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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Originally from http://www.bettafish.com/showthread.php?p=5167858

Housing
What size is your tank? 2.5 gallon
What temperature is your tank? 75ish
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? None

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Omega One Freeze Dried Betta Treat: Bloodworms; Aqueon Color Enhancing Betta Food (pellets)
How often do you feed your betta fish? Once every day to every other day and very little. Often only what he can eat within 20 seconds (I hear they have tiny bellies)

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change? Every week to every two weeks
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 80 - 90%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? I use RO water

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters?
Nutrafin Master Test Kit
Ammonia: 0.4 mg/L
Nitrite: No noticeable level
Nitrate: No noticeable level
pH:7.2-7.3
Hardness: GH 40 mg/L (ppm); KH 30 mg/L (ppm)
Alkalinity: Not tested

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? Appearance has changed by his fins getting noticeably shorter
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? He still seems as happy and perky to see me as ever
When did you start noticing the symptoms? About 3 and a half months ago. I had him at work and someone decided they would be "nice" and feed him. I came in the next day and there was a gob of food in the bottom. I got it out as best I could, but after a few weeks I could tell something was off with his fins. I did a water change. The next week I got him a new tank with better filtration but less flow than the previous. The next week I took him home to do better/more frequent water changes. After 2 weeks I started medicating his water with T.C. Tetracycline. This treatment cycle is actually what prompted me to do a large water change every week(ish). Since then, I have not seen any improvement and I think it's actually gotten worse.
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? See previous
Does your fish have any history of being ill? This was the first thing I've noticed
How old is your fish (approximately)? I got him from PetCo about 8 months ago.

I have attached two images of Thunder. One was when I first got him set up in his tank at work. The second, is in the tank at home (the picture looks a little "muddy" but I think that's just lighting)
 

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Your boy seems to be suffering from a fungal infection. This is pretty common in bettas to be honest since they have so much fin for it to get into.

If clean water and care isnt working you can try a gentle cure with AQ salt and more frequent water changes, or you can move in to a fungal cure medication which should get to the root of the problem right away.

keep us posted how he goes, he is a very striking boy! got to love the shape of a crowntail
 

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Are you mineralizing the RO water? Straight RO is not good as it doesn't contain the vital minerals fish or inverts need for long-term good health. Using straight RO is like using straight Distilled.

Kent's RO Right and Fluval Shrimp Mineral Supplement are good additives for RO water.

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/prod_display.cfm?pcatid=4128
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Taenna: Do you know what kind of fungal infection? Is this "fin rot"?

RussellTheShihTzu: Yes, I've been using straight RO water. The Kent's RO Right sounds good. Is the Shrimp Mineral for fresh water?? I had no idea! Would you recommend both of these?
 

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You could indeed call this fin rot.
Most rots are caused by fungal based infections, some are bacterial but that is far less common, best to start at the basics and move up than waste money going the other way.
 

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I posted this in your other thread

even if it is a 2.5 gallon tank you should be doing one 50% water and one 100% water change a week. you cannot go two weeks without a water change. You need to keep up with water changes because it not only keeps the water levels in check but also adds minerals that your betta needs back into the water.

However, it sounds like he has fin rot which means you need to DAILY 100% water changes for at least a week to 10 days. you can also add 1 teaspoon of Aquarium Salt per gallon of water. Do not leave this in the tank for more than 10 days.
 

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I would get the Kent's as it gets such high recommendations. Not having the minerals and salts he needed could have compromised his system and left him vulnerable to problems. Until you get the Kent's, I would mix half RO and half tap water. That's what a lot of the shrimp forums where I lurk suggest until the person gets remineralizer.

I use half distilled and half tap because my normal tap water's TDS (Total Dissolved Solids) fluctuates and is sometimes too high for my shrimp and crayfish to molt properly.

BTW, I'm glad you posted to his area as I suggested more people who can help will see it. And, if you don't mind, why do you use RO water?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
@VivianKJean: Thanks for the advice! Is the aquarium salt something I should just bathe/dip him in, or should I add it to his 2.5 gallon tank after I do the 100% water change daily? And when should I stop (if at all)?

@RussellTheShihTzu: I have a bottle of the Kent's on order! I started using the RO water because I also have a 65 gallon reef tank. I was told topping off with tap water was crazy and conditioners may not get rid of everything. But I suppose the salt water that I get from my LFS is set up with the minerals it needs. I never had a clue about them for fresh water tanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Update: Day 1 of the aquarium salt bath (following the steps listed on http://bettasplendid.weebly.com/salt-baths.html). Thunder did great! He swam in the salt water with no visible issues. While he was swimming I took a bottle brush and warm water and scrubbed his 2.5 gallon tank –*after emptying it out. Then rinsed him off in a more pure water mixture and even put a piece of food in there just in case he was hungry and he gobbled it right up like he normally does. Still super active and swimming like he always does in his fresh water. I put in some of the slime coat water conditioner and did a 50% tap RO mixture.

I'm not certain how often I should do the salt baths or if I should only do those once a week or what, but I now have a system for a complete water change that will work really well. I'll post updates daily until he's back to normal :)

Thanks!
 
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