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Old 03-03-2012, 07:12 PM   #1 
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Poop and pea-feeding

This is more of a general question for curiosity's sake than a health-related issue (as of now!), so I'm going to post it here.

I decided to try fasting my boy, Isaac, for the first time yesterday, partly because I know some people swear by weekly fasts and partly because he hadn't pooped in a few days, so I figured it was as good a time as any. He didn't eat on Friday, and today I thawed, skinned, soaked and chopped up a pea to give him. I only fed him half of the pea, and in small bite-sized pieces. He ate it happily. Things are good. (The little guy is SO QUICK-- watching him dive for the pieces was adorable. He's a smart little nut.)

Thing is, now he's noticeably bloated-- not severely, but I can see a little swell to his tummy. Is this normal after pea-feeding? (In retrospect, I think I should've probably spaced out the feeding a little better-- maybe a quarter of the pea in the morning and a quarter at night.)

More importantly, is it going to pass? Should I resume feeding as normal tomorrow, or wait until the bloating goes down/he poops? He's perfectly active and has absolutely no trouble swimming, so hopefully that's a good sign.

(Mostly I'm just looking for general fasting/pea-feeding related tips, experiences, what to do differently next time, etc. Thanks in advance!)
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Old 03-03-2012, 07:25 PM   #2 
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Peas are a big debate among betta keepers.. the pea method is great for goldfish who are constipated.. but not so much for bettas. Bettas are, by nature, insectivores/carnivores and tend to get their "roughage" in the stomachs of their prey.. but the domesticated ones get it through processed foods such as flakes and pellets (which the number one ingredient should be fish/meat related).
Peas offer bettas no nutrition, they are pure empty calories and carbs.. just like for us, peas are nothing but carbs and not ideal to eat a whole lot of. Bettas it's more because their diet requires meat, not plant based items.. and their short GI tracts aren't made for plant based foods.
A pea is used often as a one time shot for a constipated betta, should not be fed regularly, even if it is only once a week. Frozen or live daphnia (which you can collect in a bucket at your own home) is more appropriate for a constipated betta.

He should pass the pea- I wouldn't feed him anything until it passes.
A slight rounded stomach after eating is quite normal and is more ideal then not.

You can fast one day a week if you wish.. but if you are feeding high quality food- live and home made, or top pellets such as Omega One Betta Buffet or New Life Spectrum, then it isn't necessary. It's when you feed frozen or flakes or freeze dried or lesser quality pellets that you would want to fast.

Instead of fasting for one day, if I feel like mine need a fasting I fast differently- this is just my personal way- I feed breakfast, and then skip their dinner that evening, skip breakfast the next morning, and then feed dinner that same day. So technically they fasted for over 24 hrs, but still had been fed that day.

Is your tank bare bottom, to know whether or not he had gone to the bathroom? It's not often most see their bettas go to the bathroom, I rarely ever see mine do it, but I know they do when I clean out the tanks.
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Old 03-03-2012, 08:29 PM   #3 
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Thank you for the advice! I'll definitely keep that in mind-- especially the bit about doing evening/morning fasting when he gets constipated.

Currently he's actually in a 1.5ish L bowl submerged in a larger tank, just for some fin repair/monitoring purposes, and it's easy to check whether he's pooped or not during water changes.
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