Lowering the water level or moving him to a shallower container is a MUST. If he can't get to the surface he WILL die of suffocation. Don't worry about stressing him out.. just get the water level lower. Raise his temp to 82-84*F and put some aquarium salt in the tank.
The most important thing is that he gets air.. there is no medicine that will help him right now.. he needs oxygen, heat, and very clean water.
Don't worry about the airpump. If you're worried about the oxygen level within the shallowed water, just do water changes very very slowly. Llike take out water from the opposite end of the tank with a cup (not a siphon), and then replace slowly as well. New water brings in fresh oxygen within water. I'm more concerned with shallow water that he can reach directly, for his labrynth organ, than the airstone (again, gills are only the secondary method for air).
But... he still can't even swim though... I mean, he's moved to different spots in the rock, but he can't even swim upwards because he can't raise his head. I have gave him salt... ummm I don't have a heater from him but I think I might buy one. His water is room temperature... maybe even a bit lower because we just had a snowstorm.
If I can I'll buy a heater tomorrow, wish me luck with that... my family thinks he's dead already. I have like, 20 bucks hopefully it's enough.
If I get a submersible heater, how could it go underwater though, if I make the water shallow?
I've heard of undertank stick on heaters but those only raise the water a few degrees which won't be enough.
And I'm worried about heaters because I have a plastic tank and I'm always scared of the plastic getting melted. Does anyone recommend a filter I could buy for under 20 bucks, specifically at Big Al's, PetSmart, or PJ'S Pets?
And I've been adding salt, I normally do anyways to add electrolytes.
On another site someone recommended giving him Stress Coat. Would that be a good idea?
And thanks sooo much guys for all the help (:
So does that mean it would be above or below the surface though? Also I'm worried about having the cord under the lid because then if the lid's opened a crack one of our cats might be able to open it up...
But... he still can't even swim though... I mean, he's moved to different spots in the rock, but he can't even swim upwards because he can't raise his head.
Why is why I'm recommending lowering the water. It's definitely in his instincts to go up for air, or he will suffocate... there was this one experiment where a betta's (or perhaps multiple, as it was an experiment) labrynth organ was removed, and there was plenty and plenty of oxygen within the water. It still suffocated to death. Your bettas last bits of strength probably include swimming to the top for air.
Hope those help explaining about the organs a bit.
I also agree with at least having enough water to completely cover the to-be heater. It will short-fuse (?) if it's not fully submerged. I use Tetra Whisper, it's pretty cheap, and it does its job. ALthough it will probably help in the long run to go get an adjustable heater for a few extra bucks.
Yes, it will mean cracking the lid, however MOST lids come with "holes" to allow the wires to run through without any cracks. And this means the physical bulky heater itself must be UNDER, or COVERED with water.
OK, but I also realized something, I can't put it horizontally with the riser tube there, I could remove the riser tube, but last time I tried it was really hard and I had to tug a lot and I don't wanna hurt Venus, but I can try. Only if the heater is lying horizontally, it might block his way to the surface? I have a kinda tall skinny-ish tank, so that might be a problem.
Sorrryyy, you guys are probably so fed up with me xD
Heaters aren't THAT bulky lol. I know the Walmart tetra ones are pretty short, and the adjustables are pretty long. What tank is it? 5 gallon hex? Heaters will definitely not block his way up. If they were that bad, pshh, I live in Texas, I can deal with 80F all year long. Haha.