Ok here goes. About a week ago I noticed he wasn't moving as much as usual and that he was hanging out up top alot more than usual. I did my normal water change ( using just tap water and bowl conditioner) nothing I haven't been doing for about 9 months now, and then he started having trouble staying upright. He was was laying on his side on the top and seemed to have trouble staying down at all. He would swim really hard and pop right back up to the top again and then onto his side. He still eats and otherwise looks good but I feel bad for him. I have had him since he was really tiny and he has lived longer than all my others so I tried to help. I looked all over this site and think it is a swim bladder problem. I tried not feeding a couple of days and the Epsom salt baths and it seemed to be helping after a couple of days but then you are suppose to keep changing the Epsom salt water and as soon as I did that he is on his side again. I don't want to prolong his suffering if he is going to die, as my last one had dropsy and after realizing this I just let him go rather than make him live sick. But if there is anything else anyone can recommend please let me know. I am tired of my bettas dying on me. Thanks and sorry for the novel.
Last edited by Cerulean; 06-03-2012 at 03:35 AM.
Reason: More to add
Went to sticky. Never put anything other than water conditioners in water when changing it and always let it sit out over night to get to the same temperature as his bowl. Do water changes once a week and it is a one gallon but now as the sticky said, I will be doing more partials during the week to help the water be better. No heater or anything just a bowl, but he grew up big and seemed quite happy. He was very tiny when I got him and I was never able to get him to eat anything other than grubs even though I have several kinds of pellets, he would starve himself and I would give in. I usually feed him about 2-3 grubs which he eats with fervor twice a day.Any suggestions as to how to change his diet and convince him. Lol. He was blowing nests a while back and this floaIting thing came on about a week ago and nothing has changed In his routine at all. As I said before I have been doing the Epsom salt bath thing for a couple of days and have not fednin in two days either to see if he was plugged up as i suspect swim bladder issues but He is only upright sometimes,however he goes right back to laying on his side and looking very dead and I hate it. Any help would be great. Thanks so much.
Cerulean, it does sound like what my boy had. I had to keep him off the food for a few days and did the Epsom salts as well. Make sure his water temperature is up around 78-80 degrees. (Bettas are cold blooded and you can slow down their inner workings if the water is cold)
How old is your betta? And what kind of grubs are you feeding him? It sounds like a lot of food for one fish.
Are you seeing him pass any poop? Did you see any when you did the Epsom salt treatments?
I don' know the temp of the bowl it is whatever room temp is unfortunately. He is eating freeze dried blood worms and yes he was pooping and did a tiny bit when in the smaller salt bath and I didn't feed him for a couple of days. The good news is that when I put him back in his normal bowl he is swimming a little more upright with trouble still and not much movement, but started to blow a little line of bubbles against the edge of bowl and for the fist time I was able to get him to eat the hikari betta pellets. 3. He was very tiny when I got him so not very old I don't think and I have had him almost a year I think, maybe a little less so I don't really know his age. Any guesses? He has a little trouble when trying to eat but manages and mostly is just lethargic and sits at the top of the bowl hanging out. When moving he acts like it is harder to move one way and tries to right himself and flares just a tiny bit on that side to do it. I feel bad for him but it is nice to see him not always on his side now. Do you think there is any hope of him returning to normal and his frisky swimming self? What should I do if so? Ps. Sorry for always writing so much but thanks for all the help. Ceruleans mom.
starve him off those worms if you have to, lol. those freeze dried blood worms are notorious for causing bloat and swim bladder problems if fed too much. Plus they are nutritiently deficient. see if he will take some frozen daphnia. Keep up with the epsom salts, he can be in there for as long as he needs to. feed him less than you usually would, 3 pellets a day sounds good.
See if you can get him a small heater intended for 1 gallon bowls. the warmer temperature will help his metabolism
So The Boy is still alive and doing much better whohoo. Thanks everybody for your help. The other good thing is while I wasfasting him he forgot he doesn't like other foods than blood worms, so yeah he is now eating the hikari beta pellets I wanted him to eat a year ago when I first got him. He stays upright most of the time now and doesn't have to flap his fins like crazy to stay upright either. He swims around a bit more and only floats on his side about 65% of the time. He is even blowing quite nice bubble nests and I am doing a 50 or more water change every other day as he is in a small bowl, so the nests are even cooler as I keep wrecking them with the water changes. So thanks. How long should I keep putting in the Epsom salts though and is two of the pellets a day enough? I don't want him to get backed up again and go back to being sick again. How do I keep this from happening again or have the food and water changes, more often, helped that once he fully recovers, That is if he does. I hope he will. To think I almost flushed him. Thank you sooo much everyone.
Thanks especially to bladezero and ramble but also to all on here who love our bettas. The great news is Cerulean is healthy again and blowing a huge bubble nest, and he has done his first flare and show since i have had him and that is almost a year now. yeah. Thanks to all of your advice i have now seen that the bowl i have for him was not good enough and was feeling bad. It was probably about 1 litre but i have done better now,. I have bought him a minbow, 2.5 gal and am hoping that this will improve his life. i initally thought that the incandesent light in it would be enough to raise the temperature higher than his current nothing in the bowl but i will look into getting him a heater soon if it doesn't. also i would like to get him in right away and seeing how he is use to the bowl i think that even this tank uncycled would be better than his bowl. I plan to get him into tomorrow and will do frequent water changes to help him through it. how do you suggest doing water changes while not disturbing his lovely bubble nests? and is there maybe a little friend i could put in with him or is he best alone. Thanks again everyone for helping me see my error and keep up the good work with others. Updates to come and hopefully some pics if i can figure it out.
Glad to hear he's better :)
You can put a snail with him or Cherry / red crystal shrimp(most likely will try to eat them)
I suggest fishless cycle in a bucket and when its done use that water in your normal changes(return the filter when cycle is done with a 50% water change)
7.5w will be enough of a heater for that :)
I'm sure he's very happy with his upgrade :D Me and him both glad you did it :)
Well there is 2 ways going at not ruining the bubble nest..
1) Suck the water from near the bottom with a tube..
2) Mind **** with your betta and just scoop it in a box before changes lol
Thanks. The light in the aq keeps it at 76 when on but down to 70 when off so I think I need a heater 4 sure. However the weird thing is I thought he would be so happy he would swim all over and enjoy his new house , but he rarely does. He will swim a lap here and there but mostly hangs out on top and in one corner. He is not really lethargic per say but I thought he would enjoy the extra room. He seemed to swim around more in the bowl. I am a little disappointed actually because I have this nice aq and I am always trying to find him hiding. No bubble nests in here either. He is eating and otherwise acting normal though so still glad I did it. The odd thing is quite more red in here than ever before. As his name implies he was and is very blue when u look at him the right way, however in here he looks darker blue and red unless you look at him just the right way. (weird) anyway. Also I thought when I get a heate what do you think about a Cory cat maybe? Thanks again for all the advice and I am so glad he is still with me. Although the red metallic one is still at the store and I so want him. My tank came with a divider for it but it seems like maybe it would drive them both crazy now that I see it planted it would be so crowded and they would always be at each other? Any thoughts on that one? Lol. Thanks again guys