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Old 02-19-2010, 12:24 PM   #1 
Meg215
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Help with constipation/swim bladder

This is what I think is wrong with Walter. I was gone for the weekend and my Grandma fed him a lot of bloodworms. About half his diet was bloodworms the other was pellets. From what I've read, this could have made him constipated because of too much protein.

So from the way he is acting it looks like he has swim bladder/constipation. Can someone tell me what to do for this? I pulled him out of his tank and put him in a temp tank with some aquarium salt. How long should I fast him for and I read something about daphnia? Can sopmeone please tell me what this is and if I should use it?
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Old 02-19-2010, 12:44 PM   #2 
kelly528
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First off, there is rarely such thing as 'too much protein' for an exclusively carnivorous (or more accurately insectivorous) animal. You may hear rumors flying around that live/frozen food is 'too rich' to be fed on a regular basis, but this is a load of BS. While it is true that you need to feed a wide variety of frozen/live to form a complete diet 'richness' has nothing to do with it. Think of frozen or live foods as spinach or steak. Healthy? Yes. Could you survive off steak or spinach alone? No.

Therefore the best way to go (unless you want to have 25 live foods on the go) is to base the diet around 2 or 3 good betta pellets such as Hikari Betta Bio-Gold, Atison's Betta Pro, Kent's Betta crumble or HBH Betta Bites, then supplement that with feedings of live/frozen food several times per week.

Since live or frozen bloodworms are easily digestible I am assuming you are using freeze-dried. This type of food is very harsh on the digestive system and should only be fed if pre-soaked and even then only as a treat. Considering how much they swell inside the betta's stomach its no small wonder that they cause bloat. A betta's stomach is about the size of his eye so even a few freeze-dried bloodworms can cause a lot of trouble when they swell up with water ot 3x their size in the gut.

To treat, fast him for a few days and then if you are in a pinch, feed him a thawed, deshelled frozen pea. A more natural alternative is to feed him daphnia, aka the water flea, a small freshwater invertebrate that acts liek a laxative.
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Old 02-19-2010, 01:23 PM   #3 
Meg215
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Gosh it is so frustrating all the incorrect information out there! Heck I just read on a betta info site that there was such a thing as too much protein! Hence why I posted that. LOL Thanks so much for your help. You're right, the worms were freeze dried and not pre-soaked. I was giving them to him only a couple times a week but while I was gone she gave them to him every day. He doesn't look bloated but is having serious trouble getting to the surface for air and when he does he jumps real quickly 2-3 times for air and sinks back down.

I will fast him for a few days and hopefully he will get better. I will make sure to only feed him the freeze dried if I presoak them and not that often!
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Old 02-19-2010, 01:25 PM   #4 
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Also I do have frozen brine shrimp I feed him every once in awhile.
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