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Old 11-26-2010, 02:03 PM   #1 
bettaowner456
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Sick and Bloated Betta emergency - HELP!

Hello, everyone. I have one 2 1/2 year old red male Betta, Star. He's an only fish and lives by himself in a one gallon tank. There's a filter and a water heater in his tank, if that makes any difference. Anyway, I'm extremely worried because he has a huge bulge right under his two side fins. I don't know if he has dropsy, swim bladder disorder, if he's constipated, or worse. He seems in pain, and curls up in an L shape on the bottom of the tank. He also seems to hold one side fin close to his body and tries to use the other one more. By the way, he is eating and going to the bathroom. I've included a link to pictures and one 3-minute video of him on Photobucket (I had problems uploading it on this site). In case you don't know, click on the pictures to view them zoomed in.

Go to a private Photobucket.com album

Password for viewing photos: sickstar

More info:
- Tank Temperature: 82 degrees
- His food: Hikari Betta Bio-gold pellets, six a day.
- Water changes: 1/3 of water every week
- Water additives: NovAqua dechlorinator and aquarium salt
- pH of water: 7.2
- Medicine, just added: Simply betta anti-fungus and bacteria and Tetra halo-guard, 1/2 tablet
- I just noticed his symptoms yesterday, but they were probably going on longer than that
- History of illness: Ick and fungus, but he was cured of that

Any Betta experts out there who could help? I'm willing to answer any questions and am desperate not to let the little guy die!
Incidentally, he's kind of turning to one side in some of the pictures - so his scales might not actually be sticking out that much. I apologize for the awful quality - my cellphone doesn't take very good pictures.
To everyone answering - THANK YOU SO SO MUCH!

Last edited by bettaowner456; 11-26-2010 at 02:22 PM. Reason: added more information
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Old 11-26-2010, 02:44 PM   #2 
bettaowner456
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Answers?

Is anyone online? I really need help!
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Old 11-26-2010, 02:55 PM   #3 
bettablue
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well first of all I think six pellets is too much food, I would fast him for a day or two and then feed him a pea. also you need to change the water way more. 100% water changes every week and a 50% change in between. Idk about the medicine but it probably won't help him.... I would also add a teaspoon of epsom salt, it helps w/ the bloating....
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Old 11-26-2010, 02:56 PM   #4 
bettablue
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btw, one gallon is a little small for a betta. a 2.5 is the minimum and you can get cheap 5 gal containers at walmart....
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Old 11-26-2010, 03:03 PM   #5 
Oldfishlady
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It sounds like he may be suffering from the results of poor water quality and long term salt

I would start by making 100% daily water changes with Epsom salt 1tsp/gal for the next 10 days, cover the top with plastic veggie wrap to keep the air warm/humid, lower the water level and remove the filter, turn off the light and provide him with a quite location, hold all food for the next 3 days and then offer 1 pellet 3 times a day every other day during the 10 day treatment

You can pre-mix the Epsom salt 1tsp/gal and dechlorinator in a 1gal jug to help make correct dosage and daily water changes easier......if you have IAL or naturally dried oak leaf you can add this to the pre-mixed water for the tannins which are also helpful

Good luck, and keep us posted......
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Old 11-26-2010, 04:39 PM   #6 
bettaowner456
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Thanks so much! I had NO idea what to do so I'm really glad you guys could help. I added epsom salt, did a 50% water change and will change more before the end of the day and will try fasting him. His swelling seems a little better. The tank size is actually 1.5 gallons but I'll make sure to change the water again tomorrow.
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Old 11-26-2010, 04:44 PM   #7 
bettaowner456
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By the way, I might be able to find the Dried Oak leaf outside. What is IAL? Thanks again.
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Old 11-27-2010, 10:32 AM   #8 
bettaowner456
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Hmmm....

I'm really grateful for the help you guys gave me, but he might need more. I checked his tank again this morning. I don't think his swelling has gone down any more. :( He's hanging out on the bottom of the tank a lot....is that a sign of dropsy? Should I try medicated food? Or am I just overreacting and assuming his treatment will work instantly?
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Old 11-27-2010, 10:46 AM   #9 
Oldfishlady
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IAL-Indian almond leaf

It can take a few days to a week to see improvement, are his scale starting to stick out any, if so, it could be the symptom dropsy

I don't use OTC medications so I can't advise on it use...
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Old 11-27-2010, 12:23 PM   #10 
bettaowner456
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Oh no...

Is the end near for him?... He's lying on the bottom of the tank more and more and is having difficulty breathing. I tried following your advice but I guess it just didn't work....I'm almost sure it's swim bladder disorder, since he's bloated and where his swim bladder is is sticking out as well. I'm pretty sure it's not dropsy, since he has no pineconing. I just read on the web swim bladder disorder is treatable, though. He looks the same as the pictures I posted yesterday except for difficulty breathing and resting his stomach bulge on the bottom of the tank while lifting his tail up in the air...am I killing him? Is there ANYTHING I can do that will help him now? I really don't want him to die....
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