Dwarf Puffer Has Strangest Illness And I'm Thoroughly Confused.

  1. I

    IRNOEbotGaming New Member Member

    I own four DP's, have had them for over a year and they are the last four of a starting six.
    I was completely ignorant when I bought these little guys and the guy at the LFS gave me a massive amount of wrong information. I will give my tank specs first then explain my situation:
    -I have a 20 gallon tank, my reads are zero across the board and around 5-10 for nitrates.
    -The tank is filled with decorations and a lot of fake plants/very few real ones.
    -I feed brine shrimp, snails and occasionally some blood worms.
    -I use Prime and stability during changes, which I do twice a week. One for 50% and one for 25%.
    The first guy died because my water was , he died in a month and it was from ignorance.
    The second guy died when we were asleep and was completely fine right before we went to bed after we fed them. He was a few months after the first.
    The rest have been fat and healthy for about a year, until a few weeks ago one of my babies (Precious) got sick and stopped eating. I treated the water and did a bunch of changes but found it was a full blood worm stuck in her.... I caught her in a net and pulled it out of her and she is as fat and as healthy as ever.
    But a few days later, so about a week ago now, one of my other DP's (Beautiful) stopped eating, became unsocial and started becoming very skinny. I treated the water again (I alternate between Metroplex and Prazipro usually) and as of yesterday, she has completely stopped being even remotely interested in food, completely pinched in tummy, swims with her head down and spirals...
    I know I am going to lose her because she won't eat, but I wanna know what this is and how to cure my other babies if they start to show signs.
    Few things to note that may help determine what it is:
    -One of my DP's (Little Guy) attacked the sick fish about a week ago over a snail, first time I have ever seen it, then did it again a few hours later when I tried to feed her again. She seemed fine so I chalked it up to territory issues and nature.
    -I have used more meds this month that any other month because of the first sick and thinking she has IP's. I only use Metroplex and Prazipro, and nothing else goes in my tank, other than Stability, prime and vitachem during changes.
    -Today I removed her from the tank into a container with half tank water and half fresh water to feed her warm peas soaked in garlic and I literally touched her face with it and she has ZERO interest.
    The poor little girl keeps trying to swim and you can tell is losing her drive to do so every hour.
    I doubt anyone can save her but any information or help would be very well appreciated.
    Symptoms one more time:
    Slight skin colour change - no appetite - spiral swimming and sometimes upside down swimming - sunken belly - sinks to bottom - and "head standing" when at the bottom sometimes if the current picks her up and moves her.
     
  2. Aquaphobia

    Aquaphobia Fishlore Legend Member

    Have you seen them poop? What did it look like?
     


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  3. OP
    OP
    I

    IRNOEbotGaming New Member Member

    Well, I haven't seen her poop in 2 days, but the others look healthy. Dark brown and solid.
    I just went out there to check on her and she was at the bottom of her little medical center, she was breathing super heavy for about a minute then she was down to one fin moving.
    She finally sank her tail down and did the smallest little puff and stopped moving. I sat with her for a few minutes to see if she would move again but she has passed.
    I should note that when she finally passed away, her tail finally sank to the bottom with the rest of her and her "puff" had a tiny bit of air in it.
    Any info or ideas, I am about to do a 75% water change and I am going to do a few 50% water changes this week.
    I don't want to lose the rest, I am open minded to any preventative measures.
     
  4. Aquaphobia

    Aquaphobia Fishlore Legend Member

    I only just got my first pea puffer myself so I'm as mystified as you! Any chance she ate some substrate and got blocked up that way? Perhaps @KnownToSome would have some ideas. I believe they've kept a few. I'm really sorry you lost her.
     
  5. leftswerve

    leftswerve Well Known Member Member

    OP, why was there air in it? Had it puffed when you pulled it out of the water or something?
     
  6. OP
    OP
    I

    IRNOEbotGaming New Member Member

    I don't think so, I am careful with them, I use a small cup so they never technically leave the water. I am honestly not sure. They can't swallow the bubbles from their bubbler can they?
     
  7. OP
    OP
    I

    IRNOEbotGaming New Member Member

    I use sand...can the sand hurt them if they swallow the sand...? I will be so sad as the gravel stuff seems to hurt their tiny bodies :<
     
  8. KnownToSome

    KnownToSome New Member Member

    I feel awful coming in so late, I had a family situation that has kept me busy elsewhere. But I have both had my puffs take in air, and eat sand (med grain sand, sorts "gravel lite") this is not what happened here.

    You see, FW fish don't drink the water they're in, so treating the water for IPs is like putting vitamins in your bubble bath, it won't get inside you. You used the correct meds, but they are most effective when used orally (soaking food in it for at least a day prior to feeding). It sounds to me like the sweet girl was too far gone by the time you found out she still had something inside her, and once they stop eating- unless you force feed them with a pipette, which does work if it's necessary btw, it's very hard to cure them if not impossible. I would reworm all your puffs with an internal delivery system this time, just to be sure. This is the BEST article on puffs and IPs, I personally use fenbendazole for all mine (the powder absorbs well with thawed frozen food and stays well during feeding), which is safe unless the fish has prior septesemia issues.

    https://www.thepufferforum.com/forum/library/hospital/internal-parasites-prevention-and-treatment/

    Did she make it per chance...?
     


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