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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
PLEASE HELP ME! My betta fish who I've had for less than a day seems to be very sick. He is very bloated and falls to the side a lot, as if he can't keep balance. I suspect internal parasites, but I don't know. He seemed absolutely fine yesterday. This is so frustrating to me because this is my third betta, and none of the others have lived more than a week. He's in a completely clean three gallon tank with a heater and a filter. I've spent so much time and money on these beautiful little guys, I just don't know what to do!
 

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It sounds like Swim Bladder Disorder (SBD). Start by fasting him for 2-3 days.

How much do you feed him? and what are you feeding him?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm feeding him just regular betta food pellets, but I've had him less than 24 hours I've only fed him a couple pellets...is there a possibility he could be sicker? He's acting very lethargic.
 

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Ok, let's try again. There are different kinds of betta pellets, some better quality than others. Bad quality ones are more likely to cause bloat. Did you feed him literally 2 pellets (a couple)?

Whatever the case, skip feeding for a couple of days.

Did you acclimate him before putting him in your tank? Did you condition the water?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Ok, let's try again. There are different kinds of betta pellets, some better quality than others. Bad quality ones are more likely to cause bloat. Did you feed him literally 2 pellets (a couple)?

Whatever the case, skip feeding for a couple of days.

Did you acclimate him before putting him in your tank? Did you condition the water?

Yes, i fed him exactly two pellets lol. I also de chlorinated the water and acclimated him to it as well. Though, the container he came in had several pellets that were old (which I of course removed) this leads me to believe that he was probably over fed at the pet store.

Which are the best brands to feed him? Should I just keep an eye on him and fast him for a few days?
 

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The best brands are Omega One and New Life Spectrum.
Yes I do suggesting fasting him and watching him.
You can also add Epsom salt to his tank - make sure it is unscented and has no additives.
It's very common to fish to be over fed at pet stores - my new EE perry was extremely bloated when I brought him home.
Just a couple of questions -
Housing
What size is your tank?
What temperature is your tank?
Does your tank have a filter?
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration?
Is your tank heated?
What tank mates does your betta fish live with?

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish?
How often do you feed your betta fish?

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change?
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change?
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change?

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

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

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed?
How has your betta fish's behavior changed?
When did you start noticing the symptoms?
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how?
Does your fish have any history of being ill?
How old is your fish (approximately)?
 

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Vivian's on top of it.

Sometimes they're uncomfortable and stressed out when they first move. It might take a couple of days of fasting and getting used to clean water to feel good again.

If you fill out those questions Vivian posted though, there might be something that jumps out as an issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Housing
What size is your tank? 3 gallons, though if he does well I plan on upgrading
What temperature is your tank? Around 76 degrees
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? Commercial pellets, but first thing Tomorrow I am going I get the food types suggested above.
How often do you feed your betta fish? I've only had him one day, but I plan on feeding him once every other day until I find a feeding pattern that works with him

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change? Once a week
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 50%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Stress coat

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters? Not yet

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

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? He has gotten bloated, with a slightly curved spine
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? Seems semi-lethargic
When did you start noticing the symptoms? About 7 hours ago
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? I will continue to fast him for a few days, but I'll be sure to maintain the temperature and keep a close eye on him
Does your fish have any history of being ill? Not that I am aware of
How old is your fish (approximately)? I don't know


You all have no idea how much I appreciate your advice and support! I've raised goldfish and various other species for years, but Bettas are new to me, so I'm so thankful to have all of you guys helping me! I'll follow your recommendations and I really hope he gets better!
 

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Fasting for a couple of days and if you've got them, epsom salts, should help with bloating. I would personally just do fasting for 2 days and if you have no changes, then try the epsom salts and keep fasting. You can easily go up to a week if he's still showing bloat.

Clean water is also a betta's friend. The cleaner the environment, the easier it is for his immune system to fight things himself. Did you put any of the cup water in when you acclimated him? The ammonia levels were probably sky high. Just to be safe I would do a full water change to make sure the water is good.

I recommend doing more frequent water changes. one 50% a week one 100%. Your tank being so small it will build up ammonia very fast and holding a cycle will be hard.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Fasting for a couple of days and if you've got them, epsom salts, should help with bloating. I would personally just do fasting for 2 days and if you have no changes, then try the epsom salts and keep fasting. You can easily go up to a week if he's still showing bloat.

Clean water is also a betta's friend. The cleaner the environment, the easier it is for his immune system to fight things himself. Did you put any of the cup water in when you acclimated him? The ammonia levels were probably sky high. Just to be safe I would do a full water change to make sure the water is good.

I recommend doing more frequent water changes. one 50% a week one 100%. Your tank being so small it will build up ammonia very fast and holding a cycle will be hard.

Okay, thanks! And little to none of his cup water got in the tank. Also, how would you suggest I get him out to do a full water change?
 

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yup. cup him and change all of the water, rinse out gravel if you've got it. then dechlorinate all of the water, make sure it's within 2 degrees F of his current water temp, and add him slowly as if you were putting him in a new tank.

it's probably a combination of stress and overfeeding at the pet store. fasting (epsom salts too) and clean water are all you can really do for him right now.
 

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Whenever my guys got bloated or, when my now old guy had swim bladder issues bad many years ago, Epsom salts and fasting works like a charm. Sometimes it can help almost right away. 1tsp.per gallon of ES and like they said above they can go a week at least without food. Clean water and salt, don't add salt on top of salt though. There should not be more than 1 tsp. /g at a time and not for more than 7-10 days tops. But it can really help when they are constipated which happens with bettas fairly often and also with SB issues. Good luck
 
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