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Old 09-15-2008, 10:14 PM   #1 
davhsv
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To get a betta or not to get a betta

First I know I have committed one of the highest possible sins as far as proper fish ownership is concerned. My three year old daughter won a goldfish three days ago at a local fair, thank you Grandma for letting her play the ping pong game even though I protested against it. She loves "Puff Puff" and talks to him at least thirty minutes a day and feeds him twice. When the "prize" was brought home to me I explained i did not have enough money to get the fish a proper home. I was handed $10 dollars and told to go buy a bowl. I knew a bowl was bad and not big enough for Puff Puff so I spent what little money I had on a 2.5 gal starter kit in ignorance thinking that this would be much better than a bowl and a lot better life for the poor thing. I had no idea about the amount of nitrates the little guy puts out. He is doing fine now but i fear the worst, as the water is already cloudy. The water was spring water which I put conditioner in just to be on the safe side. It has an air stone with an under gravel filter so of course a gravel substrate. I plan on changing water 30 to 50 percent every three days but i still feel as though Puff Puff will be short lived. So i pose three questions. Would Petsmart take Puff Puff and give him a better home?
There are no more ma and pa shops here anymore due to petsmart. Would it be more humane to let friend who owns an oscar put Puff Puff out of his misery? My main question is will a two and a half gallon tank with an under gravle filter be good for a betta if the inevitable happens and Puff Puff goes to the big pond in the sky( I am going to try my best to keep little guy alive). I know i will have to buy a heater. I am not a cheapskate by any rate it's just that I had to buy car tags this month and a new lawn mower so the arrival of Puff Puff could not have come at a worse time. The joy my daughter gets when she talks to her little finned friend makes it quite aware to me that if Puff Puff does die I will need to have a plan to repopulate the tank. And (I know this is more than three questions) if this tank is not good for a betta do you have any suggestions on what it would be ideal for?
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Old 09-15-2008, 10:45 PM   #2 
s72450
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If the tank you have is a triangle shape, I have one that I got from Wal-Mart that my male betta Jack is in and he loves it, it's go the underground tube with the bubble stone in it and my little guy enjoys it, although I'm going to move him to a 2.5 tank in a few months.

I hope Puff Puff survives, I've never had luck with goldfish myself, but your daughter sounds so taken with him and the story is very cute, lol.

I think you'd do fine with a betta in there. I've had Jack for nearly a month now an he's doing great.
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Old 09-16-2008, 10:18 AM   #3 
katfish
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the cloudy water may just be a bacterial growth. and do not buy him a heater. goldfish are cold water fish. they prefer temps of around 70 degrees.

feeding goldfish to oscars is bad. =[ they have no nutirional value and can sometimes carry diseases that could be transferred to the oscar. petsmart ususally takes fish, and i'm not going to say if it will be in the best inerest or not for the fish, as some stay there, die, or get sold to newbie fishkeepers for bowl pets, and some may get fantastic homes. its really a chance situation.

but i'd say, if the poor fish does die, go with the betta fish. they're great. pretty, have personalities, and fairly easy to maintain. =]

(i hate goldfish)
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Old 09-16-2008, 07:32 PM   #4 
Vampure
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I've never had a goldfish and to be honest my betta I just got named Moses (Mo Mo for short) is my first fish, but I agree with Katfish, he's absolutely gorgous. I spend a great deal of time watching him swim. He's currently in a gallon tank with an air stone and he's doing great so far. He's active and when he swims the colors shimmer and change. If this is going to be a replacement for your daughter if the worst happens then a betta would be a great choice. Just be prepared to fall in love with it to.
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Old 09-16-2008, 07:51 PM   #5 
dramaqueen
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A 2.5 gallon tank will be fine for a betta. You don't have to use spring water: tap water with dechlorinator will be fine. I hope Puff Puff is getting along alright.
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Old 09-16-2008, 09:08 PM   #6 
davhsv
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Thank you all so much for your input. So far Puff Puff is doing okay. He swims and eats and does not show any physical signs of disease or stress. I am going to change out a little under half the water after my daughter goes to sleep. And as far as the heater goes I wasn't going to buy that unless I do go to a betta. The only reason I am concerned about the gold fish is after reading about their requirements for a larger tank due to their "messiness". I know the first thing I am going to get is a water testing kit so I can know how bad his water really is. I just hope he isn't being poisoned slowly or in pain (hence the question about the giving him to an oscar). I spoke with a Petsmart employee today and she said they would take the fish but he would prolly end up as a feeder at best since he is just a "common" gold fish. So I will try and do my best to keep his nitrates down and hope for the best. Thanks again betta folks for helping this newbie goldfish owner, and if the worse happens im sure i will be back to ask a bunch of betta questions :D
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Old 09-17-2008, 01:21 PM   #7 
xst3ph90x
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I had a goldfish, and it died after 3 days! At that point, I didn't really care. Then, I bought a betta, and I've never looked back! I'll never get a goldfish again! Bettas are so much better, and they're so much more beautiful. I love my betta to death, and I wouldn't trade him for the world.

Just letting you know this because even if Puff Puff DOES die, it might be for the better, bettas are so beautiful, and they'll learn to recognize your daughter's face. She may even be happier with a more beautiful fish!

Just lettng you know, so if the worst does happen, its not the end of the world.
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Old 09-17-2008, 07:47 PM   #8 
dramaqueen
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Bettas are very special fish and have wonderful personalities. Each one is unique and they all have their individual likes and dislikes, like people do.
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Old 09-18-2008, 02:26 PM   #9 
iamntbatman
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A few comments:

Goldfish given away at fairs as prizes are comet goldfish, which are the same fish as feeder goldfish. This fish will eventually reach 18 inches in length and will need a *much* bigger tank. If you have no plans to upgrade to a much larger tank (with substantial filtration) I wouldn't keep the fish in the tank just to see how long you can keep it alive. If you give it to Petsmart, as they said, it will likely end up as a feeder. However, if you've ever seen the feeder tanks at Petsmart, you know that there's a good chance this fish would just catch some disease and die before it ever ends up as lunch for somebody's pet.

As far as feeder goldfish go, they certainly have nutritional value. However, being coldwater fish, they aren't "nutritionally complete" and should never make up the entirety (or even a large part) of a warm-water fish's diet. As for parasites, diseases, etc: there's always a risk of bringing home something nasty when you buy store-bought feeder fish, so I'm sure your friend with an oscar would be more than happy to get a feeder that came from someone's fish tank rather than a disease-infested feeder tank at a store.

Personally, I would first think about upgrading Puff Puff's home. If not possible, see if a friend has a tank big enough for him. Comets make good pond fish, so you could always give it to someone with an outdoor pond. If that's not an option, I'd give it to the friend with an oscar.

A heated, filtered 2.5 gallon tank would be perfect for a betta. Here's a betta care guide:

http://www.fishforum.com/viewtopic.php?t=17558
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Old 09-18-2008, 11:48 PM   #10 
davhsv
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Well Iamtbatman funny you should mention this. I was talking to my neighbor last night about my delima and they said they would take Puff Puff and place him in their pond. I just had to prepare my daughter for this and was going to do it when after I got off work today. I figured it would be okay since she would be able to go and visit him whenever she wanted. Yet when we got home this evening we found poor little Puff Puff dead caught up in his fake plant :( . I feel horrible. My daughter keeps asking why is he dead....I want to kill my mother in law (who's glorious idea this was in the first place). I try to find some solace in the fact that at least three days of his life were spent in an uncrowded tank, though it may have been too small, and he was truly loved by a sweet little girl.
R.I.P little Puff Puff
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