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Old 11-21-2010, 11:34 AM   #1 
deamwilliams
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Got Betta Already Sick... Steps in New Tank?

Hi! The business I work at bought a Betta, and had it in a vase ... which I objected to, even though I honestly have never had a fish - therefore, I knew nothing about living conditions required, etc. They had it for a few months, and I was responsible for feeding it, changing it's water, etc, which I did according to instructions on the betta bowl and food packaging.

Anyway, a few days ago, I noticed he had a swollen left eye. I immediately took him to Petsmart, which was where they bought him from. She tested his water, and said the ammonia was high. She told me he would need medicine, but that all they had were things that would require a tank with water cycling through. So, I said whatever I had to do to keep him alive, I'd do. She suggested the 1.5 gallon Tetra tank (which I see several people have on the pictures of their beta homes here) and Tetra BettaSafe kit (which she said is for 10 gallon tanks, so for me to separate it into 10 parts, which I did). Anyway, long story short, I took him home, and put the Betta water in the tank, made sure it was around 80 degrees, with everything that came in the 1.5 gallon Tetra tank set up(two fake plants and I also bought him a resting leaf), and left the filter OUT (She told me to leave it out until he's finished his medicine) It didn't come with gravel/rocks like it pictures on the box, so I went back to buy that the next day, but haven't put it in yet, as I'm afraid to add it with him in.

He's been loving the tank, and it's been 3 days since he was put in it... the eye has went down a lot, but still not completely.

I'm sure you can tell by me going by everything they told me at Petsmart, that I've never had a fish before in my entire life... so, I googled and found this site today, because I have grown to love this little guy! I told work I'm not bringing him back, and that I read on here they can't live like they were there.

Also, with reading here, I'm now SCARED TO DEATH I'm going to kill him! He's already in his tank (which I will definitely upgrade to a bigger tank soon, since I have read this one is a little too small)... but what about right now? He's in his tank, with no filter cartridge, just the water cycling through until his medicine is complete. When it's complete, what should I do?

I don't know if I should take him out, and put the filter in and cycle... or I'm just confused! I've read what to do before he's in the tank, or even after, but what about when there's no filter in yet, and he's been sick.

I'm extremely attached to my new buddy, so I want to do everything EXACTLY right! Please help!! (:

P.S. His name is Deuces.
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Old 11-21-2010, 11:52 AM   #2 
Malvolti
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So far everything you're doing sounds great, if you havent already done so you should get an in-tank thermometer and heater as well as some at-home water testing kits. You can also look into Aquarium Salt (different than table salt which can be harmful), it generally helps a betta recover from illness.

I would recommend not putting gravel into the tank with the fish in it. Let him heal up and then put it in when you do a full water change. I also recommend rinsing the gravel in warm or salted water to make sure it is clean before it goes in the tank.

You might find the current created by the filter is a little strong for the tank when you put it in. There are some easy ways to fix this; put a filter sponge (not a kitchen sponge) inside just behind the spillway, or partially block the intake. However filters aren't required, they just help keep the water cleaner between water changes.

When he is better you should consider doing 50% water changes 2 times a week and a full water change weekly. Also get some water conditioner (probably came in your first aid kit). Tap water has harmful additives which the conditioner neutralizes.

When dealing with artificial plants and Bettas you need to be careful. If they are plastic try running a nylon over it, if the nylon tears or gets a run it is bad for the betta. Silk (fabric) or real live plants would be best.

Last edited by Malvolti; 11-21-2010 at 11:57 AM.
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Old 11-21-2010, 12:21 PM   #3 
deamwilliams
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Thank you so much!!
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Old 11-21-2010, 12:30 PM   #4 
TaylorW
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Make sure you use a water conditioner to remove chlorine from your tap water! You need it to make the water safe for fishes :)

Also make sure you do a 100% water change once every two days to keep the ammonia down! :) This will keep your little buddy from getting sick again :)

Welcome to the forum! I'm very glad that you're trying very hard to take such good care of your fish! :)
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Old 11-21-2010, 12:35 PM   #5 
Jupiter
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Well, it definitely looks like you're heading in the right direction. Right now what he needs is warm, clean water. Maintaining the water at 80 degrees like you're doing now and doing frequent water changes every week will help.
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Old 11-21-2010, 12:46 PM   #6 
deamwilliams
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So 100% water change? When do I. Need to let bacteria grow? Also, when his meds are done and he is healthy, is it okay to put the filter in with him in? I have read it isn't on here, so what. Would be the best way to go about? I buy spring water, not use tap, and put conditioner in... is tht okay? Sorry I'm asking so much! Thank you all for your help! I'm going to petsmart in a few hours to get everything suggested! I'm using my phone so if anything else is replied I will get it right away (: Deuces says thank you, too!
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Old 11-21-2010, 12:53 PM   #7 
Malvolti
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In a 1.5 gal you won't be able to "Cycle" the tank (let helpful bacteria grow) so they aren't a concern or a help. This is why you need to do frequent large water changes.

I don't see the harm in using conditioner on spring water but I'm not experienced in that area, I've always had to use tap water. With spring water theremay be something else you need to use but I don't know.

I also recommend getting a gravel vacuum for when you have gravel. It looks like a big plastic tube attatched to a long rubber hose. These let you get the dirt that will hide in the gravel when you change the water.
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Old 11-21-2010, 12:58 PM   #8 
Posaune
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The problem with spring water is that there are no nutrients in it. You should use tap water but use the conditioner. That way, they get all of the usual nutrients they would get from the water itself.
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Old 11-21-2010, 01:10 PM   #9 
Jupiter
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Yeah, unless your tap water is very unusual and has very high PH or something, tap water that's been treated is better than spring water. Plus spring water is pretty pricey...also, you don't need to condition spring water.

A filter in a 1.5 gallon isn't going to make much of a difference. I don't think a tank of that size can be cycled properly.
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Old 11-23-2010, 05:11 PM   #10 
deamwilliams
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Hello again! Now that I'm all set thank to the wonderful help from all of you, I've nnoticed he seems very hyper. Today after feeding him, he swam back and forth over and over for a good ten minutes... this does mean he's happy right?! I sure hope so! His pop eye is completely gone now also. (: I will take pictures soon of his decked out home! If I get any money for Christmas it will be going straight to getting him a bigger tank!
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