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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Housing
What size is your tank? 5 gal (use 2.5)
What temperature is your tank? 76
Does your tank have a filter? no
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? no

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? TetraBetta & BioGold
How often do you feed your betta fish? 2 times a day (2/4 pieces) 6 pellets total

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change? 2 times a week
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 50 once a week/100 once a week
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Occasional aquarium salt, beta fix, plant food

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters?

Ammonia:0
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate:0
pH:7.4
Hardness:150
Alkalinity: 180

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? Bloated
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? Less active
When did you start noticing the symptoms? 2 days ago
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? no
Does your fish have any history of being ill? yes. color change/fin rot
How old is your fish (approximately)? we've had 1.5 years

Hi! I'm pretty sure this issue is constipation. We've seen no poo for a few days. What can we do to help?
 

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I suggest no more on bettafix, or use a very small dose only when sick. It contains tea tree oil, which is harmful for their labyrinth organ.

As far as the bloating, try fasting him for a few days to let him sort things out. If he still hasn't gone in a few days or he's getting more bloated, you might have to help him out with the addition of 1 tsp/gal epsom salt (Dissolve in treated water, no scents or colors). Epsom salt will help live plants too since it works as a fertilizer for them as well as a laxative.

Try fasting fora few days before going to epsom salt though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
My wife gave him one pellet and he gobbled it up. He's hungry.
We'll fast again tonight, but I think I need to start the salt tomorrow. We've used aquarium salt in the past, but I do have epsom salt on hand. Is there any special kind or instructions?
 

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Definitely remove the Bettafix from the tank.. only add in water conditioner when doing water changes- Bettafix, and AQ salt used on a regular basis can be deadly.. especially being used together. Not ideal, as over exposure and improper exposure to the AQ salt can and do lead to kidney and liver failure.. add that with Bettafix, the organs are being affected by them both. The only thing that should be placed in a tank regularly is water conditioner specific for aquariums..
What sort of plant food? And what types of plants do you have?

Pata is correct- fast him for 3 days (not even 1 pellet fed to him, hard as it may be heh) to see if it helps.. normally that is all that is needed. Otherwise, as she mentioned, 1 tsp of Epsom Salt per gallon, daily 100% water changes and normally takes about a week for it to clear up.
AQ salt can actually cause bloating to become worse.

Good luck, keep us updated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Can someone please verify what kind of epsom salt? I have a little cardboard/milk type container of epsom salt. I'm afraid to add 2.5 tsps to the 2.5 gallon 100% water change. Just seems like a lot and that it would be a shock to his system.
I'll get the plant food info tonight.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
And he stays in this Epsom salt water until I change it again? I've read about salt baths for 15-30 minutes. I apologize for all the repeated questions, I just want to be sure of what I am doing.
 

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salt baths are for fish that can't tolerate extended treatments. Yup, you just leave him in the epsom salted water. In fact they can survive in it long term. It doesn't affect live plants either.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
It's been a week and I'm not seeing any improvement. His 'bloating' appears to be low on his right side near the front. He also also a 'swollen' spot on his left side higher up and farther back. I haven't been able to get a decent picture.

What's after epsom salt?
 

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So you have been doing daily water changes of a 100%, along with epsom salt added each time for the last 9 days, correct?

Has he gone to the bathroom at all since starting treatment?
Is the bloating you see on both sides, but at different locations on the body?
Is his waste normal looking, or does it look white and stringy?
Have you stopped use of Bettafix and started with water conditioner?

True bloating has multiple symptoms that come with it, so if he is acting normal, just an enlarged abdomen then I am thinking there is some underlying problems. Go ahead and remove him from the Epsom if he has been going to the bathroom and answer those few questions. The answers will point to a couple things that I am thinking may be going on with him, but don't want to jump the gun or worry you too much without more info.

The plant fertilizer is fine- it shouldn't harm the fish.. it's good for different types of plants (sometimes not so much for low-medium light plants). But it's safe for the fish.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
It's only been 7 days. I waited 2 days before starting epsom salts.
No bathroom (no food either)
Yes-bloating both sides, but different areas.
No waste.
No bettafix or plant food. I didn't notice anything about conditioners until now and followed the link in your sig. I'll get one of those.
 

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you can safely go for another week with epsom salt at a treatment dose.

Once you get a water conditioner, keep up with the 100% changes and epsom salt. you want to add in the conditioner to any new water you put in the tank. Even if it says it removes ammonia, it really doesn't. It just detoxifies it, so don't buy into not having to do water changes anymore.

Continue with 100% daily changes, 1-2 tsp/gal of epsom salt dissolved in treated water, and fasting.

the bloating doesn't appear to be more near his tail, does it? If so, it might be the actual swim bladder, which can be normal for it to stick out. If it's more towards the head, between the ventral and anal fins, then it's most likely constipation.
 

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Share photos and are any scales sticking out? Are you sure he hasn't pooped.while you weren't lookong? A whole week is an awfully long time to be in epsoms and no poop.you can take gravel out and leave the bottom bare to be sure. Feed him one pellet then wait bare bottom with 1 +tsp per gallon epsoms.

I suggest changing food source too. You are.using wheat based pellets which tend to cause this. Get a good protein based pellet like new life spectrum Betta or omega one Betta buffet. You can feed 3 twice a day with one fast day a week with nls but try cutting back to 4 a day with omega one or other normal size pellet
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I'll try again on the pictures. It's hard to get an angle that shows the swollen areas. The one side bloating is near the front and low. That's the biggest. There's another spot on the other side that's further back, but smaller. The only scales that look odd are the ones on the smaller spot. They look slightly raised.

We been looking hard for poop, but haven't seen any. The 1st few days still had all the gravel, but we were sifting through it. We're just barely covering the bottom now. It's possible we could have missed it. If it's not constipation I haven't fed him, so now there's nothing to come out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)

Here's the one on his left side. About half way back and in the middle. You can see the scales I'm talking about as well. The scales on the other bulge (up right after his head and low, underneath) are now looking 'raised' as well.

The bulge is larger than it appears in the pic. It's large and noticeable.
 

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He has GI dropsy (pine coning around his middle). I would not hesitate to feed medicated pellets and upping epsoms after so long of no poop is a good idea. Something with Metrodazinole should cover both the bacteria and parasite realm. Jungle has a feed with it as does Aquascape (need to be crushed as they're large). You can also buy Metrodazinole from Seachem along with garlic guard and mix up your own pellets (anything but NLS work). Metromeds are available from thegoldfishconnection but I'm not sure if they're ok for bettas.. I've been looking into it. I'm wanting to say they're good based on ingredients but don't take my word for it. i'm still in research mode on that one myself. If they are, those are what I'd use. It's krill based, which is a good base, but other than that I'm not sure of the other ingredients.
 
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