Tears In Bettas Tail Fin

Evander
  • #1
Hello!

I am really new to fish, and just joined the forum after lurking for a while to ask a question.

I've got a betta fish and today some (3-5? it's hard to count when he's moving) small tears appeared in his tail fin. I THINK it's from the plastic part on this fake plant I bought him. I read to only get silk plants, so I picked one out without realizing it had some plastic "leaves" at the bottom. Today I took it out and cut the plastic bits off, so I'm hopeful he won't get anymore tears but will keep an eye on him. I also have a plastic hammock for him, but he's lived with it for two weeks with no tears, whereas I just put the fake plant in two days ago.

My question is, what can I do to help him heal? I've read really conflicting opinions on salt vs. medicine and wanted to get some advice from you guys. How long should it take him to heal up?

Thanks so much!
 
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Kiks
  • #2
If there are no other issues and his tail is just a little torn, I'd do one water change every day to keep the water pristine. That should help it heal fast and all by itself.
 
Dave125g
  • #3
Agree no salt no meds. As long as its not infected just keep the water pristine and it will heal up nicely .
 
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Peach
  • #4
Salt does nothing. He'll heal up ok if you keep the water nice and clean.
 
KimberlyG
  • #5
It may not be called for in this case, but salt actually does a lot. I have attached a paper published by the International Betta Conference if any one is interested.
 
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Evander
  • Thread Starter
  • #6
I was dumb and got him before cycling the tank (I didn't know ). I usually do a 25%water change every other or every 2 days right now, should I do it more frequently while he's healing (like every day?).
 
Dave125g
  • #7
Simply put salt irritates the slime coat on the fish causing it to grow new and shed the old layer. Its all we had 30 years ago. For external infections it worked.
 
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Peach
  • #8
It may not be called for in this case, but salt actually does a lot. I have attached a paper published by the International Betta Conference if any one is interested.

But it's not infected so there's not a point in using it is what I mean.
 
Kiks
  • #9
I was dumb and got him before cycling the tank (I didn't know ). I usually do a 25%water change every other or every 2 days right now, should I do it more frequently while he's healing (like every day?).

What are your water parameters?
I'd do a water change every day while his tail is like this.
 
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Dave125g
  • #10
I was dumb and got him before cycling the tank (I didn't know ). I usually do a 25%water change every other or every 2 days right now, should I do it more frequently while he's healing (like every day?).
Yes I'd do 50% daily until your cycled. Add prime every day too. Did you use tetra safe start or some other bacterial supplement?
 
Evander
  • Thread Starter
  • #11
Thanks for all the information everyone!

I don't have my own test kit yet (I only have ammonia test), I'm gonna run to petsmart and get it tested right now.

I didn't use a bacterial supplement, should I pick one up while I'm there?
 
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Kiks
  • #12
Yes, it will help you cycle faster. If you can, get the API test kit (or a kit that has ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and pH test), a bacterial supplement (TSS is great) and Prime.
 
Dave125g
  • #13
Thanks for all the information everyone!

I don't have my own test kit yet (I only have ammonia test), I'm gonna run to petsmart and get it tested right now.

I didn't use a bacterial supplement, should I pick one up while I'm there?
Can you check your ammonia level real quick before you run out?
 
Evander
  • Thread Starter
  • #14
Thank you! I'm going to order a test kit for myself and while I go get my water tested pick up some bacterial supplement. I just got Prime two days ago and it seems to be helping him be happier.

Thanks again! I'm going to run to the store now I'll update with my test results when I get home

Can you check your ammonia level real quick before you run out?
OH just saw this
Yeah I'll test it right now!
 
Kiks
  • #15
If you add a full dose of Prime (determined by the size of the tank), it detoxifies up to 1 ppm ammonia and nitrite, which is probably why your fish is happier.
When you're at the store getting your water tested, ask for the exact numbers. Not just if it's in a safe range or not.
 
Dave125g
  • #16
At this point I suspect all it has is ammonia, unless there's nitrites and/or nitrates in the tap, as this tank is not cycled yet.
 
Evander
  • Thread Starter
  • #17
Okay ammonia test is sitting!


If you add a full dose of Prime (determined by the size of the tank), it detoxifies up to 1 ppm ammonia and nitrite, which is probably why your fish is happier.
When you're at the store getting your water tested, ask for the exact numbers. Not just if it's in a safe range or not.

I get my water tested at the local petsmart and they fill out this form that includes the numbers, so I'll have those numbers when I come back! Thanks for the advice
 
NavigatorBlack
  • #18
As soon as they get out of the tiny cups , stretch and swim, the oversized tails tear. It's natural, and so predictable it's a reason they are kept in the cups, so they will sell with 'perfect' tails.
No worry.
 
Evander
  • Thread Starter
  • #19
Okay, I got the ammonia test results. I have a hard time differentiating all the greens exactly, but it seems to be getting worse. And this is RIGHT after a water change (I did one like 2 hours ago), so I'm concerned.



Is it this bad because I don't have a cycle yet? I've had a couple plants the died in there, could that be making it worse?

Thanks you guys
 
Dave125g
  • #20
Okay, I got the ammonia test results. I have a hard time differentiating all the greens exactly, but it seems to be getting worse. And this is RIGHT after a water change (I did one like 2 hours ago), so I'm concerned.



Is it this bad because I don't have a cycle yet? I've had a couple plants the died in there, could that be making it worse?

Thanks you guys
Yes beneficial bacteria process the ammonia turning it first into nitrites then into nitrates. You complete the cycle with a 50% weekly water change.
 
Kiks
  • #21
I'd say your ammonia is at 1 ppm. If you put the test tube up against the white part of the test card next to the colored squares it will be easier to determine an accurate reading.

1 ppm ammonia is bad, but you have Prime which I hope you've dosed accordingly. If so it has detoxified all the ammonia. If it rises above 1 ppm, you need to do another water change and remember to add a new dose of Prime in 24 hours. If you just did a water change and your ammonia is at 1 ppm, your ammonia was above 1 ppm before the water change, which has affected your fish to some degree depending on how long it's been like that.
 
Evander
  • Thread Starter
  • #22
Thanks you guys

On dosing the Prime, it says each thread in the cap is 1mL, and to use 5mL for a 50 gallon tank. My tank is only 3.5 but I've been using about 1mL when I do my water change, is that too much? Will it harm the fish? Should I get like an eyedropper to use to get a smaller and more accurate dose to the tank size?

My current plan is to do daily wc, adding prime each time, and to get a bacteria supplement today to start using as well.
 
Kiks
  • #23
You can dose up to 5 x more than tank size and still be safe. Which means that 1 ml is in the safe range.
 
Evander
  • Thread Starter
  • #24
Oh that's really good to know! Thank you
Should I add some more right now??
 
Dave125g
  • #25
Its very hard to over dose on prime.
 
Kiks
  • #26
You should add more Prime if:

A) You've done a water change
B) If it's 24 hours since you last dosed

If you've done a water change and you've added the tap water to a bucket before you add it to the tank, you can dose Prime directly into the bucket and dose according to the size of the bucket instead of the size of the tank.
 
Evander
  • Thread Starter
  • #27
Oh I feel stupid, I've been putting the amount of Prime for the entire tank (1mL) in the bucket I put the water in for the water change. I've never actually directly added Prime right into the tank, always just in the new water during a water change.
 
Kiks
  • #28
Oh I feel stupid, I've been putting the amount of Prime for the entire tank (1mL) in the bucket I put the water in for the water change. I've never actually directly added Prime right into the tank, always just in the new water during a water change.

Either way is fine, but adding it to the bucket will make your bottle last longer.
 
Dave125g
  • #29
Oh I feel stupid, I've been putting the amount of Prime for the entire tank (1mL) in the bucket I put the water in for the water change. I've never actually directly added Prime right into the tank, always just in the new water during a water change.
That way works too. I've added prime twice a few times because I didn't remember if I added it or not.lol
 
Evander
  • Thread Starter
  • #30
Okay thanks a lot guys! I'm gonna run to petsmart to get my water tested and pick up the bacteria supplement. I'll post the test results when I come back

Okay just got back home with my results! Unfortunately the guy who did my tests just dabs the strips into the water really fast and then starts circling really quickly. I prefer when the other employee who wasn't there today does it because she gives them more time and I get worried things read as 0 because he just didn't give them time to process.

Anyway, with that in mind, my results are
Ammonia 1
Nitrate 0
Nitrite 0
Hardness 75
Chlorine 0
Alkalinity 10
pH 7

I also picked up the Tetra Safe Start bacteria supplement. Amazingly, it was $16 at Petsmart, and $6 at Walmart in the next building lol
 

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