Old, poorly goldfish advice appreciated

Goldilox

Hi Folks

I'd really appreciate any advice someone can offer.

I have a goldfish that's roughly 13/14 years old and isn't well. I'm no expert in the field, but have learnt via google etc and I've done the best I can thus far.
However, he was struggling to stay upright, and is now permanently upside down. I have tried peas, commercially-available swim bladder treatments etc but its been 2/3 weeks now and things aren't improving. He's had it before a few years ago, and a couple of peas did the trick. However, its had fin-rot (cured), ich (cured), and it's tail has been bent for 6/7 years which from what I gather is from too small a tank, but it's in a 64 litre tank, which for the last 8 years or so, he has been the sole inhabitant. Or, apparently it can be caused by nitrate poisoning but I do my best to keep on top of the water quality and have a few different kits for different things.
At the minute, as it struggles to swim down, it consistently wedges itself up against the pump housing and tank side, presumably, because it's tired/stressed. I don't want it to suffer, which I presume it is. Is there anything else you would try? Or does there come a point where you have to be cruel to be kind? I've never had a to put down a fish before, but I wouldn't let a dog suffer like this. My idiot brother bought him for my daughter, and I can't see pets struggle. I'd like to think I've done a reasonable job, but also torture myself that maybe I've just prolonged a fish's suffering for a lifetime by doing just enough not to kill the poor thing. Any advice anyone can offer would be much appreciated.
 

SparkyJones

What type of goldfish are we talking about here? I'd think 13/14 years is getting on in age for a goldfish and you've likely got organ failure at this point, By the description given, maybe you could have done a better job at taking care of him he maybe could have lived longer I don't know, not for me to really say, but over 10 years for most goldfish except koi is a long life.

Usually you'd get 5-10 years out of most types of goldfish I was hoping to get humane euthanasia methods to populate and link on the thread, there are on this forum.
Read through, think it over and decide. it's never easy, and there's always second guessing, but in the end, you should feel comfortable it was the right choice, the only choice, and if you don't feel that way, maybe it isn't time yet for it.
 

Goldilox

Thanks SparkyJones. I'm not 100% sure on the type, but due to its age, and tail, I'd be pretty sure it's a Comet.
I've done some reading on the euthanasia subject and the main two humane ones seem to be 100% clove oil, or a rather more brutal but quick approach. There's that much conflicting info on the subject it's hard to be sure, but I'll take a look on here. Thanks again for your reply, it's very much appreciated!
 

WBJR

I'm new to this forum but have over 60 years with fish and reptiles. Starting in the early sixties I raised all kind of goldfish and Koi for a local pond contractor. Lasting some 20 years and was good. There are some fish when growth is stunned the organs still grow in a small body causing pressure . From the little info given too much pressure seems to be on the swim bladder. I would try dietary changes first of all. Depending on if the tank is heavily planted go 2 days a week without offering food , allowing it to scavenge around the tank. When you do feed / much less than what you been feeding. Also even if this is a 5” gold fish sorry but a 64 liter / 16.9 gallon tank is very small. No room for exercise. I would only have 5 adult common goldfish in a 150 gallon stock tank. You should see all the activity in doing this. Depending on species a few regular goldfish may grow up to 16” then they went into my 5600 gallon in ground pond with the Koi. Adult Koi get three feet easy. I took studies just to take better care of my fish and look for the cause not just to treat. When one passed I would do a necropsy on it to find why. Did find some with very over grown organs. Swim bladder was normally effected first. Being an aquarist for over 60 years seen a lot. Today in this hobby its still a topic taken in speculation and or anecdotally . One necropsy was hard then after 60 years several more. I know what worked for “me”. Look at the cause. You done best you can so far and a reasonable job yes but. You must try something , dietary changes first. Even make a soft net as a hammock to keep upright in a slow water flow so can rest up. This fish was made captive and its your responsibility to offer it a long life. Species of goldfish can live 5-16 years and a few longer ! Euthanasia is your call ?
 

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