I am new to this forum even though I am often here reading threads silently, Now to the problem.
My daughter has owned Elliott for 1 1/2 years and we have had no problems with him until now. He has always lived alone in a 10 gallon cycled tank with the following parameters. Water is always 80 degrees, we do a 20 % water change weekly. Water is usually the following with little to no change.
Nitrate 5 or below
We have always used Aquarium salt in the water and at water changes.
Elliott has always been a good eater and always curious and seemingly happy. About 4 weeks ago we noticed his color seemed to be getting duller, but nothing else was out of sorts. 3 weeks ago we noticed what appeared to be rust or brownish color on his body with no other symptoms, we took some photos and took them to the fish store to show the manager in the fish section. We were told that it looked like it "might" be the start of something and to add a little extra salt to the aquarium and do a water change.
A few days later we noticed Elliotts normally full flowing fins were kind of clamped and hanging near his body and his scales on his side seemed to be getting lighter and he seemed to be laying around and only excited during feeding time so I took some pictures (which are posted in my album dated 2-7-11) and took them to the fish store and the clerk said it "might" be velvet, I purchased some Rid Ich Plus and started Elliott on it 2-9-11 starting with a 50% water change and also upping the temp to 84 degrees, and keep his tank covered from the light.
Since then I've performed daily 30% water changes and after the fourth day of treatment Elliott seemed to perk up, no longer laying on the bottom of tank, still excited to eat and interested in whats going on during his water changes but his fins are still clamped and I see little change in his actual appearance other than maybe a little more bluer in the areas not infected.
I have posted a photo album on this site with pictures that are dated, the last ones being taken a few days ago.
My questions are, does this look like a case of velvet or was he misdiagnosed?. Should I be treating him for a secondary infection? and if it is velvet how long does it take to rid the fish of the disease?.
A lengthy first post but I don't know what else to do, Elliott has become a part of the family and we are at wits end and oh so sad to think he might be hurting.
I was able to add 4 pics, the first two are from the 7th and the last two are from the 14th.
Thank you in advance for any help you can provide in our battle to cure Elliott.