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Hi this my first time posting here and help would be greatly appreciated. My boy Mars has been bloated and pine coning for about 3 days. He has maintained his energy levels and appetite. He is currently in a 2.5 gallon hospital tank with aquarium salt. I tried to fast him for 2.5 days but nothing has been helping so far. His typical living arrangements are in a 10 gallon filtered planted tank with small snails. I’ve been scared that it may be dropsy but he hasn’t been lethargic, thanks in advance for your help! I attached some pictures of him.
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Housing:

How many gallons is your tank? 10

Does it have a filter? yes

Does it have a heater? yes

What temperature is your tank? 79

Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? no

Does your Betta have tank mates? What kind? snails (unsure what kind)



Food:

What food brand do you use? fluval bug bites

Do you feed flakes or pellets? pellets

Freeze-dried? sometimes blood worms

How often do you feed your Betta? How much? twice a day and it’s a shaker so i do about 2-3 small shakes (i’d guess equivalent to 3 pellets)



Maintenance:

Before your Betta became ill how often did you perform a water change? weekly

What percentage of water did you change? 25%

What is the source of your water? tap

Do you vacuum the substrate or just dip out water? vacuum

What additives do you use other than conditioner? What brand of conditioner? nutrafin aqua plus



Water Parameters:

What are your water parameters? Please give exact numbers. If tested by pet store please get exact numbers. "Fine" or "Safe" won't help us help you. Important: Test your water before the regular water change; not after one.

(I hadn’t tested before the water change)

Ammonia:

Nitrite:

Nitrate:

pH:

Hardness (GH):

Alkalinity (KH):



Symptoms and Treatment:

When did you first notice the symptoms? 3 days ago

How has your Betta’s appearance changed? bloated and pine coning

How has your Betta’s behavior changed? little to none

Is your Betta still eating? yes

Have you started treating your Betta? If so, how? hospital tank with aquarium salt and 2.5 day fasting

Does your Betta have any history of being ill? no

How long have you owned your Betta? 4 months

Was he or she ill or suffering some sort of damage when purchased? no
 

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To reduce fluids you need to use Epsom salt not aquarium salt. I believe the aquarium salt can make the bloating worse. I would give him “dips.” Dissolve 1 tablespoon per gallon of water, I usually use water from the tank. Let him soak for no more than 15 minutes and if he shows signs of stress pull him out. Put him back in the tank without the salt water. You can do this twice a day. Make sure the salt is dissolved before you put him in.

Dropsy (the pineconing) is a symptom rather than a disease in itself. Sometimes it can be caused by infection but often it is a sign of organ failure. Here in Canada we cannot easily obtain meds for fish so the salt dips would be your best bet. I hope he feels better soon!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
To reduce fluids you need to use Epsom salt not aquarium salt. I believe the aquarium salt can make the bloating worse. I would give him “dips.” Dissolve 1 tablespoon per gallon of water, I usually use water from the tank. Let him soak for no more than 15 minutes and if he shows signs of stress pull him out. Put him back in the tank without the salt water. You can do this twice a day. Make sure the salt is dissolved before you put him in.

Dropsy (the pineconing) is a symptom rather than a disease in itself. Sometimes it can be caused by infection but often it is a sign of organ failure. Here in Canada we cannot easily obtain meds for fish so the salt dips would be your best bet. I hope he feels better soon!
Thank you so much, he seems to be doing better the bloating has gone down significantly!
 

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Glad to hear there's improvement.

I would suggest cutting the freeze-dried bloodworms from his diet. They are very difficult to digest and most of the nutrition has been lost. Frozen bloodworms are fine and even have diuretic properties--in fact all frozen foods are an excellent option and are unlikely to contribute to bloat. Mine are on 75% frozen, 25% pellet and I haven't seen a case of bloat in well over a decade. Freeze-dried foods have been banned from this household.
 
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