Help is my beta sick??

Discussion in 'Freshwater Fish Disease' started by kujoe, Apr 1, 2010.

  1. kujoe

    kujoeNew MemberMember

    I'm hoping someone can help me. My betta is staying at the bottom of his ten gallon tank. All readings are normal, it's definitely NOT in the middle of a cycle and all of a sudden as of today he stays at the bottom of the tank, and only comes up for gulps of air, and then straight back down again.

    Also it seems like he's suddenly bloated overnight. Can a betta get bloated from stress? I don't think he's stressed as he's been in this tank for a while and is just now acting like this.

    I did some research and I don't think it's dropsy because he doesn't have raised scales at all. I did as of a week ago give him a couple of freezedried blood worms, which I read could constipate him, which would make sense, I suppose. I've also noticed that he seems to be breathing "harder" if that makes sense. Also, a few days ago I noticed some discoloration on him that I read MIGHT be velvet, but didn't think anything of it at the time. I'll let you experts look at the pics and confirm/deny the velvet thing. I'm not so sure that's the real issue tho as he has had this on him since we brought him home.

    Also, he normally swims around a lot, but as of today he stays at the bottom rear corner of the tank, and if he's not there, he's hiding in his cave.

    I'm attaching pictures so you can see the bump I noticed today too. I could be wrong...but I'm not even sure that bump was there yesterday. I haven't seen it yet, but my wife thinks she might have seen a pinkish/red-ish looking dot on his belly (take this with a grain of salt).

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Apr 1, 2010
  2. bassbonediva

    bassbonedivaFishlore VIPMember

    He could be constipated. Has he eaten any more than usual lately? Fast him for a day or two, then feed him half a shelled pea (or less). That should help if it is constipation.
  3. OP

    kujoeNew MemberMember

    He may have over-eaten. I'm not sure though. I was thinking of fasting him to make sure anyhow though. Thanks for the tip!
  4. Martinismommy

    MartinismommyFishlore VIPMember

    I don't think your boy has velvet......He does have a bloated belly though....Try a nice water change sometimes that gets; things moving....Also as mentioned above try the shelled baby pea cut in very tiny peices....
  5. Prince Powder

    Prince PowderWell Known MemberMember

    I'm sorry your betta isn't feeling well. I agree he might be constipated. As was suggested a water change might perk him up a bit. Fast him for a day and then feed him only the peas to help clear him out and that should get him back on track.

    Be careful about overfeeding and what you feed. Remember their stomachs are only the size of one of their eyes. I feed my bettas pellets mostly, they are easier to measure out than flakes IMO. I feed twice a day, 2-3 pellets each time. I take the time to drop in one pellet and let them eat it, then the next. That way I know not only that they are eating properly, but exactly how much they are eating. Plus, I never have issues with leftover food. One day a week I feed freeze dried bloodworms (soaked first in garlic juice to allow for expansion). On that day I do only one feeding in the evenings. The day after bloodworms I feed freeze dried daphnia which I use in the place of peas. On Daphnia day they also get one feeding only in the evenings. Next day is water change day since I often have some supersized poos to clear out thanks to the daphnia. :)

    The main thing is to remember to account for his eating habits by knowing how much you are offering and how much he is eating. Be sure to soak any dried foods as they tend to expand, and give their tummies a break regularly by having a fast day or making a mild laxative like the peas or daphnia a regular part of your feeding routine or both. And also, keep an eye on his belly, if you go to feed him dinner and he still looks a little bloated from breakfast, skip dinner and wait and see how he looks the next morning, then offer food. Taking these steps can help to avoid constipation issues and keep your betta healthier and happier.
  6. OP

    kujoeNew MemberMember

    So, my poor fish is even more bloated today. Is that still potentially constipation? His whole belly is white too. Is that normal?

    I'm worried about the little guy :(
  7. OP

    kujoeNew MemberMember

    So I force-fed him a little bit of pea, not sure how much he actually swallowed tho, as he kept spitting it out. Today he's started to lean to one side, so I'm thinking it's progressed from regular constipation to swim bladder disorder. I did the water change, and have noticed he seems to be blacker/grayer than before. He was usually a vivid blue all over, now he has some black/gray as if his scales changed color across the top of his body, mostly on his head.

    I added a tad bit of aquarium salt, and some API Triple Sulfa to help things along, especially if he has bacteria in his internals. I also gave him a 30 minute epson salt bath, per some research I found.

    If anyone has any other suggestions, I'm all ears.
  8. leeishom

    leeishomValued MemberMember

    i know how you feel. i dont keep a betta, but i had a similar issue of worrying, stress and countless times of thinking of how to solve a 'sick fish' issue.

    advice: do not depend on OTC medications from from any where.
    prestine water and HIGH quality foods, only.

    all fishes will go thru a time when they are sick, like us humans. just allow your fish to heal itself with some help from you. do not jump to drastic actions.
  9. ppate1977

    ppate1977Well Known MemberMember

    I think constipation could be the culprit as well. I'm not adding much to the other posts, but I fast him for 3 days.
  10. OP

    kujoeNew MemberMember

    , I think I made a big mistake. When I was feeding him the pea, I read to gently move him to the surface of the water to 'force feed' him if he wasn't wanting to eat. Well I used my hand, and now about 30 minutes later his fins have severely discolored.

    Also, all of a sudden now, within the past 30 minutes he's not even really swimming at all. It looks like it's hard for him to get to the surface of the water, and now he'll even float upside down for a little bit. I'm even more convinced now of Swim Bladder. Can he heal, or is it possible that he'll never be a good swimmer again? Did I make him sicker by touching him?

    Also, I found him stuck to the filter intake, so I turned off the power filter. How long can I leave it off for? Would he be safe with it completely off for the next few days to see if he gets better?

    Also, I really don't want to do this...but if he's just not going to get better, what is the most humane way to euthanize him to end his suffering?

  11. OP

    kujoeNew MemberMember

    Time of death 10:11pm CST. :( I'd still appreciate answers to my other questions incase I ever face this again.

    After a bit more reading it seems it could have just been the little guys time. He may have been old already.

    I'm just absolutely shocked at how fast he deteriorated and ultimately died. From the day i noticed issues to now has only been a matter of 3 days maximum. Very sad moment.
  12. leeishom

    leeishomValued MemberMember

    very sorry to have read this. i was hoping to hear good news.
    some times, its not the water nor the owner, its the fish's health in general at birth.
    but since you are a good betta keeper, do not allow this to discourage your confidence.
  13. OP

    kujoeNew MemberMember

    I just wish I knew what killed him. If it was age, or disease. I don't know if it's safe to put another betta into his tank.

    After he died, I took a closer look at his abdomen and it looked like it had a ulcer on the bottom, so it could have been a parasite too for all I know. I'm just super shocked at how everything unfolded, in a matter of days, not weeks.
  14. leeishom

    leeishomValued MemberMember

    time to move on. :;swls

    no need to think about the past. stay strong, my young padawon!!!
  15. OP

    kujoeNew MemberMember

    Heh, yah. I mean it is kind of sad, but I'm a dude, and it was just a no crying or anything.

    Do you think it's safe to go get another betta and reuse this cycled tank? Or is it better to just play it safe and take everything out and rinse it down real good?

    This might sound kind of morbid...but a fish anatomy is pretty simple. I did an autopsy and can confirm he was definitely constipated, even if that wasn't what ultimately did him in.
  16. leeishom

    leeishomValued MemberMember

    nuke your tank with vinager, allow it to dry out and then start setting up.

    as for morbid: just as long you have the proper tools and intentions, no need to feel this way.