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Sorry about your boy. Hope with a bit of time he does better for you.

1. What brand of food are you using? It could be the source of your issues. If the first five ingredients contain anything but four fish/seafood and wheat flour (used as a binder). It is not good. The higher the protein the better, too. Good foods are New Life Spectrum, NorthFin Betta Bits, Fluval Bug Bites, Aqueon Betta or Color formulas (not their Betta Pro).

2. Dropsy is not a disease in and of itself but a symptom; often of internal issues. it might even be the Pleco did some damage if he bumped Pablo too hard. Sometimes the swelling will go away and not come back; other times it will.

3. To reduce swelling You can use plain, unscented Epsom Salts for a bath. Mix one tablespoon of ES to one gallon of water. Fill one container half full of the mixture and dilute with half plain, treated water. If he stresses, you will put him in this before returning to tank. Note, though, that in all the years I've been recommending this treatment I know of a very few Betta that were stressed.

Fill another container with the mixture. Lower him into the mixture and leave no more than 15 minutes; watch him constantly. If he shows no distress you can add him straight back into his tank

You can treat once per day but for no more than 7-10 days.

That being said, I'm so sorry to be a contrarian in your thread.

Daphnia and peas serve the same purpose but Daphnia is natural and safe for insectivores. They cannot digest the exoskeleton/carapace chitin which is part of all insectivore diets and, among other things, acts as a natural laxative. Peas/plant matter are also indigestible but not natural and can cause harm; especially if given too much. So stick with the Daphnia.

As he stopped eating for a few days there is no reason to fast him. If all he's willing to eat is the Daphnia you can add another frozen food like Brine Shrimp, Bloodworms, Freshwater Frenzy. Then wean him back onto his pellets.

About the "fix" meds. It is yet another of those Internet myths based on unfathomable logic. It goes something like this: My Betta is sick + I treated with "fix" med = The "fix" med killed my Betta. :rolleyes:

The truth is the oils have been refined to be water soluble; which means they cannot coat the labyrinth organ. Here is an actual study Melafix Dangers; Betta, Labyrinth Fish, Pencil Fish

All of that being said, Pablo doesn't need Melafix. IMO, Indian Almond Leaves and plain Rooibos Tea, with their antibacterial and antifungal properties, are a better, more natural option. I use them 24/7 in all of my tanks.

Hope he does better for you. When he recovers, feed him two or three pellets 5 x per day. You can experiment with how many meals he actually needs.
 

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Thank you for the update. Hope he continues to improve. Please let us know.

I did forget to add that peas were once the norm for giving to Betta. Many people still recommend and use them but there's a better alternative. Hope I didn't come across as harsh in my previous comments. If I did, I apologize to Eridanus.
 
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