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Old 02-04-2012, 04:33 PM   #1 
peachesxo
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Is he at the end of his days?

Hi Everyone,
I haven't been on the forum for a long time
Anyways, I wasn't sure if I should post this here or in betta care, but I am looking for some input either way, as to if there is anything I can do.

I have had Sumo for a bit over a year now (no idea how old he was when I got him) and he seems to be deteriorating, very slowly. Is this just him aging and getting old? I know some of you have had bettas who have lived quite long, and I have another that I've had just as long and he looks healthy as ever, so I really don't know...

His fins are ragged (not fit rot, no decor could be doing it either, they just don't look like they used to..) and he just looks sickly and thin. He eats but the process of it seems to tire him, he is not nearly as active as he used to be but he still swims around sometimes. Most of the time though he just floats there (not on his side or anything though) and doesn't move, he just seems so weak :(

He shares a split tank with Shiloh who is very active, always has a bubbe nest, and swims around constantly and flares happily all day (rarely ever at Sumo though, I actually think they kind of like eachother), so I also don't believe it is a water quality issue or stress from the neighbour either...

So.. Is my old man (as I call him now) at the end of his days, or is there anything else I can try doing? My very first betta died right after purchase, he was sick when I got him, so Sumo is technically my "first" that I have had for awhile, so I really don't know what happens when they get old...

Any input = awesome

& here are the specs

Housing
What size is your tank? 10 gallon split so he has approx. 5 gallons
What temperature is your tank? 78
Does your tank have a filter? yes
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? shiloh (male betta) on the other side, no other tank mates.

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Hikari betta pellets
How often do you feed your betta fish? 5 pellets a day with the occasional fasting day

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change? approx. every 2 weeks
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 40-50%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? prime


Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? skinny, looks frail, colours aren't as bright
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? more lethargic, he seems weak, rests a lot..
When did you start noticing the symptoms? it's been a very slow process over time and nothing has helped him
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? did try QTing him a few months back but it seemed to make him worse so i let him back in his tank within the same few hours...
Does your fish have any history of being ill? not besides this slow deterioration
How old is your fish (approximately)? i have had him for over a year so i would guess he would be 2 or older since he was full grown when i got him

Last edited by peachesxo; 02-04-2012 at 04:47 PM.
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Old 02-05-2012, 03:43 AM   #2 
Sakura8
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It could be old age, very possible. This is the hardest part, when they just seem "off" and don't show any definite symptoms. Because of his lack of symptoms, I'm reluctant to advise any treatment, as it could be the wrong one. What I can advise is that you try to up your water changes to once a week, about 25-35%. Try to block his view of Shiloh as much as possible with decor so he isn't stressed out by his neighbor.

Does he poop? Monitor to make sure he is pooping and see if there are any whiteish strings in it. If there are, that's an indicator of internal parasites.

Good luck with him and keep us posted.
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Old 02-05-2012, 04:01 PM   #3 
peachesxo
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Okay thanks. I'll keep a closer eye on the poos... (and yes he does poo I remember seeing one hanging out of there yesterday)

I have been watching him like a hawk over the past 24 hours, he seems to be having more buoyancy issues than I initially noted... He is always leaning against something... and though he is usually upright he often floats up onto his side for a minute before straightening himself out again. I did some things with the plants in his tank and changed them around creating what is pretty much a "betta cabana" in hopes of making him a bit more comfortable with a rest spot that is pretty much right at the surface... here's a pic:


So he has been leaning against that like he is in the picture or on the anubia leaf that is at the edge of the tank there since I put it together for him... he seems to like it at least but yeah poor dude he has been doing nothing but "resting" all day and night :( he seems utterly exhausted (i know he looks semi-normal in this one pic but he really isn't, he just started moving because of the camera but usually he is pressed against it all tired and lethargic)

Last edited by peachesxo; 02-05-2012 at 04:04 PM.
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Old 02-05-2012, 09:38 PM   #4 
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The symptoms sound a lot like what happened to my guy. :(

Seems like everything happening at once--finrot, lethargy, etc. etc..symptoms of everything mixed into one. I tried to treat them all individually, but I don't think I realized until too late that all of those problems were symptoms being caused by a bad infection that had taken hold and his body was too weak to fight it on his own.

I don't know the exact medicine to try. The medicine suggested to me last was the jungle parasite stuff meant to help clear out those kinds of infections. But I am sure others will come with better advice. I had tried maracyn, and he seemed to be doing alright, but then one day he just took a turn for the worst.

Hopefully someone who has had a better success record will come by and help.
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Old 02-05-2012, 09:46 PM   #5 
Sakura8
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Peaches, do you think you can get your guy into 1 tsp of epsom salt per gallon? This might help with his buoyancy issues. You can try to medicate him using the Jungle Labs Anti-Parasite medicated pellets. You definitely want the Anti-Parasite because the medication in them is effective at treating internal bacterial infections as well as parasites. Sounds like he doesn't have parasites but he might be harboring a mild bacterial infection. Epsom salts should help keep the fluid buildup under control.
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Old 02-05-2012, 10:09 PM   #6 
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Exactly, it's like he has everything, fin rot, SBD, lethargia.. ahhh =(

And Sakura i actually just had him in a 1gal/1 tablespoon espom salt bath earlier for about 40 minutes thinking that would help so good thing you thought it was a good idea too, now i feel better lol. I don't have a heater for the 1gallon though so that's why I opted for the bath ... if you think i should do that for a longer term treatment i do have an extra 5gal and a heater I can use for that.
While he was in the bath I did another 20% or so water change on the tank with vacc (did a 40/50% just a few days ago so didn't want to make it tooo big.) but he is back in the main tank now and moving around a bit more than before so I'll take that as a good sign..

Aiiyaaa.
=/
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Old 02-06-2012, 12:17 AM   #7 
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Since just a 40 min bath seemed to help, see if you can go ahead and keep him in the 1 tsp/gallon bath around the clock. You might want to even bump the dosage up to 2 tsps per gallon tomorrow.

Good luck with him! Keep us posted.
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Old 02-08-2012, 03:19 PM   #8 
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Little update on Sumo.
He seems to be doing a bit better, he is definitely swimming around more than before, he still looks sickly and is having trouble eating (he kind of bonks the pellet around the tank before actually getting it) but he IS still eating.

Buoyancy is still iffy but better than before.

AND - the biggest sign of improvement in my opinion... I got home from school last night to find he had made two itty bitty bubble nests in his favourite chill out spots. They are super small but Sumo NEVER has bubble nests (and my other 2 boys always do) so I was pretty excited lol SO, even though he is not looking that much better yet, I assume he must be feeling a bit better. :)

(oh and in my post from earlier, i said tablespoon for some reason but don't worry it was a teaspoon!!)
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Old 02-08-2012, 06:59 PM   #9 
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I'm glad to hear he's eating still. I always worry when they stop eating. And hurray for bubblenests!
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Old 02-10-2012, 07:14 PM   #10 
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Ooookay, so I saw a light coloured poo hanging out of him last night... I wouldn't call it white but the colour of it was white enough/suspicious enough to assume he does have internal parasites...

SOO I set up an old 5 gallon that I haven't been using to use as a treatment tank so that it can be heated... I put 4 gallons of water in and 6 tsps of espsom salts, let it sit since yesterday and just put him in about half an hour ago (not using the filter)

So day 1 of round the clock treatment starts now. Le sigh, poor Sumo.
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