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Old 06-17-2014, 09:03 AM   #21 
Taeanna
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By the sound of it he is getting swim bladder disorder, this is when bacteria invade the swim bladder the fish uses to remain bouyant and makes it difficult to swim.

The first treatment for SBD is to use Epsom salts (1 teaspoon per 2 gallons, upping the dose to 1 per gallon for medicinal purposes) which acts as a natural laxative and organ cleanser and should hopefully purge any guests in his GIT that are breeding the bacteria. Usually they betta will pass the blockage and the swim bladder will go back to normal.

If he does not appear to get better with this safer method or even begins to float more it is time to move on to antibiotics to kill the bacteria directly. I prefer tetracycline myself but the US has oher types like kanaplex available.
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Old 06-17-2014, 09:13 AM   #22 
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Thanks for replying! I didn't know it was possible for bettas to have SBD without showing signs of being bloated.

How often do I give the epsom salt treatment? Should I change the water more during this treatment? How long should I wait before moving on to antibiotics?
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Old 06-17-2014, 09:23 AM   #23 
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the epsom salt is very mild and can be added right away.You can either do the bathing method or merely add right to the tank. I am in favor of letting it into the tank water directly because it gives it more time to gently work through the fish's system. You dont need to do more or less cleans or anything really while this is going.
Give him two to three days to show signs of improvement, the first sign of improvement will be him righting himself- bettas and all fish hate lying on their side if they can help it.
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Old 06-19-2014, 08:46 PM   #24 
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Update on Spaz. He has not improved since Tuesday, and he hasn't become any worse then he has been this past week. I went and bought API T.C. Tetracycline and have just started the medication tonight.

I'm having to guess on the exact dosage because the instructions say to add 1 packet to 10 gallons of water. If I accidentally give to much, it won't hurt him will it?
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Old 06-19-2014, 09:11 PM   #25 
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Not unless you put in the entire lot or some other massive ratio difference like that. Most medications have a very wide usage area between effective dose and toxic level. (the ones that do have a close ratio you cant get over the counter)
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Old 06-20-2014, 09:21 PM   #26 
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Please be aware that Tetracycline is light sensitive and will break down when exposed to light. I wasted a 5 day treatment with it on cloudy eye once because I floated my betta in his tank with 6500k lights meant for growing plants. This medicine works best when the fish is kept in the dark, unfortunately.
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Old 06-21-2014, 10:25 AM   #27 
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Thanks for the info. Thankfully I've been keeping the lights off on and near where he is.

This is the 3rd day of treatment and there are still no signs of improvement. :(
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Old 06-23-2014, 08:10 PM   #28 
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Some good news finally! He is eating again, seems to be a bit more alert and has resumed flaring at my fingers :)

The bad news though, he is still tilting to the right side when he tries to swim and can't seem to turn to the right very well at all. Any ideas why this is?
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Old 06-23-2014, 08:24 PM   #29 
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This is a sign of swim bladder disorder. Since he just had an antibiotic treatment this may be a sign they managed to get into his swim bladder and are making it tricky for him to float correctly.
Since getting him TO eat properly was the goal, I dont suggest the usual method of fasting- instead try to offer him tiny amounts of food at given intervals throughout the day so a large meal doesnt suprise his system.

Since he is still recovering from earlier I recommend for the time being you watch him carefully to see if it gets better/worse before pouncing- he may be either continuing to recover slowly, having a relapse or (as sometimes happens in bad cases) he may have a slightly wonky swim bladder now and need to learn how to steer with it.
Watch his behaviour, if he seems distressed at being unable to swim where he likes keep the tank lights lowered and if it becomes a problem for him, lower the waterline so he wont have to dive as much.
With luck it corrects within the next few days, fingers crossed!
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Old 06-26-2014, 06:21 PM   #30 
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Spaz seems to be doing good. Still eating, flaring and trying to swim around. Trying to swim because he still sometimes tilts to the right when swimming foward or can't seem to fully turn to the right. He has no issue going up or down though. So, I'm guessing he has that wonky swim bladder? There any thing I can do to help him learn how to swim with it? Any adjustments I should make? I plan on switching him back to his 4 gal tank this weekend after giving it a good scrubbing to make sure any bad bacteria is removed.

Thanks for all the help! :)
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