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Old 11-19-2011, 02:46 AM   #1 
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Join Date: Jan 2011
A betta horror story. My divider broke. Any and all help needed!

Hi guys, long time no see!

I came home with a new cave for my newest fish, who had gotten himself in some unfortunate trouble getting trapped under his other cave for several days...then doing it again after being rescued. I moved the older cave into my divided tank to the center of three segments. When I was putting the cave in I did brush against the divider while trying to avoid breaking his new bubble nest, but it didn't feel any different than other times I've brushed against it so I ignored it. I went and did some things somewhere. I was sitting on the couch when I looked over to my fish tank, and noticed a flash of yellow in the center segment. The fish living in the center was purple. I tore the lid off and saw Mocha and Cappuccino having at it in the center. No time to waste, and my scoop in the other room I did the only thing I could think of; I cupped my hands and picked up my fish with some water and tossed him on the other side of the broken divider to buy some time to get the cups ready. I took all three fish from the tank to do a damage evaluation. The divider can be fixed. Espresso, the third fish, was fine. Cappuccino, my yellow fish, was swimming in circles but seemed unharmed.

Mocha is torn to shreds. His beautiful fins that I worked so hard to repair when I first got him are torn up, some pieces were in the tank still. His left fin is mostly gone and he isn't moving it. His right eye is swollen badly. He doesn't seem lethargic but he is very pale.

I have moved him to a half gallon bowl, with large rocks. He has a heater and the water temp is 80 F, and I have put in a small amount of aquarium salt. I plan to hold off on feeding for 2 days if he manages to survive the night.

I also moved the other fish involved into a quarantine tank, but he seems to be quite lively.

Here is the question sheet now.

What size is your tank? Formally 10 gallon divided three ways, now in a 1/2 gallon bowl
What temperature is your tank? the 10 gallon was 78F the bowl is 80F
Does your tank have a filter? no
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? no
Is your tank heated? yes
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? formally two tank mates behind dividers, both male Betta.

What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Pellets and blood worms
How often do you feed your betta fish? daily, 3 in the morning, 2 at night.


How often do you perform a water change? minor every 4 days, major every 2 weeks.
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 10 percent, and 75 percent
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Conditioner. Aquarium salt in the 1/2 gallon.

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? All fins shredded, pieces missing. Right eye very swollen, left fin shredded. Very pale.
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? He is behaving like normal, but will not move his left fin. He is able to make it to the top with no difficulty.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? After removing him from the tank I did a full examination while he was cupped.
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? He's in a 1/2 gallon QT with aquarium salt. I will perform daily water changes and treat with the salt for 7 days. I will return him to the large tank in 2-3 week based on recovery.
Does your fish have any history of being ill? He had problems with clamped fin when I first got him.
How old is your fish (approximately)? I've had him for 2 months-3 months.

Any advice or help you could provide me that will keep Mocha alive and aid in his recovery will be a big help.
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Old 11-19-2011, 11:30 PM   #2 
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Thank you to those who read but were unable to write a response.

I got up this morning and looked into the QT bowl expecting the worst...and he was swimming around quite happily, a nice foamy bubble nest in the corner.

I was so terrified but it seems I underestimated my darling's resilience. I could never imagine a Betta to bounce back so quickly after such trauma, and I am yet again humbled by the strength housed in such a small body.

Mocha will likely never fully regain his beautiful fins (he's the one in my avi), however his scars and his disregard of them will always be an inspiration to me.

I will continue treatment as I don't want his wounds to become infected, however I am no longer frightened for his life.
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Old 11-20-2011, 12:01 AM   #3 
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I'm glad he pulled through. I don't know if you've fed him by know but I wouldn't stop feeding him. He will be needing the protein to stay strong while he recuperates.
Best of luck!
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Old 11-20-2011, 12:05 AM   #4 
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I'm glad to hear he made it through the night. Good clean water and a high protein diet will help his fins regrow. Stress coat has helped with fin regrowth in my experience. But as long as you see improvement, you might not need any other treatments.
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Old 11-20-2011, 12:09 AM   #5 
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Oh no! I have only had that happen once to me, I have a ten divided like you have and had a 5 divided in half before and came home to the divder knocked down and the two of them swimming around o.O zeke was off hiding at the bottom and zepher was swimming around harassing a snail. Im so glad he is doing ok! Im not sure what else could have really been done for him the only other thing I could think of adding were tannins. I hope he makes a fast recovery keep us posted!
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Old 11-20-2011, 12:12 AM   #6 
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I don't have anything helpful to add, but I read this when you first posted it and I'm really glad to hear Mocha is doing better!
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Old 11-25-2011, 04:34 PM   #7 
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Welcome back, Lordsameth.
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Old 11-25-2011, 08:58 PM   #8 
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It happened to me a while back. My fish hasn't exactly recovered due to secondary infection of fin rot so my advice is to keep a sharp eye out for other infections.
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Old 11-25-2011, 09:33 PM   #9 
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This has never happened to me before but what I would recommend is to throw out the broken divider and get a brand new better brand one. Also, I put tons of gravel around the bottom of my divider so if you want do that too to keep it in place. Idk if you have a divider like this but On the left and right side of the divider, make a hole on the top (only if it doesnt have one) and bend a big pin in half so it looks like a --n-- then put one side in the hole, and the other outside the tank. To make them tighter and make it stay in place, push both sides of the pin so its really secured. My bettas are perfectly fine with this. Also, if theres a little gap on a side of the divider to the tank, make sure its not too big for the bettas to squeeze through. My bettas are too fat to fit through XD (and no, they're not bloated!)
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Old 11-26-2011, 01:14 AM   #10 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Pluto, North Carolina [ mountain region ]
I second Silverfang's advice, good clean water, API's Stress Coat+ Conditioner ( in addition to your regular conditioner ) and as you said the FW AQ Salt ( 1 teaspoon per gallon )
poor guy D: I'm glad you got him out soon enough, if he was that torn up and not fleeing he probably would've fought to the death ;x; I'm sorry he got so beat up and I'm glad he made it through the night... do keep feeding him as well,, he'll need it <3 don't bloat him though ofcourse,,

edit: oops just realized this is a mildly old thread... hope hes doing okay.. <3
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