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Old 07-14-2012, 10:56 AM   #1 
peridotclover
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Swollen belly / Large bubbles?

I got a new dragonscale CT two days ago, and I feel like there's something wrong with him, but i'm not sure what. His belly is kind of swollen (see pic), and strangest of all he keeps coming up to the surface to gulp and blow these BIG bubbles (its not a bubble nest - I know what those look like). Anyone might know whats wrong with him? Any input is greatly appreciated!!

Housing
What size is your tank? 1 gal
What temperature is your tank? ~78 F
Does your tank have a filter? No
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? Java ferns

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Omega pellets / frozen bloodworms
How often do you feed your betta fish? Twice a day

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change? Every other day
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 50% - 50% - 90% - repeat
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? API Stress Coat, 1 tsp/gal AQ salt (since I just got him)

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters? Haven't tested - but I keep up with water changes.

Symptoms and Treatment
When did you start noticing the symptoms? After I brought him home
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? Just the AQ salt
Does your fish have any history of being ill? uh...
How old is your fish (approximately)? 2 days old after petsmart purchase?

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Old 07-14-2012, 11:35 AM   #2 
Aus
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He doesn't look very swollen? If anything, he looks a little on the thin side.. maybe a tiny bit pot bellied. If it was me, I'd keep an eye on his poop and check for stringiness, signs of internal parasite. But I wouldn't be panicking at this point. He might just have been overfed at the store and is taking his time relaxing in his new digs.

Gulping might also be a sign of parasites.. or simply a bit of ammonia damage from the store cup. If his gills are dark, it'll be the ammonia. If not, again keep an eye on him.

If he has parasites, there's plenty of cures to pick him right up, but just wait a while and watch, to make sure. Treating fish for stuff unnecessarily can make them sick.

ETA: sorry, just took a closer look at his pic -- his fins are kind of black and eroded at the edges.. which is probably fin rot. See those little pinholes in his fins? That's finrot, brought on by ammonia in the store cup is my bet.

Since you're concerned about bloating, I'd not go with the salt treatment, which can make swelling worse. Get him straight onto the Kanaplex or similar antibiotic for the rot.

If he bloats more, you can use epsom salt in conjunction with those medications safely.

Last edited by Aus; 07-14-2012 at 11:41 AM.
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Old 07-14-2012, 11:40 AM   #3 
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+1 Aus
About the bubbles - my boy, Sparta does that too. He's fine, and I think that it's just them heaving or taking a nice, deep breath.
Correct me if I'm wrong...
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Old 07-14-2012, 11:45 AM   #4 
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+1 as well. Also, don't use aquarium salt with plants (Java fern) because it's not good for them. Just making sure. :)
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Old 07-14-2012, 11:49 AM   #5 
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The bubbles IS them breathing, Pog does it when hes scared.
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Old 07-14-2012, 12:19 PM   #6 
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Yes, quite right about the bubbles/normal breathing.

But if he's not 'sipping' the air like bettas do, but instead 'gasping' at the surface for a long time or every few seconds, continually (there's quite a difference..) then it could be a gill issue.. just playing it safe, checking the bases, etc.
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Old 07-14-2012, 05:35 PM   #7 
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Or there is like NO oxygen in they water... I suggest a bubbler ;)
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Old 07-14-2012, 09:28 PM   #8 
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thanks for all the responses!

after much hunting in my tank, i have found what i believe to be a piece of poop. is this internal-parasite-confirming? its pretty stringy... and not brown.



also, i fed him a bit of a pea last night and no food since then, and the swelling doesn't seem to have gone down any. don't think its bloating anymore.

would Jungle Fungus Clear fizz tabs be good to use for both the fin rot and the internal parasites at the same time? i know the box doesn't claim to cure internal parasites, but the sticky on this forum lists this medicine as one of those that might work.

Edit: oh wait no, thats Jungle Parasite Clear. sorry, i can't read apparently XD

So what would be a good treatment for both the parasites and the fin rot at the same time??

Last edited by peridotclover; 07-14-2012 at 09:32 PM.
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Old 07-14-2012, 11:43 PM   #9 
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I think I see a stringy bit coming off that poop? If so, then yup. Colour's less to do with it than stringiness. If you food is dark brown and he's pooping that colour, that seems like another point for parasites. If it's pale food, then not so.

But yeah, if it was me, I'd do the parasite cure first.

Fin rot is generally slow-moving. But if he has parasites, that won't be helping him heal while he's being treated for it. They suck a lot of life out of a fish.

I don't live in the US so I'm not sure what parasite cures are best there. Jungle does one, I think? Their products are pretty good from what I hear. Anyway, wait a week after that cure is done, then hit up the fungus cure.

Just make sure to do 100% water changes and rinse everything in hot water each day, for the parasites. Nasty things.
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