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Old 03-17-2010, 02:47 PM   #11 
kelly528
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Call me crazy but I'm not seeign the pineconing.... looks more like a pseudo-dragon coloration to me?

In any case if he was pineconing it will be very apparent today.

Meg, it looks like a cyst of some sort? I would treat it with both gram positive and gram negative antibiotics. A combination of Maracyn and Maracyn 2 should do it.

Your only problem is that the tank is extremely small... a betta needs a bare minimum of 1g to thrive, but only very experienced people can pull this off and therefore 2g is the most commonly recognised minimum. I recommend 5g.

Here is a cut/paste from another thread on why small tanks can kill bettas:

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Unfortunately fish stores will sell you just about anything to get your money. And they make considerably more selling cheap tanks to a bunch of people than they do selling proper tanks to the few people who have actually done their homework on tank size.

Another common myth is that small tanks are lower maintenance. If you put three drops of red food coloring in your 1g bowl, it would probably turn the water bright red. If you put 3 drops of red food coloring in a 5g tank, it would only turn the water a light pink. The same goes for the waste your fish produces. The smaller the tank, the stronger the waste will be. So you have to clean it more often. If you are looking for a truly good beginner size, I strongly recommend you grab a 5g tank.

Furthermore, there are no heaters on the market that will heat a 1g to the right temperature. Since it is such a small amount of water even the smallest of heaters will often make the water too hot.


The ammonia, nitrite and nitrate given off by fish waste and rotting food is very toxic and will compromised the fish's immune system, stress him or even burn and suffocate fish in extreme cases. Therefore removal of these componds on a regular basis is essential to fish health.


Furthermore most medications (including the maracyn packets) are meant for use in standard-sized tanks of 5, 10, or upwards of 20g tanks. So dividing a portion meant to treat 10g into a portion that will treat 2L is a very difficult and dangerous task, since inconsistent dosage can not only fail to kill the bacteria but make them resistant to the antibiotic. For treatment of your fish I suggest you either buy a 5g tank or treat the fish in anything (even a rubbermaid tub or a bucket) that will hold 5g of water.
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Old 03-17-2010, 02:52 PM   #12 
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You're not crazy. It's hard to tell from the picture because it's only his head we're seeing close-up.

Meg, if you could get us a good pic of his whole body from above it would help eliminate dropsy.
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Old 03-18-2010, 10:55 AM   #13 
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Thank you for all of the responses, I really appreciate your feedback.

I immediately put him in a larger tank, its the biggest one I could find at the time so its only about 2 gallons. I also put a lamp on him to increase the water temperature. I have already noticed a bit more activity with the warmer water- although not like he used to be.

I do not notice any obvious pineconing- I have noticed that his gills look swollen (under his chin area) and gray-ish, his breathing is shallow. He is trying to swim around today, but seems to be having trouble, and will rest in the plant or on the bottom of the tank. I may try to bring him into a fish store today, although I am concerned about upsetting him by handling him too much. I will try to take more photos if he makes it through the day. Thank you again for your help.
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Old 03-18-2010, 11:36 AM   #14 
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Don't bring him to the fish store; it will only stress him and honestly fish stores are an absolutel crap-shoot as far as advice goes. A good deal of the time the employees know as much as you do about fish.

Get ahold of some Maracyn and Maracyn 2 and start medicating him with it. The packets (there are 8 of them in each pack )treat 10g each. So you will have to dilute them in order to measure out doses for 2g of water. Mix a pack with 5 mL water, put what you need for that day in and then keep the rest in the fridge for the next day. You can measure the meds with a baby syringe, a very useful tool to have for measuring meds, fertilisers and water treatments.

So to restate your shopping list:

1 x Box of Maracyn (8 pack, not the 24 pack)
1 x Box of Maracyn 2 (Again, just the 8 pack will do)
2 x Baby Syringes (one for each medication. Make sure they have millilitres, preferably at least 5 mL but 2.5mL will do too. If they are measured in CC (cubic centimetres) thats the same thing as millilitres.

You can find the Maracyn & Maracyn 2 at a local pet store. They are pretty common. The baby syringe you will have to look for either at a drug store, a dollar store or a vet should also have a drawer full on them for giving dogs and cats medicine orally.

Get these items as fast as possible (preferably by this afternoon) and post when you have everything. We will go from there.
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Old 03-18-2010, 07:53 PM   #15 
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Before reading the updated posts I had a moment of panic and took him to an all fish local pet shop. They said that it looked like a bacterial infection (as many of you have stated) they thought he may have cut himself and gotten a bacterial infection that turned into that lump on his head. Thank god it is not dropsy! The shop owner removed the lump (thank god I was not there to see that) and put neosporin on the injured area and gave me the antibiotics to put in the tank. Is this something that is done? He is my first fish and I was surprised this was okay. I bought the PH, nitrate, ammonia test kit and things in the water are normal. I will wait to see what happens. He is still not eating, but is moving more than yesterday. The temperature is now 80 degrees in his tank.
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Old 03-18-2010, 09:15 PM   #16 
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I hope he does really well! Sending good vibes his way.
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Old 03-18-2010, 09:19 PM   #17 
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We have a member here at TFK that did surgery on a goldfish. NOT recommended unless you know what you're doing!!
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Old 03-18-2010, 09:30 PM   #18 
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wow i see the pine coning though and it really looks bad but not too bad.. im sorry Meg good luck
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Old 03-19-2010, 11:44 AM   #19 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meg01 View Post
Before reading the updated posts I had a moment of panic and took him to an all fish local pet shop. They said that it looked like a bacterial infection (as many of you have stated) they thought he may have cut himself and gotten a bacterial infection that turned into that lump on his head. Thank god it is not dropsy! The shop owner removed the lump (thank god I was not there to see that) and put neosporin on the injured area and gave me the antibiotics to put in the tank. Is this something that is done? He is my first fish and I was surprised this was okay. I bought the PH, nitrate, ammonia test kit and things in the water are normal. I will wait to see what happens. He is still not eating, but is moving more than yesterday. The temperature is now 80 degrees in his tank.

Okay then he sounds legit. I was most concerned that you'd get some pimply Petco teenager who let you walk away with a bottle of BettaFix.

Generally physical medical procedures fish is reserved only for the 'pros' but unfortunately with the lack of Vets who treat fish people are often forced to do medical procedures like expressing cycts or even performing surgery themselves. In a life-or-death situation sometimes there is no choice but to take your chances with 'playing doctor'/
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Old 03-19-2010, 07:20 PM   #20 
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You can put Neosporin on a Betta?!

I'm sorry about your little guy, meg -- I hope he recovers. :)
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