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Old 02-27-2013, 12:29 AM   #1 
GoldieSpotty
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Exclamation Sick fish

Hi my daughters beta is about 3 yrs old and is not doing well. It is in a small tank and was fine until the last month or so. It has white on it's back and can't really swim well. It eats but struggles to get up to the top of the tank it to eat because it's tail doesn't seem to work anymore. Thus he struggles to actually eat and has to try to numerous times to actually get the food. I change the water once a week and change about 75% of it. We just moved and my daughters room is much colder then her old room so I wondered if this is the problem. I put in some water conditioner with every water change. I am not doing anything different than before but he seems to not be doing so well.
Thanks.
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Old 02-27-2013, 02:48 AM   #2 
Myates
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I would say it is the cold.. bettas are tropical fish and require warm waters of around 78-82F.. unfortunately since they are sold in cups, it's not widely known that they have requirements such as needing a heater.

The white on it's back I can't say for sure unless there is some more detail - is it the color fading, or does it look to have a white puff that have "hairs" growing out of it?

It is getting up there in age.. typical pet store betta lives anywhere from 3-5 years depending upon care. Unfortunately exposure to cool/cold waters over time does cause significant health issues such as lowered immune system, slow metabolism and even early death from age.

I don't want to recommend treatment for the "white" on it's back without knowing what it is.. with it's condition and age, some medications may do more harm than good.. etc. All I can recommend at this time is just get him warm and see if that helps to perk him up.

You can purchase smaller heaters for smaller tanks.. I would get a 25 watt heater for a tank of 1-3 gallons. I am assuming it's in a 1-3 gallon tank. If the tank is larger than you can go up to 50 watts for the heater. Some don't like them, but the Tetra heaters at Walmart for around $10-15 that works for 5-15 gallons will be fine, and they are small enough to fit into 1g bowels if needed.

Last edited by Myates; 02-27-2013 at 02:50 AM.
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Old 02-27-2013, 09:59 AM   #3 
GoldieSpotty
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Thanks so much!
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Old 02-27-2013, 10:59 AM   #4 
GoldieSpotty
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Here is a picture of the fish
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Old 02-27-2013, 12:41 PM   #5 
OrangeAugust
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Where is his dorsal fin???
I think he has fin rot. Get him a heater right away and make sure his water is always very clean. Do partial water changes every day and hopefully his fins will grow back.
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Old 02-27-2013, 01:01 PM   #6 
rachelq
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i also heard putting some aquarium salt in (NOT REGULAR SALT) was a way to treat fin rot.
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Old 02-27-2013, 10:32 PM   #7 
Myates
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Yes, he has lost all of his dorsal and a good portion of his tail..

Not saying this to be mean, but it can take months+ for rot to reach the body. Once it does it's iffy if he can be saved.. it's bacteria attacking him from the outside working it's way in.

In a tank that size, with no filter 1 50% and 1 100% water change per week + water conditioner is needed to keep the water properly clean. If anything at least 2 50% per week with siphoning of the waste.. fin rot occurs from a damaged fin and water not being cleaned enough.. bacteria sets in and grows, eating away at the fins and in time, the body.

For now what I would suggest if you want to try to save him is:

2 teaspoons of Aquarium Salt per gallon, make sure to dissolve it before placing him in it - hot water (a drop of conditioner) with continuously stirring (that part sucks) works best to dissolve it.

Daily 100% water changes with new salt/conditioner added in each time. Treatment should last no longer than 10 days.

BUT, this is really advanced, so the salt may not work.. in that case I would look for Maracyn Plus - it can be pricey, but it may work.. others may know of stronger medication, I tend to stick with the more "natural" way to heal.

It's not a for sure thing, his immune system is weakened by the cold water.. so definitely get him a heater soon and treat him, with his age added in.. it's a toss up whether or not he will make it. Medications can be stressful on their delicate organs - even the aquarium salt can shut down their kidneys if left in it too long.

Poor guy.. I would definitely look up the recommended water changes link for any future fish, it does make a difference. The person who posted it has over 40 years breeding/raising these fish.

If you have any more questions, concerns.. please feel free to ask.
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Old 02-28-2013, 09:30 AM   #8 
GoldieSpotty
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Your not being mean....I have made a terrible mistake by not cleaning his tank better. I thought I was suppose to leave some water in his bowl so I was not doing 100%water changes and thus never really getting all the bacteria out. I feel just terrible because I would never want to hurt the little guy! I'll do a much much better job and hopefully I can get him healthy again. I have moved him to a warmer place in the house and will be more on top of water changes. Thanks for all the advice and please know I was never doing this to him on purpose!!!!
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