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Old 07-03-2011, 04:05 PM   #1 
octuppy
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Rescued Skinny Betta, Need Advice

Hi, I bought a betta from Wal-mart because he was the only one there alive out of three. He was in a little cup of dirty water just enough to cover him. I don't think they hardly ever fed him because he looks super thin to me. Right now he's in a small bowl about half full. I only filled it half because he couldn't swim very well and I wanted to make it easier for him to get air. I have a 1gal tank I filled with water that I am waiting for the water to be safe for him. I looked it up and the product website, Tetra Aquasafe, said 8 drops for a gallon so that's what I put. I still don't know if he can swim well enough for that much water though. I'm going to put some more in his bowl and see how he does. He's swimming better and more active today. I gave him a little pinch of BettaMin yesterday and today and he ate, no surprise I imagine he was hungry. So, I wonder how much should I feed him? How often? Is that food okay, its all they had. I know bettas need oxygen so should I wait until he swims well in the bowl before I move him to the tank, it does have an air tube with a stone. Yesterday I thought he was going to die, he laid at the bottom of the bowl a long time but there is improvement today. I know its a bad idea to impulse rescue animals but I had the empty tank anyway, I would like to keep him for as long as I can and do my best. Thanks and here are some pictures, they are the best I could get with my phone.
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Old 07-03-2011, 05:08 PM   #2 
Oldfishlady
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Welcome to the forum...

Good that you have him in a half filled small container, Bettas don't need added aeration since they have a labyrinth organ and can breath air like us...so no worries on the need to add an airstone or filter at this point....I would get him healthy, get some weight on him and swimming better for now....work on that immune response for now....

What you need to do now is focus on water quality and nutrition.....

I would start by making daily 50% water changes with 100% every 7 days, feed small but frequent meals, maintain the water temp in the 76-80F range, you may also want to cover the top of the container he is in with plastic veggie wrap with a small hole poked in it to help retain the heat and humidity for the labyrinth organ especially if you have AC going in the house, if you have any live food like mosquito larva...offer a few of them a couple of times a day and if you have any tannins to add from either IAL or dried Oak leaf he would really like that too......

Be sure and keep the water temp within a couple of degrees between new and old water with the water changes by checking it with a thermometer and Always use dechlorinator with any new water added.....

I would just make frequent water changes for now and observe for any changes...if he start to show signs/symptoms in regards to buoyancy, clamped fins, flashing, become lethargic....etc....he may need a salt treatment with either aquarium salt or Epsom salt based on S/S...

Be sure and properly acclimate him to both temp and water chemistry by adding small amounts of dechlorinated tank water to the holding cup over 20-30min to his tolerance...toss out any pet shop water...
Keep us posted....

Last edited by Oldfishlady; 07-03-2011 at 05:13 PM.
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Old 07-03-2011, 05:37 PM   #3 
octuppy
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Thanks a lot. One thing I would like to know I forgot about is how do I change the water without scaring the heck out of him? I have changed half the water today but it really scared him, especially when I poured the new water in. I know they stripe when they are scared and that's what he did, he seems to have calmed down now though. I don't want to scare him death trying to help him. As for humidity and temperature, we don't have any air conditioning so he should be fine, its plenty humid and hot here. I'll let you know how he's doing, like I said he seems better today so I'm more hopeful about his future.
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Old 07-03-2011, 05:57 PM   #4 
Oldfishlady
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Often all they need is some fresh like temp dechlorinated water and time....along with some good food and they will perk right up for you.....

Once the Betta gets use to properly done water changes it isn't as stressful on them....

I would leave him in the container for the partial water changes and use a plastic cup to dip half the water out....replace the water as slow as you can...sometimes some things are unavoidable....on my small tanks I use my clean free hand and hold it under the flow of water as I pour it in the tank and this kinda displaces the flow enough so it doesn't knock the fish around

When you make the 100%-cup him-(by either a pre-wet net or the cup itself and scoop him up) in the cup you bought him in if he came in one-be sure and use a lid or some type of cover so he doesn't jump out...if he didn't come in a cup...any small container will work...be sure and give it a good rinse and if you fear that it may have too much soap residue in it...rinse with some vinegar and rinse the vinegar out with warm running water before use
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Old 07-05-2011, 09:54 PM   #5 
octuppy
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Thanks again, he's doing good, eating, swimming around in a full bowl of water. I've decided to use a small plastic cup to catch him for full water changes, he's too hard to catch with the net. I bought a little pack of drinking cups to do it. I tried switching him to pellet food thinking that was cleaner but his mouth is too small for them. He spits a lot when he eats, sucks up a flake, spits it out, maybe sucks it up again. I've put some gravel in his bowl and he had a plant but got stuck in it so I took it out. No harm done fortunately. I'll let you know what he's doing ever so often and try to get some more pics soon.
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Old 07-05-2011, 10:21 PM   #6 
Silverfang
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You might try crushing the pellets and see if he is able to nom it that way. There are also some micro pellets out there, usually about half the size (.5mm) or normal pellets. Those might work.
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Old 07-06-2011, 10:20 PM   #7 
masshiimarro
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sometimes bettas also dont eat their food if it isnt soaked. you might want to soak his pellets in some tank water for about maybe 5 mins or so before feeding him. break up the soaked pieces and feed him like that if you want. it makes it easier for him to eat them.
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