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Old 11-12-2010, 11:33 AM   #1 
RSandelli
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Exclamation Treating for Parasites - Please Read!!!! HELP!

Okkkkk.....so! Heres the dealio as of today. (Sorry sooooo long!)

1) I went to the local Marine store here in town last night and got the medicated fish food and Betta Fix to treat a bacterial infection. The local marine store was not very helpful (even though they are a true marine store) and didn't really ask me about Villa, they suggested I just buy a new fish!!!! To he honest I am not sure what he has and everyone I go to keeps telling me something different! When I went to this local marine store before, they first told me it was a fungal infection so I started to treat him with Maroxy but they neglected to also tell me that you have to take the stupid carbon out of the filter. When that did not work, I began to think it was columnaris and thats why I went to the marine store again last night.

(He was in a 4 gallon filtered but not heated tank, still eating but has a small white patch on his side, acting very fatigued when in his tank.)

2) I went to Petco and the guy there said he owned 3 Bettas that had survived for 5 years each so far. He said that the white cottony patch on Villa (my fishie) sounded more like a parasite and not a bacterial infection since my baby has not come into contact with any other fish. He also proceeds to tell me that the Betta fix and medicated fish food are ok at best. He gives me Mardel's Coppersafe and told me to do a 2 minute "dip" every night for the next few nights and that would be most effective in killing a parasite. He also gave me a bottle that he says naturally builds the fish's slime coat and told me not to use aquarium salt because he said it is too harsh on the fish.

3) So I get home, retrieve said Fishie from the 4 gallon tank (after 25 mins of chasing him around), put him into the dip for 1 1/2 minutes and then put him into a 1 gallon vase that I had him in before I put him into the bigger tank.

4) This morning he was swimming around his little vase and looking somewhat perky, investigating the new fake plants I bought for him.

5) My plan is to get the poor guy out of his vase and do the dip for the next 2-4 days and if the white patch on his side is not going away then maybe also put some of the Betta Fix in the water in his vase in case it might also be bacterial.

I am worried about stressing him out with the constant moving of him into the dip and back into the vase but if it is a parasite, I obviously don't want him to die.

6) Also, the guy at Petco said I need to get a very small mini heater for my tank. Do you think this is a good idea?? He said it would keep the temperature regulated and keep him warm. But if this is a bacterial infection, wouldn't warm water cause the bacteria to grow??

HELPPPPPPP! :(
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Old 11-12-2010, 12:54 PM   #2 
Alex09
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If the white patch is fluffy and cottony then it may be a fungus. And if you want your betta to heal you would be best off with a heater. This will bring his immune system to its strongest. In cold water betta's immune systems are much weaker.
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Old 11-12-2010, 01:08 PM   #3 
RSandelli
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Hey Alex - It is not quite "fluffy" - it stands up from his body but his body is not protruding out, just the white part. We will see how he does - if after a few days of parasite and bacterial treatment he is not getting better, I will switch to fungal medication again. You just never know.

I am buying a mini heater online to get delivered to me Monday. (In the meantime I have my apt heat on and set to 78o). Should I order new ceramic media? I am going to disinfect his tank today so I can put him back in there on Monday but I am worried the ceramic media might be holding onto to icky bugs or what not that caused whatever he has.
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Old 11-12-2010, 03:04 PM   #4 
Adastra
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Boy, you're just getting all kinds of bad advice. The Maroxy isn't really an antibiotic, coppersafe is a really crappy parasite treatment, and bettafix isn't going to help you at all no matter what it is. D:

This does not sound like an external parasite to me. Parasites burrow into the fish's skin and cause cysts to appear. Velvet creates tiny yellowy granules across the fish, you see them mostly gathered in between the fish's scales. Ich cysts are a little bigger--they are white and look like grains of salt have been scattered across the fish. This is likely what the pet store clerk thought you were describing when you mentioned his white bump. If it were ich, it would be much smaller specks all over him, not just one big one. If it were ich, in my experience copper sulfate is an ineffective treatment--from now on I'll never bother with anything other than malachite green when I'm faced with a parasite.

To me, this looks like either bacteria, or fungus. It is most likely to be a gram negative bacteria--true fungus is actually quite rare on aquatic animals and it moves very slowly. It's also extremely fuzzy, much fuzzier than bacteria. From what you're describing, it's not particularly fuzzy--just raised, discolored, and textured oddly. This says bacteria to me, and needs to be treated by lowering the water temperature or keeping it around 76-77 degrees. Many bacteria become highly active around 78-80 degrees and could quickly kill your fish at those temperatures.

I would remove the bettafix. Bettafix is just an antiseptic and a healing agent. It's similar to the effect of putting peroxide on a cut--it's not going to help you if you have a cold because it is not actual medicine. There have also been studies conducted that have concluded that the melaleuca in bettafix and melafix produces fumes that are harmful to the labyrinth organ in bettas and other anabantoid fish.

If I were you, I'd return all those products. Even if they're opened, they gave you bum advice, and you shouldn't have to suffer from the growing dent in your pocket due to their ignorance. You want to purchase a true antibiotic for gram negative bacterial infections--such as API's Triple Sulfa, Seachem's Kanaplex, and Mardel's Maracyn-Two. I always recommend reading this article: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/fa084 before purchasing or using antibiotics so that you better understand how they work, how to use them responsibly, and the risks involved.

If you could somehow get a picture, that would be extremely helpful.

Last edited by Adastra; 11-12-2010 at 03:08 PM.
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Old 11-12-2010, 03:26 PM   #5 
RSandelli
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Ok - now my head is truly swimming. I don't know what to do or who to believe!! Every single person I go to says something different. Oy vey.

I will try and get a picture of the little guy tonight.

Should I order new ceramic media or just use the old stuff?
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Old 11-12-2010, 03:36 PM   #6 
Adastra
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Well, the best thing to do when you're trying to figure out how to deal with something like this is to look at real pictures of what infected and infested fish look like. Look up medicines that have the best customer reviews and research how the ingredients work and their intended use. It only makes sense to attempt to understand the chemicals you're dumping in your fish's water. Reading the article I posted on antibiotics is a great first step.

If you used medication that compromises filter media, the old stuff is likely to be history--especially if it's fiber and carbon. The carbon will definitely be trash. If it's ceramic, you can probably just soak it in water that has been treated with an overdose of dechlorinator and allow it to dry completely. Maroxy is just chlorine oxides--so the dechlorinator should help remove the medication and whatever is left should evaporate.

Last edited by Adastra; 11-12-2010 at 03:41 PM.
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Old 11-12-2010, 06:30 PM   #7 
Perdue
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i'd go with what anybody says on here, over what someone else says in a pet store...
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Old 11-13-2010, 01:47 PM   #8 
RSandelli
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Picture of Villa - Possible Bacterial Infection



Here's the baby. I think I am going to start Maracyn-Two today.
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