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Old 10-01-2012, 09:36 PM   #1 
fantasybookworm
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Sick betta, no longer sure what's wrong

I posted a few days ago, thinking my betta had SBD. I'm no longer completely sure that's it, but I can't figure out what else it might be. The freshwater fish person who helped me at the local exotics pet store didn't seem convinced that it was SBD, and I'm just looking for more ideas on what the problem might be and ways to help him. Trying not to spend a ton more money as I'm extremely low on cash at the moment and I've already spent between $20-30 (which is, pathetically enough, a lot for me at the moment...).

Housing
What size is your tank?
10 gal
What temperature is your tank? 76-80 degrees 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? N/A

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish?
Wardley Betta Food pellets & Tetra freeze-dried bloodworms (throwing these out though)
How often do you feed your betta fish? Usually once a day, in the evening.

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change?
Usually every 2-3 weeks.
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 25-33%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? I use Tetra BettaSafe water conditioner.

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters?
I haven't tested it.

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed?
He's much less active and has a very hard time getting off the bottom of his tank - he struggles to get to the water surface for air and seems quickly worn out if startled into moving or after trying to get air or food. He seems a bit paler too, on his stomach/underside. As of Friday/Saturday, he's mostly not interested in food, though once or twice he's tried to eat pellets once he's noticed them, but either loses hold of them or spits them back out, then sinks back to the bottom like the effort of trying to eat it once has worn him completely out. At this point, he's pretty much only moving to go to the surface for air, or if I startle him into moving by accident (or he's trying to get away when I catch him in a cup for water changes).
When did you start noticing the symptoms? Last Wednesday evening.
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? I've moved him to a 5-gallon "hospital tank" with no rocks or decorations in it, so I can monitor any food that he eats, any signs of waste/poop, and he won't hurt himself. I keep the tank only about half full so he doesn't have to swim so far to the surface. I'd keep it less full, but the lower-wattage heater I bought to heat his hospital tank isn't adjustable and if I keep the water lower, the temp gets to 82 and above. I've been trying to keep it around 80 degrees, and managing fairly well.
With originally thinking it was SBD, I didn't feed him on Wednesday or Thursday, then tried to give him some cut up peas on Friday before seeing that it's not a good idea. He completely ignored the peas anyway, didn't even bat an eye at them. On Saturday I went to the exotics store to get daphnia to try instead, where the guy who helped me gave me about 5-6 suggestions since he said that buying daphnia would be a "lot of extra food". Among his suggestions were BettaFix (I vetoed this, thought I remembered reading on here or somewhere that things ending in -fix are bad), Betta Revive, algae mats for impaction, a filter to improve water quality, and some kind of garlic liquid thing that you soak the pellets in and it attracts/encourages them to eat. He said to continue trying to encourage him to eat pellets.
I ended up buying the Betta Revive to try for 3-4 days and see if he improves. The dosage he gave me that I've been following is 8 drops to 1 gallon of water, with a complete water change each day. Tonight's the end of the third day of it, and so far he's exactly the same. I'd like to stop at the store tomorrow evening on my way home from classes to get another option to try, but I'm not sure what to get or do, especially with no longer being sure of what's wrong.
Does your fish have any history of being ill? No.
How old is your fish (approximately)? I've had him for just over a year and a half, I think, but I don't know how old he was when I bought him.

Also, I do realize that I need to change the water more often and I plan to, but right now I just need to get him healthy again before I can even worry about that. I just don't even know what to do anymore, and I can't do nothing and just let him slowly die. Thanks for any help/advice/suggestions!
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Old 10-01-2012, 10:32 PM   #2 
Bettanewbie60
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One...I think you have "over-treated" him.
Two..yeah, without a filter you need to up your water changes to 50% twice a week in that 10g.
It sounds like ammonia poisoning.
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Old 10-01-2012, 10:34 PM   #3 
Bettanewbie60
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Here is a great link on number of water changes based on your tank.
http://www.bettafish.com/showthread.php?t=115758
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Old 10-02-2012, 08:35 AM   #4 
fantasybookworm
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Thank you for the link. I know that I need to change the water more often, and that's the only answer I got on my last thread too. I need to know what I can actually do for him right now though, not just keep being told what I did wrong. I know what that is. If it is ammonia poisoning, will he recover on his own if I continue to change the water on a regular basis? Or is there something else I should get to help him out?
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Old 10-02-2012, 08:45 AM   #5 
MyRainbowBettaFish
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ammonia poisning- just to give you an idea for cleaning it-

i have a ten gallon with one male betta WITH a filter and it gets 25% changed weekly.
Without a filter you are talking 2x water changes a week, at 25-50% each.
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