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Old 07-08-2010, 07:54 PM   #1 
Amour
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Swim Bladder Disorder?

Amour here with another betta question, hehe. Me and my husband really appreciate the feedback and advise you all give.

Today Ninja Dude hasn't been himself. He's been laying at the bottom of the tank a lot. I noticed later today that his belly is slightly larger than usual. My husband took some pictures of him.







He does get up a lot and swim around and doesn't keep his fins clenched or anything. And when my husband got home from work and greeted him, he flared at him like he always does. And he still begs for food when I come near the tank, and gets excited to see me. But after a little while he'll just go lay down again.

He doesn't have any pineconing. There's no tore fins, but the other day when my husband was trying to get him out of a bucket we were keeping him in, he got a little bruised and lost a few scales. The bruise is almost healed but he's still missing the scales. We're keeping aquarium salt in the water, and a little bit of Stress Coat, and Aquaria-Sol.

I just did a 100% water change today and rinsed everything off so the water's clean.

Though we moved him from a 1.5 gallon to a 5 gallon yesterday, and I read that stress can sometimes cause constipation. So maybe that's why? He's had a rough couple of days, poor guy.

Also, we bought a new heater that supposedly keeps the water at 78 degrees automatically and fits up to a 10 gallon, but it's only keeping the water at 76. I kind of want to take it back. Anyone recommend a different heater for a 5 gallon?

If he does have constipation which is what I'm almost certain he has, I'm just going to feed him one pellet a day in the morning until he feels better.

I hope it's not something more serious.
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Old 07-09-2010, 12:05 AM   #2 
Adastra
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Pre-sets are not known for their quality and accuracy--if it's not heating the water enough you should definitely take it back. You should get a 50watt heater with an adjustable temperature dial. I use Hydor Theos, but Marineland Stealth and Marineland visitherms are other good options. The good thing about the stealths is that they aren't glass, so they take a lot of abuse--but unlike the Visitherm and Theo they lack the indicator light, which I prefer to have. After all, it's a heater, not a baseball bat--it's ok with me if it's made from shatterproof glass. :) You can see them/order one here: http://www.fosterandsmithaquatics.co...ps/c/3578/3743 if you don't like ordering them online and they aren't at the fish store, you should try asking them to special order one for you. Most stores are willing to do this.

On another note, I would not feed him anything unless you see him poop or you see the bloating go down. It would be best if you could actually find the poop--but that isn't always possible. I know it seems like you're starving the fish, but it actually is doing more harm than good to stuff more material in his intestines than he can handle. Fish can go for weeks without food, so don't worry. If you feed him anything, frozen daphnia is a wonderful source of fiber, in my experience it works just as well or better than the blanched pea treatment, and has the added bonus of providing your fish with nutrients they can actually digest instead of just veggie matter.

If you have some frozen (not canned), unsalted peas in your freezer, that will work too. What I do is dip a little piece of a paper towel in some tank water, wrap a single pea in it, and put it in the microwave for a few seconds. Allow to cool, then remove the shell/skin of the pea--you will see that inside there are two halves. Moosh them up a bit, and then take a tiny piece, comparable to the size of one betta pellet, and feed it to the fish. After this, he gets no other food until he poops. This is like--fish metamucil.

Has he had any freeze dried foods? These are notorious for causing constipation. If you're just using pellets, remember to soak them in a little tank water before feeding them to your betta. Bettas weren't made to eat bready air-filled foods, so eating a dry pellet for them is kinda like us eating uncooked rice. Very uncomfortable. More heat should also help speed things along.
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Old 07-09-2010, 11:30 AM   #3 
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IMO/E a ggod quality 25 watt adjustable heater in a 5 gal. tank is PLENTY!!

I agree - don't feed him at ALL for a few days.

Hope he feels better soon!
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Old 07-09-2010, 12:50 PM   #4 
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Why did I somehow get the impression he was in a ten gallon? Lol. Must have read that last part wrong. 25watts is enough for a 5G, Lion is correct. Also, I think you should stop with the Aquarisol--there is no need to add copper sulfates to the water if the fish isn't sick. The company just claims that it's a preventative in order to sell more stuff--it doesn't seem like a good idea to randomly put any "medication" into the water when nothing is wrong, it places stress on the fish and helps create stronger strains of parasites.
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Old 07-09-2010, 02:20 PM   #5 
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The best "preventative" is clean water - a.k.a. regular tank maintenance.

This "preventative" crap they sell is just that, IMO - CRAP!!!!
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Old 07-09-2010, 06:11 PM   #6 
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Thanks for all the replies guys! He's doing A LOT better today. The swelling went down a lot but it's still a little swollen, so I'm gonna fast him a few more days to make sure he's all cleared out. Can't hurt, right?

I'll also see about that heater.
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