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Old 06-18-2012, 10:14 PM   #1 
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: PA
HELP my Sick little fish????

My son has been begging to have a fish and had finally earned one. We got him one week ago yesterday. Now this is our first Betta; and I chose this fish thinking they were very hearty and easy to care for - there is a lot more to it than I thought. I even asked at the pet store what I needed and what type of fish they would recommend. They said chose one of these tanks, gravel, decorations, and a water conditioner - they were not very helpful. The tank I bought was broken and had to be returned, and required a late night run to Walmart to get a different one so we could get it set up. I went out yesterday and got a heater and new filter inserts. Cleaned the new tank/plants/decorations well with hot water and allowed it to cycle for 24 hours before putting him it. He never seemed super active, but was ok for a few days. I kept asking my husband if his color looked different and now I think his fins look different. From what I have seen online I am wondering if he has fin rot. I am worried about the poor little guy and I am very disappointed that it seems we purchased a sick fish. My son was practically in tears earlier.

What size is your tank? 3 gallon
What temperature is your tank? 72 degrees - but just put the new heater in
Does your tank have a filter? yes
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? no
Is your tank heated? just put a heater in today with 50% water change
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? none

What type of food do you feed your betta fish? pellets and freeze dried blood worms
How often do you feed your betta fish? 1 pellet or 2-3 blood worms 2x/day

How often do you perform a water change? 1x/week
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? first change tonight 50%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? betta

Water Parameters: Have not tested the water - what should I get to test it??
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters?


Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? yes dulling color; grayish, fins look shredded
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? somewhat more lethargic; doesn't eat well with pellets and hasn't since wee got him; seems to eat a little with the blood worms
When did you start noticing the symptoms? slowly progressing daily since we got him a week ago
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? Not yet really need advice on what to do
Does your fish have any history of being ill? ???only had him on week
How old is your fish (approximately)?
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Old 06-18-2012, 11:48 PM   #2 
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Location: Oklahoma
Pictures ? :/ sorry about your betta..
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Old 06-19-2012, 01:35 AM   #3 
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Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Australia!
Fin rot plus his ill look is probably a bacterial infection, but it can be really hard to tell.. if he never looked that sprightly to begin with, I'm thinking a safe bet is infection. If he's steadily declining, I'd forego the usual basic AQ salt treatment and go the big guns right away. There's a couple of things you can try:

Do 100% water change. Make sure to clean the gravel. Add 1 teaspoon/gal Aquarium Salt 3 times, 12 hours apart so that you end up with 3 times the normal concentration. Do NOT raise the temperature... Combine salt treatment with Mardel’s Coppersafe, Maracyn I & II, API Erythromycin, OR API Triple Sulfa, combined with Jungle’s Fungus Eliminator (if possible).

Kanaplex is also really good for gram negative infections, which this -probably- is.. it's hard to tell sometimes... and it knocks a few others out as well. Treating with Maracyn I & II at the same time works well for a lot of fish, says my research (we don't have those medications here, so I am going on what others have said).

ETA: also, your tank isn't cycled, that takes weeks and is best not done with the fish in the tank.. in an uncycled 3 gallon, do 2 x 50% changes at least. My own uncycleds get 1 x 50%, 1 x 100% per week.

I feel bad for your boy.. good on him for earning his pet. It's hard enough on adults when their first fish gets sick (my first was a sickly one..) let alone a child. It's not your fault the fish is ill.. if worst comes to worst, do try again. Bettas are great 'companion fish' .. That said, I do hope your boy's fish pulls through.

Last edited by Aus; 06-19-2012 at 01:42 AM.
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Old 06-19-2012, 04:48 AM   #4 
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Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Paris, France
How big is your fish? In addition to what Aus has said, I think you're not feeding him enough. You should increase his portion size to 2 pellets in the morning and 1 or 2 in the evening, depending on his size. Try not to be too heavy-handed on the bloodworms because they can cause constipation, swim bladder issues and bloat, assuming they're freeze-dried. Once or twice a week for bloodworms is plenty.
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Old 06-19-2012, 10:30 AM   #5 
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Georgia
I hope your boy's fish pulls through! You've gotten some good advice. Clean water, little AQ salt, good medicine list *jots that down for her own use later on* Good luck. We've already dealt with a couple of dead snails, so we crossed that bridge of explaining how sometimes these small pets come to us sick, and being small animals, they are just not going to live as long as a cat or dog even in perfect health.

You are not alone! My sons' betta has been through a case of fuzzies and is now hopefully mostly mended from a post fuzzy case of fin rot, but he is THE most personality-laden betta we have! My son has already been complaining to me because I fish napped Lavatail's tank so I can do the treatments.
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Old 06-19-2012, 10:42 AM   #6 
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Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Haverhill, MA
Hello and Welcome to the forum, I also want to ask, If you are using regular pellets, you might want to give Micro pellets, and cut out the freeze dried bloodworms, only for a treat, maybe once a week, or once every other week, and give micro pellets 1or2 pellets, 2-3x a day..this will help his color and appetite, I have been using these since we got our Sammy and our boy has grown and his color is bursting, try the Hakairi Gold, or New life Spectrum, (micro) pellets, they are much smaller and betta's seem to prefer them over the reg size ones. also check the heater, and see if you can adjust it, to 78d or maybe get another one, or look at the themometer temp, to see if it is flucuating, sounds like if it's at 72 it's a lil chilly. Hope all goes well with you lil guy:)
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