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Old 10-07-2012, 09:41 PM   #1 
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FrostSinth's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Massachusetts, USA
Almost Certain its Dropsy

So I leave for a month and come back to 2 out of my 6 sorority girls dead and two out of the remaining looking as though they have a small alien trying to bust out of their sides. I'm about ready to kill my mother! I would've brought them with me but the damn university I go to doesn't allow fish (or any living thing other than plants and students). I had brought the boys with me, but they were found so I had to send them home too. . . GAH I'm so irritated:

What size is your tank? 10 Gal
What temperature is your tank? 78 F
Does your tank have a filter? Yes
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? Currently there are 3 girls (I removed the healthiest one to her own tank) and a sucker face (I think its a clown pleco, but don't quote me)

What type of food do you feed your betta fish? OmegaOne Beta and Bloodworms
How often do you feed your betta fish? Once a day

How often do you perform a water change? Supposed to be done weekly, not sure if its been getting done
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 75-100%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Stress Coat

Water Parameters:
Haven't tested

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? The worse of the two is HUGE, she looks like some sort of frankenfish. Large belly, swollen and looks like her scales are being stretched, color has changed where stretched to lighter. I also think it looks like she's got eggs, but it could be wishful thinking
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? Not at all, she's still energetic and eating
When did you start noticing the symptoms? I just noticed them when I came home today, but I've been gone a month
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? I kicked up the temperature to 82 F cuz I read that can help with dropsy, otherwise nothing. Planning on separating in the morning and doing frequent water changes. But she's so big I worry about gravity killing her
Does your fish have any history of being ill? No
How old is your fish (approximately)? about a year, maybe a lil' more

I know there's a slim chance for the girls, but if I can maybe bring them back I'd like to try. Unfortunately I literally have no money to my name and can't get any to spend on anything I don't already have. Are there any home remedies that I can try? Something with more common household things? Is dropsy contagious? Should I risk stressing out the girls by moving them to individual tanks and doing full water changes daily?

Any help would be appreciated, i'll try to get pictures in the morning to see if it really is dropsy or if its some really bad egg bloat or something. Of the four bettas and pleco in the tank, only 2 of the girls seem affected, the other 3 fish seem very healthy.
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Old 10-07-2012, 11:13 PM   #2 
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Binghamton, NY
This has happened to two of my fish but a few months apart. I wasn't sure if it was dropsy but they both went from fine to pale, bloated, and slightly pineconed in a matter of 2 days. Sadly I lost them both. Mine ate as well and would mostly sit on the bottom but would move if disturbed. This sounds a lot like mine. I would maybe put them in a small shallow container so its easier to get to the surface for air if they need, otherwise I don't believe there is anything to do. :( Good luck.
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Old 10-07-2012, 11:31 PM   #3 
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Yes, dropsy is usually caused by a bacterial infection and is contagious. Do you think you can post a pic? I've had a lot of fish bloated and weird looking for numerous reasons. I would take the girls our individually in hospital tanks and treat with 3tsp per gallon of epsom and a tannin source (oaks leaves or IAL.) If the infection is pretty advanced, I would go right for an antibiotic. I would also test the water and see if the water's been changed within the last week or so.
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