I went away over Christmas break and left my betta Oscar with a friend to look after while I was gone. 3 weeks later I go to pick him up and she hasn’t changed the water once!
Since then he’s hasn’t been his usual happy self. He hangs out in the upper corner of the bowl all day (which he kind of did before, but at least then he used to blow bubble nests, which he doesn't do anymore). When he does move, he darts around the bowl charging and scraping himself on things.
He's also been showing some physical damage. He’s a crowntail, but his fins now have holes in the center of them. His bottom fin especially. The front of it looks like it’s been falling apart in chunks, while the back of it looks clumped. I tried the conservative approach for the first few weeks (more frequent partial water changes), hoping he’d just snap out of whatever it was, but nothing changed.
From the scraping I initially thought it was some kind of external parasite so started giving him a few drops (I worked the math out and gave the recommended dosage) of “Kordon Rid Ich Plus” as it was suggested by the woman at my pet store. I did this for about 2 weeks and moved him to a warmer part of my apartment and he seemed to sort the behaviour out.
I then started treating him for what looked like fin rot, as that had gotten worse since I started using the first treatment (throughout this process I was doing frequent water changes and made sure to do a full water + a couple days of no treatment change before I switched medications) and I actually saw him scrape a chunk of fin off on his plant! I used the fin rot medication (I believe it was “Aquarium Pharmaceuticals Mela Fix”, again recommended by my pet store, but I don’t have it on me and won’t be able to double check for a few hours) for the recommended 7 days and it didn’t do a thing for his fins AND he'd started darting/scrapping again so I stopped using it.
I haven’t given him anything for a week or 2 now. At this juncture everything he’s had so far (the darting, the scratching, the holes in his fins) have come back, some worse so, and in the last week his stomach has gotten bloated! He still eats voraciously every time I feed him (no throwing up, eats everything I give him - I haven't changed the amount I feed him), but the bloating has me especially worried. I tried not feeding him for a day hoping it would pass but it hasn't.
He seems to have everything wrong at once and I don't know what to do!!
What size is your tank? – 1 Gallon
What temperature is your tank? – Don’t know. Feels luke-warm?
Does your tank have a filter? - No
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? - No
Is your tank heated? – No
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? - Plastic cave and a plastic fern thing.
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? – Flakes and occasionally freeze dried blood worms
How often do you feed your betta fish? – Once a day
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? – 100%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? – I use britta filtered tap water, pH neutralizer/dechlorinator and a pinch of aquarium salt
Have you tested your water? - No
Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? – Fins look like they’ve been coming off in chunks. Back bit of bottom fin appears slightly clumped?
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? – He no longer builds bubble nests but still lingers on the side/top of the bowl and occasionally spazzes out darting around and rubbing his gills and sides on things.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? – A month and a half ago
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? - Yes (outlined in detail above) Rid Ich Plus for 2 weeks, followed by a week of nothing, followed by a week of fin rot medication. No current treatment regime. All symptoms are still present.
Does your fish have any history of being ill? - No
How old is your fish (approximately)? – I bought him 4-ish months ago
Any advice you guys could give me would be vastly appreciated.