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Having trouble treating sick betta


Jordan
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I have a betta (Barry) that has been behaving very odd the past 10 - 14 days or so and was wondering if I could get some help in figuring out how to address it. Notably, he has been lethargic, breathing heavily and not eating.

We initially noticed he wasn't eating about 12ish days ago and when we tested the water there was an ammonia spike (to about 1ppm) due to a dead snail. We did water changes daily until ammonia was back to 0 and figured he would start eating a couple days later once he recovered; however he never went back to normal so we did some more research. We then thought he might be suffering from some infection or other such illness because he looked fine, he just wasn't acting like himself. At that point we decided to do daily methylene blue baths: 1ml of MB per gallon of tank water for 30 minutes each day. After a few days, we noticed he was moving around a little more (actually going up to the surface for air) but still not eating. At this point it has been about 9 days of daily MB baths and he's still not eating but he is moving around more.

On top of all that, I just noticed that his scales are more... noticeable? Almost spikey and his belly looks bloated. Googling around I found that it might be dropsy but, to be honest, I feel lost trying to diagnose him and I feel like I've tried so much and nothing is working 😔

I had considered buying the quarantine medication trio from Aquarium Coop and putting him in a hospital tank for a week or so but from what I've been reading I'm not sure if that is any different than the MB baths he's been getting daily; however, at this point I'm willing to try anything. Any help is much appreciated

Water parameters: Ammonia 0, Nitrite 0, pH 8.2, temp 78ish

Here are a couple photos I took of him today:

PXL_20210623_224139806.PORTRAIT.jpg.1cae8a3657a865269d9664bfbe2dae58.jpgPXL_20210623_231912144.jpg.34599529bc3c9ae76b733484ee1a9663.jpg

 

And here is a photo of him from January

PXL_20210119_014705992.PORTRAIT.jpg.64c5c9d03445746b1cf78d8cc42c221a.jpg

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Thank you for the quick response! I placed an order with amazon and will hopefully get everything soon 🤞

There are some invertebrates in the main tank with him so I was planning on moving him into a hospital tank to treat him and I was wondering, how often should I add the salt to the water? Should I only add it after I change the water or should I add salt every few days sorta thing?

Thanks again!

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On 6/23/2021 at 9:16 PM, Jordan said:

Thank you for the quick response! I placed an order with amazon and will hopefully get everything soon 🤞

There are some invertebrates in the main tank with him so I was planning on moving him into a hospital tank to treat him and I was wondering, how often should I add the salt to the water? Should I only add it after I change the water or should I add salt every few days sorta thing?

Thanks again!

Perhaps @Colu will disagree with me, so go with whatever he says he has more experiance then I do.

When I treat with salt I try to dose every day, or every other day but I always do a waterchange before each salt dosing. You dont want too much salt in your water.

Also make sure you only treat for a week at a time. So treat salt for a week, and after do waterchanges to remove the salt despite the fish being any better. If the fish still hasn't improved after your one week salt treatment try a salt bath. Heres a video I followed when I was doing a salt bath:

I would also reccemend watching this video prior to using any salt at all:

 

 I wish you the best of luck with your treatment! Keep us updated!

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On 6/24/2021 at 3:16 AM, Jordan said:

Thank you for the quick response! I placed an order with amazon and will hopefully get everything soon 🤞

There are some invertebrates in the main tank with him so I was planning on moving him into a hospital tank to treat him and I was wondering, how often should I add the salt to the water? Should I only add it after I change the water or should I add salt every few days sorta thing?

Thanks again!

What I would do is start at 1 table spoon for 5 as he's not doing great and you don't won't shock him and then gradually increase it over a couple of days to 1 table spoon for 2 gallons remember when you do a water change only put back in the amount of salt you take out so if you do 2 gallon water change put 1 table spoon of salt back in

Edited by Colu
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@James Black Thanks for the info, I found both videos incredibly helpful! I love the fact that Aquarium Coop has a 2 hour video on just salt. It really demonstrates the passion of Cory (and the AC crew) as well as the community! Super awesome to see 😄 

 

On 6/24/2021 at 6:31 AM, Colu said:

remember when you do a water change only put back in the amount of salt you take out

Thanks for the call out here! I would've totally just put in the "full" amount after a water change otherwise 😬😄

I was able to find some salt at my LFS so I set up a hospital tank for the little fella and added 1 Tbsp of salt per 5 gallons and will slowly add more salt over the next few days until I reach 1 Tbsp per 2 gallon. The KanaPlex and GarlicGuard are supposed to show up on Saturday so hopefully the salt will help a little until then. In the meantime, I've got some blood worms I'm going to try to hand feed to him to (hopefully) get something in his belly.

Thanks again everyone, I'll be sure to post here to keep you all updated!

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Hello again! Just a quick update for everyone.

I added the KanaPlex to Barry's hospital tank on Saturday night and then on Sunday I added a bit more salt (to get him up to the 1T per 2gal ratio). I don't think there has been any physical change in his appearance (although it is kinda hard to tell) and he's still not moving around a whole lot.

The good news is that he nibbled on some (GarlicGuard soaked) blood worms this morning! I took some tweezers and put them right in front of his face and he took a few bites 🎉🎉🎉 The KanaPlex container says to add medicine every two days so I will probably do that tonight and I'll let you all know if how that all works out 🤞

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Hey everyone,

I was just wondering, how quickly does KanaPlex work? Reason I ask is because I'm not seeing significant improvement over the past week of treating him. I've been adding KanaPlex every two days per the instructions (after 6 days I skipped one day and changed his water) and the salt is at about 1Tbsp per 2 gal. 

Each day I try to feed him bloodworms soaked in GarlicGuard; some days he nibbles and others he doesn't. It seems like he's going up to the surface for air more frequently but other than that he doesn't move around a whole lot. Additionally, I think he looks the same? Honestly it's kinda hard to tell. 

Any thoughts or advice at this point? Should I just keep up with the current treatment? Is there anything else I should be doing?

Thanks!

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Finished up the round of KanaPlex round and then gave him maracyn and unfortunately, I'm still not seeing much (if any) improvement 😔 to be honest, it looks like his belly is more bloated but regardless, he's still not really eating, moving around and he's still breathing hard.

At this point I'm wondering what is the likelihood of him actually recovering. From what I've been reading online of others' in similar situations, the prognosis doesn't seem great but I'm curious what others think.

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As there  not much improvement and he's still not eating much and the bloating has got worse  I would say there's a small chance of him recovering if you think he's suffering you might have to consider euthanizeing him clove oil is the most human way as there's not a lot more treatment wise I can suggest as treating with kanaplex and maracyn and aquarium salt haven't seen much of an improvement other then treating with kanaplex and API furan2 together makes a more broad spectrum antibiotic treatment

Edited by Colu
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