A few months ago, I bought a baby Betta fish from a large chain-type pet store. Though originally I kept Mr. Teddy Salad in a vase, with less than 1 gallon of water, I quickly became unhappy with that set up because I felt that I couldn't keep the water clean. So I started doing some research around the web, and decided to buy Teddy a 2 gallon aquarium, complete with filter, heater, gravel to add to decorative rocks, Betta bulb plants, and a decoration.
I've had nothing but trouble with my poor fishy since then! I really do my best to care for Mr. Salad. I change the water 100% weekly, and when I do I clean everything in the tank, and the tank itself, thoroughly (with water only).
First I noticed that Teddy had some fungus. Bad advice from a pet store employee led me to using PimaFix, but within a day I learned better. In that day, Teddy developed pop eye too. So I completely changed all the water, and changed to BettaFix. This worked well; the fungus and pop eye both cleared up within a few days. I even bought some filter fiber to use in place of the regular carbon filter. I didn't want the filter to be completely off when Teddy was ill.
Meanwhile, I bought another plant, Anubias, to add to the tank, and removed what was quickly becoming a deteriorating decoration. Teddy loves his jungle, but has had a hard time with his "furniture". I've switched it out and can't find anything he likes, hopefully the sinking log that's coming will work.
During this time I've noticed that Teddy is either a runt or a female. Because I wasn't told what the sex was when I bought him, I can only guess by the size and that he has small, not so colorful fins. Teddy is maybe an inch long.
Recently I noticed that he seemed to have developed fin rot. I immediately removed him from the tank, and started an aquarium salt treatment in a quarantine tank--his old vase. Aside from when I broke the vase one night when cleaning, the daily water changes and salt were working well. There seems to be some fin re-growth.
But yesterday I noticed that Teddy has been swimming on his side, and doing these odd twirls. From what I understand it could be gas or constipation. I rushed out to buy peas, managed to get him to eat some, but I see no changes today.
I suppose my main concern is what I must be doing so wrong that my fish is always sick!!! I really do change the water 100% weekly, and make sure the temperature is right before re-introducing Teddy. I trim the plants of dead leaves, I switch out the filters as recommended, I clean every part thoroughly when changing the water--seriously everything is rinsed in at least warm and cool water and the rocks and equipment I boil from time to time--I monitor water temperature, I feed him Betta flakes twice daily and a blood worm treat at night. The tank isn't in direct sunlight, I don't leave the lights on 24 hours a day, and I work 10 hours of the day so I can't disturb him too much either.
I'm so worried about my fish! Teddy is a cool fish, who likes to hunt his food (feeding time is fun), explore the tiny jungle, and be curious about his surroundings. I'll be heartbroken if Teddy dies and it's my fault.