Believe it or not, a stressed betta is not as bad as a betta with ammonia burns and finrot. In a 1/2 gallon (if he is still in there) 100% daily will barely make the cut for clean water.
When I got my first betta, he was in a little 1/2 gallon. Once he started getting sick, I found my way here. He had to stay in there until my 10 gallon was cycled, so while he was waiting, I did 100% water changes daily. The cleaner water improved his health, and once he got into the cycled and heated 10 gallon with clean water, he bounced back greatly.
Oh, no doubt a betta with ammonia burn and fin rot is way worse than a stressed betta. But a stressed betta with ammonia burn and fin rot is even worse. I'd certainly suggest changing the water frequently and getting a heater but I'm not sure if the gravel being removed will make that much of a difference. It's mainly a problem when it traps the fish's solid waste and since this fellow hasn't eaten for four weeks, I'm guessing he hasn't produced much of that.
Well, if done correctly, even 100% water changes should be stress free, and the clean water will work to heal the ammonia burns and finrot. It's much better than letting the ammonia build up and cause even more damage, no?
Oh gosh yes, the water changes will work wonders for a fish with ammonia burn an fin rot, or any other ailment for that matter. I'm all for water changes, never said I wasn't. Just not sure about removing the gravel in this case, that's all. Wonder what happened to Chacha, though. I'd like an update on the poor little fella.
The fish died approx. this morning. I changed the water and added the usual medicine Friday afternoon. I really thought it was getting better, possibly getting well - the redness was reducing and almost gone in some areas.
After I woke up and checked on the fish, it was still alive. Then, I was not home for few hours. Within this time, it died. It was staying between the fake plane leaves. One side of its body was pale and greenish. The other side was more normal. The body was cure up and stiff. Poor thing... it was very sick but a great fighter. At the end, it was probably died with hunger (it did not eat at all).
Thanks for all of your input on how to save our little fish!
Chacha, I'm so sorry to hear you lost your fish. You're right, he was a great fighter to hang on for so long. I hope things go better with your other fish. Don't forget that all the advice we gave for your little fighter applies to your other fish as well. That is, a heater and lots of water changes. If you have the time, please do keep us all posted on how the other fish is doing. My sympathies. :(