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Old 05-12-2013, 04:37 PM   #1 
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Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Canada
Sickly Betta, possibly SBD and deformed, getting worse

In my last thread, I had a Chronic Tail Biter that to date still regularly trims his tail, but has remained otherwise perfectly healthy. (Yay!) In the time between that thread and this one, I acquired a second betta with worse needs than the first.

Ugly is a red/blue male Crowntail that my coworker impulsed after a terrible series of slaughtering exotic fish in his 20G tank that hadn't been cleaned out in over a month. He decided he didn't want the Betta anymore the next day, and I jumped on it. He was already showing signs of being overfed and SBD, and hasn't gotten much better, getting a lot worse in the last week alone.

I've had him for a little under a month and he's been deteriorating progressively little by little despite trying to remedy him; to make matters worse, I'll be leaving both Fish (tail-biter) and Ugly in the care of my co-workers when I go on vacation in 4 days. I'm dreading what I'll come back to.

What size is your tank? 2.5G
What temperature is your tank? 77 - 80C
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, using Marina Betta Heater from Petsmart (for 1-1.5G tanks)
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? Ugly has five leaves of Java Fern to keep him company.

What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Usually Omega One Betta Buffet Flakes, but using Nutrafin Betta Pellets while leaving my co-workers to take care of them since it's easier to measure.
How often do you feed your betta fish? Once a day, 1-2 pellets or 3-4 crushed 1-2mm flakes, fast on Sundays. Instructing co-workers to feed 1-2 pellets a day and fast on the weekend.

How often do you perform a water change? Twice a week
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? For Fish I do 50% mid week and 100% end of the week, but Ugly fouls his water terribly so I do 100% twice a week for him. Co-workers should be attempting this but if work schedule doesn't allow, at least 100% a week for both fish.
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Aqua Plus dechlorinator, and occasionally Stress Coat.

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters? No kits to test with ): But I think I change my water frequently enough that I've never thought of it as a problem.

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? Paler in color than when I got him
How has your betta fish's behavior changed?He's normally very listless and lethargic, in comparison to Fish who's always swimming around energetically. ): Today he's been sitting on the bottom, gasping heavily (gills pumping in and out a lot), but occasionally darting around and swimming around in response to stimuli. He often wriggles up onto the Java Fern to rest too. Yesterday after his water change he fell completely onto his side and lay at the bottom for twenty minutes until I gave him half a flake, then he was okay.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? Yesterday and today
Have you started treating your fish? I'm leaving soon and I can't, but I've made sure his water is clean and he has plenty of things to rest on near the surface. Also added Stress Coat. I'll be doing one more 100% for both fish before I leave them to my co-workers in four days.
Does your fish have any history of being ill? When I got him, he was pretty bloated and had trouble swimming (SBD). I fasted him until his stomach looked normal and he could at least swim properly, but he still normally swims around only the top of the tank. I think his mouth is deformed as it's turned upwards a bit more than normal and is perpetually open, and he has to bend backwards to get air. Also spews a ton of non-nesting bubbles whenever he eats, breathes, or gulps air. He bloats a lot faster than Fish even if I only feed him one pellet, I think partially due to his breathing problems.
How old is your fish (approximately)? Slightly under a year
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Old 05-12-2013, 04:39 PM   #2 
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Forgot to add that Ugly's fin tips are getting a little broken and whitish, I'm not sure why (if it's fin rot) since I keep his water really clean. ):
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Old 05-13-2013, 11:56 AM   #3 
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Could someone please help? Came in this morning and Ugly's lying on his side again, still gasping. My other fish is completely fine.
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Old 05-13-2013, 01:21 PM   #4 
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Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Central Arizona
I can only comment on the SBD issue. You pre-mix 1tspn of pure, non scented Epson salt per gallon of tank water into his tank. This helps with bloated or SBD symptoms. If needed you can gradually up the treatment to 3tspns per gallon.

Lower the water level in his tank so he doesn't have to swim as far to breathe air. Also some nice plants he can rest on for when he tires. Adding some Indian Almond Leaves wouldn't hurt either.
It does sound like he may have a physical deformity? I wish you luck with them. :-/
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deformed, floating, lying on bottom, sbd, swim bladder disorder

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