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Sick betta, please help quickly
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losttheskyagain
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Joined: 20 Jun 2011

PostPosted: 2011.07.15(Fri)19:52    Post subject: Sick betta, please help quickly Reply with quote

My little betta's tummy has been bloated for the past two weeks. I've stopped feeding him and have given him half a blanched pea each week, thinking it was constipation.

Well his tummy is getting bigger. When he's up against light I can see how opaque the bulge is, it is very light in color and there are no dark splotches. I think it's a bacterial infection.

He's very active and can swim just fine right now, though he does tremble.

He's in a 2.5 gal heated but unfiltered tank, normal parameters (except from a slightly high pH, which he's had his whole life), with weekly 25-50% water changes and 100% once a month, though I've been giving him 100% every few days lately.

What do I do?
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Flame Angel
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Joined: 07 Nov 2006
Location: Sydney, Australia

PostPosted: 2011.07.15(Fri)23:15    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are his fins sticking out? Like a pinecone? Do a search for 'dropsy'.

I would stop the 100% water changes, and do smaller (say 50%) more often, although if the water quality is fine there is no real need probably...by 'normal parameters' do you mean zero ammonia and nitrite? And how high is 'slightly high' pH?

It is possible that it is a bacterial infection, however I would be hesitant to add meds if you aren't sure, and often they have no effect on this type of infection anyway.

Salt may help.
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losttheskyagain
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Joined: 20 Jun 2011

PostPosted: 2011.07.16(Sat)7:55    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's not dropsy. And yes, I mean zero ammonia and nitrite. The pH usually clocks in at 8, but he was born and raised in that water so that is not the problem.

I don't want to try salt. I read everywhere that salt is a bad idea.

I don't know what else it could be. It's not parasites. Nothing new has been introduced to the tank. I left him with a friend for three weeks not too long ago and there's a chance his water changes weren't as thorough when he was there. That's why I'm pretty sure it's a bacterial infection.
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unissuh
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Joined: 29 Mar 2005
Location: Melbourne, Australia

PostPosted: 2011.07.16(Sat)7:59    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry, no helpful suggestions from my end at this point besides maintaining good water quality. Do you have a picture? They always help with trying to figure out what the problem is. Very Happy
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losttheskyagain
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Joined: 20 Jun 2011

PostPosted: 2011.07.16(Sat)8:50    Post subject: Reply with quote

How often and how much water should I change, do you think?




In this one you can really see how light travels through his bulge and how there's nothing solid in there.


Just so you can see it's even on both sides.

This photo shoot also led me to discover he isn't flaring anymore. I guess it puts too much pressure on him.

And if there's any medication suggestions... I'm open to them.
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unissuh
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Joined: 29 Mar 2005
Location: Melbourne, Australia

PostPosted: 2011.07.16(Sat)20:29    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmm, I'm at a bit of a loss here to be honest - hard to say what it is definitively. Could be fluid accumulating from an organ failing possibly. I'd probably stick with about 25% waterchange a day for now, not sure larger ones will help in this case, make sure the water temperature doesn't flunctuate too much.

My thoughts would be to try an epsom salt dip or bath, these are commonly used for constipation and other blockage/swelling problems. I'd dip if you're comfortable with moving the fish between containers, bath if you're not.

With the dip, you can use a pretty high concentration of epsom salt, if I recall right up to about 3 grams per L. Dissolve it in tank water and transfer the fish inside for 20-30 min, stop immediately and move back to main tank if the fish starts rolling over or panicking.

With a bath, it's much easier (but IME less effective)...just add about a gram per L into the tank. When you do a waterchange add the right amount for the volume of water you changed so the amount on the tank stays constant.
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