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Old 02-11-2010, 11:07 PM   #1 
TokyoBetta
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Velvet? Help me diagnose please

When diagnosing whether a fish has velvet or not, exactly how 'dusty' should the fish look?

And how do you tell the difference between a fish that's darting around, occasionally bumping into things, basically looking playful, vs a fish that's trying to scratch itself because of the itch?

I'm worried my fish may have Velvet for these reasons:
1) He's darting around and bumping into things
2) He looks a tad dusty, just a tad.
3) This week I started getting algae in the tank, on the rocks (yellow stuff..rocks are white so it's easy to tell)

I feel like he may not have Velvet for these reasons:
1) He's eating well
2) The tank is at 82*F all the time and I do weekly water changes
3) The 'dust' is not pronounced, I really can't tell whether I'm imagining it or not. It's definitely not granular like ich, like sand/sugar/salt. If the tank light is off I can't even see it.

Last question, if I go to the pet store, tell them this, and they give me medicine, and I use the medicine and he wasn't sick after all, will he be sick from taking medicine unnecessarily?

Thanks.
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Old 02-12-2010, 11:07 AM   #2 
kelly528
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Yes, unnecessary medication will stress your fish out. Most anti-parasitics are slightly toxic to fish but more importantly extremely toxic to parasites.

If he is darting and flicking it sounds like he has early velvet or barring that another protozoan parasite.

Shine a flashlight on his and see if that brings out the 'gold dust'.

You can treat it with Mardel Coppersafe, or basically any copper-based medication or Parasite-Clear by Jungle along with salt.

And whatever you do don't get swindled into buying any bettafix, melafix, betta-revive, etc. They are antiseptics and therefore not effective against parasites.
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Old 02-12-2010, 06:18 PM   #3 
dman
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gold dust? does it literally look like gold dust?
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Old 02-13-2010, 06:02 AM   #4 
TokyoBetta
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It looked like regular dust to be honest, but regular dust being light brown I could easily have said it looked gold, yes.

There were no large white spots or anything that looked like ich.
He was eating very well and although a little lethargic didn't seem too bad..

But today when I came home I really felt that I wasn't imagining the dust.. it seemed very obvious. I think these things are gradual so we don't notice at first. I spent the whole day at work and when I came home I felt pretty certain he looked 'dustier' than when I first got him.

Plus, when he breathed one of his gills on the right side didn't open as much as the left, also leading me to believe he has some minor parasite problems.

I've read bombarding with medicine is your last recourse, as kelly said above, and a water change and some salt is a good start and clears up even ich in most cases let alone the more minor parasitic problems.

I was waiting til tomorrow for my gf to bring over salt, as the pet store I got him at is in her neighbourhood and really knowledgable with tropical fish. But today I broke down and went out and got it myself, I found it at a local department store that luckily had a well-stocked pet section. I did his water change, added conditioner, then salt, got rid of the decomposing grass and put a nice fake plant in there. Boiled the heck outta the gravel and all his toys/decorations so hopefully that killed off whatever was in the tank. (In another thread I talked about my browning/yellowing gravel problem, possibly linked).

Finger crossed that nature takes his course and the clean, warm, mineral-rich water will help him heal up!

When I put him in his temporary accommodations he was quite energetically opposed as usual so he's still got the fight, hopefully I caught whatever this was. I'll update later this week. If anyone else has any ideas I'd be grateful.
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Old 02-13-2010, 01:07 PM   #5 
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Yeah try him out on a high-er dose of salt before resorting to copper. Should do the trick.
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Old 02-13-2010, 04:53 PM   #6 
TokyoBetta
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I did a big cleaning yesterday!

Here:
http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/b...w-tinge-36888/

Added the salt (at a higher dose than the normal. I went with the dosage recommended for sick fish) and we'll see how that goes. He looks improved today so I'm hopeful, seems his old self. But I will monitor closely all week.
Thanks!
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