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Old 06-22-2012, 06:32 AM   #1 
Hallyx
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Getting old?

We all get old (if weíre lucky). But Iím astonished at how quickly my ďfirst fishĒ has apparently aged.

Iíve had him about fifteen months. He was bigger than some when I got him, but he grew another quarter inch in body and gained a few grams and much finnage over the next six months. I donít suppose heís two years old, yet. He was very energetic and playful during that time with great appetite.

Beginning about April, heís slowed down a lot. Now I have to put his pellets right in front of him. If he misses it on the first try, he wonít or can't go after it. Heíll only take two pellets a day, if that, and heís losing weight. He sleeps in his floating plants all day, and, if he falls out, he has a hard time swimming back up. I donít see any signs of disease.

His brother, purchased at the same time and kept in the same water in a filtered, divided 5gal, is not as chipper as he once was, but heís more alert and responsive with a good appetite. He still builds bubble nests and flairs enthusiastically..

I donít know if heís in pain or suffering in any way. Iíve heard they live three or more years, but I donít think he will. Anybody have any advice?
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Old 06-23-2012, 04:58 PM   #2 
Sena Hansler
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We all age at different rates... As do our fish. I estimate ol' Georgie to be 4, he's massive in size and he's become more active since I got him (though friendly is not in his vocabulary!!)

Shiloh, well he was really hurt when I got him... Missing scales, wounds here and there, a gashed face plate and torn beard... He lasted 2.5 years. Spartan lasted 2.5 years as well, with a tumor. Mister lasted about 7 years (he was older in the store as well!), Finicky about 4... All of them had different lives, different live spans... At first it sucked.

When I saw Shiloh slowing down, sleeping a lot, and not eating as much I knew he was going to pass away from old age... And truthfully, I didn't worry, and I didn't feel bad or anything. Just happy I gave him the care he would have never gotten
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Old 06-25-2012, 03:43 AM   #3 
Hallyx
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I've lost a few fish through ignorance and inexperience; that really felt bad. This is different. It just seems a bit early.

I posted this thread mostly to see if anyone thought it might be something else.

At what point would he be better off if I put him down?
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Old 06-25-2012, 04:02 AM   #4 
LittleBettaFish
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My bettas I purchase from pet or badly managed fish stores seem to die off a lot earlier than my imports and locally bred ones.

I recently euthanised my second betta who was around 2 and a half years old. He would go along at the top of the water looking like he couldn't catch his breath, and lost so much condition because he was having difficulty eating. There were no water quality issues and he was otherwise healthy, flaring and in full colour.

I decided to euthanise as I could see he was slowly starving and it wasn't fair let him suffer. Some might have left him die naturally but I'm always of the mind better a week too early than a minute too late.

He was in a 4 or so litre bowl with several other 'females' when I purchased him, and I always think that having to deal with ongoing poor water quality while on the shelf must surely have long-term consequences for their health. One of my males was in water with an ammonia of 8ppm, and something has to be irreversibly damaged or compromised by that kind of exposure.
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Old 06-25-2012, 08:48 AM   #5 
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My oldest male has had these same symptoms for about 6 months now, and I feel it's at the point I need to let him go. He rests in a plant at the surface all day and almost looks like a swim bladder problem in that it just takes so much effort to get back to his plant and get to food pellets. He has also lost weight & color. When this first started to show I thought he wouldn't make it much longer. But it's been 6 months and a cross country move of 2000 miles, but I think it's just time... Just my experience. You may want to add some aquarium salt to see if that helps at all.
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Old 06-25-2012, 11:10 AM   #6 
Sena Hansler
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For my old boys, (even if they weren't old but showed the old man signs), I cared for them like any other betta (modifying the diet, so they wouldn't get bloated or constipated) and they would pass on their own. The only time I euthanise an old betta, is when he really is suffering.
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Old 06-25-2012, 11:22 AM   #7 
Blue Fish
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For the ones who are having difficulty getting around, would they possibly actually be happier in a smaller/shallower bowl or tank? Lots of plants and places to rest in, but less water which would make it easier to move from place to place and possibly to eat? Rather like a betta retirement home?
I've never done it, but I was curious as to wether or not anyone else had an opinion?
I'm sorry about your boy, it's always sad when they go, especially when it seems too early. :(
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Old 06-25-2012, 11:45 AM   #8 
Sena Hansler
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I had an old boy in shallow water, so he could move about easier :)
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Old 06-25-2012, 12:26 PM   #9 
cjayBetta
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My Coco seems to be the same way - I feed him 4 pellets at night, sometimes 6-8 just because he can only get 2 or 3 of them if hes lucky... I think he might be blind......
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Old 06-25-2012, 06:55 PM   #10 
chicagojo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Fish View Post
For the ones who are having difficulty getting around, would they possibly actually be happier in a smaller/shallower bowl or tank? Lots of plants and places to rest in, but less water which would make it easier to move from place to place and possibly to eat? Rather like a betta retirement home?
I've never done it, but I was curious as to wether or not anyone else had an opinion?
:(
I did this with my son's fish Rock N Roll - when he started having lots of problems getting to the surface, I lowered the water level to just a few inches. I had to do really frequent water changes, but he really perked up, started eating again, and his quality of life really improved. He went from spending half the day just laying there to swimming around like a normal fish. I put some silk plants on their sides so he would have plenty of places to rest. Sadly, he died two days ago but I think his final months were much happier because of these modifications (BTW, he was less than a year old when he died but I think he had some genetic issues - he was super tiny, never grew at all, and had some chronic swim bladder problems - so his time came a lot sooner than most)
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