To what extent do betta tails grow back?

Discussion in 'Betta Fish' started by renthus, Jul 27, 2014.

  1. renthusWell Known MemberMember

    So I was working on getting another betta (don't even say it) and the seller just messaged me saying it bit its tail off. He enclosed a picture, too, which looks... severe.

      (image belongs to betta_hero, I just reuploaded it since I can't link to an e-mail attachment)

    Is this guy a lost cause, or will his tail grow back? I know they generally grow back if just a chunk is missing, but it looks like this one came off at the base.

    Last edited: Aug 2, 2014
  2. bellachanWell Known MemberMember

    Idk...from that picture it almost looks like there's flesh gone? :( that's looks aweful! I don't even know if the tail will grow back when the wound heals (if it heals)

    Can a betta even do that severe of damage to itself?

  3. renthusWell Known MemberMember

    Yeah, something feels weird about it, almost like the seller stuck two males together and that was the result. I can't really imagine how the betta could even reach the base like that.

    I guess a better question is, will the tail grow back, and if not, how will this impact breeding and quality of life? Because if it doesn't impact quality of life significantly, I might ask the breeder to send him to me anyway, since I suspect the alternative is euthanasia (people don't buy tailless bettas).

    Last edited: Jul 27, 2014
  4. bellachanWell Known MemberMember

    Maybe you should ask for a video, to see his state. How he moves, eats, behaves.
  5. renthusWell Known MemberMember

    I e-mailed him to request the video. Hopefully he hasn't already done anything with the betta. Is that the sort of injury that would impede shipping?
  6. LucyModeratorModerator Member

    Oh man....poor betta. :(

    We've had a lot of suspected tail biters on the forum but never saw one that would take it to such an extreme.

    If he's being shipped I would fear that with a weakened immune system infection would surely take over.

    Seriously though, that betta should not be for sale.
  7. RivieraneoModeratorModerator Member

    Wow renthus, that looks severe. I agree with Lucy, I would be concerned with the stress of shipping and bacterial growth.
  8. renthusWell Known MemberMember

    Assuming the seller hasn't put him down but is planning to (which I suspect is likely the case), I'm going to try to give him to me for free (since I'm getting another girl at the same time). I figure taking the chance with shipping is better than an almost certain termination, and I'm certainly willing to put in the time to help him heal as much as possible.

    Just for comparison, this is how he looked when I ordered him the other day:


    EDIT: I just noticed... I'm not sure if it's just a trick of the photography, but he seems to have suddenly lost all of his purple o_O
  9. LucyModeratorModerator Member

    Hopefully he'll just give him to you.
    Looking at that first pic again it looks physically impossible that he bit his own tail off.

    Last edited: Jul 29, 2014
  10. renthusWell Known MemberMember

    Yeah, I'm guessing he got into a scuffle with another male. Maybe one jumped a divider or something like that. If anything, it makes me feel a whole lot luckier than in the instances where my current boys snuck into each other's sections they barely even flared.

    Think it has the potential to grow back, or will impact breeding?

    EDIT: The seller is going to send me a video in the evening. I'll post it here when he sends it.
  11. RivieraneoModeratorModerator Member

    In these photos, it looks like there is a second darker tailed betta in the tank, female plakat?
  12. renthusWell Known MemberMember

    It looks like there's a glass divider between them, though. Either that or they're in two separated containers directly adjacent to one another. I don't know the details on that fish. It wasn't on the seller's aquabid, at least since I started keeping an eye on it.
  13. renthusWell Known MemberMember

  14. mg13Well Known MemberMember

    he's very pretty and looks like a bride

    poor boy, I heard if the tear is to the flesh it probably won't row back... :(
  15. TJBenderWell Known MemberMember

    A dumbo betta with 70% of his tail gone, and the seller still expects you to pay for him?! Am I understanding that right?

    IMO, that betta looks like it's having a very, very hard time swimming. That's a very severe tail injury--one that I strongly doubt was self-inflicted as the seller claims--and not likely to ever heal fully or anything close to it. If it were my betta, I would strongly consider euthanasia, and I would certainly not try and con someone into paying for him. I would also insist that the seller level with me about what really happened to that fish's tail, and probably leave some nasty feedback on Aquabid. Bettas will bite their own tails, yes, but they don't rip 70% of their tail off down to the flesh. One more seller on my "do not buy from" list.
  16. renthusWell Known MemberMember

    No, he offered to let me pick another or just receive a refund. If he's got hope at a good life I'd love to take him in, just not for a significant price. I want to know what really happened, but the seller's english isn't particularly good, and I really don't feel like trying to argue with someone who isn't very strong in the language. I suspect that he's not trying to hide it so much as the english impairs communication. "he bited his tail" feels like a google translate of "His tail was bitten."

    So really, we're at this point: Can his tail grow back, and if not, can he still live happily given the proper care and support? I don't know the answer to that question.

    EDIT: You say dumbo like it's a bad thing. Do you consider it a defect? I'm rather fond of the look, generally.
  17. JakobaWell Known MemberMember

    Oh wow, poor boy! looking at the first picture, if that the missing portion of his tail laying in the background!? It sure looks like it.

    As far as whether is tail will grow back, I wish I could give you an answer but I don't know with bettas. I suppose it depends on how bad the damage is. I know Blood Parrots sometimes have their tails removed as babies so they will grow into a 'heart' shape as adults. In those cases the tails don't grow back, though I am not sure how far beyond the flesh is removed in those cases.

    If I were you I would definitely see if the breeder would be willing to give him to you so he can at least have a shot at life.
  18. renthusWell Known MemberMember

    I'm not sure. That's what it looked like to me, too, but that seems really really strange. Like, stranger than the rest of this. I suspect that it's a reflection.
  19. renthusWell Known MemberMember

    Update: Got him for free, plus shipping :p. Two fish, incoming!

    Update 2: In addition to getting him for free, he's technically being replaced by another female (now we're at 3 fish :D)

    Update 3: In addition to that, since infection is very much a possibility, he's throwing in a second male for free, just in case of a DOA. I have four fish coming. I think I need to go get another 10g.

    Anyone want to advise me on treating the tail damage? Linda suggested aquarium salt, and I'm tempted to add IALs. He's definitely going in my QT tank to start.

    Side note: Is it just my imagination, or is it incredibly hard to find true HM females? Most of the ones I see look more like SDs from the pictures.
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2014
  20. MimsValued MemberMember

    Have you received your fish yet, and if so, how is he doing?

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