination for fish and their diverse personalities. His website,, is dedicated to making fishkeeping accessible and enjoyable, offering beginner-friendly guidance, expert insights, and a community for aquarists to connect and share experiences.

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