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Old 11-11-2010, 04:15 AM   #1 
flammaefata
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Exclamation Help immediately! Horrible betta accident!!!

I've just come home to find that our Betta had wedged himself into the hole of the terracotta pot we had in the tank. He had already lost two pieces of fin. I took him and the pot out and shattered it on the floor to get him out as quickly as possible!

He's still breathing but has gotten a lot of damage. He's white where he chafed against the hole and like I said has lost two pieces of his fins. Currently he is just lying on the sand, breathing but not swimming although his front fins are moving all the time.

PLEASE GIVE ME ANY AND ALL SUGGESTIONS AS TO HOW I CAN SAVE HIM!!!

If he survives long enough he'll probably get fin rot. But treating him with the normal medicines might be too harsh. I read a thread on treating Bettas with Rooibos tea to treat fin rot. Should I try this? I think it's least invasive.

I don't think we should move him to another container because he might get even more stressed by that. The tank has a filter so I hope the water is oxygenated enough for him, or should I move him closer to the filter to make sure?

Please please please help us!

I have posted this on a South African forum and they have suggested to cover the tank and keep it dark, not move the Betta and to treat him with Tetra General tonic or Bio-Elite Heal all. But they warned that I can't use the Tetra General in a filtered tank as it damages the biological filter, and most have had bad experiences with Bio-Elite Heal all. It has also been suggested to increase the temperature to 27 or 28 degrees Celsius but I'm not sure if the Hillstreams (specifically) will be able to handle this.

A description of our tank:

27 liters with heater and thermometer (25 degrees Celsius), a corner filter containing activated carbon, floss and Sera Siporax and another separate sponge filter. One full spectrum fluorescent lightbulb.

1 x Betta splendens
1 x Banjo pleco
3 x Hillstream loaches

Planted with various plants, one piece of driftwood.

It is a new tank that has already finished cycling but has only been up and running for almost 2 months.

Thanks in advance for any and all help!
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Old 11-11-2010, 05:20 AM   #2 
small fry
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Welcome to the forum.

That sounds like a diesaster! What I would do first off is medicate the tank with stress coat! The pot has no doubt damaged his natural protective coating called "stress coat." That need to be immediatly addressed.

As for the meds, other than stress coat (which is avalible at almost any fish store) I have no suggestions. I have heard that medications with the active ingredient "melaleuca" (although I could be wrong, not starring at a bottle) such as, Melafix and Bettafix can be very harmful to your betta, especially when it is sick. I would steer clear of that.

You can probably add some freshwater aquarium salt to make him feel a little better and improve his gill function.

I hope your betta can recover, it is a slow process. Hope this helps!
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Old 11-11-2010, 06:50 AM   #3 
flammaefata
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Hi small fry,

Thanks for your help!

I've decided to add 1tsp aquarium salt to the tank along with 1 teabag Rooibos tea and 3.5 ml of the Bio-Elite Heal All. None of these are medications per se, the Rooibos and Bio-Elite supposedly boost the fishes' immune system with the plant extracts that they contain. I'm not sure if you get the Bio Elite range in the US, I think it's a South African product. But you probably get Rooibos tea products.

I have not been able to get the Tetra General Tonic but as I don't have a quarantine tank I prefer not to need to use it.

I got another product as well: Aquadene Stress Shield Special. Unfortunately no ingredients are listed so I don't know if ti contains anything that might have a negative effect on our Betta. It does however say it isn't a medication and should not be used to substitute any medication. It also says that it specifically aids the replacement of the slime coating and promotes healing of skin wounds and torn fins. I'm just a bit worried using it as no one has recommended it yet.

At least Stishy (our Betta) is still alive...
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Old 11-11-2010, 07:08 AM   #4 
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if i may add a small piece here....
i had this happen a few months ago and everything you are doing is great! i would also bump up water changes to every day for a week as the fresh water will help prevent infection....
i am truly sorry this happened to your Betta but i am glad you came here to join us... WELCOME!!!!!
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Old 11-11-2010, 07:18 AM   #5 
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So your Betta survived the ordeal? That's probably the best news I've heard all day! Someone else also said that they are used to fighting and in some countries where they have fights with the native Bettas the loser might have lost all its fins but will regrow them in the span of a month or so.

I'm a bit worried about doing the water changes too often, I really don't want to disturb him any more than I have to. But we've been doing our water changes with a thin-ish tube so the current from the WC isn't strong at all and I can control it quite well.

I've now got a considerable hatred towards terra cotta pots... Might need therapy...
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Old 11-11-2010, 07:28 AM   #6 
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LOL yes the Betta did quite well.... the water changes are good for them to be 100% honest i rather use a little salt and water changes than any medication at all.... as for fighting them i personally feel this is a cruel act and dont really entertain the idea.... as for the flower pots a few things you can do to make them safe are silicon the hole closed, make it bigger with a drill or find ones that dont have the hole (they cost more if you can even find them)

again i hope all continues to go well...
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Old 11-11-2010, 07:30 AM   #7 
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I suggest watering down some Melafix (since BettaFix is just expensive watered down MelaFix) and adding that. Stress Coat (my personal choice for water conditioner) is very good and I use it all the time. Also some aquarium salt and keeping the water conditions perfect with help as well.
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Old 11-11-2010, 07:33 AM   #8 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flammaefata View Post
bearwithfish
So your Betta survived the ordeal? That's probably the best news I've heard all day! Someone else also said that they are used to fighting and in some countries where they have fights with the native Bettas the loser might have lost all its fins but will regrow them in the span of a month or so.

I'm a bit worried about doing the water changes too often, I really don't want to disturb him any more than I have to. But we've been doing our water changes with a thin-ish tube so the current from the WC isn't strong at all and I can control it quite well.

I've now got a considerable hatred towards terra cotta pots... Might need therapy...
The difference between Thai fighting and American fighting is that Thai fighters remove the loser male as soon as it's clear the other has won. Then they treat the fish and heal him back up then sell or keep him but never breed him. In America (and possibly other countries) they don't care if a fish dies or dies from the injuries from the fight. Overall fighting them is cruel.
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Old 11-11-2010, 07:38 AM   #9 
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I agree completely that allowing fighting between any animals, especially if it's for human entertainment and/or greed, is a despicable act. I just meant it made me hopeful if these fishes are able to recover from such stressful and damaging situations as ours will hopefully live through this horrible ordeal!

What stress coats do you use?
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Old 11-11-2010, 07:48 AM   #10 
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Originally Posted by flammaefata View Post
I agree completely that allowing fighting between any animals, especially if it's for human entertainment and/or greed, is a despicable act. I just meant it made me hopeful if these fishes are able to recover from such stressful and damaging situations as ours will hopefully live through this horrible ordeal!

What stress coats do you use?
Well there's only one and it's called API Stress Coat. It conditions tap water and makes it safe for bettas and other fish and replaces the slime coating that fish need to guard against disease.

Also try adding some Indian Almond Leaves (they're dirt cheap and you can get them from www.aquabid.com). They're naturally found in bettas natural habitat but they'll make your bettas water turn a brownish yellow color but that means the leaves are working :)
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