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Old 02-23-2011, 07:39 AM   #1 
Margaret
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Exclamation Lethargic and struggling fish - please help

I am new to this site, and have read many of the threads, and they are somewhat helpful, however, it seems there are many here who really know about bettas! Please help. My daughter has 2 fish, one is at least 2 years old, the other is relatively new, about 3 months. They each live in a 1 gallon tank, (we have had bettas before), with room temperature water (around 70 on average), have an ornament and a water lily plant each. We clean the tank and replace about 95% of the water every other week, adding water conditioner each time. We haven't had any issues so far, previous fish stayed with us for a couple - 3 years and then one week they would act strange and die.
Our older fish, Leopold has been very lethargic for the past 4-5 weeks, he struggles to swim up to eat, or to swim at all, and is lying on his side mostly, on the bottom. I have changed his water and added a couple of drops of betta fix in case, took out the plant (which he loved for a long time, but lilies are poisonous to people, who knows?). we did change food when the new guy arrived, as he wouldn't eat Wardley's pellets, switched to Hagen flakes. They both seem to like it, get fed 1 x day. The new guy is very happy, energetic and always exploring, and Leo was the same until recently. Would the epsom salt treatment be worth trying? or daily water changes? I'm hoping for your collective wisdom, thanks!
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Old 02-23-2011, 08:43 AM   #2 
LolaQuigs
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They are probably cold, this is one of the most common causes of lethargy in bettas; they are a tropical fish, so they lose energy when they are kept at room temp. Ideally their temperature should be in the 76-82 range.

In a tank that small you should be doing 100% water changes every other day; ammonia builds up very quickly in smaller tanks. Bigger tanks may seem like more of a hassle, but really they are much less maintenance.

I would start with 100% daily water changes for a week or so, then go to a regular schedule of changes every other day. Do this and get them heaters, and you should hopefully see some improvement. I'm not sure about epsom salt, but I've heard bad things about betta fix. You should shoot a private message to Old Fish Lady, she is an expert in betta care and treatment for illness; I know she often recommends epsom salt baths but I don't know if your situation calls for it or not.
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Old 02-23-2011, 02:59 PM   #3 
Margaret
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Thanks a lot - I will start with the water changes, the temperature issue seems strange, as one is fine, the other has been around for a long time and just now lying down... appreciate the help!
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Old 02-24-2011, 12:07 PM   #4 
karlhague
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Laying on his side To me sounds like swim Bladder Disorder.

when your older guy swims, does he swim with his body to one side, irregularly at all?
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Old 02-25-2011, 07:53 AM   #5 
Margaret
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Hi - thanks for reply - he just really seems to make a great effort to swim up, but not on the side, just makes a dash for it (at feeding) and then sinks back down, and lies kind of to the side, or leans on the glass. Hides a lot in his cave, too.
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Old 02-25-2011, 10:59 AM   #6 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Margaret View Post
Hi - thanks for reply - he just really seems to make a great effort to swim up, but not on the side, just makes a dash for it (at feeding) and then sinks back down, and lies kind of to the side, or leans on the glass. Hides a lot in his cave, too.

I would lower the water level untill its at a level he can reach the surface comfortably at.
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Old 02-25-2011, 12:13 PM   #7 
ANHEL123
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That what is one of the site recommendation about lower the water level. Also the site saying try to feed with cooked pea.

How it warking? If u buy frozen pea do we have to cooke it or it already cooked?

Can SBD be teated with Aquarium salt or Epsom salt?
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Old 02-25-2011, 12:31 PM   #8 
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Originally Posted by ANHEL123 View Post
That what is one of the site recommendation about lower the water level. Also the site saying try to feed with cooked pea.

How it warking? If u buy frozen pea do we have to cooke it or it already cooked?

Can SBD be teated with Aquarium salt or Epsom salt?

Epsom would be best, as aquarium salt retains fluid,

Try NOT to use the cooked pea meathod.... Vegetables are NOT good for you betta..

Try using live or frozen daphnia instead.
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Old 02-25-2011, 12:43 PM   #9 
BETTACHKALOVE
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Old Fish Lady will give best advice about salt and food. I wish she can see the thread.I am wondering if SBD can be treated. But how i understood from reading on the betta disease that betta don't suffer from that disease.

Why vegetables are not good? I want to try to feed my bettas with pea.

Last edited by BETTACHKALOVE; 02-25-2011 at 12:50 PM.
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Old 02-25-2011, 01:05 PM   #10 
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Also Margaret changing her bettas every other week for 1 gall. I think it not enough water change.
I have 2 bettas in 1 gall at doctor office i worked on saturdays i change it every saturday and i think it not enough too. I would do it every 5 days if food don't sink on the bottom though. That is why i don't like flakes. I love pellets so they just eat them nothing go to the water.



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