Fish Swim Bladder Issues - Looking For Advice.. :(

squidney13
  • #1
My poor baby Axl seemed to have developed swim bladder last Saturday (the 25th). I moved him into a hospital tank with less water because while he was floating near the top on his side I wanted to make sure he wasn’t struggling. I’ve been doing 50% water changes in the tank currently that has API Stress Coat + in the water. The heater keeps the tank around 78 degrees (its small and not adjustable). Things seemed to be getting better while I was fasting him as he turned upright again but since Wednesday I’ve tried to feed him some daphnia and he’s just showing no interest in it. I’ve had him about a year and a half and he was fine up until last week. I’m starting to worry it’s something more however because he’s not really improving, he is active and seems very happy when I give him Epsom salt soaks for about 15 mins (on day 3 of them), but once he’s back in his tank he just hangs out on a leaf near the heater looking sad. As of right now his eyes look normal, possibly a bit darker but it’s hard to tell because the lighting in my apartment isn’t great, there’s no pine cone effects happening, no white spots or fuzz. Is there anything else I can try? I feel completely lost and I’m out of ideas. I’m worried I’m going to lose him.

I appreciate any help and advice I can get.
 
Plecodreams
  • #2
what type of fish is he?
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
what type of fish is he?

He’s a Veil Tail Betta! Sorry I’ve posted so many times looking for advice everywhere I completely forgot to add that
 
Plecodreams
  • #4
It could be anything, really. How big is your tank and is he the only fish in the tank?
 
Plecodreams
  • #5
If you've had him for 1 1/2 years he could be dying of natural causes, sadly.
 
sipec
  • #6
Some pictures of him and his qt might help
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #7
It could be anything, really. How big is your tank and is he the only fish in the tank?

I have a 5.5 gallon and he was going to be however with the circumstances I’ve got another male currently living in it. (Mums idea as a back up in case he didn’t pull through, if he did I’d get a bigger tank and divide it or just another tank the same size). However he was the only fish I had at the time of the symptoms showing and has been kept on his own since everything started. I’ve got a 2 gallon tank I’m keeping him in with the heater but I’ve not filled it fully so there’s not as much water to stress him out.
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #8
Some pictures of him and his qt might help

I tried to upload one originally and it wasn’t letting me.
IMG_2835.JPG
IMG_2885.jpg
The first was yesterday during his soak, the second is after his soak today.
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #9
If you've had him for 1 1/2 years he could be dying of natural causes, sadly.

I hope not I know they’re capable of living decent life spans. Plus I’m attached to him now.
 
sipec
  • #10
Parameters may help too. Also do u use declorinator in your water, or do u have a well?
 
Plecodreams
  • #11
I hope not I know they’re capable of living decent life spans. Plus I’m attached to him now.
Bettas usually live 2-3 years, so if you bought him, say, when he was 6 months old, he would be about 2 years old; towards the end of his average life span.
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #12
Parameters may help too. Also do u use declorinator in your water, or do u have a well?

I do use a declorinator, do not have a well. Have been using Stress Coat recently since he was floating near the top and I was worried about him getting sores on his back. I should also add which you can possibly see in the one photo his spine seems to be curving a little too.
 
Plecodreams
  • #13
Could be fish tuberculosis
 
sipec
  • #14
Parameters?
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #15
Could be fish tuberculosis

I’ve seen a few things about it but not much. I was hoping it wasn’t that. It just sucks because it’s very out of the blue. He was completely fine it seemed on Friday
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #16
Parameters?

I’m waiting on a shipment of testers since I’ve been working all nights and now with the long weekend I haven’t been able to get anything to see if anything is off. I’ve had no issues since I’ve got him and I’ve been on top of water changes. So I don’t have anything up to date other than the water temp because the heater keeps it consistent. I know that doesn’t help but I’m stuck currently.
 
Plecodreams
  • #17
I’ve seen a few things about it but not much. I was hoping it wasn’t that. It just sucks because it’s very out of the blue. He was completely fine it seemed on Friday
I really hope your fish gets better, I know how hard it is to lose someone you love. It sounds like you have been doing things right, keep trying, I bet he will recover.
 
sipec
  • #18
Keep us posted
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #19
Keep us posted

Will do. The fact that he’s not going for food and went back to going to a sideways float is what has me worried. It seemed like he was doing better minus the not eating part
 
oOBlueOo
  • #20
My poor baby Axl seemed to have developed swim bladder last Saturday (the 25th). I moved him into a hospital tank with less water because while he was floating near the top on his side I wanted to make sure he wasn’t struggling. I’ve been doing 50% water changes in the tank currently that has API Stress Coat + in the water. The heater keeps the tank around 78 degrees (its small and not adjustable). Things seemed to be getting better while I was fasting him as he turned upright again but since Wednesday I’ve tried to feed him some daphnia and he’s just showing no interest in it. I’ve had him about a year and a half and he was fine up until last week. I’m starting to worry it’s something more however because he’s not really improving, he is active and seems very happy when I give him Epsom salt soaks for about 15 mins (on day 3 of them), but once he’s back in his tank he just hangs out on a leaf near the heater looking sad. As of right now his eyes look normal, possibly a bit darker but it’s hard to tell because the lighting in my apartment isn’t great, there’s no pine cone effects happening, no white spots or fuzz. Is there anything else I can try? I feel completely lost and I’m out of ideas. I’m worried I’m going to lose him.

I appreciate any help and advice I can get.


I think you're doing a good job trying to heal him

Another thing you could try is to fast him again, about 24 hours, then feed a deshelled pea. You might have to cut it into small pieces.

How much do you normally feed him and what kind of food? I once had a betta that was prone to bloat if fed pellets. So he had to be fed betta flakes soaked in water. Just a small bit though. Those little beggers always think they're hungryead:
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #21
I think you're doing a good job trying to heal him

Another thing you could try is to fast him again, about 24 hours, then feed a deshelled pea. You might have to cut it into small pieces.

How much do you normally feed him and what kind of food? I once had a betta that was prone to bloat if fed pellets. So he had to be fed betta flakes soaked in water. Just a small bit though. Those little beggers always think they're hungryead:

I was originally feeding him pellets. When I first got him I tried flakes (my previous one ate anything), and he wouldn’t eat them. I thought the cause was over feeding maybe by someone in my family while I was away for a few days but since I haven’t been able to eat anything since last Friday (24th) I’m not sure. He’s not pooped either I tried the frozen daphnia thinking he’d be much more interested in it and it would help him go. I tried the pea and he wasn’t interested in that either. He’s been starting to float more on his side again now to the point where I keep checking if he’s gone . I used to feed him once a day give it take some fasting and I probably dropped more than I should have a couple of times but he’s never had this problem before.
 
Iverg1
  • #22
Hello! Welcome to Fishlore! Have you tryed fasting or a pea (Well you already used daphina so...) He looks like he's missingndome scales on the top of his head has he always had that? Plecodreams there have been cases of bettas living up to 5 years so there's that Repolie Sakura48 wanna take a look see?
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #23
Hello! Welcome to Fishlore! Have you tryed fasting or a pea (Well you already used daphina so...) He looks like he's missingndome scales on the top of his head has he always had that? Plecodreams there have been cases of bettas living up to 5 years so there's that Repolie Sakura48 wanna take a look see?

Started fasting as soon as I looked into everything. I assumed the problem was being over fed so it was my first resort. He ignored the pea and both I and my mum tried a few times and I lowered the water so he had easy access since he’s not swimming down much. From what I can see the only change I’ve noticed but I may not really have noticed are his eyes appear slightly darker as does his general face colouring but he’s changed a lot in colour since I first got him so I’m not really sure. He’s back to being more on a lean as opposed to being stuck on his side currently so I’ll see if I can get another photo.
 
Iverg1
  • #24
Well your doing everything right so far. Don't worry about the pea daphina works the same way. I don't know about his eyes I'm just waiting for Repolie or Sakura48 or anyone else to get here
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #25

IMG_2890.jpg

Current photo. It’s the best I can do currently
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #26
Well your doing everything right so far. Don't worry about the pea daphina works the same way. I don't know about his eyes I'm just waiting for Repolie or Sakura48 or anyone else to get here


That's alright, is it worth giving him another soak tonight or should I give him a break and start up again tomorrow? I'd hate to think it might stress him out more.
 
Repolie
  • #27
Cold temperatures can cause swim bladder disorder if you do large water changes without properly acclimating him. There's still the possibility of constipation because he hasn't pooped yet and dropsy because bettas with dropsy will usually not eat or poop. Is he looking bloated? Can we get a side picture of him?
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #28
Cold temperatures can cause swim bladder disorder if you do large water changes without properly acclimating him. There's still the possibility of constipation because he hasn't pooped yet and dropsy because bettas with dropsy will usually not eat or poop. Is he looking bloated? Can we get a side picture of him?


IMG_2892.jpg
IMG_2820.jpg

First is just now. He’s hard to get a photo of currently. The other is from either Thursday night or Friday morning.
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #29
I feel like I should add because he is in a bowl the angle can be a tad misleading. He doesn't look bloated and his scales are still showing smooth so I'm hoping it isn't dropsy
 
Repolie
  • #30
Hmmm. Doesn't help that the bowl is curved. I wouldn't do another epsom salt bath if it still isn't doing or helping with anything. I would still suspect dropsy because bettas won't eat when they have it and fluid build up and it would put pressure on the swim bladder causing swim bladder disorder. For now, I would wait for more symptoms to appear. Has there been any poop?
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #31
Hmmm. Doesn't help that the bowl is curved. I wouldn't do another epsom salt bath if it still isn't doing or helping with anything. I would still suspect dropsy because bettas won't eat when they have it and fluid build up and it would put pressure on the swim bladder causing swim bladder disorder. For now, I would wait for more symptoms to appear. Has there been any poop?

No poop and it's been over a week. He really isn't bloated though compared to usual. I opted out of the salt bath but I might try tonight when I'm home from work. If there's anything you can recommend though to start I need an idea of what to pick up because after tomorrow I'm on night shifts so it will be hard to get out.
 
Repolie
  • #32
If he hasn't pooped or eaten in a week, I think it's safe to rule out constipation or bloating. I think it may be dropsy and you might need Kanaplex, but you need pinconing scales to be sure. You did salt baths which may take out some fluids if there is any inside him. Also when doing water changes to properly acclimate him to the new water because temperature/ph shock can be causing SBD.
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #33
If he hasn't pooped or eaten in a week, I think it's safe to rule out constipation or bloating. I think it may be dropsy and you might need Kanaplex, but you need pinconing scales to be sure. You did salt baths which may take out some fluids if there is any inside him. Also when doing water changes to properly acclimate him to the new water because temperature/ph shock can be causing SBD.

So what should I do? Keep doing salt baths? His scales are fine it seems and from what I’ve heard the pinconing of scales can be too late?
 
Repolie
  • #34
What I meant was, you did salt baths which would help with dropsy if he did have it. But it wouldn't help us diagnosing him because we need protruding scales to be sure of dropsy, but the removal of the fluids would not show any pinconing in the scales. Bettas with dropsy can still be saved when they have slightly raised scales. If you want, you can get Kanaplex on backup just in case. If he still can't right himself after 1 more day, I say give Kanaplex a go because you've tried everything else.
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #35
What I meant was, you did salt baths which would help with dropsy if he did have it. But it wouldn't help us diagnosing him because we need protruding scales to be sure of dropsy, but the removal of the fluids would not show any pinconing in the scales. Bettas with dropsy can still be saved when they have slightly raised scales. If you want, you can get Kanaplex on backup just in case. If he still can't right himself after 1 more day, I say give Kanaplex a go because you've tried everything else.

Okay. Do you think it’s worth trying to feed him some bug bites and see if he’ll go for them?
 
Repolie
  • #36
You can try.
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #37
You can try.

Picked up some Kanaplex on the way home from work. Hopefully he’s still doing alright when I get home and I’ll start that tonight.
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #38
I came home and he was so much paler than yesterday but it was closer to his normal colouring for the most part. He still won’t eat but he was able to swim down a bit better. Hopefully the Kanaplex helps.
 
squidney13
  • Thread Starter
  • #39
What I meant was, you did salt baths which would help with dropsy if he did have it. But it wouldn't help us diagnosing him because we need protruding scales to be sure of dropsy, but the removal of the fluids would not show any pinconing in the scales. Bettas with dropsy can still be saved when they have slightly raised scales. If you want, you can get Kanaplex on backup just in case. If he still can't right himself after 1 more day, I say give Kanaplex a go because you've tried everything else.

So he’s giving a lot more effort into swimming and his colouring is back to normal, he’s not so dark looking anymore including his eyes which had me nervous. He still floats back up when he swims down but it’s only been 24 hours and the improvement in his ability to move is so much better!
 
Repolie
  • #40
So he’s giving a lot more effort into swimming and his colouring is back to normal, he’s not so dark looking anymore including his eyes which had me nervous. He still floats back up when he swims down but it’s only been 24 hours and the improvement in his ability to move is so much better!
Glad to hear he's doing better! Is he eating now?
 

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