Neighbor's goldfish (in a bowl) is sick!

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by fishy5, Jul 9, 2015.

  1. fishy5Valued MemberMember

    So, the first thing I learned on this forum was that goldfish bowls are a huge no no because of stunted growth and high ammonia levels among other things. Now I cringe whenever I spot a goldfish in a bowl.

    Quick backstory: I watch my neighbor's dog, and that neighbor was watching our other neighbor's (cringe) one gallon goldfish bowl.

    I peeked in on him. He's pretty large. He was swimming in circles around his murky watered bowl when I noticed that he had some sort of fungus. It was on top of his body aligned with his gills. It was white and wispy but clung on tight.

    The owner of the goldfish bowl is a younger child, and although I know it will eventually die, is there anything to prolong the goldfish's life for another month or two? Any way to get rid of this fungus (is it life threatening?) Frequent water changes, medication....? (I would love to suggest to them a filtered thirty gallon tank, but I have that close of a relationship with them.)

    There aren't many tank stats to tell, but here they are anyways:
    One gallon bowl
    Murky water
    Gravel on the bottom but nothing else
  2. Aloeb1Valued MemberMember

    First things first. He needs a bigger tank or there is nothing that can help it.

    Sent from my iPhone using Fish Lore Aquarium Fish Forum

  3. BornThisWayBettasFishlore VIPMember

    Yes, it is going to be very, very difficult to help the fish unless he's in proper settings. Maybe you should call the owners and tell them about the situation?
  4. fishy5Valued MemberMember

    I would love to but 1. They are on vacation, not a good time to devastate the child about her sick goldfish and 2. i don't know them that well, so it would be a little awkward to start spouting off fish facts.

    However, I know the neighbors who are fish-sitting pretty well, and I know that she'd welcome any medication advice (if there is anything available even; I understand that this may very well be the end for the Goldie)
  5. alinkWell Known MemberMember

    For what its worth, I think you are better off letting it go in this case. When the time comes that it dies, you can then approach them about it and explain why it happened. They may view it as a pet that can be easily, and cheaply, replaced and not want to spend a ton of money on a large enough tank for the 39 cent goldfish that would go in it. If thats the case then theres probably nothing you can do. A lot of people dont realize how big goldfish get and how long they can live when given a proper home. They just think they stop growing in a smaller home and thats that. Thats what I used to think a long time ago lol.
  6. ThetanknwebieWell Known MemberMember

    I know how you feel, I've been in this situation before except it was a betta in a bowl. I was invited to dinner by a friend at her house. She had the bowl on the kitchen counter and I casually brought up how I have a fish tank and she loved the pictures. Then I asked her about her fish and she says that those fish never last. I politely told her I had one love for four years and she was amazed. She asked me how and I told her that bettas like bigger fish tanks with clean water. She was scared at first but I showed her how easy it was. Since it was her birthday a month after our dinner, I bought her a 6g fluval edge, a few silk plants and Asian themed ornament. She loved it and her betta has been with her for over two years.

    In your case, however, I would be very difficult to do anything. You could anonymously leave a pamphlet on goldfish care in their mail box.

    Sent from my iPhone using Fish Lore Aquarium Fish Forum
  7. fishy5Valued MemberMember

    Thetanknwebie I might actually do that! Great idea! (Leaving a pamphlet in the mailbox)
  8. KwigWell Known MemberMember

    They'll probably think it was left by the neighbor who was fish sitting though. Might cause some drama. You could leave a note with it and just explain like, hey, I know we don't really know each other but here's some info that you should review with some urgency. I know you want to do what's best for your pet and that's why you had a neighbor sit for you, and your fish is pretty unhappy. His living conditions are stressing him out which has left him vulnerable to illness. Etc etc.
    Emphasize that you know they want to do their best but you're aware how much misinformation is out there. I literally do this almost daily at work. Just last night had a family with 5 comet goldfish and 3 fantail goldies in a 20 gallon. And they wanted 2 more. I gave them adult sizes and such and alerted them to the dollar per gallon sale at Petco so they could get a 40 gallon or a 55 gallon and maybe keep two. Then I told them how lovely a backyard pond is. Drives me nuts that comet goldfish are even sold as feeders.
  9. FishtailBraidValued MemberMember

    Could you buy a big cheap plastic box or something, fill it up with water and put the goldfish in there, then explain that it was sick and needed a larger environment at least temporarily? Even if it recovers they might return it to the bowl; but on the other hand, they might get the general idea that bigger environment = healthier fish. :)

    ETA: This suggestion is based on the assumption that you currently have your own tanks and are stocked with water conditioners and maybe even appropriate medications. As the others have said, this isn't your fish and unfortunately the fish may be beyond help (or they may return it straight to the bowl even if it recovers) so you may not want to risk spending heaps of money on it. Be careful not to use any of your own siphons, nets etc on the goldfish in case his condition is contagious.

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