What is wrong with my goldfish?

Discussion in 'Freshwater Fish Disease' started by illnasty, Jul 19, 2014.

  1. illnastyNew MemberMember

    Is there something wrong with this right eye and gill? Pics attached. Thanks.
  2. Witchydesign

    WitchydesignWell Known MemberMember

    Well lets get some basic questions out of the way, itll help us out alot :)

    1. What size tank are they in?
    2. What are your water parameters? (Ammonia, nitrite and nitrate levels)
    3. How long have you had them?
    4. Is this a recent change? Or has his gills be red since you got him?

    Theres a few people here very knowledgeable about goldfish, and I'm sure will be around in the next few hours. :) Also when you hit 3 posts, can you finish filling out your profile please? :)
  3. hollie1505

    hollie1505Well Known MemberMember

    Hi :)

    Along with the above questions, I'd like to add a few more if you don't mind?

    What other fish is he kept in?
    Have you recently added anything new?
    Have you changed anything recently (food, water, decor, conditioner, anything!)?
    Can you describe the symptoms and his behaviour please, I'm having trouble with the pictures?

    It looks like he may have popeye in his right eye. Look it up and see if it looks like it.xx

  4. OP

    illnastyNew MemberMember

    We got him and two others at a carnival. We believe they're all comet goldfish, and no more than two inches long. They're in a 29 gallon tank. We've been changing about 30 percent of the water weekly and been using a dechlorinator and balancer.

    The particular fish with the big eye and pink gills came as is. As far as we can tell, he doesn't exhibit any worrisome symptoms and actually appears to be the most intelligent of the three.

  5. OP

    illnastyNew MemberMember

    Additional pics:

  6. hollie1505

    hollie1505Well Known MemberMember

    Unfortunately the tank is far too small for them and they will need rehoming soon.

    It looks like popeye, have you looked it up?

    Is the tank cycled? How long have you had the tank and fish? I am going to take it as it's not as they're from the fair in which case it could be ammonia burns. If your tank is not cycled it will need daily water changes until it is.

    It would be really helpful if you could answer the questions from above;

    What are your current parameters?
    How long have you had them?
    Have you recently changed/added anything?
    Can you describe the symptoms and his behaviour please?

  7. OP

    illnastyNew MemberMember

    1) PH level is around 7.1. Nitrate level is .05ppm. Ammonia level is .2ppm.
    2) We've had them for three weeks now. Made partial water changes twice a week for the first two.
    3) Nothing added or changed. Again, the fish's condition came as is.
    4) No red flags in terms of behavior. Rather spunky and moves around well, at least much better than when we first got it. If there are any particular symptoms you're looking for, please describe.

    I had a chance to look up pop eye. One note is that its eye isn't protruding; its pupil actually appears dilated. Not sure if this distinction is necessarily significant.

    Also curious if it's possible that the damage has already been done, whether it was at the carnival or somewhere else, and if its condition is one that is irreversible.

  8. hollie1505

    hollie1505Well Known MemberMember

    Hello :)

    1. Have you read and understood the nitrogen cycle? Fish poop turns to ammonia, which turns to nitrite, which turns to Nitrate. What test kit are you using? Your readings are confusing me a little;

    Ammonia 0.2ppm or 2ppm? If you are reading the API freshwater master test kit it's probably 2ppm in which case you are in serious need of a water change.

    NitrITE - you have no readings for this or is the nitrITE 0.05ppm?

    NitrATE, 0.05ppm or 5ppm? The API kit gives a reading more like 5ppm for nitrATE.

    It appears your tank is not cycled. The red gills can be caused by excess ammonia. You need to perform a water change as a matter of urgency. Followed by daily water changes using Prime (also detoxifies the ammonia). Or you can do a TSS cycle.

    2. Your tank is not cycled if you haven't done a fish-in cycle or are using TSS so it needs cycling to break down the fish waste to make it non-toxic to the fish.

    3. Could he have a black coloured eye? I used to have a gold fish that simply was different colours?

    4. Some general symptoms to worry about are hanging around the surface, sitting on the bottom, looking bloated, floating, not eating, not pooping, "flashing" (rubbing it's body against things in a fast motion), red gills (usually caused by excess ammonia which it appears you have) sores, white spots, problems swimming or anything unusual that you haven't noticed before.

    Popeye is generally bulging, here's the FL profile


    Poor Goldie probably hasn't had a good life at the carnival. He will have had bad water and living conditions so it is probable that he has some underlying issues. Pristine water (ie. 50% water changes daily using Prime) is usually the best medicine and the first thing to try.

    I am more than happy to further explain anything I have mentioned, answer any questions I can or point you in the right direction. I am no expert but I am a Fishlore addict with my own Goldies.

    I have learned a lot from @poeticinjustices who is, herself going through a tough time with her Goldies and I'm sure if she has any advice for you (her unfortunate experiences leave her well versed in medications!) she will pop over and say hello :) xx
  9. poeticinjustices

    poeticinjusticesWell Known MemberMember

    Welp, a mention is a good way to get me to pop over, lol. I've been so caught up in treating my fish I haven't done my due diligence in reading what's going on with everyone else. illnasty - I am sorry for your troubles but, welcome to FishLore.

    And yeah, my goldies and I are having a rough go of it and, sadly, this has forced me to learn some things I may not have otherwise learned.

    I agree with the above. It does not sound like the tank is cycled. I'm also really confused by the readings - what are you using to test your water?

    If you won the fish at the carnival, put them in a totally new tank and have been doing once or twice weekly water changes, I can say with a fair amount of certainty that the tank is not cycled. Cycling naturally is a process that takes at LEAST 6-8weeks and, in the time between, daily or even multiple times daily water changes are needed to keep the parameters safe. This is most especially true of goldfish, who are tremendous waste producers. For now, the tank is a little overstocked. Comets and other long-bodied goldfish grow VERY large and, somewhere in the near future, the tank will be far more overstocked.

    I have seen goldfish with solid black eyes like yours. I don't know that there's necessarily anything wrong with the eye but maybe someone with more knowledge can comment on that. I did notice...something...in the second set of photos you posted. It almost looks as if the fish is missing his gill cover on the reddened gill. Gills are a deep, healthy, fleshy pink normally and they are covered by a protective layer of tissue that can be just about any color of the rainbow. I could swear in the photo it almost looks like he's got a giant hole in the gills covers and the tissue beneath is exposed.

    Guys - do you all see that? Or am I just interpreting the photo wrong? Take a look at the second link in the second set of photos posted by illnasty. If this is really the case, I've heard of it before. I don't really know the cause but I don't think there's much that can be done other than keep the water very clean and feed him well.

    The fish also looks a little red in the rest of the body as well in one of the photos - am I seeing that correctly? I'm a little concerned about ammonia/nitrite exposure and recommend more water changes on the double. Also, that you read the article here on the nitrogen cycle. Tetra SafeStart (TSS) is a bottled bacteria product that will help cycle your tank. I highly recommend it. If you get the TSS it's very important that you post back here for specific steps.

    I wish you the best of luck!
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2014
  10. hollie1505

    hollie1505Well Known MemberMember

    I see it. His gill is very red and looks quite sore and I agree, regular water changes for both the cycling and healing of the gill :)

    If you could let me know what test kit you are using and check your readings that would be great.xx
  11. OP

    illnastyNew MemberMember

    Thank you both for your replies. We're currently using test strips from Jungle. We're also taking a water sample to the pet store tomorrow to have it tested and to make sure we're reading the results correctly.

    As to the fish in question, we agree that his gill cover may be missing. Just never put two and two together.
  12. Tank GirlValued MemberMember

    Black eyes are common in goldfish. They are also called "button eyes". The pink looking gill is just translucent, allowing the normal pink tissue to show through.
  13. Witchydesign

    WitchydesignWell Known MemberMember

    I thought translucent at first too, but the second set of pictures looks more like its missing. Like an open sore almost :-(
  14. fishingdeepValued MemberMember

    Can you buy something a test kit, since we don't like : test strips : very much. The results vary to much
  15. OP

    illnastyNew MemberMember

    May have found some more relevant info here:  

    and here:  
  16. fishingdeepValued MemberMember

    Nope - thanks for the links though. I have to say "relevant" is the key word. I know the links also, but are you posting things about you and not what this forum is about?
  17. Lucy

    LucyModeratorModerator Member

    Hi welcome to FishLore!!

    Perhaps if you explained why those links are relevant to your particular fish?
  18. hollie1505

    hollie1505Well Known MemberMember

    When you take the water to the LFS be sure to get a reading from them not "good conditions" it will give you much better insight into what is going on.xx

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