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Old 06-03-2011, 10:59 PM   #1 
Ianthe
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Join Date: May 2011
Location: Folsom, CA
What could I get this fish to eat? Rescue, very sick, emaciated!!

I just couldn't turn my back on this dying boy at Petco...so now he is home with me. I have him currently in a one gallon drum bowl (all I had on hand, will upgrade him if he makes it), with stress coat and aquarium salt. He is NOT good. He is VERY emaciated, can't swim at this point. He tries, but he is too weak, I think. Breathing heavily, barely any color to him. He has been like this for at least 3 days, because it is the same state he was in when I first spotted him on Tuesday. Just couldn't get him out of my head, so went and got him this afternoon. I couldn't believe he was still alive!

Anyway, he obviously is not eating anything. He can't make it anywhere CLOSE to the top to reach the Hikari pellets I have. Should I try something else? Or not worry about food at this point? What would he be most likely to eat?

I know his chance are really not good, but i figure if nothing else, at least he will die in clean water :(

Here he is:
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Old 06-03-2011, 11:43 PM   #2 
Ianthe
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Location: Folsom, CA
Forgot to do the questionnaire!

Here it is:

Housing
What size is your tank? Currently 1 gallon
What temperature is your tank? 77 degrees
Does your tank have a filter? No
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? No
Is your tank heated? No
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? None

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Right now, Hikari pellets
How often do you feed your betta fish? Once a day

Maintenance

How often do you perform a water change? I'm thinking every 3-5 days?
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 100%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Dechlorinator, Aquarium salt

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters? Haven't tested them yet!

Ammonia:N/A
Nitrite:N/A
Nitrate:N/A
pH:N/A
Hardness:N/A
Alkalinity: N/A

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? So far not much, still looks very stressed and sick
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? See above
When did you start noticing the symptoms? 3 days ago, in the store
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? 1 tsp aquarium salt
Does your fish have any history of being ill? He has been very ill since I first saw him!
How old is your fish (approximately)? I have no idea!
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Old 06-03-2011, 11:46 PM   #3 
Sakura8
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Whoa. . . words fail me. How could Petco let him get so bad????? Aiyiyiyi . . .

Well . . . if he can't make it to the top, sinking foods are best. What have you tried? I've been reccommending New Life Spectrum Small Fish .5mm Sinking Pellets; started using them on my shy girl who wouldn't come to the surface to eat. These are much smaller than NLS Betta pellets, so small they're like coffee grounds almost. They're high in protein and seem appetizing. They don't sink very fast, though. You could also try Hikari MicroWafers. They are said to be super small and I think they sink, since most wafers are for bottom-feeders. There's also the usual freeze-dried foods and frozen foods too. You could also probably target feed these small foods with a turkey baster, just squirt them out under his nose.

Poor guy, he looks so bad I'm surprised he survived the move from his cup to his new home. Does he move at all? If he looks like he's suffering, maybe it's best to euthanize the poor chap.
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Old 06-03-2011, 11:50 PM   #4 
Ianthe
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He does move, when he sees someone looking at him, but not very much. I feel like it is a fine line right now, whether to try to save him or euthanize him :( I think I'll see how he is in 24 hours and then make a decision.

Thank you for the suggestions!!!
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Old 06-03-2011, 11:54 PM   #5 
Ianthe
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Anything else I should be doing? Trying to get his bowl warmer? Keeping him in the dark? Anything? Thank you all so much!!
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Old 06-03-2011, 11:57 PM   #6 
Sakura8
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Yeah, warmth would be good. If his water is too cold, he'll be spending what little energy he has just to stay alive. Darkness might help to keep him from getting panicked from sudden movements. Or, in his state, I'd think even non-sudden movements might scare him.

Were you tempted to tell off the Petco employees when you checked out? Makes you want to dump them in a septic tank and say, "Here, how do you like living in your own filth?"

You could also try crushing the Hikari pellets and using a turkey baster (or eyedropper) to squirt them closer to him.
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Old 06-03-2011, 11:59 PM   #7 
Tisia
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if he's not able to make it to the top, you should probably lower the water so he can get up to breath, and I believe that if you're doing a salt treatment you need to change the water 100% daily for 7-10 days. maybe try some frozen bloodworms and grab some chopsticks or feeding tweezers and wiggle them right in front of him
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Old 06-04-2011, 12:02 AM   #8 
Ianthe
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Thank you!!!! Maybe I will move his bowl to the top of the refrigerator when I go to bed, so it will be a bit warmer. And I will definitely try crushing the pellets!

Yeah, I did tell them off. Because besides this guy, there were ten others just like him, and I also counted 4 DEAD bettas in cups. And some had water so brown you couldn't see through it. And then, they didn't even give me a discount on this guy!!!! Whatever...
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Old 06-04-2011, 12:02 AM   #9 
Sakura8
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Oh yeah, good idea about lowering water, tisia.
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Old 06-04-2011, 12:03 AM   #10 
Ianthe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tisia View Post
if he's not able to make it to the top, you should probably lower the water so he can get up to breath, and I believe that if you're doing a salt treatment you need to change the water 100% daily for 7-10 days. maybe try some frozen bloodworms and grab some chopsticks or feeding tweezers and wiggle them right in front of him

Thank you! I was wondering what level the water should be. So I should lower it to like, an inch? Because that is about how far he can make it up. Or would not be enough water? :(
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