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Hello!

We just got our very first Betta fish about 2 weeks ago. He was such a happy little guy. But, in the last three days his tail fin has begun fraying. I noticed the plastic tree stump in his tank was rather sharp, so I took that out immediately and it seems to have helped a lot. His fins have not gotten any worse. I don't see any signs of fin rot or parasite. However, last night he started swimming a little more erratically. Today I changed out half of his water with new, clean, de-chlorinated water, which seems to have calmed him down some. We have a 2.5 gallon tank with a filter, a small, live moss ball, and a heater. I have two questions for everyone and would really appreciate any help at all!

1) Should we be concerned about the fraying/tearing, or just keep him clean and warm? How can we help him heal and keep him healthy? Some things I've read say to get him medicine, and other things say he'll heal on his own, which is confusing us.

2) What do you recommend for habitat/decoration in his tank? I've been searching for smooth things but can't seem to find what I'm looking for when I google it. I really want something natural or safe for him, non toxic, that's very very smooth. He seems bored without his tree stump to swim through so I want to get something as soon as possible.

Again, I'd really appreciate any help. I know we haven't had him long, but he's become our good friend, swimming up to see us, following my finger around the tank, and eating from my hand every day. I want to take the best care of him and make sure he doesn't get worse. Thank you!
 

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1. Clean water and 1/2 tablespoon of aquarium salt will help him heal quickly.
2. You can always do the panty hose test, if it snags on the panty hose it will snag the beta's fins.
3. Get some prime, your tank is the middle of the nitrogen cycle I suspect, the nitrite sounds like it might be a little up there. I would do 25% partial water changes every three days to help keep the numbers down. Get your water tested.
Prime maybe expensive but worth it. 3 drops is good for 3 gallons of water, a small bottle will last a long time.
 

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Welcome to the forum!


1) Can you upload a clear picture of your betta and also of the whole tank?


This is a forum fish-in cycling tutorial. You'll have to test water parameters twice or three times a week until the tank is cycled. If parameters are fine, you have to do weekly 50% water change. If either Ammonia and Nitrite reaches 0.25, do 25% water change, wait for a couple of hours, test water again. Repeat the process until Ammonia and Nitrite is 0.
http://www.bettafish.com/30-betta-fish-care/507585-cycling-two-sentence-tutorial.html


2) I would recommend silk plants. Betta like to sleep on the leaves too.
 

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Hi and welcome to the forums.

#1 - Both answers are correct. If it the cut/bite is an open wound you can use salt to help sterilize the wound or if it's gotten infected medicate. In most cases (which from your description, appears to be the case with your fish) all you need do is keep his water clean and feed him a nutritious diet, he'll take care of the rest himself, they have an amazing ability to heal themselves. If you're seeing a translucent edge on his fins where it's cut, that's usually regrowth. If you post some pictures of his cuts, we can have a look.

#2 - As Ryry2012 said, plants. Silk plant or live plants if you're up for it, you want to provide him with someplace near the surface to rest as well as some top cover. Additionally, you can get a small terracotta flower pot from Walmart. Clean it well and if there is a hole in the bottom, either break it open so he can swim through easily or plug it up with some silicone, generally the default size can cause some fish to get stuck in the hole.
 

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If you are still looking for plants, I like to use Marina Naturals silk plants. They look more natural and are soft enough not to cut the betta's fins.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks to everyone for the help! I can't get the photos to upload, but he does have clear parts forming on his tail so I think he's healing. Yay! And we ordered him silk plants. Thank you guys!
 

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Welcome to the Forum.

Only thing I'd add is..

- the intake on the filter can sometimes damage their fins. They get curious of course.You can get properfoam covers
But a bit of stocking and cable tie does the job.

-You've likely done this already, but slow down the flow on your filter as
2.5 gallons is small & strong current, over time, can damage/stress their fins.
I thought they liked playing in it at first, but its not there natural environment

Enjoy :)
 

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RusselltheShihTzu
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Welcome to the Fourm! :wave:

To upload photos click on "Go Advanced" and then either the paperclip in the toolbar or on "Managed Attachments."

<<snip>>

-You've likely done this already, but slow down the flow on your filter as
2.5 gallons is small & strong current, over time, can damage/stress their fins.
I thought they liked playing in it at first, but its not there natural environment <<snip>>
I agree that the output of any filter blowing a Betta all over the tank or preventiing it from resting or eating is unacceptable. However, current is extremely important to overall health of an aquatic environment. In addition, it allows Betta to exercise their fins and gain strength.

In all of the years I've had Betta, in filtered tanks/bowls from 2-100+ gallons, I've never experienced one that had damaged its fins from current; nor have I had any that were stressed. Instead, a majority deliberately sought the output stream when it could have been avoided. I have had almost 100% deliberately going in and out of bubble wands. I even have to watch when adding the replacement water when I do water changes. :)

All of that being said, there is nothing wrong with baffling filters or slowing output that is too strong no matter the reason. But it is not necessary unless the output makes the habitat uninhabitable.
 
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