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Old 12-08-2010, 01:01 AM   #1 
TRISHIESfishie
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How do I help my betta not be afraid of me?

I have had him 2 weeks Sunday. I rescued him from Walmart Sunday night (most of the bettas were dead or very close to death and I couldn't save them so I saved him from their fate) and he is teeny tiny. Anyway Monday morning he was floating on his side really sick. I thought he was dead. Once I saw he moved I immediately dropped him into a qt cup epson salt water. Glad to say he has made a womderful recovery and gets to finish his spa treatment on Thursday! Ok now for the part about him being afraid of me. When I first got him (and the first few days in his qt cup) he was not afraid of me at all. he would actually come up to see me when I came over. Well about the 4th day, he finally "used the restroom". I can't imagine it was his first time (even with him being so tiny) and it tangled inbetween his lower fins (he's a crowntail). It freaked him out so bad he was frantically swimming and thrashing trying to get it off him. I thought I should leave him be and thought he would take care of it himself. But after several minutes he was just becoming more frantic and agitated. He even pulled/knocked off one of his spikes from somewhere on his fins. When I saw the tiny "spike" laying at the bottom of his cup I knew he needed help. I took his cup out of his tank and took a q-tip cotton swab and gently brushed against the end of his "waste" (not against his body) and it came off onto the q-tip. I put him in the dark and he finally was able to calm down. But now, even several days later, he is terrified of me. I go over to his tank and he bolts to the opposite side of his qt cup. I can handle him not being "friendly" to me, but I don't want him terrified everytime he sees me. How do I console and comfort my betta?
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Old 12-08-2010, 01:41 AM   #2 
LittleBettaFish
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Hold a tweezer with some frozen bloodworms or other yummy treats in the water and let him come to you. I had a very skittish female who had been beaten up quite badly by the other fish and she would go and hide as soon as she saw me.

After a couple of days of being hand-fed with brine shrimp and mosquito larvae, she now zooms over as soon as I come near the tank.

Also if you just ignore your boy while you're doing something near the tank, eventually your presence should stop upsetting him. It sounds like he's had a pretty traumatic couple of few weeks and some bettas can just be more sensitive than others.
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Old 12-08-2010, 09:15 AM   #3 
scootshoot
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Fish need to be accustomed to your presence. How often are you near him? Am sure at the pet store he rarely saw glimpses of humans peering into his home.

My present betta tank is stationed right next to my computer so he has become accustomed to my presence 4plus hours a day I spend working at my computer.
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Old 12-08-2010, 10:36 AM   #4 
TaylorW
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Put him in an active area of your home, somewhere where he'll get used to seeing and hearing lots of different people. After observing you and your family and friends and realizing they are not a threat, he should start to warm up a little.

Don't just drop his food in the tank, make him come close to you to get his meal! He'll then start to associate you with food, and you'll have a better relationship :)
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Old 12-08-2010, 03:37 PM   #5 
TRISHIESfishie
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@LittleBettaFish :Thank you for the tip with the tweezers. I want him to get used to eating regular pellets so once he does, I will try the tweezer.

My fish are in the living room (most active room) So unless I am at work I am pretty much no less than 5 feet from them. But the only time I approach the tanks is to do something with them, so I willl try to do more by the tanks that don't involve the tanks. I think he may be sensitive, I just don't want to traumatize him. I was thinking of letting them "play" with a string and let them chase it and then feed them so they can hunt

thanks everyone
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Old 12-08-2010, 11:22 PM   #6 
TaylorW
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Good luck with your fish! I hope he becomes friendlier! :)
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