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Old 01-16-2013, 12:49 AM   #1 
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Join Date: Jan 2013
Unhappy New Betta - HELP!

Hi, Iíve been reading and researching to help my poor baby but nothing seems to match my situation... fully.

Okay, so Iím a new betta fish owner but Iíve done enough research to know that bettas prefer >2.5 gallons, but my expenses and my current living situation (shared small dorm room) allows for only a 1 gallon bowl. Please be nice when answering this question, I really want to help my fish! Plus, I figured a 1 gallon bowl was better than living in a small cup in pet depot anyways!

I just got him today and I did everything that I was told to do, wash the gravel, put in the de-chlorinator, etc, and I even bought bettafix as a I noticed a little shredding around his tail. For the first 10 minutes or so, he seems pretty active and normal, swimming around and exploring but afterwards, he became quite still and motionless (even his gills werenít moving!) at the top corner of his bowl. I observed him for around 20 minutes and in that time period, he barely moved. I put a lamp shining above his bowl as I heard that bettas do better in warm water. (This is a temporary situation, I have a heater and am waiting for my thermometer to come by mail... Donít want to boil my fish alive without know it!) When I turned the lamp off after awhile, he actually seems to be more active but not greatly so. He swims around in an awkward jerky fashion (Velvet? Ich? I donít see white spots or the rusty shine) and at one point, was aggressively headbutting the gravel?! If fish could get ďhighĒ, this would definitely be what it looks like!

Oh and my bowl is uncycled... I really shouldíve read up on more information before making the decision of purchasing a fish! Lesson learnt.

Heís such a pretty thing, please help me out! :(
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Old 01-16-2013, 01:23 AM   #2 
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Just did more research, could it be internal parasites? His erratic behavior (headbutting the gravel) could be his way of “flashing”? If I’m right, how do I treat it?
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Old 01-16-2013, 01:48 AM   #3 
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First off, bettafix is actually quite bad for betta fish. While most pet store employees recommend it, it is actually quite harmful for the fish and can inhibit their ability to breathe, I believe. I know you want to do the best for your little guy, and I'm so happy to hear that you've done your research and all before buying your betta. :) Also, can you post a picture of him? Or even better, send us a link and show us a video if you can of his behaviour? Does he seem like he's blinded in any way or trying to rub on the gravel? If he's rubbing, then he might have a bacterial infection, or as you said, internal parasites. I'm hoping not though, since I know from experience that that could be very scary for a new betta owner.

For now, I would suggest you try keeping him very warm (80 degrees) and dose him with a teaspoon of pre-dissolved Aquarium salt for a week, and keep his water very clean. I would do a 50% water change every other day and a 100% after every four days to help speed up the healing process on his fins and if he has any other infection that is causing him to rub, it might be able to ease the symptoms until a better diagnosis can be given.
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motionless, owner, sick, velvet, worried

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