Cannot get severe fin rot under control. Please help!
I am new to this community. I am usually on myaquariumclub.com but am reaching out for other suggestions from different people because I've hit a dead end with treatment for my poor male veil tale, Sunny.
Ive been battling his fin rot for almost a month now, and its progressing daily. His fins have been clamped & are disappearing before my eyes, with his fins becoming translucent and chunks falling off. It has affected ALL of his fins, including his fragile Pectoral fins. Hes lost his bright red color =(
Ive tried frequent PWC, aq. salt, and now, Im on his 2 round (day 10) of Kanaplex. I cant get his ammonia readings below .25ppm no matter how many water changes Ive done. I havent changed it for about 4 days thinking I may have messed up the biofilter with excessive changes. (?) I just started using Seachem's Stability for added beneficial bacteria to stabilize the biofilter while using Kanaplex, and Prime to neutralize the existing ammonia.
Please, any advice would be much appreciated. Im actually really affected and saddened by this because I feel like I am watching him slowly come to his death. His water parameters are as follows:
Tank size: 5 gal
Temp: Heated, 79 deg.
Live plants: 2 Anubias
Behavior: still active and healthy poops and appetite. Maybe a tad less energetic but I don't blame him
Well, for heaven's sake! It sounds like you're taking great care of him. I recently got a betta who had severe fin rot, almost touching his body, and Jungle Fungus Clear helped a lot. But if Kanaplex isn't working, I don't know... But the Jungle product is only $3.50 at Walmart, so it wouldn't break the bank if you wanted to try it. I don't have much else to offer. Warm, clean water you've got. All of my go-to advice is used up! And if it's all of his fins, it sounds like it's definitely fin rot rather than tail biting. Good luck with him! Sorry I have nothing better to offer.
I'm assuming from the water test results that you're in the process of cycling the tank. Have you ever tested the ammonia readings in your tap water? Mine comes straight out of the tap at .25. Like you, I treat the water with Prime before I add it to the tank and that helps. Don't stress about that, presence of nitrates is okay at this stage.
Are you using Kanaplex with carbon filters? If so, from what I understand, that can filter out part of the meds and may keep your little guy from getting a full dose. So, if you are cycling you have 2 options (1) Remove the carbon filter, or (2) transfer your fish to a smaller bowl or QT tank for treatment. Personally, I'd leave your tank alone and let it finish cycling, put your guy in a separate container, and that will ensure he's getting full doses of Kanaplex.
Maybe you can post a pic so we can see what you're dealing with! Good luck....
BTW, frequent water changes are fine, and necessary when cycling with a betta. Just keep an eye on water testing results to find out how much to change.
Last edited by MyBettaJack; 10-26-2013 at 05:57 PM.
MyBettaJack: My tank has been fully cycled for about a year now. I started getting random ammonia readings about a month ago (suspect: Amazon Sword i planted in his tank from Petco...i took it out after noticing the drastic change in his fins but guess it was too late). He has Nitrates of 10ppm, which is a healthy amt. My tap has ammonia readings of .50ppm, unfortunately. I have removed the carbon from his filter prior to treatment, even though the carbon inactive (carbon is only active about 2 wks).
At this stage, I am thinking I should put him in a QT and do 50% water chngs every other day so that ammonia is always neutralized with the Prime?? I don't want to stress him out, though. Should I do Aq. salt again, this time in larger medicinal doses (I only did 1/2 tsp per gallon for 5 days before Kanaplex treatment)? Or use Spring water for water changes which has no ammonia in it? Aaahhh, I dont know what to do!!!
Okay, then I would definitely QT him. How big is the tank/bowl you'll move him to? I'm treating my oldest betta Mister Fire, in a one gallon bowl, and I change his water every day. I add prime and fresh meds and he's getting better. You've done everything right so far, except I wouldn't increase the AS at all. Depends on how long you've been using it. Matter of fact, I might even stop it completely (it can cause internal problems to kidney, etc. if used too long) and just use Kanaplex. Give his system a small break. Re-assess his condition and go from there. Someone with more experience will jump on here to give you more advice. I'm just telling you what I would do.......
Sorry just re-read your last answer, and it seems like your not doing AS right now. In that case, if no improvement then re-start it, but not at an increased dose. Work up from there.....
Last edited by MyBettaJack; 10-26-2013 at 06:28 PM.
Can you post pictures of Sunny? It would be a lot easier to suggest treatments if we knew what he looks like..
Don't worry, everyone on this site will help figure this all out. You're doing great. I'm going to PM a couple people and see if they can jump on and help you more than I can! :)
I'm afraid I have nothing else to offer, but good luck with him! I agree with MyBettaJack- pics would probably help more knowledgeable people than myself with a diagnosis. Again, good luck, and do keep us posted on his condition!
Thank you so much for the support! I will try to post pics tomorrow when it is light out so I can get the best image of his fins. It's really bad. I can see the whitish film on the edges of his fins, along with the dark red/blackening edges (the film is not regrowth, unfortunately). His fins are receding quickly toward his body and now BOTH pectoral fins have fallen victim!!!
His other tank is 2 gallons, and you are correct, I have not added AQ salt for the past 10 days....I only added it about 3-4 times when doing PWC's before I began treatment of Kanaplex. So you think I could re-dose the salt again once in his QT? If so, what amount would you suggest as 1/2 tsp. did not work before?
Also, his next dose of Kanaplex is due tomorrow. Should I discontinue the treatment (again, this is the second round of the medication...meaning instead of 3 doses total (every other day dosing), I am doing 6 doses at the advisement of Seachem's support tech. It seems to have no effect =(
Last edited by SunFish; 10-26-2013 at 11:31 PM.
Reason: Forgot to ask one other question
1) I would put him into a QT tank for treatment. Use bottled drinking water, preferably a brand that says something like "Minerals added for flavor" on the label. Add conditioner. Test pH and ammonia to be sure they're OK.
(Reasoning: Fin rot won't heal if there is ammonia present. While he's in the QT tank, you can work on fixing the ammonia issue in the 5 gal tank..... Also, since your tap water has ammonia, using bottled drinking water will hopefully give him some time in an ammonia-free environment.... Use a bottled water that has added minerals, since this will provide the necessary electrolytes for him.)
2) I would not use aquarium salt. I would stop the Kanaplex.
(Reasoning: I don't like using Kanaplex for fin rot. It's one of the few antibiotics that treats internal infections, so I prefer to save it for that. (Overuse of an antibiotic can lead to resistance, which means it won't be effective when you really need it!.... Aquarium salt is good for minor external issues. But if his fin rot is severe, an antibiotic will be more effective. Also, aquarium salt puts stress on the kidneys. This can lead to other issues, such as bloating or buoyancy problems.)
3) If the rot is severe, or progressing quickly, or is getting near his body, I would use an antibiotic in the furan class, such as API Furan 2, Jungle Fungus Clear and Bifuran.
(Reasoning: IME, the furan medications are more effective at treating fin rot than Kanaplex. Kanaplex is a broad spectrum antibiotic. But fin rot is often caused by gram-negative bacteria, which the furan group targets well.)
4) What's the pH in the 5 gal tank? A lower pH will convert some of that ammonia (NH3) to ammonium (NH4+). This is the same thing that Prime does.
Everything you addressed were all issues I was debating about because I have over-researched everything and it has left me not knowing what to do. One concern I do have is regarding the bottled water: I've read that it's hard to tell if Spring water truly does have minerals in it or no chlorine, that sometimes it is just glorified tap water or distilled. Do you have a brand you would recommend that has no chlorine and the needed minerals in it for sure? What about the betta water from Petco?
Also, would you recommend I give Sunny a break from any treatment for about a week since he has been on Kanaplex for almost 2 weeks?