Hello, I am new here. 1st time owner of a betta that I got 2 & 1/2 months ago.
At first he was very active, curious about things going on around his tank, used to make bubbles and swim a lot.
1. He has stopped eating (he used to swim to the top as soon as I open the bowl lid & wait for me to drop the food, eat it immediately). Now he doesn't seem to care at all.
2. Not swimming around like usual but just lying on the bottom all the time.
3. Not responding (he used to swim to the top as soon as he looks at my fingers and move around in his tank following my fingers)
Here is my betta's details:
1 male Betta in 1/2 gallon Marina betta fish bowl with lid.
1 plastic plant & some accent gems on the bottom.
Complete water change every week with betta water conditioner.
2,3 Topfin pellets, twice a day. Changed it to Nutrafin flaky food for bettas few days ago as I thought he got bored of eating the same food everyday.
No heater till now (as the lady in pet shop said it's not needed for a fish in the bowl, as it may sometimes get overheated. She said she has a betta for the past 2,3 years in a bowl without heater & he is doing very fine)
Today I got one betta bowl heater that is supposed to go under the gravel.
No thermometer, got that also today & attached it to his tank, it showed 72F (I have to say that today is a bit warmer here, past couple of days were kind of cold)
This is how I change water:
I thoroughly wash one container with just warm water & fill it with room temperature water from kitchen tap & put few drops of betta conditioner in it. I'll let it sit with his bowl for couple of hours (hoping that fish bowl & the
changing container will come to the same temperature, so that my little guy will not have temperature shock) Then I change him into this container & wash his fish bowl, plant & gems with hot water under the tap. I don't use any soap. After washing, I will put the plant & drop the gems and fill it up with room temparature water from kitchen tap, put some betta water conditioner in it & let it sit with the container for a couple of hours. Then I change him in to his bowl.
But for the past week, one day he eats a little, the other day none. (He used to do that once in a while- eat 4 or so in the morning & not eat in the evening. Sometimes not eat much a whole day & eat fine the next). So I couldn't make it if he is sick or just bored with his food. So I changed his food thinking that he got bored of eating the same thing everyday. 1st day he ate the new food well & swam well. But the next day he was not interested at all. He just sits on the bottom a lot. I am worrying a lot about him not knowing what to do.
Today I went back to the pet shop again to know what's wrong with my betta. The lady (not the other two ladies I talked during my previous visits) there said may be his water is getting cold for him. So I bought a water heater. Also bought thermometer to keep a track of temperature in his tank. I didn't install the heater yet, but he is swimming somewhat ok & eating a little.
He looks thinner than before as he is not eating well. In one angle, he looks like HE HAS SEVERE DRY SKIN ALL OVER HIS BODY. I cannot get that in picture. I found it as I looked at him with magnifying glass.
Is it some kind of fungus? How do I confirm what it is or treat him?
I asked the pet store lady the same questions & she told me to install the heater & look for the changes in his eating & behavior. She said betta bowl salt is not necessary now.
I am somehow not totally happy with my trip to the pet store as I am reading on the web since last night, about fish deceases & worrying that he may have velvet. His skin looks golden & also very dry, in one angle. I think am noticing some loss of color also in some parts.
I am attaching some pictures of him below.
1. First day we got him from the pet shop.
2. Couple of weeks later, I got a close up shot of him. (I tried to get close-ups lot of times prior to this, but couldn't get a good one as he used to swim around a lot)
3. Two days later he was making bubble nets.
4. Picture of him today just lying low on the bottom of his tank.
I find this website really wonderful & I am hoping some experienced Betta keepers will check the pictures & let me know. Thank you very much in advance.