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Old 11-17-2011, 08:54 PM   #1 
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Exclamation Betta emergency!!

I need ALOT of help! My betta has a curved body and doesnt move around much at all. It looks as if its about to die but its not. I thought it had swim bladder and I tried feeding it a pea a few times but alls that did was make it poop all over and made nothing better. I really need help! I can add a video of photo of him if anyone would like bud he's been like this for about a year and I still dont know what to do! I feel so bad for him because he cant move and his body is like sideways and it kinda looks like this \_ The slanted part being his head & upper body and he just sits like that and has VERY clumped fins! Please help! Thanks so much!
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Old 11-17-2011, 09:07 PM   #2 
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First question... what's the setup for your betta??
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Old 11-17-2011, 09:14 PM   #3 
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Well i just changed its water and its in bowl... I didnt want it anything to big because its sick and it cant get to the top of the water so i didnt even fill the bowl up all the way. It have some gravel and it used to have a fake plant but i just took it out because it got really gross and it broke. Also I have another beta and im pretty much taking care of it just like i do this one and it seems to have no problem but it does have some ripped fins but other than that nothing really.
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Old 11-17-2011, 09:30 PM   #4 
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Peas are bad for bettas. Can you tell us the temperature of the water, how often it is cleaned when it was cleanee what you added (dechlorinator), how big is the bowl... Have any fish meds on hand?

Also, love your name
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Old 11-17-2011, 09:40 PM   #5 
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No i dont have any fish meds and i dont have anything to measure the temp. with. I dont add anything to the water i just use bottled spring water, I clean it every month with all the water changed. I know I have to clean it more though im going to start cleaning small parts of the water every week.
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Old 11-17-2011, 10:34 PM   #6 
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He may have been poisoned by: nitrite, nitrate, ammonia... The cleaning definitely could be why. I suggest try a water change. This'll lower all the bad waste. I also suggest not using all bottled water... And try getting "water conditioner" that helps too :)

Check his gills. Is the inside of his gills pink, red, black...?
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Old 11-17-2011, 10:40 PM   #7 
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1. The *acceptable* temperature if you don't have a thermometer is lukewarm to the touch. Not cold, but not warm either (make sure your fingers are clean and are warm when attempting this method). This means the temperature is around 74F. At most, it may feel slightly cool to the touch but not something you would describe as "cold". If your fishy is too cold, wrap him up in a old towel or a shirt you will never think about wearing again and put it in the warmest place in the house/room which may be the kitchen or on the floor in a safe place not too close to the heater. Please please don't just add warm water to keep him warm, the temperature shock may kill him/any fish.

2. You should grab yourself some water conditioner, whether it is the expensive SeaChem Prime or API stress coat (just ask your pet store for water conditioner). It removes harmful stuff in the water. If you're not sure how much you're supposed to put in, you can ask someone here. SeaChem Prime (concentrated) = 2drops per gallon. API is 1ml per gallon. Aqueon is something like 1 teaspoon per gallon.

3. The curved body may be a sign that it has a nutrient deficiency which comes from using spring water. Just use tap water (as long as it is "drinkable" water). To prepare it, get a container of water and leave it out for a 24 hours or so before you change the water. The water conditioner will help remove ammonia your fish produces (from pee and poo). The tap water contains nutrients spring water doesn't since it's filtered a bit before it ends up in the bottle. If you're using "purified" water (or purified tap water), that's even worse because the filtering removes almost all of the nutrients your betta may need.

4. Depending on how much water you have, it may be better if you do 50% changes every week/few days.

5. Ripped fins means there's something sharp in your tank. If the edges aren't rounded you are probably better off taking it out.

6. Please feed your fish every day. Don't give him a pinch of fish food, estimate - his stomach is as big as his eyeball. So if you feed him more than that, his stomach will bulge out and you will know you fed him too much.

7. Peas aren't for bettas, it should only be used to clear out its digestive track. Kind of like making people eat papayas to make them clean out their respective tracks.

I am not sure if he will respond to any treatments, but that is what you can do to make him more comfortable. Add a picture, if he has any diseases someone more experience may be able to see it and let you know what you should do. But it just sounds like a betta that has been living in poor conditions like mine when I was 10 or so.

I hope your little guy feels better!

Last edited by Behati; 11-17-2011 at 10:54 PM.
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Old 11-17-2011, 10:43 PM   #8 
Wulvie Sharpteeth
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I dont have any advice, I just want to wish you and your betta lots of luck! get better little fishy! :(
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Old 11-17-2011, 11:04 PM   #9 
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You don't have to use spring water. Just use tap water with a good dechlorinator like Seachem Prime.
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Old 11-18-2011, 08:27 AM   #10 
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Her second thread with the sticky filled and help from others:
To hopefully avoid confusion.. since unsure which one she is using, and it seems more are following this one.

Originally Posted by Sena1 View Post
What size is your tank? Its a bowl.
What temperature is your tank?
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

What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Betta Min tropical medley flakes with color enhancers.
How often do you feed your betta fish? Every 3 days


How often do you perform a water change? Every month
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? All of it
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Nothing I just use spring water.

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters?

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? He has a very crooked body and its sideways.
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? He just sits at the bottom of the bowl :/
When did you start noticing the symptoms? About a year ago but I couldn't find anything to cure it and i didnt know what was wrong.
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? I thought he had swim bladder so i fed him a pea a few times but nothing happended he just pooped all over :(
Does your fish have any history of being ill? No.
How old is your fish (approximately)? 1 year and 6 months (around there)
Originally Posted by Myates View Post
Agreed- there are a few things going on that will help him return to normal, simple, easy fixes that you will need to do.

As mentioned above, anything under 5 gallons unfiltered you will want to be doing 1 50% and 1 100% water changes per week-
Spring water is not idea, bottled and distilled, any filtered type of water isn't idea to use as the filtration process removes the nutrients and minerals within the water that the fish need. Tap water with water conditioner (any brand that removes chlorine, nitrate/ites and binds metals) is what you are wanting to do- you do that with all fresh water fish.
As mentioned above, 76-82*F is the temp they should be at, as they are tropical fish. The smaller the tank, the tougher it can be to heat- so in the bowl (I'm assuming it's a one gallon, anything smaller I don't recommend getting a heater for) I would look for a 10-15 watt heater. Being in cooler water in time will lower their immune system, cause them to become lethargic and slows down their metabolism.

Peas is a treatment for goldfish who are constipated, and it can work with bettas (as you have seen with him pooing all over), but not idea as they cannot digest the vegetable matter and all it does is push everything out because the body is trying to eject the foreign object (the pea). SBD you would do a different treatment.

I would first get a thermometer at least to know the temp of the water, and then would do a 100% water change with tap water and conditioner- that is a must do.
Then in a few days, do a 50%, and then a week from the 100% do another 100%, etc. Upping the water changes, using the conditioner (would need it even if you used spring water) and keeping the water temp warm will help in reversing the damage being done.

As well as feeding regularly. You are pretty much just keeping him alive barely with the food- they should be fed daily, a couple times a day.
Betta pellets are the best staple in their diet, frozen blood worms/brine shrimp are great too. Betta specific flakes are fine for a couple of meals a week, freeze dried are treats. A variety of food is the best recommendation, as well as feeding small amounts 2+ times a day. So 2-3 pellets per meal, once in the morning, once in the evening is highly recommended. Or a very small pinch of flakes each meal- but removing any uneaten flakes right after feeding or they will foul up the water quickly. You can feed all 7 days, or some fast their betta one day a week. But they need to eat a lot more than every 3 days- he isn't getting proper nutrition to keep up his systems to keep him healthy and avoid illnesses.

Bettas can live a long time in unfavorable conditions, they are hardy- but regardless those conditions will always catch up to them. And he's been battling it for a year from what you said (laying on the bottom of the bowl for a year).. so he's a tough little guy.

So a few things to just remember: The most dangerous water condition is one that is invisible, so doing regular water changes is a must.
They get hungry and need food just as us, a good breakfast and dinner will make them happy, even a lunch if you are able to (just cut the other 2 meals smaller).
Tap water and conditioner gives them the best conditions.
No one likes to be cold, and since they can't throw on a coat, it's up to us to keep them warm.
They don't like a lot of empty spaces, they like places to hide among silk plants, and a cave would be welcomed by him greatly.

I hope that you take all our recommendations into consideration, that these simple fixes will work. Not here to judge you, but to help teach. Good luck, and keep us updated.
Is there a way to get a picture of the other betta as well? The one with ripped fins? If you are only cleaning the bowl once a month, I'm worried he may have/get fin rot and if left untreated will do unrepairable damage.

Last edited by Myates; 11-18-2011 at 08:35 AM.
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