Domitrius Barkwood

Updated On:

What Do Pet Octopus Eat [Diet & Facts]

Heartgard Plus Chewables For Medium Dogs 26-50lbs (Green) 12 Doses

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Keeping pet octopuses can be a fun and rewarding experience. They’re smart creatures that can even learn tricks and games. 

However, it’s important to remember that they’re still wild animals and need proper care and respect. 

Octopuses aren’t the right pets for everyone, so do your research before getting one.

If you’re considering getting an octopus, make sure you have a big enough tank and set it up correctly. 

Octopuses are good at escaping, so seal any small openings in the tank. Also, give them hiding spots because they like having a place to retreat.

Octopuses are meat-eaters, so they need a diet mainly of meat. They’ll eat almost anything, but you have to be careful what you put in their tank. 

Taking care of these amazing creatures involves more than just providing a tank and water. Understanding their dietary needs is essential.

In this guide, we’ll talk about what pet octopuses eat, how to feed them, what to consider when buying one, good tank companions, and important setup tips.

What Do Pet Octopus Eat: Food They Love 


Pet octopuses, like their counterparts in the wild, have a varied diet since they are carnivorous creatures. 

In their natural habitat, they mainly eat crustaceans, mollusks, small fish, and sometimes even other octopuses.

It’s important to provide them with this diverse diet when they’re kept in captivity to keep them healthy. 

Many pet octopuses prefer live prey such as small crabs, shrimp, feeder fish, and marine invertebrates because they’re rich in nutrients and stimulate their hunting instincts. 

Frozen options like shrimp, squid, mussels, and other seafood are also popular since they’re convenient and nutritious. 

Additionally, commercially available octopus foods like pellets and frozen mixes can effectively supplement their diet. 

By observing your pet octopus’s feeding habits, you can determine the best diet to ensure they get all the essential nutrients they need and avoid any dietary deficiencies. 

Feeding them in moderation is important to prevent overheating and maintain good water quality in their tank.

What to Feed A Baby Pet Octopus?

Feeding a baby pet octopus means giving them small, easy-to-digest food that resembles what they eat in the wild. 

Good choices are tiny live creatures like newly hatched brine shrimp, small crustaceans such as tiny shrimp or krill, and very small marine invertebrates like copepods or amphipods.

These foods have all the important nutrients and are just right for the small bodies and sensitive stomachs of baby octopuses. 

It’s important to make sure that the food is small enough for the octopus to eat without any problems. 

As the octopus gets bigger, you can start giving it larger prey that matches its size and eating abilities. 

Keeping an eye on how the octopus eats regularly will help you know if it’s hungry and adjust its diet to help it grow up healthy and strong.

Factors to Consider When Buying a Pet Octopus

1. Species Compatibility

When you’re thinking about getting a pet octopus, it’s important to understand that not all octopus species are the same. 

Each type of octopus has different needs and behaviors. So, before you decide which one to get, make sure to do some research on the specific species you’re interested in. 

This will help you figure out if it’s the right fit for you and if you can provide everything it needs to be happy and healthy. 

Some types of octopuses might need more care or special tank setups, so it’s good to know what you’re getting into beforehand.

2. Tank Size and Setup

When it comes to setting up a tank for your pet octopus, size matters. Octopuses are smart and like to move around a lot, so they need plenty of room to stretch out and explore. 

Make sure to get a tank that’s big enough for them and set it up with the right kind of stuff inside, like places for them to hide and things to keep them entertained. 

Pay attention to things like how clean the water is, what kind of filter you have, and how warm the tank is to make sure it’s a comfortable home for your octopus.

3. Feeding Requirements

When it comes to feeding your pet octopus, it’s important to remember that they’re meat-eaters. 

They need a mix of different foods like live prey, frozen stuff, and special foods made just for them. 

Think about what foods are easy to find and how much they cost, as well as what your octopus likes to eat. 

Making sure they get a variety of foods is important to keep them healthy and happy.

4. Octopus Lifespan and Responsibility

Octopuses don’t live as long as some other pets do. Some kinds may only live for a few months or a couple of years when kept in a tank. 

So, before you decide to get one, think about the time and effort it takes to care for them throughout their whole life.

5. Octopus Behavior and Friends

Octopuses like to be alone and might not get along well with other octopuses or tank mates that are too aggressive. 

Before putting any other animals in the tank with your octopus, make sure they won’t bother or harm each other. 

It’s usually best to keep only one octopus in a tank unless you’re sure they’ll get along.

6. Checking Rules and Doing the Right Thing

Some types of octopuses might be protected by laws, either locally or internationally. Before getting a pet octopus, make sure it’s okay to have one where you live. 

Also, make sure you get your octopus from a good source, like a responsible seller or breeder, to make sure it was treated well and obtained in a way that’s good for the environment.

Type of Octopuses That You Can Keep As Pet

1. Day octopus (Octopus bimaculoides) 

The day octopus, also known as Octopus bimaculoides, is the top pick for people wanting pet octopuses. 

They’re active during the day and not too big, usually reaching around 18 inches across at most. 

Plus, many of them are bred in captivity, so they’re likely to be in good health and used to living in tanks.

2. Dwarf octopuses (Octopus joubini and Octopus mercatoris) 

These are among the tiniest octopus species, reaching only about 6 inches (15 cm) across.

Because they’re so small, they can live comfortably in a relatively small tank, usually around 30 gallons. However, they’re mostly active at night and maybe a bit shy.

3. Long-armed octopus (Octopus briareus)

The long-armed octopus, also called Octopus briareus, is a smart and fun-loving reef octopus. 

They have long arms and can stretch up to 3 feet (91 cm) across, so they need a bigger tank, usually around 50-75 gallons.

How to Set Up for a Pet Octopus: A Guide

Keeping octopuses as pets can be rewarding, but it’s important to understand that it comes with challenges. 

Before you decide to get one, it’s crucial to think about a few things. First, check the rules in your area about owning an octopus. 

Also, consider whether it’s right to keep such smart animals in captivity. Octopuses don’t live very long compared to other pets, usually only a few months to a couple of years. 

So, it’s essential to be prepared for the responsibility and the commitment involved in caring for them.

1. Choose the Right Tank 

When picking a tank for your octopus, make sure it’s big enough for them when they’re fully grown. For smaller kinds of octopuses, a tank of about 30 gallons should work fine. 

But for bigger ones, you might need a tank that’s 50 gallons or even larger. Also, make sure the tank has a tight lid because octopuses are really good at escaping.

2. Provide the Proper Substrate

When setting up the bottom of the tank, go for fine sand or smooth gravel to recreate the ocean floor. 

Avoid using rough materials that could hurt the octopus. It’s important to have a thick layer of sand (about an inch deep) so the octopus can burrow and hide comfortably. 

Crushed coral or aragonite sand are good options for this.

3. Create Hiding Spots

 Octopuses like to hide, so it’s important to give them places where they can feel safe. Live rock is perfect for this because it has lots of little spaces where they can hide. 

You can also use PVC pipes, caves, or ledges for them to hide in. Having these hiding spots will help your octopus feel comfortable and secure in its tank.

4. Install a Filtration System 

Setting up a good filter is important for keeping the water clean in the tank. 

Make sure you choose a filter that fits the size of your tank and can handle all the waste that your octopus produces.

5. Water Quality is Paramount 

Having clean and stable water is super important for octopuses. 

You’ll need a tank that’s been running for a while and has a good filtration system, like a sump and protein skimmer, to keep the water clean. 

Octopuses like the water to be a bit cool, around 68-72°F, so you might need a chiller to help with that. 

It’s also essential to regularly check the water’s temperature, saltiness, acidity, and ammonia levels using a testing kit. 

If anything’s off, you’ll need to do partial water changes to keep everything balanced and the octopus healthy.

6. Provide Enrichment

Give your octopus things to keep its brain busy! Octopuses are smart and like to explore, so put toys, puzzles, and PVC pipes in the tank for them to play with. 

This will keep them entertained and stop them from getting bored.

7. Consider Lighting 

Think about the lighting in the tank. Octopuses prefer dim lighting, so don’t make it too bright. 

Bright lights or direct sunlight can stress them out. Low-level LED lights are good enough and won’t bother your pet octopus.

8. Get the octopus used to its new home slowly.

After setting up the tank and making sure everything’s ready, introduce the octopus to its new environment little by little over a few hours. This helps reduce stress.

9. Keep an eye on how the octopus is doing

Watch its behaviour closely and change things in the tank if needed to make sure it’s happy and comfortable. 

Take good care of your pet octopus and give it attention regularly to help it stay healthy and happy in its new home.

How to Feed Them?


Feeding your pet octopus requires some care and attention to make sure they’re getting the right nutrition and staying healthy. Here’s a straightforward guide on how to feed them:

1. Choosing Food: Give them a mix of foods that resemble what they’d eat in the wild, like live prey, frozen foods, and specially-made pellets for octopuses. 

Options include small crabs, shrimp, feeder fish, squid, and octopus pellets.

2. Feeding Schedule: Feed your octopus 2-3 times a week, adjusting if they seem more or less hungry. Don’t overfeed them; it can cause health problems and dirty the water.

3. How to Feed: Depending on the size of your octopus and how they like to eat, you can use feeding tongs to hand-feed them or drop food into the tank with a feeding stick. 

Keep an eye on them while they eat to make sure they’re doing it right.

4. Watching Them: Pay attention to how your octopus eats and take out any food they don’t finish to keep the water clean. 

Some like hunting live prey, while others prefer frozen or prepared food.

5. Adding Extras: Think about adding extra vitamins and minerals to their diet, especially if they mostly eat frozen or prepared food. 

Talk to a vet or someone who knows a lot about keeping octopuses for advice on what to use.

6. Mixing It Up: Give them different types of food to make sure they’re getting everything they need. 

Try out different things to see what they like best and to encourage them to hunt for their food.

7. Keeping the Water Clean: Make sure the water in their tank is good quality so they can digest their food properly and stay healthy. 

Change the water regularly and check it often to make sure it’s okay.

If you follow these steps and keep an eye on how your octopus eats, you can make sure they’re getting the right food and doing well in their tank.

Companions in the Tank

Introducing friends to your octopus’s tank can be tricky because octopuses usually like being alone and might see other animals as food. 

To keep everyone happy, choose animals that get along well with octopuses, like small, speedy fish such as gobies or blennies, and calm invertebrates like hermit crabs or snails.

Make sure to research each potential friend carefully to match the water conditions and prevent stress or harm to the octopus. 

Introduce new friends slowly, watch how they interact closely, and be ready to take out any troublemakers. If needed, provide separate homes to keep everyone safe and happy in the tank.


In summary, taking care of a pet octopus needs commitment, patience, and knowing what they need. 

By giving them different kinds of food, setting up the tank right, and making sure they have a stimulating environment, you can keep them healthy and happy. 

Keep learning about how to care for octopuses and ask for help from people who know a lot about them. 

With the right care, having a pet octopus can be a wonderful experience for those who love marine life.


Do octopuses make good pets?

Octopuses can be really cool pets if you’re ready to take care of them properly. They’re smart and fun to watch, but they need a lot of care.
Octopuses need a big tank with just the right water conditions, and they can get stressed out easily if things change too much.
Also, they don’t live as long as other pets, so if you’re thinking about getting one, you should know it’s a big commitment.

What is the lifespan of a pet octopus?

The lifespan of a pet octopus can vary depending on the species and the conditions in which it’s kept.
Generally, octopuses live for only a few months to a couple of years in captivity.
Some species may have shorter lifespans, while others might live slightly longer.
Providing optimal care and meeting their specific needs can help prolong their lifespan.

How long can an octopus survive out of water?

Octopuses are aquatic animals and cannot survive for long periods out of water.
Their ability to breathe air is limited, and they rely on being submerged in water to obtain oxygen.
While some species may be able to survive for short periods out of water, it’s essential to keep them moist and return them to their aquatic habitat as soon as possible to prevent suffocation or dehydration.

How much does an octopus eat per day?

The amount an octopus eats per day can vary depending on factors such as its size, age, and activity level.
Generally, adult octopuses may eat 1-2% of their body weight per day.
However, this can vary, and it’s essential to monitor the octopus’s feeding behavior and adjust its diet accordingly.
Overfeeding should be avoided to prevent health issues and maintain water quality in the tank.

Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of, Inc, or its affiliates.