My betta is losing his fins, help!

Mari

Active Member
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I had read about fin rot before but never thought my betta would get it. :'( My ammonia, nitrate, and nitrite levels are all OK, I am not sure why it happened. I make 50% water changes weekly with tap water which I dechlorinate with Stresscoat. I feed them once a day, sometimes giving them a treat 2 or 3 times per week. I have a 20 gallon with 2 albino corys, 6 cardinal tetras and my very beautiful betta, Pepe.
He is sick, starting losing his little finnies about a week ago. They seem to be growing back, but my other fish look as healthy as ever, my cardinasl have actually grown and look very happy. My corys are as crazily active as always, eating like piggies. And my betta eats too, loves anything I give him, usually flakes and frozen bloodworms, sometimes I give him freeze-dried brine shrimp which he also likes.
What could be wrong with my baby? Why did he get fish rot if all seems to be ok? What should I do? No one is attacking him, I made sure of that... what should I do? It seems the fins are growing back... but is there something I should do to help or speed his recovery? help meeeee pleeeeeassseee :'( I don't wanna lose my baby ???
 

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Hey there, my betta just got fin rot too, and I was pretty freaked out as first. However, by reading what the folks on here have said, it bothers us more than it bothers them! But, of course, if left unattended there could be problems in the future. Check out all the info the folks here gave me in this thread, and good luck!
 

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do you have any decorations in the tank that might snag the delicate betta fins? even gravel can sometimes do it.. unfortunately finrot is a big problem for male betta splendens especially.. 10 days of should help clear out the finrot. - vitachem added daily to his water is also good for treating fin rot and for regrowing his fins.

do you have a hospital tank to treat him in?

first of all though - do you have a picture of him to post? to be sure he has fin rot - he may have torn his fins on something and been lucky enough to not get fin rot, if the fins are growing back now.
 
Yep, unfortunately, finrot seems to be pretty common for bettas. But the good news is that it means you'll get plenty of experienced advice on how best to treat it. Good luck!
 
You sure the tetras aren't nipping his fins? Try spying on the fish with binoculars (watch them at night especially) so they don't know you are watching...sometimes fish will act nice and peaceful during the day and tear up the tank at night. Of course, Cardinals are usually pretty docile but it's still possible they are fin nipping.
 
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  • #6
thanks for all the great comments. I will post a picture tonight. also, I was wondering if its true that antibiotics make your water yellow and guey. most importantly, won't antibiotics kill your beneficial bacteria thereby disrupting the removial of ammonia and nitrites? is this an issue at all? ???
 

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  • #7
You sure the tetras aren't nipping his fins? Try spying on the fish with binoculars (watch them at night especially) so they don't know you are watching...sometimes fish will act nice and peaceful during the day and tear up the tank at night. Of course, Cardinals are usually pretty docile but it's still possible they are fin nipping.

yes i'm sure they're not nipping cuz I don't sleep mre than 3 hours and stare from far... they don't get close to each other at all.... luckily!
 
thanks for all the great comments. I will post a picture tonight. also, I was wondering if its true that antibiotics make your water yellow and guey. most importantly, won't antibiotics kill your beneficial bacteria thereby disrupting the removial of ammonia and nitrites? is this an issue at all? ???

Not all meds change your water color...others make your water yellow or even blue or other colors. Some antibiotics will harm your bio filter but most claim not to (just look on the label or instruction sheet, it will say somewhere).

Glad to hear fin nipping is not the problem. Is your Betta relatively new? If so he probably picked up the finrot at the store.
 
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  • #9
i've had him for a month... sorry didn't go home last night so couldn't post the pics, overloaded with work. will do so probably tomorrow. thanks for all your advice. we will see what happens to my beautiful fishie
 
  • #10
Make sure you start medicating him asap. Finrot will not go away on it's own. I would suggest Triple Sulfa and Jungle Labs medicated food. (use both at the same time) This seems to be working for me. As soon as I stopped using the medicated food and only the Triple Sulfa his finrot worsened so I started the food again and it's getting better. The two together really seem to work for me.
 
  • #11
Am having the same dilemma. Am worried if I medicate too often, he'll just habituate to the meds and respond even less (well, not him, but the bacteria).
 

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  • #12
Bacteria only become immune if you stop the meds too soon and the bacteria hasn't been completely killed. Also, if a med is not working after a few days you can try a different med as meds don't work on all strains of bacteria so try another until you find what works.
 
  • #14
OK, thanks for clearing that up. So I've been doing it wrong, stopping treatment early because I want to give the poor little guy a break from meds.
Bacteria only become immune if you stop the meds too soon and the bacteria hasn't been completely killed. Also, if a med is not working after a few days you can try a different med as meds don't work on all strains of bacteria so try another until you find what works.
 
  • #15
Never stop the treatment even if he seems all better. You need to keep treating for at least a few days AFTER you see significant improvement because even if he seems well, the bacteria is still there. It's the same as when we take antibiotics. Your doctor will tell you to finish the whole bottle regardless of whether you are feeling better. Most people don't listen to that and that is why we have super bacteria that are resistant to all antibiotics. This is no different for fish.
 
  • #17
Never stop the treatment even if he seems all better. You need to keep treating for at least a few days AFTER you see significant improvement because even if he seems well, the bacteria is still there. It's the same as when we take antibiotics. Your doctor will tell you to finish the whole bottle regardless of whether you are feeling better. Most people don't listen to that and that is why we have super bacteria that are resistant to all antibiotics. This is no different for fish.

good advice. - for us, don't forget the antibiotics we get fed in meat.
 
  • #18
OK, thanks, Phloxface. You always seem to clarify my fish 'situations'. Right, the way to go is clear now.
 
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  • #20
Hey guys! My betta is actually doing much better.... I think I found the culprit, one of the decorations that he constantly rubbed against was packed with bacteria biofilms... the anemonae-like plastic thingies were covered with bacteria. As soon as I took it out, Pepe was better. His fins are growing slowly but surely. I actually did not treat him with antibiotics, just added freshwater salt to his water and vitamins (I got at Dr. Foster and Smith). Also, I bought the sulfa antibiotic but still have not used it. Should I now that he is getting better? Thanks for all your help!
 
  • #21
Without seeing him, I couldn't tell you for sure on if you should give the sulfa. but if there's any doubt, I would. Glad to hear that he's doing better.
 

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