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Old 06-02-2012, 03:43 PM   #1 
Danibunkins
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Depression?

Out of curiosity, can bettas get depression?

Caesar was an extremely excitable fish. He would fin flare just to show off whenever I walked by the tank. He followed my finger around the tank, be excitable, and generally appeared happy.

In the last two days, he's gotten pretty lethargic. His coloring is a little more muted, but he's not got spots nor is he starting to pinecone. He doesn't actively flare his fins, and when I stuck him in front of a mirror, he wouldn't flare at all.

We are currently in the process of doing a 100% water change, cleaning gravel, and adding his heater which we got today. We opted to use distilled water in the tank, because I feared the tap water, even conditioned, was getting to him.

He doesn't look sickly, per say, just ... well ... depressed.

Thoughts?

Edit: I should note, he's in a 5g planted tank and we were doing a 25% water change twice a week.
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Old 06-02-2012, 03:50 PM   #2 
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Yea they can, but it sounds like he isn't feeling well.. It's unlikely he got depressed over nothing..

Loss in color, lethargic behavior, not flaring are usually disease signs
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Old 06-02-2012, 03:52 PM   #3 
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Yes, Betta Fish can get Depressed. I heard that Someone had a Female Betta Fish and a Male Betta Fish in Different Tanks, but next to each other. One day, the Female died. The Male Betta seemed Devastated.
He did not eat. His Color came Dull. He hardly swam... The Owner tried to Cheer him up with Brine Shrimp. It still didn't work... He tried other ways, nothing worked. Nothing did.
But otherwise, if there is Something wrong with your Water Parameters, he could be sick.
BTW Distilled Water is the Worse. There aren't enough Things that he needs in his Water.
You can try to Cheer him up. Make things Exciting for him!!!
Good Luck with him. Sorry.

Last edited by LebronTheBetta; 06-02-2012 at 03:55 PM.
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Old 06-02-2012, 03:52 PM   #4 
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Fish depression is different than depression for people. They are not capable of feeling emotions like we do, so it can be hard to understand. The same goes when the fish is "bored," its different than the feeling we associate with. It sounds like something in his water is making him ill because color loss is a sign of this.

Check his water conditions. Is he cycled?
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Old 06-02-2012, 03:54 PM   #5 
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Well, we've added some new colored gravel and rearranged his tank a bit, but he's currently sitting in the half gallon fish bowl we use to hold him or quarantine stuff, and he's sort of leaning against the glass down at the bottom, pointed up a bit.

Should I maybe get some aquarium salt and add a little to fend off potential for disease?
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Old 06-02-2012, 03:56 PM   #6 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sivan View Post
Check his water conditions. Is he cycled?
The tank wasn't cycled, unfortunately. I didn't know about cycling tanks until after I got him. Go figure.

Our water here is terrible, in terms of tap water, and I'm thinking it might be that. We filter the water, and then condition it, but the conditioning initially was with those tablets... and really imprecise.

So we've swapped out for full on distilled water with him ... ultimately his water changes will cost $3 or so a week, so it's worth it.
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Old 06-02-2012, 04:03 PM   #7 
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And in review, it turns out distilled water is actually bad for him in the long run ... but hopefully it will help neutralize whatever is going on. We'll swap over to spring water.
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Old 06-02-2012, 04:10 PM   #8 
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NO. Distilled water is bad. From a guide on the site:

Quote:
-What kind of water do I use for my betta?
A reliable source of spring water can be used safely for a betta. The use of RO/DI water will require the addition of needed minerals & nutrients, as would distilled water. The purification process done with distilling makes distilled water the most pure, and thus the most dangerous for a fish. The process of RO and DI will also remove many minerals and nutrients the betta fish need for their organs to function properly. Tap water is usually the safest, but use of water conditioner is very important. Water conditioner will neutralize chlorine and chloramines, as well as toxic heavy metals that may be found in tap water sources. Testing tap water before using it for a betta is important. There are other, more complicated ways to make tap water safe. If you find you have high ammonia, nitrite, and/or nitrate in your tap water, and can’t find a good source of bottled water, then those other options should be considered. (other options include using a bucket, filter, and filter media to clean the water before using it in the betta tank)
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Old 06-02-2012, 04:11 PM   #9 
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Tap water is fine if you use a good conditioner. I recommend using Prime. It removed chloramines and metals, pretty much everything. Is your water hard by any chance?
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Old 06-02-2012, 04:14 PM   #10 
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you will need some kind of minerals for his water. distilled isn't very healthy for them since there is nothing good in it anymore.

This is just an idea:

I am not sure it will totally work but Aqueon sells a product called Betta Water Renewal. You can google it. It has a bunch of minerals in it that soposedly bettas and plants use. You can call Aqueon and see if this could be used as a mineral replacement for distilled water.

They have above and beyond super customer service. 1-800-255-4527 is the number on the bottle. They may have a different number you might want to contact on their website. That number is for the "Aqueon Guarantee" - I have no clue what that is, I found my customer service number off their website.....

The directions for it say to add 5ml (1tsp.) per half gallon of water.

I use a few drops per water change, but i'm using tap water with Tap water dechlorinator in it, that removes chlorine, chlorimine, and heavy metals.
During the winter I guess water companies add chlorine. Spring and summer they change over to chlorimine.

I hope someone helps you get your fish feeling better, sorry if this didn't help much, it was just an idea, and it couldn't hurt to call.

Best wishes

Edited to add, wow 3 posts while I was typing that, and I typed fast (for me at least) LOL

Last edited by Twilight Storm; 06-02-2012 at 04:17 PM.
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