Trimming bettas fins? - Betta Fish and Betta Fish Care
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-26-2011, 06:25 PM Thread Starter
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Trimming bettas fins?

Has anyone ever heard of this? I've read that breeders do it to heavy finned males so they can care for their spawn easier and some have done it for fin rot. I'm not considering doing it myself, I'm just curious. How is it done without causing harm?

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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-26-2011, 07:41 PM
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If the fins are to heavy or a bother the fish he'll simply bite them himself.
i've heard reccomend it.

And simply put it does cause harm. Just because it's done doesn't mean it's right or safe, especially for someone who's never done it before.
(not implying anything towards you in any of this)

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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-26-2011, 08:07 PM
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Large chunk got cut out of what i said, just saw it and can't edit so reposting: If the fins are to heavy or a bother the fish he'll simply bite them himself.
i've heard of it in cases of fin rot where treatment doesn't help. but would never recommend it

And simply put it does cause harm. Just because it's done doesn't mean it's right or safe, especially for someone who's never done it before.
(not implying anything towards you in any of this)

My wishlist:
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-26-2011, 09:50 PM
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I agree....when my bettas decide they need a trim or their tail starts to grow funny they nom it off....I have certain fish that absolutely love their tail long and beautiful but some of my fish nom it off until it's the right length...if they don't nom it off then it must not bother them

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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-29-2011, 02:31 PM
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I think if a bettas fins are so heavy that he cant move properly then he definately should not be bred. Why create more fish that cant swim or breed without assistence.
It is possible to select for HM with shorter fins in lines and infact there are many lines of hms without the huge useless heavy finnage.
But if there is a fish that cant breed normaly then why breed him and pass on this failing trait?
Sure huge finnage loooks nice when in full flare, but seeing that fish struggling to drag his finnage around is kinda sad
haha theres my rant for the day

I'd cut off severe finrot if I had to, I'd probably take the fish out and chop with scissors. I dont think it hurt them, if it did, I dont thin tail biters would enjoy biting their tails.
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-29-2011, 06:46 PM
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I was actually wondering this a few weeks ago. Iorek's fins are very heavy to him, so he's in a half full 2.5 gal so he can reach the surface easier. When the tank was full he would sink to the bottom and have to struggle to the top. I was surprised by this since he's a crown tail and there's very little webbing, but his age is probably a bigger factor in that. He hasn't bit at all, so I guess he's fine with his fins that length so long as we compensate with water level.

I think it would hurt them to cut off some of the fins. Whenever they get into fights, I always read that they clamp and become lethargic, which are signs of pain or illness. There's also the stress of whatever method would be used to factor in too. It would leave lots of openings for illness and rot to set in too if the water wasn't kept very clean all the time.

I think lowering the water level would be more humane and effective for heavy finnage, along with lots of plant cover for the medium and top levels of the tank for the betta to rest on too.
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-29-2011, 07:19 PM
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I've trimmed fins once due to severe fin rot. Some breeders do it to help the fish heal up easier after spawning because a clean cut heals better than a jagged one if the fins get torn.

Even a well bred fish who carries his fins well can need trimming in older age, it's just a humane thing to do. However I do NOT recommend any person off the street attempt this. You need anesthetic, very SHARP scissors or a scalpel (I use an exacto knife) and you need to know how to treat the fins so they heal up beautifully.

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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-30-2011, 01:36 AM
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Yikes! Sometimes I wonder if we humans go to far. We've created dogs with noses to short to breath through, horses smaller than loaves of bread and fishes that need fincuts just to swim.
Just sayin.
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-30-2011, 03:09 AM
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You know, I was thinking about asking this question myself. My HM's tail literally drags him down. It's so big, he can't even begin to open it when he flares. He's not an OHM, he's more like a freakin' FULL MOON. I actually would be thrilled if he would bite some off but he never has.

My thought is this: can it really hurt that much for a human to trim the fins? I mean, it can't hurt any more than the betta chewing them off himself, right? As long as the water is kept clean after the fincut, there should be no chance of infection, just the same as if the betta had bitten them off himself.

I think if you want to go around trimming fins for cosmetic reasons, to make a "designer" betta, then you're pushing some ethical limits. But if you are trimming the fins to help the betta, then I dunno, it doesn't seem so bad.
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-30-2011, 10:03 AM
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Usually it's not just the length of the fin that impedes the fish.. but the body. These fish with thin, wimpy bodies can't possibly hold up their massive fins over time. That's why the fish I choose to buy and breed have nice thick bodies of good length. IME they hold their fins just fine.

Edit..

Oh and IMO the fins should be less than the length of the body. If you have a fish whose caudal fin is longer than it's body length no wonder he's chewing his tail off.

If ya don't like it.. don't buy it.

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Last edited by 1fish2fish; 09-30-2011 at 10:06 AM.
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