First Time Betta Owner Trying To Heal My Betta

Teb

New Member
Messages
14
Reaction score
1
Points
13
Hi I just joined this forum after reading a few posts to try and help my betta. I have a 5 gallon tank with a filter and water heater. My betta is a very active swimmer and all of a sudden we found her at the bottom of the tank looking a little bloated. When she swam she was nose down tail up and about 25 degrees and her body in a slight s shape. To try and fix this we first ran tests strips of the water. The only abnormality was the ammonia level is at .5. I have changed 40 percent of the water 4 times and each time applied the appropriate amount of stress coat to the tank. Today I went out and got Epsom salt and gave Lilly a salt bath for 8 minutes not sure if it should be longer. Wondering how to lower the ammonia level as it has stayed at .5 even after water changes and also if I should try something different with the Epsom salt bath.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #3

Teb

New Member
Messages
14
Reaction score
1
Points
13
I am assuming room temperature and chopped in quarters? I forgot to mention I did buy peas. Does it matter that they are labeled as sweet peas?
 

SFGiantsGuy

Well Known Member
Messages
1,088
Reaction score
388
Points
108
Experience
More than 10 years
I always have kinda smushed 'em up with a bit of garlic concentrate as well. Prime works best for water conditioning as well as a liquid test kit sir. I strongly, veyr highly recommend those products as your go-to imperative fundamental tools at your disposal, as paper test kits are vaguely accurate and can be very inconsistent compared to liquid test kits. And is your tank cycled at all?
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #5

Teb

New Member
Messages
14
Reaction score
1
Points
13
I have changed 20 percent of the water the past two days and I am about to change 20 percent more of the water now. Is this what you mean by cycling?
 

Mcasella

Fishlore VIP
Messages
8,405
Reaction score
4,378
Points
458
Experience
5 to 10 years
I have changed 20 percent of the water the past two days and I am about to change 20 percent more of the water now. Is this what you mean by cycling?
Nitrogen Cycle is what they are talking about, it is the process of having good levels of bacteria grown so the ammonia, nitritelevels are zero. Nitrate needs to be kept below 40, ammonia and nitrite can kill fish, the bacteria grows for ammonia first (so it's level will drop), then the bacteria for nitrite will grow (nitrite levels will drop, nitrate should rise), you levels should read 0 ammo, 0 nitri, and some nitrates for a cycled tank.
Keep doing daily water changes, I would pick up a product called Prime and use it in place of stress coat as it helps protect your fish from ammo/nitrite for 24hrs.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #8

Teb

New Member
Messages
14
Reaction score
1
Points
13
Thank you for all the help! I did buy a bottle of stress and each time I do a 20-30% water change, I put 2.5ml of the stress coat in. My biggest question now is if doing an 8 minute Epsom salt bath everyday is okay until Lilly is healthy? I use 1 gallon of water and 1tbsp of Epsom salt mixed together. I tried feeding her peas but she doesn't even go near them. She's being fasted as well. Good news is after just the one Epsom bath she is swimming a little more normally and is going from the top of the tank to the bottom of the tank more frequently. She also started using her resting leaf more that's near the top of the tank.
 

Mcasella

Fishlore VIP
Messages
8,405
Reaction score
4,378
Points
458
Experience
5 to 10 years
Thank you for all the help! I did buy a bottle of stress and each time I do a 20-30% water change, I put 2.5ml of the stress coat in. My biggest question now is if doing an 8 minute Epsom salt bath everyday is okay until Lilly is healthy? I use 1 gallon of water and 1tbsp of Epsom salt mixed together. I tried feeding her peas but she doesn't even go near them. She's being fasted as well. Good news is after just the one Epsom bath she is swimming a little more normally and is going from the top of the tank to the bottom of the tank more frequently. She also started using her resting leaf more that's near the top of the tank.
It sounds like swim bladder issues, meaning you will have to control her food very much, the Epsom baths will not hurt but I would not continue them beyond 3 days in a row since she does not have more serious issues that require the salt (baths can go up to 30 minutes, normally 15 is the lower end for time unless the fish is stressing). I would fast for the same amount and see how she looks in a couple days, if she has her balance back then feed sparingly to prevent it from occurring again. 3-4 times a week once a day is likely the best route to go, I have a dt make that has severe issues with swim bladder so he gets fed 2-3 times a week once a day because it is so bad (more and he floats on his side for a couple days until the fasting works).
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #10

Teb

New Member
Messages
14
Reaction score
1
Points
13
Thank you so much! My girlfriend bought her and we fell in love with her because of how active she is and how she swims up to meet us after work and every morning. I guess we overfed her with flakes. Is there another food option or options we should try to avoid this? We currently feed her a flake medley because she refused to eat pellets. We read that blood worms should be a treat only and not an everyday food.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #12

Teb

New Member
Messages
14
Reaction score
1
Points
13
One more question I promise haha. Would it be okay to get a snail or two that roam the bottom of the gravel and feed on the bottom? Or do they require their own food as well?
 

Mcasella

Fishlore VIP
Messages
8,405
Reaction score
4,378
Points
458
Experience
5 to 10 years
One more question I promise haha. Would it be okay to get a snail or two that roam the bottom of the gravel and feed on the bottom? Or do they require their own food as well?
Pest snails would be okay for this but others need more food than that (a nerite generally only eats algae, a mystery will eat everything, so veggies and shrimp pellets are helpful to keep their shell in good shape, however most mystery snails poop as much as they eat so they aren't any cleaner than you just suctioning the old food out).
 

BobNJerry

Valued Member
Messages
311
Reaction score
186
Points
73
Experience
More than 10 years
I dont know if this has been mentioned but keep in mind that a bettas stomach is about the size of it's eye - so it needs very little food and they dont need to eat every day.

I have one betta that doesn't bother with his snail.. i have another betta and it bit both antenas off his snail- so its a gamble .. have a back up plan in case your betta doesn't like it's snail.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #15

Teb

New Member
Messages
14
Reaction score
1
Points
13
Noted. Because I was close to buying snails but I don't think I will now. What's the best way to suction out the old food on the bottom with all the gravel that's down there? How often should the gravel be changed?
 

Mcasella

Fishlore VIP
Messages
8,405
Reaction score
4,378
Points
458
Experience
5 to 10 years
Noted. Because I was close to buying snails but I don't think I will now. What's the best way to suction out the old food on the bottom with all the gravel that's down there? How often should the gravel be changed?
A small air line or a turkey baster, I wouldn't change the gravel but I would gravel vacuum it if you can (every other weekly water change stir up the gravel and suck the gunk out).
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #17

Teb

New Member
Messages
14
Reaction score
1
Points
13
Got it! Thanks to everyone for the solid advice. I feel better about Lilly getting better and being healthy going forward
 

BobNJerry

Valued Member
Messages
311
Reaction score
186
Points
73
Experience
More than 10 years
One more question I promise haha. Would it be okay to get a snail or two that roam the bottom of the gravel and feed on the bottom? Or do they require their own food as well?
ask away - this is your thread! LOL
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #19

Teb

New Member
Messages
14
Reaction score
1
Points
13
Could use some more help. My fish is still slightly bloated and not swimming as actively as before. Is there any type of medicine that would help my betta heal as well? I'm going to give her a second salt bath because after the first one she was swimming better. Also, she will NOT go near the crushed up peas and stays near the top or bottom and does not move at all. I've fasted her except for one pea two days ago and one pea last night.
 

Mcasella

Fishlore VIP
Messages
8,405
Reaction score
4,378
Points
458
Experience
5 to 10 years
Could use some more help. My fish is still slightly bloated and not swimming as actively as before. Is there any type of medicine that would help my betta heal as well? I'm going to give her a second salt bath because after the first one she was swimming better. Also, she will NOT go near the crushed up peas and stays near the top or bottom and does not move at all. I've fasted her except for one pea two days ago and one pea last night.
Can you get a picture of her? Some fish will not eat peas, it is okay.
 
Toggle Sidebar

Aquarium Calculator

Follow FishLore!





Top Bottom