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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all. I recently made an unwise fish purchase from the dreaded walmart. He died three days later. They replaced the fish of course, and I'm thrilled to have the opportunity to help any of these that were probably destined for the toilet. The problem is, I'm not very experienced with sick fish! My first betta is healthy and happy as a clam.

I'm treating my sick baby for ich, as he DOES appear to have some white spots around his head and gills, and I wanted to get him medicated ASAP before he went the way of his predecessor. Right now he's in a little half gallon container that I intend to use as a sort of hospital tank with frequent water changes and the whole 9. I have a gallon aquarium I'm planning on moving him to once I'm sure he's healthy.

As I said, I believe he's suffering some ich, but I think that he's experienced a heck of a loss of color too. I'm almost sure that he's the same fish I was looking at three days prior, but he's almost white instead of blue now. I've uploaded some photos, so please have a look and give me any advice you can.

http://imgur.com/N0Al8

http://imgur.com/5mYjM
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Uh, erm. And since I don't know how to edit my first post... I realized I should give some info on his behavior as well as his appearance. He looks like he's trying to scratch himself on the gravel and the fake plant in the tank. He's also not keeping his food down very well. Right now I've got him on a high protein flake food with something called blood shrimp thrown in. He seems to be able to hold down the blood shrimp, but spits the flakes back out. He still seems to be fairly active, but if he's not able to eat, I wonder how long he'll last.
 

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I'm sure someone here will more experience will post soon, but I do want to say that flakes are generally not the best food for Bettas. Try getting some pellets made for Betta fish. There are several different brands and they should not be too hard to find.

Not sure what blood shrimp are, though I know there are blood worms. If you have the freeze dried kind, be careful with them. I don't think it is good to feed them too much of the freeze dried foods. Frozen is better! >> Meaning the worms are sold frozen. You thaw them out and feed them that way. They are not dried.

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It sounds like he may have ick, but again I am going to let the more experienced people help you with that. I'd hate to tell you wrong!
 

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I was told API Bettafix works well! You could make a gallon of water with this Bettafix and use that to do the water changes? I also read that bettas can survive weeks without food, so I don't know if it's an issue until he is healthy again.. But I'd still feed him and clean what he won't eat. Also, I think you may have my bettas twin! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I'm sure someone here will more experience will post soon, but I do want to say that flakes are generally not the best food for Bettas. Try getting some pellets made for Betta fish. There are several different brands and they should not be too hard to find.
I realized shortly after buying my first betta and googling a little more info that flakes weren't the BEST thing. He seems to be fine on them, aside from acting like he's starving all the time. I made the mistake of continuing to feed him until he stopped acting hungry and he just got fat/bloaty and swam funny for a while. Now that, that embarrassing and potentially deadly situation is over he seems just fine on it, so I was going to finish out this giant tub of it, unless you think I should just toss it and get the pellets.
 

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Betta fix is for bacterial infections torn fins or fin rot. not ich. Try tetra tablets I had great results with it in a day compared to API super ich cure. Also raise tank temps and salt will help. Google the temp and amount of salt. I had two bettas that had ich at some point. Be careful very contagious. Sanitize and dry anything that was in tank with him. Let it dry out outside
 

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I think the best thing to do is treat him with Aq salt before you use any meds. I have been advised in the past to prepare a jug of water premixed with conditioner and dissolved aquarium salt. 1tsp per gallon. If you have the cup you bought him in this will make the procedure a lot easier... You can place him in there and float him in the tank in his cup... Slowly acclimate him to the salt water by adding 25% through 15 minute intervals for an hour... Then perform 50% water changes everyday for 3 days on the fourth do a 100% using the premixed jug. Do this no more than 10 days.

If I missed something on here someone jump in!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
D'oh. Sorry, I meant to be clearer. I'm already treating with API Super Ick Cure. I can also treat with aquarium salt at the same time yes? Or will that be putting too much strain on him?
 

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I can't help with the salt question, but I used the API Super Ick Cure and it worked great.
 

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No that would be bad I don't think you can mix aq salt and medication together.

Since you already started the treatment I would just finish that treatment. If he has ick the white spots should disappear in a few days How long does it say to continue the medication?

Also I would vacuum the bottom of the tank everyday to get rid of any eggs if there are any
 

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No on bettafix, for any reason.. just not worth the risk.

Is he darting around any? Does he look like he is trying to scratch himself on the gravel, plant, side of tank? That is what you are wanting to look for when it comes to ich. If he is not darting, then I wouldn't say he has ich for sure..

As far as his coloring goes- he looks good in the pictures, but keep in mind that bettas will generally change color once you bring them home and place them in clean water with water conditioner.

As for food- they can take a week or longer before they start eating healthily, but you have to give him the proper food to get him used to it now. As long as the main ingredient in the flake food is fish/meat then you can continue trying those (remove any uneaten shortly after feeding to avoid fouling up the water), pellet food is more ideal as you can be direct in how much you feed him, and they generally are better then flakes overall.

IF you see him darting and the white spots continue to develop, the proper way to treat ich is a couple ways-

Conservatively you will want to raise temperature to 85 F and add 1 tsp per gal of Aquarium Salt 3 times, 12 hours apart so that you end up with 3 times the normal concentration. Perform daily 100% water changes to remove fallen parasites before they can reproduce. Replace the water with the right amount of salt. Do not continue this treatment for more than 14 days.
The temp is important to help speed up the process.

If you want to go the medication route- which is a gamble on whether or not it works, then Jungle’s Parasite Clear, API Super Ick Cure, or Kordon Rid Ich Plus are what is commonly recommended.

Do not mix the salt with the medication- one or the other when it comes to these meds.
 

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There's nothing wrong with betta fix. I even called API and they gave me every last detail. So many people used it with amazing results. Just because someones betta died when they were using it doesn't mean it was the meds fault. They either over dosed or were using it for the wrong reason. Ie if they tried it for ich. It obv wouldn't work and the fish would die because it is not meant for that.
 

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use the AQ salt and/or continue with you ich meds, And rais the tank temp you normaly get ich in colder water. i know it sounds odd but when my fish get ich i rais the temp and if it doesnt show signs of going away i use meds
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Just an update, little guy seems to be doing a bit better. He isn't darting around as much, and his color seems to be getting a little darker. He's still having a little trouble keeping his flakes down (or maybe he's just a picky eater?) but he seems to be able to handle the bigger chunks. Not sure if they're brine shrimp or blood worms, but whatever they are, he'll eat them without spitting them back up. I'll be changing his water and adding more ich medication in the morning. Hopefully he'll keep getting better. :)
 

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There's nothing wrong with betta fix. I even called API and they gave me every last detail. So many people used it with amazing results. Just because someones betta died when they were using it doesn't mean it was the meds fault. They either over dosed or were using it for the wrong reason. Ie if they tried it for ich. It obv wouldn't work and the fish would die because it is not meant for that.
The company will tell you what you want to hear- yes, the medication is safe for most fish, but bettas are not included. It was made to sucker people in to get more money for the company, but at the risk of the health of the fish.

Many people have reported firsthand the sudden deaths of their bettas after using this product.
Labyrinth fish, like bettas and gouramis, can be seriously injured or even killed by the use of BettaFix or MelaFix, the stronger formula. While other fish can tolerate melaleuca extract (the active ingredient in Betta/MelaFix) quite well, the labyrinth organ present in bettas is highly sensitive to it. The melaleuca can burn the labyrinth organ and at high enough concentrations or with enough exposure, can damage the labyrinth organ to the point that the fish cannot breathe with it. These fish cannot breathe using their gills alone and will suffocate as a result of this.

Also, note that melaleuca is a harsh antiseptic and an irritant, speeding the healing of torn fins and tissue by irritating the injury site to speed up healing. This would be similar to putting alcohol on a wound.
Unfortunately, it is an irritant that seems to have an adverse effect on certain fish. Most fish can handle melaleuca just fine, this includes most "scaleless" fishes as well. So far, the fish that seem to have problems with melaleuca are anabantoids and pencilfish. Since it is an irritant, it is not unlike using alcohol or peroxide on a cut or a scrape. The melaleuca irritates the cells to speed the healing process. With most fish this would be fine and it wouldn't harm the fish in any way, but labyrinth breathers are different. Their labyrinth organs are sensitive to the melaleuca and with a full dose of Melafix, you can kill a betta or a gourami within a few days. The labyrinth organ is the most important organ in a betta's body, that is it's lung. Like humans, if an irritative chemical gets into our lungs, we will have adverse problems from it, possibly even death, the same goes for bettas with a dose of straight Melafix.

Yes, the ingredients are watered down in Bettafix- but since it requires you to put in a whole dose every day for 7 days before a water change, you are actually putting in quite a bit of it in there.. and it has been known to kill MANY bettas within days of use.. not just one or two.
 

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Just an update, little guy seems to be doing a bit better. He isn't darting around as much, and his color seems to be getting a little darker. He's still having a little trouble keeping his flakes down (or maybe he's just a picky eater?) but he seems to be able to handle the bigger chunks. Not sure if they're brine shrimp or blood worms, but whatever they are, he'll eat them without spitting them back up. I'll be changing his water and adding more ich medication in the morning. Hopefully he'll keep getting better. :)


I hope he wil recover. He is beautiful betta and it so nice of you to rescue him from Walmart:) Give us update.
 

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plenty of people have had good results with bettafix but there are also plenty of people who's fish have died from using bettafix/melefix. The main ingredient is a tree oil which can damaged their breathing organ resulting in the death of the betta. If you insist on using it, I would use a little less then the recommended dosage. I used it with fish that had columnaris, but I didnt have access to anything else. I felt that it was worth a try as the betta was going to die if I didn't at least try it. As myates said, its for stuff like fin rot and will not help with ich.

I had one walmart fish that had a mild case of ick. I used quick cure and it worked almost overnight. However the main ingredient is Malachite Green which is pretty potent stuff. Use with caution and do NOT OD on it.
 

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There's nothing wrong with betta fix. I even called API and they gave me every last detail. So many people used it with amazing results. Just because someones betta died when they were using it doesn't mean it was the meds fault. They either over dosed or were using it for the wrong reason. Ie if they tried it for ich. It obv wouldn't work and the fish would die because it is not meant for that.
You realize that of course the company will say "sure, it's fine!" because they want you to buy their product? What company would tell you that a medication might well kill your pet instead of telling you to go for it? Not very many. (I'm looking at you, Hartz.)
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Another update, he seems to be doing much better. He's nice and active, and is keeping his food down a little better. I think he might just be a finicky eater. His color is also still improving, but can't seem to decide if it should be reddish or bluish. I'll post a new picture in the morning.
 
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