Originally Posted by Oldfishlady
On a regular schedule for a 2g unfiltered container I would make 1-2-50% and 1-100% a week to maintain water quality-this is provided that you don't over feed and uneaten food is removed.
Since your Betta is sick-bloat, constipation, swim bladder and fin issues-I would do an Epsom salt 1tsp/gal (not aquarium salt) leave in 10 day treatment along with 100% daily water changes-hold food for the first 3 days and then offer half feedings twice daily every other day-I also would cover the top of the tank with plastic veggie wrap to help keep the air above the water warm and humid
I like to pre-mix my salt in a 1gal jug to make correct dosage and water changes easier
Now to your water-you already know about the problem with bottled water-are you using a supplement to replace the lost minerals-if not-some of what you are seeing may be related. What about 50/50 mix of tap and bottled along with dechlorinator?
Can you post your tap water numbers-pH, KH, GH-is your tap water too hard or what is wrong with it-sometimes water we don't like fish love......
Alright, that sounds good for water changes I think, thanks!
He had actually been bloated for over 3 days yesterday (the first day it went away within like 2 hours, but the second day and third he was bloated for most of the day) and I hadn't fed him at all since the night before the bloating started, so yesterday I fed him the insides of a thawed pea. He hasn't bloated since, though I can't tell if he's poo'd or not, if he flares up again I'll take everything out of his bowl so I can see the bottom and get on hardcore poo duty, but at present he seems to be doing a lot better.
And I read your comment about Epsom salt on another thread, and I think you mentioned you could get it at most pharmacies? Is it just the same as the stuff you can get at a pet store? There aren't really many pet stores close by, hence my asking. Though if he doesn't bloat again, I'm guessing I won't really need it.
I had been feeding him 2 pre-soaked pellets once a day, that I cut into fourths (he was having a really hard time swallowing) but I think switching to 1 pellet twice a day makes more sense, and I'll stick to an every-other day feeding for now, until I'm sure he's better.
I'm not adding any mineral additives at the moment, but I'll add that to my list for my next pet store run (unfortunately it takes me a 2 hour subway ride to get to the nearest/best stocked one). I know Poland Springs is at least filtered spring water, not tap, and it's a brand I relatively trust, from digging around they do say it has natural minerals in it, but of course I have no idea what those are, or if those are what he needs. But it definitely makes sense that the missing minerals could be making him weaker, so that's probably #1 on my list.
The only water tests I have at the moment are for pH and ammonia (on a college budget here, and since it's not cycled it didn't seem worth spending $35 on the whole kit), however even when I just go wash my hands in the bathroom, the water smells funky. Like it smells more fishy than Charles' fish water...
The one time I tried to use tap water, I made the foolish mistake of putting Charles in it before I tested it, and he immediately freaked out.
I put him back in his old water, and tested the pH.
The tap water turned my test bright bright blue, way off the chart that was included in the kit that only goes up to 7.6, so my guess is it's at least a 8.0. (They're liquid tests, as my experience with the paper strips are poo, more poo than was coming out of Charles, I'm afraid)
Which would be a lot of pH down stuff that I'd have to add, which I don't currently have anyways. (Would require that 2 hour trip =/, but I might have time tomorrow, but I'm still on a budget =X.)
Even when I test his regular water, and go to rinse out the tube, just as it touches the tap water it turns bright blue... pretty, but not safe >.<
As far as the hardness goes, I have no idea, but I know my water at home is pretty hard, so if you know what I can do to fix that water (for when I'm home for the holiday) I'd appreciate the advice =]. No idea on boston's city water though, but it is well known as being "dirty-water"
And I have absolutely no idea what GH is, sorry, even google failed me on that one =/.
Even if I tried a 50/50 combo of tap with bottled, I think the pH would still be too high. Every time I've tested the PS bottle, I always get about 6.8 or 7.0, which is about where it should be, and I think I read that slightly acidic is better than slight base anyways, right?
I guess I could try a 25/75 mix? But at that point maybe mineral additives would be better.
I think I'd rather add minerals to his bottled water, than a lot of chemicals to change the pH and other parameters in an attempt to make icky water good, does that make sense?
I'm still new at this, so thanks for the thorough response!
If you're busy though, I know I wrote a lottttttttttt,
the tl;dr version = THANKS! <3