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34 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Back again with another issue! :roll: This morning Momo was fine when I fed him, and I was gone all day...came upstairs and he was nowhere to be found in his tank. So I tapped a couple of times and he came swimming up like a rocket to the top.

I started noticing something weird. He's having a hell of a time swimming down, and I watched him swim down with everything he had and then lodge himself into a plant to stay put :cry: poor guy. When he's at the top he sometimes lists to the side, and it looks like (when looking down at him from above) his back is in sort of an S shape and he does look a bit bloated. So, I think it may be SBD, but I would like your opinions. Here is some info:


What size is your tank?

3.4 gallon

What temperature is your tank?

Not sure, haven't yet gotten a thermometer

Does your tank have a filter?

Yes, a sponge filter

Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration?


Is your tank heated?

When it gets really cold in my room I'll stick his heater in, but I'm paranoid about leaving it unattended.

What tank mates does your betta fish live with?



What type of food do you feed your betta fish?

Nutrafin Max Flake Food

How often do you feed your betta fish?

Once a day


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?

25% to 50%

What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change?

Kordon Amquel Ammonia Detoxifier and conditioner

Water Parameters:

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

Haven't tested, need to get some strips still

Symptoms and Treatment

How has your betta fish's appearance changed?

Looks like he took a bite out of his fin the other day, I posted another thread about that. Aside from the bloating and S-shape I spoke about above, no.

How has your betta fish's behavior changed?

Yes. He's currently floating at the top of his tank, slightly listed to the side....can't swim down. When he tries to swim down he darts really fast and then floats back up.

When did you start noticing the symptoms?

Just now. He seemed fine this morning, so it might have happened within the past 10 hours.

Have you started treating your fish? If so, how?

I have not because I'm not sure what to do, which is why I'm here.

Does your fish have any history of being ill?

Don't think so. I got him at Petco after Christmas.

How old is your fish (approximately)?

I'm not sure how old he is - I would guess several months.

I'm wondering if you guys think this is swim bladder, and how I should go about treating him. Thank you!

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34 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
It does sound like SBD to me but I am not an expert.

Try fasting him for a day or so. if that does not help you may wants to move on to using PLAIN UNSCENTED epsom salt. 1 teaspoon per gallon.
Thank you! Its breaking my heart to see him struggle to swim :cry: I'm definitely going to try fasting him, and I also read you can give them a cooked, skinned pea after fasting, to help them have a 'movement'.

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34 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I personally have not fed mine a pea, but I do know how to prepare one for a fish... It's supposed to be blanched, not cooked. Any frozen peas you would normally buy at a store have been appropriately blanched (otherwise they wouldn't be safe for even you to eat). Simply thaw a frozen pea and remove its skin. A piece of the inside, no more than a quarter, should be enough. A good judge is to make it about the same size as your fish's eye. Also, don't feed him any other food the day you give him the pea. Hope that helps!

Very helpful, thank you!! Hopefully he's back to normal after a couple days of fasting, but I'll likely give him a pea anyways :)

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34 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Yes I'll definitely fast him for 2 days before I try anything, and then depending on how he is I'll give him a bit of a pea! *fingers crossed*

Thank you again for all the tips! Its such an odd thing to watch, its like he's swallowed a balloon. He literally bounces once he's at the surface!

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34 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Just an update; a couple days of fasting seems to have done the trick! He's swimming around normally and he's able to float in the middle of the tank. YAY!

Still might give him a pea just as an extra push to being cleaned out.

Thank you again for the help!!
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