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Old 04-13-2013, 11:05 PM   #21 
LittleBlueFishlets
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Using aquarium salt for fin rot is fine. But aquarium salt contains sodium, which can cause fluid retention and buoyancy issues.

I would stop the aquarium salt, and switch him to Epsom salt.

Epsom salt has a laxative effect, which should help relieve his symptoms. It also has minor antibacterial properties, which will help the fin rot. (See the previous posts about how to use it.)

You said you lost two other fish. Was this due to an aggressive fin rot? If so, salts (whether aquarium or Epsom) may not provide enough treatment. If your other two fish died from a fast moving fin rot, I would treat this as an infection. Since it's affecting the fins, it's probably a gram negative bacterial issue, so you could try something like API Furan 2 or Jungle Fungus Clear.

Also, it sounds like you're overfeeding him. How many pellets does it mean by feeding him "2x a day as many pellets he eats"? That could be a lot. A betta's stomach is about the size of his eye.

What pellets do you feed him? A lot of bettas become constipated if given pellets with lots of grains (soybeans, corn, wheat). If yours has this, try switching to a higher protein diet. (But it still sounds like you may be overfeeding him.....)

Last edited by LittleBlueFishlets; 04-13-2013 at 11:09 PM.
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Old 04-13-2013, 11:13 PM   #22 
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The other two fish died from what was I think a water issue. I had removed the filter pad to change it and removed all the beneficial bacteria with it. It stirred up the junk on the bottom when i was dumping the new water with it and since there was no more bacteria the ammonia spiked and that is what got to them :( I put betta back into hospital tank bc of fin rot (I'm assuming from ammonia, it happened overnight) I am taking a sample of water to petco tomorrow to have it tested to see. Betta has aquarium salt now.

I am so confused. It is supposed to help with fin rot, but does it cause swim bladder disease? I've had many bettas and never had this problem. What am I supposed to do? I don't want to let his fins rot because I know it will kill him eventually but I also don't like seeing him floating around and looking so helpless. If I get Epsom salt tomorrow should I leave him in the aquarium salt overnight? Does Epsom salt help with fin rot? Or should I change him to all fresh water again even though I just changed the water an hour ago? I want to do whatbis best for him :(
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Old 04-13-2013, 11:19 PM   #23 
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How is his buoyancy? If he's having difficulties swimming, then you may want to change him over to regular water tonight. If he doesn't look too bad, then you can just leave him in the aquarium salt until tomorrow.

Epsom salt has a laxative effect, which should help relieve the buoyancy issues. It also has minor antibacterial properties, which will help the fin rot. You can get Epsom salt at most supermarkets and pharmacies.

Yes, a spike in ammonia can cause fin rot, and could have caused the other fish to die. When you bring the sample to Petco, ask them to give you actual numbers. (They usually just say "the water looks good." So ask them if they can give you specific numbers.)

The best way to treat fin rot is with clean, warm water. And, the Epsom salt will be helpful, too. If the fin rot doesn't start to clear up in a few days, or if it looks like it's getting worse (at ANY time), then he may need antibiotics, like API Furan 2 or Jungle Fungus Clear.
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Old 04-13-2013, 11:22 PM   #24 
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Will the switch of salts stress him out? How much Epsom salt should I be putting in per gallon? I might just go out and get it tonight at cvs. I have 2 gallons of water that has been sitting at room temp so I could do it. He is having issues with buoyancy. He can swim if he wants to but otherwise is just kind of floating around not upright.
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Old 04-13-2013, 11:44 PM   #25 
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I would use 1 teaspoon Epsom salt per gallon of water.
  1. Mix 1 teaspoon of Epsom salt into one gallon of conditioned water. Shake/stir until you're sure the Epsom salt is completely dissolved.
  2. Since he's in a 2 gal tank, remove 0.5 gallons of his tank water. (25% water change.)
  3. Add 0.5 gal of Epsom salt treated water to his tank. (I usually add this slowly, over the course of about 10 min.)
  4. Wait 15 minutes.
  5. Remove 0.5 gallons of his tank water. (25% water change.)
  6. Add 0.5 gal of Epsom salt treated water to his tank. (Over the course of about 10 min)

Tomorrow, do another two 25% water changes, following the above procedure. This will remove a lot of the aquarium salt, and replace it with Epsom salt.

After this:
  • If his swimming is back to normal: do 50% water changes every other day, using regular conditioned water. (No Epsom salt.)
  • If he is still having swimming problems: do 50% water changes every other day, using Epsom salt treated water.

Last edited by LittleBlueFishlets; 04-13-2013 at 11:54 PM.
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Old 04-13-2013, 11:50 PM   #26 
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Is it not wise just to do a 100% change? I usually do that when he is in the hospital tank.

And actually he is in the 1 gallon bowl now

Last edited by Sweetstrwbrry; 04-14-2013 at 12:00 AM.
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Old 04-13-2013, 11:51 PM   #27 
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Then his heavy breathing might be due to ammonia spike?
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Old 04-14-2013, 12:00 AM   #28 
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Ammonia is a poison. So if he's in water with high ammonia levels, yes, he can have heavy breathing.

He's going from aquarium salt to Epsom salt, so his body needs extra time to adapt. You'll need to acclimate him slowly. That's why I recommend doing a series of partial water changes. It tends to be less stressful, since they don't need to be transferred to a cup.

OK, here are two options. Pick the one you prefer.....

Option 1) Do a series of five 25% water changes tonight:
  1. Mix 1 teaspoon of Epsom salt into one gallon of conditioned water. Shake/stir until you're sure the Epsom salt is completely dissolved.
  2. Since he's in a 1 gal tank, remove 0.25 gallons of his tank water. (25% water change.)
  3. Add 0.25 gal of Epsom salt treated water to his tank.
  4. Wait 15 minutes.
  5. Repeat steps 2-4 for one hour. (Five water changes total.)
  6. Then tomorrow, do a 50% water change, using the Epsom salt treated (and conditioned) water.
Option 2) Do a 100% water change tonight, but acclimate VERY slowly. It should take at least one hour of acclimation time..... Slower is always better.

Last edited by LittleBlueFishlets; 04-14-2013 at 12:06 AM.
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Old 04-14-2013, 12:07 AM   #29 
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If he's not in the ammonia water anymore, can he still have heavy breathing as a result of it? He has been out for a day now.

I am doing these steps as I write
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Old 04-14-2013, 12:11 AM   #30 
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It can take some time for toxins to get out of the body. And then his body still needs to recover from any damage that occurred during the time he was exposed to it.

Do you have a lid on the tank? You can put plastic wrap over the top. This will increase the humidity level, and make it easier for him to breathe.
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