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Old 02-11-2013, 09:45 PM   #1 
FishiFrances
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Angry Came back from vacation to DISASTER!

I left for vacation about a month ago. I was gone about 3 weeks, and came back to discover that my fishy caretaker just didn't care about my darlings like I thought she would! I've been back for a about 9 days now and have set up a hospital tank with water/air flow (took out the carbon filter), and 2 other sitting tanks.

Housing
What size is your tank? Rico: 1/2 gal, Frances: 1 gal, Draco: 2.75 gal
What temperature is your tank?Rico & Frances: about 76F, Draco: 80 (He was the worst at the time, so he got the only heated tank)
Does your tank have a filter? None have an actual FILTER atm.
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? One does (Draco's)
Is your tank heated? Draco's is. Not the others.
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? All are single.

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Was doing Tetra Betta-min, now doing live blood worms.
How often do you feed your betta fish? One (decent sized) worm, twice a day.

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change? Everyday.
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 40-50%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Added to the water acclimated to room temp the day before: Aqueon Water Conditioner and AQ Salt.

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters? I have not, but with the daily changes (did 100% water change as soon as I got home and saw the poor things!!), I know that the ammonia levels have been kept somewhat lower.

Ammonia
Nitrite
Nitrate
pH
Hardness
Alkalinity: ?


Now, I tried just 80% water changes on all three and AQ Salt for the first 4 days with NO change at all, and all of them were acting super lethargic. So I did a really good water change and have been keeping them on Marycyn 1 daily doses. I know that they can spike the ammonia and other chemicals, so I've been watching them closely and changing their water 50% daily before adding a new dose. And I was using a little less Marycyn than it recommended, just in case (since I have to be gone 18 hours a day for work at the moment, I felt it was safer than coming home to dead lovelies). So far Draco seems to be doing waaay better. All three of my boys are much more active and are voracious eaters again (even had to limit how much they get, cuz they were getting FAT), and follow me around at feeding times and everything. However, I still worry about their recovery. Frances, I feel the best about. His fins never truly healed up properly from a bad mating fight (she ate most of his tail), but I think it's rolling back up on the ends. I'm more or less worried about preventatives for him.

Rico is the worst off right now. He wasn't so bad, but now I have noticed that he also has a gill issue. One gill will not close properly. I know that's from nitrate/nitrite/ammonia poisoning, most likely from when I was gone since I have been closely monitoring him since I got back, but did not get a good look at him before. Now that he is more lively again, and is swimming around, I have noticed it. Plus, most of his beautiful tail is GONE!!! (Trust me, my sister is NEVER again watching my fish!)

I just want a second opinion on how to handle these poor darlings. I've never played rescue before. Granted they are all acting much happier in the last couple of days, but this isn't going to take a turn for the worst at the last minute on me, is it?


Rico BEFORE I left:







NOW:






And his poor little gill: (HIS right)

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Old 02-11-2013, 09:50 PM   #2 
FishiFrances
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Here's Draco BEFORE I left:




And NOW, after a bit of healing looks like has taken place (most of the black tips are gone and turning white):


Sorry, he wouldn't hold still for anything!!! And his color has almost completely come back... He was almost all white when I got home. >.< I honestly thought I was going to lose him....
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Old 02-11-2013, 10:34 PM   #3 
callistra
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Well first off you need to upgrade two of your tanks. 2 gallons is minimum to keep bettas healthy long term. Your 1g and especially the half gallon isn't going to keep them healthy for full lives. In the 1/2 gallon I would do 50% and 100% water changes every other day. In the 1g you need at least one 50% and one 100% weekly but I'd throw a third 50% in there. This is while they're well. Now they need more.

Bad idea to dose less than full meds. All you will do is breed a resistant infection. If you're going to use the med you need to do a full dose and for a full week of treatment.

Blood worms are like feeding potato chips. They should only be fed one once a week as a treat. you need a good quality pellets whose first two or three ingredients are whole fish not fish meal or wheat and they need one fast day a week.

Sorry to tell you that the last betta in your first post has dropsy. Is this also Rico?

Rico for sure has has popeye and fin rot and is either very constipated or has an internal infection to boot..is this the same drop down one?

Draco has ammonia burns and maybe some popeye.. hard to see.

I don't see any of Frances..

I would fast all of them for a few days, at least two or three and also add 1 tsp per gallon epsom salt - 100% magnesium sulfate predissolved and added slowly over an hour to avoid shock. I use CVS Pharmacy brand successfully myself. This will help with Draco's ammonia poisoning and also acts as mild antibacterial/fungal. Increase water changes on all of them to 50% and 100% every other day along with redosing salt (only as much as water you replace).

That should be good for Draco as the Maracyn helped him. As long as all black is gone and you see regrowth you are good.. he is still clamped however. That may be from the meds.

However the dropsy one needs it too.. treat for two weeks with the epsoms plus the med.

How do you do large water changes with acclimation?

Last edited by callistra; 02-11-2013 at 10:36 PM.
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Old 02-12-2013, 03:42 AM   #4 
FishiFrances
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I would love to upgrade them all eventually, but right now it's really hard on finances. The smaller tanks were all intended to be temporary. I would very much prefer them all filtered and heated, trust me. I know that in the smaller tanks they need more water changes. That's why I was saying that I'm doing at 50% daily right now.

And when I say I was doing less than full meds... each packet is for 10 gallons, and I'm literally trying to seperate it into 3 parts (roughly 3.3 gallons each). Well, I was putting one of those doses in with Draco, no problem. I felt more comfortable knowing that he has water flow in his tank and a heater. With the other ones being so small, I was doing 1/3 of Draco's treatment into Frances', and half of THAT amount into Rico's. I had done the math all in the beginning and figured it was the closest I could get without actually weighing it all on a scale.

In actual closeness, I've been looking out for popeye (since THAT, I have treated once before) and neither look like they have it. I think just the bad quality of the pics makes it look worse in the eyes. And yes, all of the first 3 pictures are the same fish. Just trying to show his poor gill. I've been trying to keep an eye out for dropsy, and I know that it usually slows the fish down a lot in attitude. Now, all of them have only been getting better as far as attitude goes, so that's one reason I was leaning towards dropsy having not set in thus far. He does look that fat since he had JUST eating, but I do think he might be constipated too. I'm just worried about fasting him if I know he's already sick. I'll try it though and give him a smashed pea in a day or so. Didn't realize that about the worms though... I thought live food would give them more fresh nutrients that they would need for healing. I have like 3 different varieties of dry food though; I'll start them back on that.

Also, as for clamped fins, I know the pictures don't really show it, but all of them are now willing to spread out their fins in the tanks. I just can't seem to get them on camera doing it at the moment. Which makes me feel better, cuz they were all rather clamped for the first few days.

And you say to use Epsom salt, does Aquarium salt work for that too? I have some of that. And that is one thing I was unsure of too, is using the meds AND the Epsom salt. Good to know that I can mix the two.

Here's Frances: His first picture was taken when I first got him, so he looks much smaller. He has since then, beefed out quite a bit. So keep that in mind...




Now: (again, he wouldn't hold still either and it's at an odd angle to catch the light)



Again, he's not doing quite so bad. I think he just needs a better tank (bigger w/heat) since his fins just have not fully healed back after the female just ate him up. And he has always had the red in his bottom fins, just the light doesn't always catch it.
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Old 02-13-2013, 06:56 AM   #5 
FishiFrances
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Rico had to be euthenized last night. Broke my heart to the core, but he ended up with some kind of white growth that overtook both his gills. He kept gasping for breath, practically suffocating and grew a red popeye that I've never seen before. I guess his eye filled up with blood. I called a specialist and she said it was irreversible at that point. Not sure exactly what caused the sudden change, but I am very sad that he is gone. Almost put me out of fish entirely.

But I've got 2 other babies that need help still. So I have to get them better.
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Old 02-13-2013, 10:19 AM   #6 
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I'm so sorry. :c




This fish looks a bit bloated, is it possible he got overfed?
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Old 02-13-2013, 12:32 PM   #7 
FishiFrances
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White Mage, in that picture yes, Frances had just been fed and ate like a piggy. I had dropped an extra worm by accident. He has since slimmed back to normal.
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Old 02-13-2013, 01:52 PM   #8 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by White Mage View Post
I'm so sorry. :c




This fish looks a bit bloated, is it possible he got overfed?
Keep any eye on the anal fin. It looks abnormal to have color changes starting from the body and not the fin tips for fin rot.
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Old 02-13-2013, 06:23 PM   #9 
FishiFrances
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He's had those colors since I first got him. The colors look much brighter in different lights. Like in that last picture, the grey parts actually look white and healthy. He just has an odd coloring, but thats what drew me to him. I do know what you mean though and am keeping a close eye on him. Thank you.
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Old 02-13-2013, 11:21 PM   #10 
callistra
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Sorry about Rico :( Dropsy is usually fatal and the progress was unsurprising, unfortunately.

I would treat the other two as above..
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