Does he look constipated or is it something else? He became bloated like this. I noticed it two weeks ago. Last week has been doing the pea treatment (one quarter pea in water once every day and a half) for a week, but doesn't look any better. Other than how it looks, it seems very healthy. It reacts to my finger, still will want to eat anything that comes across his path, very active, and swims all over the place (not floaty). I've started fasting him (today is the 2nd complete day). I just did a quick search and seems like people are against the pea method (even though everywhere else I googled suggested it). What should I do?
It's been around for two years, 1 gallon tank with water changed every week, conditioner and temp around 70s.
He looks like he is glowing because I had to use a flashlight at night to get better focused pictures.
You should be changing his tank much more frequently in a one gallon. I suggest 2-3 tsp per gallon of epsom salts and warm water (80F). 100% water changes every day and check for poop. If he has had a movement, check and see what it looks like. Is he pineconing? I can't really tell from the pictures. I also suggest a tannin source: Naturally dried oak leaves. 10-20 per gallon. Steep until the water turns a weak tea color. I wouldn't feed him peas, for goldfish it's okay - not as good for bettas. You can use some daphnia and see if that clears his system. If not, the epsom salts should help. :)
I'll change the water tonight and take out the rocks so I can see the poop and see if he poops the next few days. Some questions:
1: I'm assuming no food during this time, right?
2: If I end up needing to use epsom salt, should I still use conditioner? Also, how long do I leave him in the salt bath?
3: Wow could it really be a tumor?
Last edited by betta234; 10-16-2012 at 08:40 PM.
Reason: adding questions and organizing
1. You can probably feed him much lightly, but yes, try not to feed him.
2. Yes for the conditioner. c: What you do is, you pre-mix the salt with fresh tank water in a separate cup (so it doesn't burn the fish) then you pour the dissolved mixture back into the water. You can go this for 10-13 days (making sure you use new water each time, or it'll kill your fish!) and see what happens.
3. I'm not an expert on that, but you can ask Oldfishlady for more info.
IMO/E-using small piece of pea on occasion for treatment is not harmful to a Betta. Its not recommend to use as a staple due to poor nutrient absorption in the short GI tract-but 1-2 times a week along with a staple high protein diet shouldn't cause any problems when you have a chronic constipation issue.
I wouldn't recommend fasting for more than 24-48 hours at most-except in rare cases. It is important for the Betta overall health to maintain proper nutrition as well as to keep the GI system functioning properly and shedding parasites/pathogen they normally have on a regular basis to keep them in check.
Proper nutrition is an important part of the general health and strong immune response.
Good quality varied diet fed in small frequent meals and if you have access to live mosquito larva-offer several rinsed for at least 1 meal a day or other live foods-especially when you have a chronic condition you are dealing with.
Your Betta might be aging out and/or combination of issue related to a tumor (not cancer) that is growing, fatty liver or constipation related to diet, excessive internal parasites, long term sodium chloride use, bacterial and overfeeding- to name the most common.
To understand-You have had him for 2 years and has been overall healthy, kept in a 1gal unfiltered tank with weekly water changes, the only additive being a dechlorinator and water temp 70's.
His abdomen became enlarged 2 weeks ago with no other symptom...
No buoyancy problems, no clamped fins, no pine-coning, not lethargic or hiding and still eating and responsive to you.
The lack of fecal matter on the bottom of the tank-isn't always the best way to tell if they are still pooping or not since they will sometimes eat it or pick it up-destroying it.
White poop doesn't always mean internal parasites or the lack of white poop means they don't have internal parasites. Not all internal parasites cause white poop and stress, diet can cause white poop or color/texture changes. Fish will always have some parasites normally that they keep in check themselves.
Need to know-Where did you get him or is he home spawned, how long in this tank, how much water changed, any live plants or tank mates, any past health issues and treatments.
What is the source water-well water, tap water...etc....and do you have a water softening unit hooked up on the house that uses salt. Any other additives used other than the dechlorinator like aquarium salt-other than for short term treatments.
Do you have a heater and thermometer.
Oldfishlady, thanks for your detailed response. I unfortunately do not have access to larva. He's been on a diet of dry pellets from the store for the most part. Your understanding of his condition is correct...other than what looks to be the bloaty stomach, he's as happy and healthy as he's been for the past two and a half years that I owned him. Still very responsive and active, and still want to eat!
Answers to your questions:
1: He is store-bought.
2: He is in a round bowl all to himself, with blue pebbles on bottom, with plastic tree. Also floating thermometer and heater under pebbles. I change all water from tank every week.
3: No health issues in the past. Occasionally I might go for a week vacation, and when I come back, first half hour he is unresponsive, but then he returns to normal.
No other conditioner or additives used.
4: Water is from the tap. Not sure about softener, but my town is known to have clean drinkable tap water.
I have fasted him since monday. Yesterday I changed water and removed all rocks. Today just now I see nothing on the bottom of bowl (no poop). I do know that when I chaged water yesterday, he did look like he was pooping, but it was a very very thin/skinny poop, almost transparent, not like the usual size over the past years (could be due to lack of feeding and pea diet last week). He's still as bloaty today.
How should I proceed? He's been without food since Sunday night. Epsom salt?
I would feed him if he want to eat.....small frequent meals...
You can try the Epsom salt 3tsp/gal and tannins-along with partial water changes for the next 10-14 days and see if it helps-It can't hurt....
Ok...I will feed him small amounts. I'll see if I can get some epsom salt and do what you suggested. I do have a question about tannin...should I just get some bark or leafs from around the house and just leave it in the bowl? Also, I assume I can continue to use the conditioner?
Another thing, based on the information, do you have an idea what is the diagnosis? Could it still be something as simple as constipation?