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Sundance (Elephant Ear Betta), Johnny (Guinea pig), Kooky (Guinea pig)
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Including my first post about him twitching because my form is in there and it'll help understand how I've gotten to this point.


And now the pictures.

Bird Beak Organism Fish Adaptation
Water Plant Organism Underwater Beak
Eye Water Fin Plant Underwater
Vertebrate Fin Organism Water Underwater
Fin Fish Underwater Marine biology Tail
Underwater Fin Fish Marine biology Tail
Reptile Lizard Scaled reptile Terrestrial plant Terrestrial animal
Water Vertebrate Plant Underwater Terrestrial plant


I definitely see gold here and there...On his cheeks and so on. DO I need to start treating for velvet now? Poor guy...
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Couldn't wait for an answer so I've started the lesser intense way of treating which is darkness/heat and aquarium salt. I figured I'd try this before going for the very dangerous copper even though I have it and a hospital tank ready. He has no other things living with him but plants which I can replace so I'm treating the tank directly right now with the salt/dark and heat. At least then if it IS velvet it'll eradicate it all in his tank too. He doesn't mind the salt. Still swimming fine.
 

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1) 25 litres, Jedi the betta,2) 60 litres with 2 blue rams and 6 tetras,3) my cat!
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I found this at wikihow

Shine a flashlight on your fish.
One way to see velvet is to use a light directly on your fish. The light will help you see the shimmer of gold or rust that this disease can produce on the scales. Your fish will exhibit other symptoms, such as lethargy, loss of appetite, and rubbing or scratching himself against walls or items in the aquarium. He may also have clamped fins.
  • This parasite can be prevented by adding aquarium salt and water conditioner to your tank on a regular basis.[32] You need to add 1 teaspoon of aquarium salt for 2 1/2 gallons of water. You also need a drop of water conditioner per gallon, though always read the instructions that come with your water conditioner. Only add extra salt when doing water changes, not when topping off a tank.
i'm so sorry, he was doing great, i don't know why he got sick... 😢
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I found this at wikihow

Shine a flashlight on your fish.
One way to see velvet is to use a light directly on your fish. The light will help you see the shimmer of gold or rust that this disease can produce on the scales. Your fish will exhibit other symptoms, such as lethargy, loss of appetite, and rubbing or scratching himself against walls or items in the aquarium. He may also have clamped fins.
  • This parasite can be prevented by adding aquarium salt and water conditioner to your tank on a regular basis.[32] You need to add 1 teaspoon of aquarium salt for 2 1/2 gallons of water. You also need a drop of water conditioner per gallon, though always read the instructions that come with your water conditioner. Only add extra salt when doing water changes, not when topping off a tank.
i'm so sorry, he was doing great, i don't know why he got sick... 😢
It's possible he had it when we adopted him. He was in such bad condition. Maybe the 3 treatments of kanaplex kinda kept it under control but now it's resistant to it. Idk. Today he still has a really good voracious appetite. But not very active. I removed his light and it's fairly dark in the room he's in. I'm trying to get the temp above 80 but it's hard because I don't want to risk raising the temp too much and cooking him so I just turn the heater dial a tiny bit when it's not raising at all. I added 4 teaspoons of salt last night. I'll add the copper sulfate (coppersafe) tonight when I'm home so I can monitor him. I really don't want him to die without ever getting to really live...I'm sad the poor guy is going through one thing after another.
 

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I have never personally seen velvet, but looking at other sources that does look like it.

You did the right thing by going ahead and starting treatment, better to hit it quickly then risk it getting worse.

Salt and copper is supposed to be able to get rid of it, and also good you're dosing the whole tank since it goes onto everything. Sorry you have to lose your plants though.

And look at it this way? Yes, he's going through things back to back, but he's gotten a chance to live. If you hadn't rescued him, well, he probably wouldn't be here sadly. And he's in a place where he's loved and has been given a good fighting chance.
He's beaten the odds once, he can do it again!

Hope Sundance starts feeling better soon, I'm rooting for you two!
 

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Sundance (Elephant Ear Betta), Johnny (Guinea pig), Kooky (Guinea pig)
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I have never personally seen velvet, but looking at other sources that does look like it.

You did the right thing by going ahead and starting treatment, better to hit it quickly then risk it getting worse.

Salt and copper is supposed to be able to get rid of it, and also good you're dosing the whole tank since it goes onto everything. Sorry you have to lose your plants though.

And look at it this way? Yes, he's going through things back to back, but he's gotten a chance to live. If you hadn't rescued him, well, he probably wouldn't be here sadly. And he's in a place where he's loved and has been given a good fighting chance.
He's beaten the odds once, he can do it again!

Hope Sundance starts feeling better soon, I'm rooting for you two!
Thanks so much. I've learned more since oct 27th about bettas and fish diseases than I ever knew in my whole 32 years of life that's for sure...And you're right. At least he has a chance and I know he would be long gone if we hadn't gotten him...And if I do fail with him, my husband and I agreed that we will keep trying to save the worst off looking betta in the pet shop. Sundance will not be the last.
 

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It's not failing if you've done everything you can. Sometimes we just lose.

But he's not gone yet! You havent failed him, you've saved him. You can do it again!

I love that, it's always great to hear that other people will do that too. They all need love, but the worse off ones need it more I think.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I've decided to rule out Velvet. I know you see gold in the pictures. However, those pictures are stills from a video I made with my phone using the phone's light and I believe the auto filter made his iridescent spots look golden. Last night I turned off all the lights in the bedroom and put a flashlight on him and saw no gold. Just his lovely greens and blues. The spot on his cheek that looks so golden in the pictures in reality is simply iridescent. Also looking at other fish with velvet they appear to have a dusting on them. like dust particles that appear gold or rusty and he doesn't have that. Luckily when I started treating him for Velvet I decided to wait on the Coppersafe and try the aquarium salt, darkness and heat method. So he hasn't been unnecessarily treated with the copper and I'll add it to my betta's first aid stash for the future.

I believe he DOEs have swim bladder disease and I believe it's from the ammonia spike we've been dealing with and the things I've been doing to try to keep it from harming him.

Since I changed his tank to a planted tank a couple weeks ago the water has been consistently 0.25ppm ammonia. Also the ph keeps dropping rapidly and I think that is from the driftwood and IAL in the tank. It literally goes from 7.6 to 6.6 almost overnight and stays there...My base PH in my tap is 7.6 and I have no way of leveling it besides my API PH up and I haven't used it lately because I wanted the PH to stay lower so the ammonia won't do as much harm. I've been doing 20-80% water changes which makes the ammonia 0ppm for a shot time but it seems to go right back to 0.25 the next day.

I've been adding live bacteria via Fritz Turbo every day and Seachem Stability to help that bacteria thrive. I've been using Seachem Prime to condition the water. Now what puzzles me is it says it works almost instantly so I take that as it's saying I can immediately add my betta. I add the Prime, wait 10 min, put the water in the tank, add the Stability with the Fritz Turbo and run the filters for about 10 more minutes until all the water calms down so he's not swimming in little particles and then I reacclimate him and add him back...Not sure what I'm doing wrong. The temperature is consistently 80 degrees.

He's behaving so oddly. And nothing on the internet points to ONE thing and I'm so frustrated and sad and feel like nothing I'm doing is right.

He's very lethargic. Stays on his log or in the gravel. When he DOES swim up for air he's almost completely vertical and struggles to stay level. This is why I think it's the swim bladder. Apart from that he twitches like he's being tickled and sometimes will dart around narrowly avoiding the decor before becoming lethargic and resting again for a long period. He doesn't seem like he's gasping for air. I see his gills working but I wouldn't say it's gasping. And he also still has a very good appetite. It's so confusing. It's like he has a symptom of everything.

My best guess, and what I'm treating him for, is ammonia poisoning so I'm changing a percentage of the water daily for now and also swim bladder issues so I've given him Daphnia today and will fast him for 1-3 days and see how he does. There is also a bit of aquarium salt in the tank to help encourage his slime coat and all that jazz. I used less than what's required. Says 1 tablespoon for 5 gallons and I used 2 teaspoons. It's frustrating that there's not a whole lot of helpful info out there for what seems to be the most common pet store fish people buy...This poor guy...
 

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I'm sorry for the misdiagnosis on my end, but I am glad to hear that you're sure it's not velvet. One less issue and a rough one at that.

Just a couple thoughts? And I'm sure you've thought through all this, so forgive me if you have!

Is there something in the tank by chance that you're missing that might be causing it?? That's a bit odd for it to shoot back up.

By some odd chance, have you possibly looked into seizures? Most sources say that the bettas won't survive, but I would guess they can be like people. Maybe he has a fish version of epilepsy? I know dogs and all can get it, and bettas have the correct nervous system and all to have them if you look at it biologically.
There are stories of people's bettas having seizures, but I'm not sure if there are any reports of it as an actual condition but I wouldn't doubt if it has happened. I'll look into this more though, it's been a while since I read up on this subject.
But I do know they can be caused by shock and infections.

Twitching/jerking can be a sign of parasites as well. Odd question, but, has his poop looked normal?

Ammonia does cause a lot of weird things. Most common is reduced appetite, lethargy, inflamed gills, burns, and inflamed/reddened eyes and fins. (You probably know this already)
I would try just treating that for now, and once that's under control we can try to figure out whatever symptoms he has left.
But yes, prime works instantly. It's safe to put him right back in if you want to.

Do you mind if I conduct research on Sundance's symptoms as well? I know you've researched a ton, but maybe between two of us there'd be some luck?

We'll figure this out, and even if we don't, we'll all keep trying until we can find something to help your baby.

Edit: Few typos lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
I'm sorry for the misdiagnosis on my end, but I am glad to hear that you're sure it's not velvet. One less issue and a rough one at that.

Just a couple thoughts? And I'm sure you've thought through all this, so forgive me if you have!

Is there something in the tank by chance that you're missing that might be causing it?? That's a bit odd for it to shoot back up.

By some odd chance, have you possibly looked into seizures? Most sources say that the bettas won't survive, but I would guess they can be like people. Maybe he has a fish version of epilepsy? I know dogs and all can get it, and bettas have the correct nervous system and all to have them if you look at it biologically.
There are stories of people's bettas having seizures, but I'm not sure if there are any reports of it as an actual condition but I wouldn't doubt if it has happened. I'll look into this more though, it's been a while since I read up on this subject.
But I do know they can be caused by shock and infections.

Twitching/jerking can be a sign of parasites as well. Odd question, but, has his poop looked normal?

Ammonia does cause a lot of weird things. Most common is reduced appetite, lethargy, inflamed gills, burns, and inflamed/reddened eyes and fins. (You probably know this already)
I would try just treating that for now, and once that's under control we can try to figure out whatever symptoms he has left.
But yes, prime works instantly. It's safe to put him right back in if you want to.

Do you mind if I conduct research on Sundance's symptoms as well? I know you've researched a ton, but maybe between two of us there'd be some luck?

We'll figure this out, and even if we don't, we'll all keep trying until we can find something to help your baby.

Edit: Few typos lol
I really don't blame you or anyone for anything. I come here for guidance but I always look into things myself first before deciding on treatments so I made this choice. No blame. Sure if you'd like to research as well that'd be a big help. Yea I've looked everywhere...I see a symptom he has for one thing but he ends up not having any other symptoms. Then another symptom here for something else and no other symptoms. I'm going to try to get some videos of his behavior and his coloring and all that. Who knows maybe it still is Velvet...And he still has the aquarium salt in his water. As for what could be causing it...Man...Idk...All he has in there is 3 java ferns, 1 Anubias, 1 baby tears a few assorted rocks I think dragon stone, some driftwood...But the substrate is Controsoil and it said it wouldn't mess with the water parameters and reviews said it was good so I have no idea. He's just one fish. It's crazy. His poo about a week ago WAS long and stringy so I thought...OK...Parasite...But yesterday I saw one that was more...Like clumpy? I'll include a picture of it at the very end. You tell me if that's normal because I honestly have no idea. It looks white but it's a medium brown just a bit darker than the substrate. The camera light just made it seem white.

So the ammonia spike happened when I took out everything and started over from a completely uncycled tank. His first one hadn't even finished cycling but it was so unnatural looking and I knew he was unhappy in it. I figured it wouldn't hurt to just restart as long as I kept adding the beneficial bacteria. I didn't have the Prime or Stability at the time so I used Crystal Geyser spring water which had a nice PH of 7.0 and of course everything else was 0...the next day almost his ammonia was 0.25ppm but he had no reaction at that time but I went out to buy Aqueon Ammonia Neutralizer. This stuff doesn't say how often to use it...Or how long it lasts...So I dosed it in. Also added his beneficial bacteria which I added half a cap every day per the instructions of another pet store owner.
She also told me to only change his water by 25% ONE time so I listened to her and did that. Over a week I added the bacteria every day and a bit of the ammonia neutralizer until I got my prime. At this time I was also treating him for his popeye with a third round of Kanaplex and on the LAST day of his kanaplex the twitching began. this was a bit over a week ago now. He now has the tap with Prime and Stability. I'm worried though because the Aquarium Co Op test strip shows the water is really hard...Idk how to fix that or if it's making him worse. My air stone just arrived today but wasn't processed at the post office so I have to wait to get it tomorrow so he'll have more oxygen. The twitching is pretty often now. Almost every few seconds when he's moving. Mostly he just lies on his log under his light and I can tell he's getting weaker and weaker. Still has a bear of an appetite and swims up to eat but when he swims it's almost vertical and he struggles to stay level. It makes me and my husband really sad to see. I'm running up to check on him every 30 min. All I can think to do right now is fast him and see if he improves.

I have a hospital tank in our bathroom Primed and ready in case I end up having to give him the copper if he DOES actually have velvet. There's just SO few pictures and the ones out there don't look like him. I took a video again last night...What do you think? He's also getting these odd light brown spots on his back you can see in some pictures but I don't know if that was there before or new at this point. I THINK they're new. Around his eyes have always been red also that gold spot you saw in earlier pictures actually shows blue in some of these so I think it was a trick of the light.
Also including a top down pic so you can see there's no pineconing so it can't be Dropsy. His poor left eye is so crazy swollen and has been since we got him. His right eye was too but for some reason that one went way down and he can look forward with it again but the left stayed bad even after 2 epsom salt baths. I stopped them because I heard sometimes they make things worse.

So this first picture LOOKS like theres so much gold and it MUST be velvet but I don't see this AT ALL with just a flashlight in a dark room...

Eye Fin Fish Water Underwater
Plant Fish Wood Grass Aquatic plant
Water Vertebrate Organism Wood Plant
Green Reptile Lizard Wood Iguania


It's weird you see so much more gold looking stuff with the phone camera than with just a flash light. With a flash light in a dark room no gold shows at all and I don't know if it's a filter on my phone trying to enhance him coloring and make him more vibrant or not. And heres the poo.
Wood Road surface Plant Soil Water


It was maybe...3 mm long.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Just got some more pictures using the flash light in the dark and my camera. Now see how you don't see gold. This is why I'm so hesitant to use the copper. I know how dangerous it can be if the PH drops or I give him too much...It's a scary thing...
Reptile Scaled reptile Underwater Fish Marine biology
Plant Fish supply Underwater Pet supply Marine biology
Plant Green Vegetation Grass Groundcover
Water Fluid Fish Liquid Fin
 

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Happy to, if I find anything worthy of consideration I'll mention it.

To lower pH, I think API has something out for that.
You're doing all the natural recommendations there are on how to lower it already too. Driftwood and almond leaves and all. Which, a pH of 7.6 isn't bad at all, he'll be just fine with that level.

I wonder if maybe his system was overloaded with meds and it's started effecting him in a way? Just a theory..
Not saying stop the meds, since he does have stuff that still needs treated.

It might be your phone, I know mine does that. If the same spots that were gold are showing blue at a different angle I think it's safe to assume that it's just iridescence.

It's odd that his eye is still swollen even after all that.. I'm not sure what else to recommend to you sadly. I know some people use methylene blue for stuff, not sure if you'll be able to find it though. But since you've already done three rounds of Kanaplex and it might've become ineffective at this point?

For his SBD, you can try feeding part of an unshelled, thawed pea after a few days of fasting. Epsom salt baths will also help that.
But it could also be from something with his water, not sure if we can pinpoint one thing right now like you said.

I would guess possible ammonia burns for the spots, which honestly all you can do for that is what you're doing.. Water changes and the ammonia lock.

I don't have anymore to suggest other than what you're already doing. I will research all this tomorrow and hopefully there will be something..
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Sorry for the spam...Just got this video so you can see how he's having trouble swimming up and floating. So that's why I'm suspecting the swim bladder due to water quality.

 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Happy to, if I find anything worthy of consideration I'll mention it.

To lower pH, I think API has something out for that.
You're doing all the natural recommendations there are on how to lower it already too. Driftwood and almond leaves and all. Which, a pH of 7.6 isn't bad at all, he'll be just fine with that level.

I wonder if maybe his system was overloaded with meds and it's started effecting him in a way? Just a theory..
Not saying stop the meds, since he does have stuff that still needs treated.

It might be your phone, I know mine does that. If the same spots that were gold are showing blue at a different angle I think it's safe to assume that it's just iridescence.

It's odd that his eye is still swollen even after all that.. I'm not sure what else to recommend to you sadly. I know some people use methylene blue for stuff, not sure if you'll be able to find it though. But since you've already done three rounds of Kanaplex and it might've become ineffective at this point?

For his SBD, you can try feeding part of an unshelled, thawed pea after a few days of fasting. Epsom salt baths will also help that.
But it could also be from something with his water, not sure if we can pinpoint one thing right now like you said.

I would guess possible ammonia burns for the spots, which honestly all you can do for that is what you're doing.. Water changes and the ammonia lock.

I don't have anymore to suggest other than what you're already doing. I will research all this tomorrow and hopefully there will be something..
Thank you...Yea...It's like everytime I STOP trying to do research I start getting antsy and then I'm like..Wait! Maybe I'll get a result if I word it THIS way or add THIS detail. It's very sad that there's not much news for the little guys. Poor guy.

Right now I'm giving him a small break from hardcore meds...The Kanaplex was 2 round back to back Nov 1st and the last round was right before he started twitching so he had a week break in between since I didn't want to overload him even though he took the treatment well. So now all he has is the aquarium salt and I'm trying to keep to temp between 80-82. I'm prepping the hospital tank. I read on some amazon review of Coppersafe that it's very dangerous to mix the copper safe with Prime or any other dechlorinators so you should wait 48 hours before adding the Coppersafe and the fish so the tank is primed and ready and in 2 days I'll go ahead and try it...OR I can try Maracyn 2 in a couple days and ONLY if he hasn't improved from the fasting. But at least it'll be ready for anything.
 

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No need to apologize, it's helpful, and not a bother at all.
I do agree, it does look like a (luckily but I know it doesn't seem like it) milder version of SBD.
Best option is continuing water changes and trying the fasting and if you have a pea on hand.

That's a good idea. Maybe he'll improve during the break.
You also may want to consider letting up on the aquarium salt soon for a short break since it becomes ineffective after a few weeks of continuous use.

Of course, and that's completely understandable. I've been there and I'll be doing it too. We'll figure something out, even if it's choices based off of hope and current knowledge.

Edit: I really should triple check my posts for typos.. lol
 
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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
No need to apologize, it's helpful, and not a bother at all.
I do agree, it does look like a (luckily but I know it doesn't seem like it) milder version of SBD.
Best option is continuing water changes and trying the fasting and if you have a pea on hand.

That's a good idea. Maybe he'll improve during the break.
You also may want to consider letting up on the aquarium salt soon for a short break since it becomes ineffective after a few weeks of continuous use.

Of course, and that's completely understandable. I've been there and I'll be doing it too. We'll figure something out, even if it's choices based off of hope and current knowledge.

Edit: I really should triple check my posts for typos.. lol

I speak fluent "typo" so it's all good lol...I'm reading this article right now. https://www.myaquariumclub.com/so-you-think-that-your-betta-has-velvet-20581.html Some of the non velvet bettas have coloring very close to my boy.

And as for the salt, I'll start diluting it out with upcoming water changes. Thank you.
 

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Good to know if I accidentally miss one LOL

That's good, I guess we can safely assume it's iridescence? And looking at the better photos, I do agree.
Something else that I just thought of. Your kiddo looks white in normal lighting when I glanced over other photos, and with the flashlight he has different shades of green and blue along with that gold. I do believe it's probably just iridescence.
 
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Good to know if I accidentally miss one LOL

That's good, I guess we can safely assume it's iridescence? And looking at the better photos, I do agree.
Something else that I just thought of. Your kiddo looks white in normal lighting when I glanced over other photos, and with the flashlight he has different shades of green and blue along with that gold. I do believe it's probably just iridescence.
That's what I'm hoping as well. Regardless for now he's gonna be fasted for 3 days then given a pea like you said. I've done it before with him when I thought he looked a tiny bit bloated and it worked.

We'll just play it by ear. Thank you so much for your messages and hopium.
 
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