Cardinal Tetra with possible Popeye?
Today I discovered one of my 15 Cardinals was acting odd. He was the only one not swimming with the school which isn't normal. As soon as I walk up to the tank they always group up. He wasn't swimming around and his red stripe was very faded. His eyes looked large compared to the others and he was breathing heavy. I immediately setup a 10g hospital tank and I'm treating him with Mardel Copper Safe. The temp is around 78*F which is the same temperature as the 75g he came from. Is there anything more I can do for him? Should I raise the temp a bit more? I'm not using the filter as of now to reduce stress from swimming hard. Should I aerate the tank with a stone and keep the filter off? Any other suggestions are welcome.
CopperSafe is not going to help unless this is an external parasite. Unfortunately, it will make the fish worse, regardless. All characins are highly sensitive to any chemical or medication. I have used CS to cure ich with characins, but it does stress them nevertheless, and here I suspect it may not fix the problem anyway.
Can you post a photo? I'm not knowledgeable in fish health so I generally don't advise but sometimes I may see something I have gone through and be able to suggest something.
I would run the airstone. Or the filter, unless it buffers the fish around.
Edit. Just noticed this issue is now six days old; I would expect the fish is dead. But...
It turned out the fish didn't have Popeye. It was choking on something so my LFS told me to just euthanize him as there was not much I could do. If it were a larger fish I may have been able to get whatever was stuck out but with something as small as a Cardinal its near impossible without doing other damage.
BTW, I do agree with euthanizing fish in such cases. To be honest, this is my usual "treatment" unless I have a good idea of the actual issue, or if it is widespread obviously.
They came to that conclusion because its mouth was wide open.
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This also occurs with almost any water-related issue, such as pH. If the fish has an internal problem, such as a protozoan, it may also be attempting to get more oxygen in the blood. The mouth in my experience is usually open upon death.
I won't say fish never choke, but from my experience and reading, this is very unlikely.
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