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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, yesterday, my sister took me on a voyage to Petsmart to go see if any hide-aways were worthy for her little betta boy, Steve. They had a beautiful selection of fish, but I wasn't interested in adopting any, so we went over to the tank decor. On the same aisle, they had maybe four female bettas, and we thought it was an odd place to have them. The majority of them were gorgeous, but I noticed one little girl in particular.

Not so little, really. She's a pale, iridescent betta who looked to be slugging along and nearly on death row. She had a little bit of velvet, some noticeable fin rot, and she still has a rather bloated belly. Her water was so filthy, she had this strange little fuzz-ball nearly the same color as her body floating around at the bottom. I felt terrible for her, and was ultimately dominated by my ridiculous compassion toward all innocent and/or suffering beings. Long story short, I have a huge female crowntail in a one gallon "hospital" jar. I'm also a beginner, which adds to the list of problems. I have my sister helping me along as I go, though.



This is my "little" female, Draka. If you're familiar with any lore concerning the Warcraft universe, you'll understand why I chose the name. She's got a bloated belly, which really concerns me. I'm aware of the swim bladder disease or infection, or whatever it's called, but she swims just fine. No tilting whatsoever. Also, what appears to be a yellowish filter on the camera is actually the green hue in her new water. I put some of the API Fungal Cure in her water right after we got home and made a little recovery jar for her, and after a day, it seems to be doing its job (with the velvet, anyway).

Also, I noticed that her caudal and anal fins began taking on a reddish hue once we placed her in her new environment. I've been told this "color-gain" can be caused because of decreasing stress, but after reading a thread on fin rot, I don't know whether it's her happiness climbing, or just her fin rot showing itself off even more. She did not have color on ANY of her fins prior to her relocation. Draka's dorsal and pectoral fins continue to be colorless, and her ventral fins have a blackish-red hue -- which have remained constant from first sight to the present. She also has very small speckles of black on her body, and a tiny patch of blue on her caudal fin.

I've only had her for a day, and this is my first fish, so I currently lack a heater (which I now know is extremely important to her health) and I'm also without a filter. The filter doesn't pose too much of an issue, I think, because I plan on changing her water regularly... But please correct me if I'm wrong. Since she's in only a gallon, I've been using an untouched turkey baster (cleansed with only hot water) to take the place of a siphon when cleaning debris from her gravel and/or jar surface. I also made a point to properly condition her water and add some API Aquarium Salt to help her out. She seemed to perk-up a little ever since.

Currently, she likes to float around the bottom of her jar, and sometimes looks at me if I sit on the end of my bed. Otherwise, she's either fascinated by a wall of glass, kissing the surface for her ordinary gasp of air, or trying to nibble on a piece of debris -- only to spit it back out, expressing her disapproval.

She might not be as active as most bettas though, which concerns me a bit. I hope she's only bored or sleepy, and that it's not lethargy caused from something else that I need to be worried about. I also plan on putting a wireless leaf bed in her jar after a partial water change tomorrow, and I might also add a soft, small, natural plant I bought to combat any possible boredom.

I've read a sticky thread listing and describing possible diseases and their treatments, but I don't know what to think of her bloating. Any comments, questions, or suggestions concerning Draka's condition/care are incredibly welcome, as it is my only desire to see this sweet, shy girl thrive. Please note that I couldn't take the time to properly "spruce-up" her recovery jar, (save for adding the standard conditioner, salts, and fungal cure) as I needed to remove her from her previous tub immediately. My next course of action, however, is to purchase a small heater for her.

I apologize for the paragraphs, but I'm just concerned for her. My main goal is to successfully nurse her back to health, if possible. If I can't, then at least I'll know that I gave her a more comfortable environment to spend the rest of her living moments in (anywhere else probably beats a filthy, claustrophobia-inducing tub with sketchy puff-balls tumbling around in it).

Please help, and thank you!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Actually, I'm beginning to doubt my speculation of velvet today. When I shine a light on her, she doesn't appear to be swallowed-up by gaudy gold sprinkles. Instead, she just offers a pearly-white, iridescent shine. Also, following a 100% water change, she instantly began to gain more color!



As you can see, the blue patch on her caudal fin is now darker, and her dorsal fin is beginning to take a blue-ish hue as well. Her flappers (pectoral fins) also seem to be gaining a dark color, along with her scales. And, better yet, her ventral fins are a deep red and extended!

I really hope this is a sign of improvement, rather than an issue. I hope I'm doing a good job caring for her!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thank you all so much; you'll be helping me rest easier about this little girl. I'll definitely be moving her to a larger tank once she finishes up the last of her fin rot treatment (for good measure), but I'm going to get that heater ASAP.

Hopefully she'll be more active!
 
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