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Old 01-30-2013, 11:10 AM   #1 
Nicci Lu
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Betta Sucked Up in Vacuum

I just sucked up my betta when vacuuming the gravel. I think he was there for a few seconds. His fins look all crumpled, he's breathing heavy, he's lethargic and his scales near his swim bladder look shiny like they were scraped. Any ideas as to what I can do to help him? I was in the middle of a water change- should I just leave his tank alone for now? I'm so scared for him.
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Old 01-30-2013, 11:20 AM   #2 
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Goodness, I just realized that there is a recent thread on this. Will read.
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Old 01-30-2013, 11:40 AM   #3 
SolomonFinch
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I am very sorry.
So far, and I have searched and searched- no betta specific advice just yet, I can recommend 3 things
epsom salts
warmth
dark
(dont forget to treat the isolation water as you would tank water)
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Old 01-30-2013, 11:49 AM   #4 
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At least I know I wasn't the only one. I think the saying should be 'curiosity killed the betta'. I don't see any swelling like with your girl, but I'm going to give him some epsom in case there's anything internal. I'll cover his tank for darkness, too.

I hope your girl recovers.
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Old 01-30-2013, 11:55 AM   #5 
logisticsguy
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This is a very common accident it seems. My fish get too close and like to play with the vacuum. Your fish was under a lot of water pressure. Best of luck, not much you an do at this point other than keep fish as comfortable as possible.
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Old 01-30-2013, 12:07 PM   #6 
LadyVictorian
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This happened to my male, unfortunately he was too large to go through the vac so his insides were sucked out and i had to put him down myself. It ripped all the scales off his side too, after seeing so many accidents with gravel vacs no thank you. I'll stick the the turkey baster. Sure it takes forever and I have to kick up the gravel but my fish are not at risk every time I clean the tank.
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Old 01-30-2013, 12:17 PM   #7 
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I am seriously thinking about a turkey baster, too. Between watching out for my betta and the frogbit while vacuuming...I thought he went in his cave, but the poor guy was mashed between the gravel that had gotten sucked up and the plastic filter in the vacuum. I hope I got him out in time. He seems to be slowly regaining his normal activity level, and his breathing is returning to normal. I'm slowly adding ES and his water is already tannined.

What should I do about feeding for the next few days? Hold off altogether, feed him smaller meals or stick to something soft? I have frozen bloodworms, Omega One pellets and frozen daphnia.
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