I've made my way back to the forums, but not in a way I'd like.
My mom wants to start raising fish on her own (since my dad and I do all the work) but she's scared that she'll kill her first fish from doing something stupid. So for the past 3 months, she's been taking care of my only betta, Boba. I've left her alone, beyond making sure that he's alive, and let her do everything without me pestering her. However, she told me yesterday that he was acting sluggish and no responding to anything except the net. I checked up on him, and she was right. A small water test later...
And I almost had a damn heart attack. Somehow the ammonia levels were at or past 8 PPM in a 2.5 gallon tank! I've immediately moved Boba into a hospital tank, with fresh, heated water and now I'm basically on death watch, I'm afraid. Boba was insanely tough for a betta, but I don't see how he'll survive such prolonged exposure to that kind of ammonia buildup. That didn't happen overnight, and the water parameters were near perfect when I moved the tank to my mother's room.
Just needed to get that out there to some people who would understand.