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Old 12-22-2011, 10:53 PM   #1 
JeanLuc2
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Question Um..What in the world has been going on with my little Betta???

Hi everyone,

I haven't been on for a while but beyond a bout with fin rot my little JeanLuc has been fine.

However, lately he's been acting more and more sluggish. Up until a few weeks ago I could sort-of figure it out. Now, after I've fixed the problem (his heater died), I don't honestly understand what in the world is going on.

He nearly died on me the day he moved home to my parents place with me since his bowl never rose beyond 70 degrees..too cold...because his heater died on both of us. So I ran out to PetSmart, tried to buy the ZooMed ( http://www.petsmart.com/product/inde...ductId=4455060 ) but they were totally sold out then so I ended up just buying the same heater he had to begin with: http://www.petsmart.com/product/inde...ductId=4134008 . I understand that this heater is not the best but a) he is in a 2 gallon bowl, and b) I am a poor college student who can't afford much. This heater has worked beautifully but he hasn't really perked up to his usual self.

I know this is not due to the fin rot since he has been on an 1/8 tsp of MelaFix, and a 1/2 tsp of salt ( http://www.petsmart.com/product/inde...ductId=2754001 ) {this salt I am using is in a white and blue package not all blue..can't find the exact stuff} , and 1 tsp of http://www.petsmart.com/product/inde...ductId=3714140 . This was all prescribed by our family friend who also happens to be a Betta fish expert, and it saved my boy's life. When she looked at my boy she gave him 2 weeks to live (this was back in August) and he's made it to now. This has all worked for him perfectly.

So here are his symptoms:
1. Sleeping most of the time, sometimes will perk up when I walk past, sometimes won't perk up and make me think he's dead.

2. Sleeps mostly on the side of his belly, and has taken to now sleeping belly down (straight up and down) on the bottom of his log.

3. Can take anywhere from a few seconds to 20 minutes to eat his food. I have found it works well if he's asleep to just put the food on top of him. Of course by the time the food is on him he has already moved since he noticed that I am standing in front of him.

He's been basically acting sluggish like this most of the time but, it seems to alternate between him acting like this and acting perfectly normal (which includes swimming a lot). The last couple of days ago he has taken to blowing a good amount of bubbles and swimming in circles around the opening of his beloved floating log.



So, this all boils down to did I kill him slowly when I let his heater die or is he just simply slowly dying of old age (he is 1 1/2 years old)?? Please help me understand what is going on since this little guy is my first ever fish I've taken care of and I love him dearly.
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Old 12-23-2011, 10:09 AM   #2 
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Hi again.

I realized I forgot to post the sticky questions on this thread so here they are:

Housing
What size is your tank? 2 gallons
What temperature is your tank? Approx 73 degrees
Does your tank have a filter? Yes but it is not in use since my curious boy got himself stuck in it a couple months ago so I removed it for his own safety.
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? Read above/yes
Is your tank heated? Yes
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? None

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Top Fin Color Enhancing Betta Bits or Freeze Dried Bloodworms
How often do you feed your betta fish? Once a day; 3 pellets, or as few bloodworms as I can possibly pluck out of the little box with tweezers.

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change? Once a week
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? They are all above in the original post, and they have the exact measurements listed with them. I also filter all of his water that goes into the bowl since my city has a history of killing Bettas with its tap water.

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters? I don't have a kit.

Ammonia:
Nitrite:
Nitrate:
pH:
Hardness:
Alkalinity:

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? Hasn't really changed much
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? He is more sluggish. All symptoms are also listed in the original post.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? A couple weeks ago
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? I have been doing treatments for fin rot/keeping the fin rot away. All the treatment is listed in the original post.
Does your fish have any history of being ill? Yes
How old is your fish (approximately)? 1 1/2 years old

I hope this helps
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Old 12-23-2011, 04:26 PM   #3 
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I'm no expert, but I know one thing that may help is raising the temperature. 73 is too cold; bettas like their water to stay as close to 80 degrees as possible. 76, I believe, is the low end of the scale.

I'm sure one of the more experienced members will be along soon to give you a more helpful answer. Hope your boy feels better soon!
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Old 12-23-2011, 06:04 PM   #4 
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I completely agree with you but, I can't seem to get the heater to kick in all the time and I also cannot get my parents to turn up the heat in the house. He absolutely adores water that is 80 degrees.
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Old 12-23-2011, 06:05 PM   #5 
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Thank you for the warm wishes for my little boy :D
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Old 12-23-2011, 06:52 PM   #6 
Sena Hansler
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There are a couple things... the temperature is definitely too low. Something is wrong with the heater... most heaters should keep it at an average of 75 minimum - 73 is odd.
Temperature tricks: put him up higher. Heat rises - the lower the tank, the colder the water, in this case. A closed in area (I find my closet super warm and my room nice and warm, hallway freezing) that there is not too much air traffic, such as near doors or hallways is best.
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Old 12-23-2011, 07:21 PM   #7 
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I know you said you're on a budget, but there are cheap heaters out there that would do a better job. This one is what I have in my 5 gallon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...00_i00_details -- and it never wavers from 80 degrees. I had it in a 2.5 gallon before that, and it was completely steady in there, too. Plus, it's only $10, which is cheaper than I've found them in stores.

Last edited by angiessa; 12-23-2011 at 07:23 PM.
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Old 12-23-2011, 09:50 PM   #8 
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That heater looks cool but when my mom and I were about to buy it one of the reviews said that it cooked a fish within a few hours. I don't really want to risk that, and would LOVE to have something with a darn dial so I can set my bowl to where I want it to be.

So here's a question:
Considering that heater you recommended along with this one: http://www.amazon.com/06105-Heaters-...96712&sr=1-174 in some appropriate wattage (please help me find one that does work well for a 2 gallon) which would be more recommendable? I really don't know much at all about heaters, and at the time the one he's been using seemed great, worked great, and then starting dying and taking my boy with it. So, please help me with this.


My mom has been trying to help me out with JL and she had a wonderful idea: filling up a hot water bottle and laying that up against the side of the bowl along with removing some of the water. So far it's gotten the water up 2 degrees in the last 30 minutes or so. I'm quite pleased with this in addition to the malfunctioning heater for the time being.
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Old 12-23-2011, 10:05 PM   #9 
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I usually take Amazon reviews with a grain of salt. ;) The Elite heater I have has worked perfectly since I got it -- you just have to make sure you're monitoring it for the first day or so to ensure it's set correctly. It does have an adjustment dial, and obviously you can't crank it to its highest setting and just leave it. Mine's set about 3/4 of maximum, and keeps my tank at a perfect 80 degrees.

That said, the Aqueon looks like a good heater, too. Same rule applies no matter which heater you get: start it at its lowest setting and adjust upwards slowly so you don't shock your fish. Also, keep an eye on it for at least a couple hours once you have it set to make sure it's at the proper level.
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Old 12-23-2011, 10:41 PM   #10 
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Well then here's one more question: I am leaving on Tuesday to visit my family on the Eastish Coast (WV/OH..they kind-of count as being on the coast) and I won't get back home until January 3rd. Should I go ahead and have my mom get a heater even though it won't get in until the same day I leave? Would it be worth having my mom (who barely knows anything about Betta's besides what I have taught her) moniter him after the heater gets to our place? My mom is doing a great job of being a loving Grandma to my poor fellow but I don't want her to be in over her head getting a new heater to work right when I won't be a phone call away for a few hours at a time as I mosey my way East via airplanes; if I were a phone call away and not flying at the same time that would be a different story.

What's the best plan of action at this point?
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