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My dragon scale betta is about a year and a half old. Shortly after I brought Rojo home he started developing a small white bump on his lower right side. It has never affected his behavior, he always ate, swam, made bubble nests, etc.

Over time the lump has gotten larger and larger. About two weeks ago there was something that looked like an open sore on his lump (a red spot that looked tender) I immediately cleaned out his tank and changed his filter, and also started feeding less.

The sore healed, but Rojo's behavior has been strange the last few days. The sore is solid on the right side but has just recently started poking through on his left side too.

His tank is a good temperature (2.5 gallons), has a fairly new filter in it, he is fed one pellet in the morning and one pellet at night.

Currently he is laying in the bottom corner of his tank a lot, he is having a hard time getting his food and sometimes when it looks like he is going to get air he stops just short of the surface of the water and lingers until it seems like an emergency to get a breath of air.

I will include as many pictures as I can. Rojo isn't that old so I want to do whatever I can to help him. I will be moving in a few short weeks too and I already know the stress is going to be a lot, so I want him in good condition before that happens.

Please help :( I have researched this problem so many times and I can't diagnose it with the amount of conflicting information I keep finding. :(

First picture is shortly after I brought him home. Second picture is the bump poking through on the left side. All the rest of the pictures are the large lump on his right side.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
additional information

Housing
What size is your tank? 2.5 gallons
What temperature is your tank? warm, but no thermometer. feels about 85
Does your tank have a filter? yes
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? no
Is your tank heated? by the artificial light only
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? only the betta fish

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? betta pellets by top fin
How often do you feed your betta fish? one in morning, one in evening

Maintenance

How often do you perform a water change? i add filtered water when the water gets low (i only have well water at home right now)
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? i usually add somewhere between 10-20%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? none. I've been told to add a specialized salt before and killed fish that way. I have never added anything to rojo's tank.

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters? no

Ammonia:
Nitrite:
Nitrate:
pH:
Hardness:
Alkalinity:

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? his tumor has gotten tighter, and shinier, and is poking through on the other side for the first time ever
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? he is laying on the bottom of his cage a lot
When did you start noticing the symptoms? three days ago
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? took some water out so it was more shallow and he could get to the top easier
Does your fish have any history of being ill? always had the tumor, never acted like this though
How old is your fish (approximately)? a year and a half
 

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It looks like the lump is cauliflower-ish which is a sign that he has lymphocystis. It is just a virus that will clear up on its own, probably in the next few months. It will not hurt/kill him but it depends on the fish. If his immune system is low he could get them all over his body but it looks like it is just in one spot. So I would say it is pretty curable right now.
I would recommend 1 tsp of Aquarium Salt per gallon (in your case 2 and a half)for up to 14 days. If it looks like he isn't eating I would try to get more help or it 'pops' it could become infected. But for now try AQ salt and it should help. Good luck!
 

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First off, you need to add some kind of conditioner to the tank every water change. How ofter do you change your betta's water? I don't mean putting water in when water gets low.
 

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Here is the question and answer to what your betta has:
Q: The fish have a cauliflower-like growth on, or at the base of the fins.
A: This is Lymphocystis Virus and cannot be cured. No suitable treatment known.
 

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And to include something else that I forgot to mention; you will need to change the water 100% everyday while you add the medication. So you can probably turn your filter off.
I would also get Prime water conditioner to put in his tank because even if you have well water you still need to purify it for your betta. Stress coat is great to have as well that helps with their slime coats
Here are some links:
http://www.petsmart.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2753920 & http://www.petsmart.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2754036&f=PAD/psNotAvailInUS/No
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Rojo

So shortly after I posted, Rojo went from just laying at the bottom of his tank to having all kinds of balancing issues. His breathing is also very heavy.

I went out and bought a water testing kit and water conditioner. I tested the water and the only issue seemed to be the pH was too high.

I did about a 50% water change adding the new conditioned water to help solve the pH problem, but Rojo was very stressed out with the change because I did not do this with his aquarium before. He was breathing even heavier and his abdomen seemed to be swollen (I only noticed while I was doing the water change, but I don't think the water changed actually caused any issues other than stressing him out a bit).

I did a lot of research and people seem to trust the Old Fish Lady's comments, and when I found her instructions on another betta having similar problems I decided to go ahead with a treatment for him, essentially for swim bladder disorder.

I currently have Rojo in a separate small container with fully conditioned water and an epsom salt percentage. I haven't fed him since changing him into this new container, and I want to see if he is passing anything. He didn't eat for a full day (maybe a little more) before I put him in though.

Old Fish Lady said to fast him the first three days and do the treatment a full 10. I think I might try to feed him tonight or tomorrow though since he hasn't eaten in awhile. As of this morning he had not passed anything.

I will update as I go along with this treatment, but if someone sees something I am not or has any suggestions, they would be greatly appreciated!
 

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I would put a thermometer in there, it makes it a lot easier and they are cheap. 85 is okay but bettas like it better around 78-82.
 

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Hello,

My name is Jaimie and my Dragon Scale Betta has the same thing (I believe). Only parts of his largest lump will flake off like dead skin. He is in a five gallon tank. Has a heater. Has a filter. And u use Top fin betta water conditioner.I don't know how to post a picture on here, UT if anyone is interested I can email it. I don't know what else to do for him..
 
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