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Old 06-22-2014, 10:10 AM   #1 
Lichen7192
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Suddenly bloated and lethargic

Immediately after a normal water change on June 10, my male veiltail was bloated and started laying at the bottom of the tank. He is no longer nearly as active as he usually is and doesn't respond to anything. I fasted him for a few days at a time with no apparent results. Last night I moved him into a 1/2 gallon hospital tank with 1/4 tsp of Epsom salt dissolved in it, planning to change the water 100% every day. He's been fasting for the past few days with no signs of poop. Should I continue fasting him and is the Epsom salt dosage correct?

Housing
What size is your tank? 5 gal
What temperature is your tank? 82 F
Does your tank have a filter? yes
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? no
Is your tank heated? yes
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? none

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Omega One Betta Buffet Pellets
How often do you feed your betta fish? twice a day with a fast on Saturday

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change? once a week
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 50%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Stress Coat

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters? no

Ammonia:
Nitrite:
Nitrate:
pH:
Hardness:
Alkalinity:

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? His belly is bloated and gray.
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? He lays at the bottom of the tank, gill breathing and tilted towards a side. He comes up to the surface only for air.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? On June 10, immediately after a water change, he was bloated and laid on the bottom of the tank.
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? I put him in a 1/2 gallon tank last night with 1/4 tsp dissolved Epsom salt.
Does your fish have any history of being ill? no
How old is your fish (approximately)? I got him a little over a year and a half ago.
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Old 06-23-2014, 08:09 AM   #2 
Taeanna
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Are you able to post a picture of him for us to look at? How is his swimming, any changes to bouyancy at all when he stops swimming? When he does eat how is his appetite? Also what is his weight like? ( a pic posted from above can let us judge it)

I recommend if you are able, to try and get hold of some frozen/live daphnisa (water fleas). They are a natural betta food and laxative and should both get some food in his belly while ALSO helping us see if he has any waste issues.
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Old 06-23-2014, 11:34 AM   #3 
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When he swims to the surface to breathe, he immediately sinks back down to rest at the bottom. He has no trouble swimming to escape from the camera though. When I dropped in a pellet last night, he ignored it, even when it sank and fell right onto his fin. It took him a minute to notice and eat it and I don't see any poop so far today. He seems a bit heavier from the bloating.
I'll try to see if I can get some frozen daphnia. Would Petco/Petsmart sell it?
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Old 06-23-2014, 11:38 AM   #4 
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I am afraid i cannot comment since I do not live in the US, but frozen fish blocks are becoming more and more common so it is worth a shot.

I can see in the above shot he seems to be bending into an S shape, is this just from his angle in the shot or does he appear to be favoring a curved position when he sits?
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Old 06-24-2014, 03:55 PM   #5 
Lichen7192
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He doesn't quite curve while resting, but leans to a side.
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Old 06-24-2014, 06:08 PM   #6 
VivianKJean
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Petco and Petsmart do not carry frozen daphnia. You would need to look at ordering it online or looking at local fish stores.
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Old 06-24-2014, 08:04 PM   #7 
Taeanna
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I am tempted to believe his energy fall off is not from going without food or SBD since it should have manifested by now. By the look of his glassy gaze and posture he is feeling completely and utterly worn out which points to an infection.
If the epsom salt doesnt work on his paunch you may need to move into medication territory. Since he isnt having flotation issues the usual medications prescribed for SBD are not our first port of call. I would instead use a mild general cure to see if it has an effect- many of them come with a number of additives to perk up and heal a distressed fish which is our true goal. Depending on how he responds to this we can move up to stronger medications.
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Old 06-25-2014, 04:49 PM   #8 
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I've been dropping a pellet in for the past few days and I've finally seen poop on the bottom of the tank.
I got API General Cure. It says to use one packet for 10 gallons. How would I dose it for my temporary 1/2 gallon tank and can I continue using Epsom salt with it? Do I still change the water 100% every day?
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Old 06-26-2014, 03:46 AM   #9 
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Epsom salts are mild enough to be used in conjunction with most medications so no need to worry there- and good to hear he is beginning to pass waste again!.

As to measuring his dosage (honestly why are all medications in the us in sachets?! droplet bottles are so much handier) I recommend either taking out the sachet powder and chopping it into equal piles until you have the dose you want OR make up a plastic bucket with a larger more measurable amount and dose that- then cover and keep the water for the next dosage.
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Old 06-30-2014, 11:17 AM   #10 
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I have completed the total of four days treatment of API General Cure.
My fish is now much better. He has an appetite, passes waste, and is much more active. He flares and responses to stimuli. However, his belly is still bloated and he still lies on the bottom much of the time. Should I continue using General Cure?
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