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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Housing
What size is your tank? 1 gallon
What temperature is your tank? 78-83
Does your tank have a filter? no
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? NLS Betta Formula and bloodworms.
How often do you feed your betta fish? 2x daily, 3 pellets per meal. On wednesday and sunday skip pellets and feed 4 freeze dried bloodworms split up between two meals instead

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change? 2x a week
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 100%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Aqueon ammonia neutralizer( which also neutralizes chlorine and chloramine) and Ph down. Currently reducing amount of PH down because recommended to do so. Should be done using it on monday.

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

Ammonia: N/A
Nitrite: N/A
Nitrate: N/A
pH: Somwhere above 7.6
Hardness: 20-30 grains of hardness
Alkalinity: N/A

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? Body is slightly paler than used to be.
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? Hardly swims, lays on thermometer suction cup and gravel almost all the time. Last several days has started free falling down after getting air. This happens once in a while. Other times after getting air swims down. Seems to have trouble getting air sometimes. Movements are somewhat jerky.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? About one and a half months ago. Has gotten worse last several days.
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? No
Does your fish have any history of being ill? Probably
How old is your fish (approximately)? See below

Some friends won him at a fair in August 2010. They kept him in a 1 liter container, changed his water once a month, and didn't use dechlorinator. They used well water. We got him from them in June. He looked horrid but got better quickly. He could have been old when he was at the fair, I don't know. He seems weak and I think medications would stress him out. Is he just old, is he getting sick, or is the abuse finally catching up to him? I have AQ salt, Epsom salts, and Maracyn 1 & 2. We don't really want to take extraordinary measures if this is the natural end of his life, he has been thoroughly spoiled since his arrival here, and is a beloved fishy member of our family. If there is something we could do to help him, we'd like to, but we don't want to prolong his suffering unnecessarily. We also have clove oil and vodka if he gets really bad and needs to be euthanized. Thank you in advance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I got API Stress Coat today because it is highly reccomended. It's supposed to reduce stress with fish, but will it stress Toby out if I put it in now?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I added the API stress coat. It didn't really help. He spends almost all of the time at the bottom of the tank, and his tail and anal fins seem to be getting shorter. There are no signs of fin rot. His poop is short, bright red, thin, and curled into a U shape. Please help!:-(
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I messed up describing the poop. It is very bright red, very skinny, probably about an inch long, with a white tip at one end. It is curled into a spiral shape. That is the biggest one. The others look the same except that they're shorter than 1 inch. I'm not sure if it is poop, but I don't see any normal poops and he's not bloated, so it must be. I hope this helps. Please help. Could it just be that his past abuse is catching up to him?
 

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The medications that you have are good too. Maracyn 1 & 2.
I just texted Oldfishlady asked to look at your post. She knows all natural remedies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I do know instructions on that. Start at 1 tsp. per gallon predissolved, and if no improvement, slowly increase to 2-3 tsp. per gallon, right? That would be easy since I change his water today anyways. Thanks.:)
 

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1 tsp/gall with daily 100% water changes. You can use aquarium not iodized salt only for 10 days.
Pre-mix it in 1gall jug to make correct daily dosage and water changes easier.
Usually Oldfish lady recommending to QT fish in small container for the treatment and maintain a water temp of 76-78*.

You can use a gall from spring water or milk. If it from milk you need to rinse with water very well.

Or if you don't want qt then i guess you can keep him in his 1 gall.

Wait a little I am wondering what Oldfish lady will recommend I did text her.

Keep us update.
 

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not bloated very skinny...and his poop has white tip on the end..it might be internal parasites...


EDIT: For internal parasites Epsom salt is recommended so wait with aq salt....
 

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Sorry your Betta isn't well......

It sounds like he may be aging out, however, it never hurts to try since these guys can really surprise you.....but like you posted you also don't want to prolong his suffering......

At this point-either aquarium salt or Epsom salt, personally I would use Epsom salt 2-3tsp/gal and tannins if you have some-either IAL or Oak leaf, lower water level, no water movement, dim lights, plastic veggie wrap over the top to help retain heat/humidity for the labyrinth organ, water temp 77-80F

Normally I would recommend that you use a small QT, however, since it may be age related-sometimes it is best to keep them in their regular tank when housed alone already-just lower the water level so its easier for him to reach the top for air and cover the top to increase humidity to make them the most comfortable.

If you have a tannin source-add the dried leaves to the tank so that they can slowly release tannins to get the water darker.

I would use a cup of the tank water to dissolve the Epsom salt 2-3tsp/gal and slowly add it to the tank over about and hour-longer if needed....

Water changes-I wouldn't do any 100% at this point-I would Premix some treatment water- use a 1gal jug of dechlorinated water-add the tannins and Epsom salt 2-3tsp/gal and make 25% daily water only changes
Epsom salt is safe to use long term and with live plants-and if you have any live plants you can float in the tank with him so that he can use them to rest on-that can be helpful to make him feel more secure and comfy....

With end of life issues-its more important to make them comfy, limit stress...etc.....and if he looks to be suffering-you need to do what is right by him and by the sounds of your post....you have a good understanding of this as well as prepared......

Nutrition-if he wants to eat-feed him good quality varied diet in small frequent meals and if you have access to mosquito larva-offer a few rinsed..

Keep us posted...
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Will do ES salt. I guess I should mention, his motions are jerky, not fluid, compared to our other betta, Ares. He also has a voracious apetite, especially since we recently upgraded to NLS. I will do my best to keep him around 78 degrees, but his heater is a hydor 7.5 watt, which doesn't have an internal thermostat. Since the ammonia levels might get too high if I only do 25% water changes, could I do several partial water changes? I would do them about every 15-20 minutes if that would work. That would only be for today, starting tomorrow I would do daily 25% water changes. Thank you so much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I just did a partial water change. It was closer to 50% than 25%, never mind. I'm going to do one more today after 15 minutes. His movements which I mentioned being jerky are also stiff, and his fins are very short. He is the betta in our avatar, but he looks a lot different now. The fins are half the length they are in the avatar picture, but there are no signs of fin rot and no fin chunks are on the bottom.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Did second water change.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Quick update:
He looks a tiny bit better, and the angle at which his back end hangs down isn't as steep as it used to be. He loves his NLS Betta Formula pellets, but today when I fed him freeze-dried bloodworms, he ate one tiny one and spit the rest out (I fed him 3 very small ones).
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I left the bloodworms in and he ate them, must just have had a hard time eating them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
He's doing about the same. The only difference are his fins are even shorter, and there are two tiny black spots on the back. The black spots started out a few days ago and looked like dry skin peeling away(it looked like athletes foot on a human). Then they turned black. I tried to get pictures of the black spots, but I couldn't. I couldn't get any pictures without a flash, so these are all with flash. The first one was taken in December. The next four were taken several days ago. And the last two were taken last night. We don't see any evidence of fin rot, and we havent' seen him tail-biting, the fins just seem to be disappearing-and disappearing evenly. He doesn't swim much at all, spending most of his time perched on top of his suction cup (in picture) or thermometer (probably because it's hard to swim without fins). His movements are jerky and stiff, not at all fluid like they used to be. He never has been one to look at, owing to the neglect he received from his first owners. But now he just looks terrible. The one positive thing to report is that he still gets excited about eating, and seems to have a good appetite. He also likes to say hi when we go by his tank. Poor guy, any advice? Thanks ever-so-much!
 

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Sadly, it looks like he is aging out and not a lot we can do except to keep him comfy.....

If I remember correctly he is well over 2 years old and this being a short lived species to start then along with the poor care he received before you got him can sometimes limit life span....on average longevity is 2-3 years-rarely 4-5 years.....genetic, overall health, past health issues, nutrition...etc....all can impact longevity.....

What you are doing is about all I know to do in cases like this.....good luck and sorry I couldn't be of more help.....
 
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