Goldfish sleeping a lot...?
First post, here goes...
Hey guys, I am a new proud owner of 3 beautiful goldfish. They came from an owner who didn't really pay attention to them. I have never had fish before, so I am just about new to everything. Eventually, I like to have a nice aquarium with a large variety.
With that said, I think there is a problem with one of my goldfish. She's the largest of the 3 and seems to be sleeping a lot. She spends most of the day hovering over the gravel. When its feeding time, she'll get active and swim around seemly fine. Then, its back to hovering over the rocks. From all that I've read, these guys are supposed to be very active, like the other two. So I don't know what it could be...?
Here are the specs:
It is a 5.5 gallon tank---which I am told that is cutting it close for 3 goldfish
It has a filter system
It has an automatic feeder, once a day.
It only has one toy rock, fake leaves. No live plants or anything.
According to the owner, they've lived like that their whole life. She claims they are about 3 years old. Now I went to Petco and took them a sample of my water and the following is what I was told: The ammonia level were a bit high but not dangerous. The highest was the nitrate levels among all of them. She told me the only way to stabilize the tank was to do weekly water changes of about 25-30%. She also sold me a gravel vacuum.
When I got home I followed her recommendation. I changed 30% of the water and did so using the vacuum. The new fresh water I put in was treated with water conditioner and was around the same temperature. So I am hoping to restore ideal conditions so that the sleepy goldfish can recover quickly before its too late. I just want to make sure what she told was accurate and recommend. I figured those reps are jack of all trades but master of none type of deal. So I'd toss the question to you guys for some advice on why she could be spending so much time over the gravel..?
As of now, she is still acting the same way and the water in the tank is cloudy (which I heard is normal). Should I continue the weekly water changes or start doing them daily? Any advice would be helpful! Thanks!
P.S pretty sure goldfish are coldwater fish and the heated water may be adding to his stress and stress leads to sickness and even death. wow is humans responded the way to stress liek fish the world would be wayyyyy diffrent.
Um...what type of goldfish are these? There are a lot. Even the smallest goldfish need a 55 gallon tank. And by smallest I mean they grow to be 6+ inches :/
I've been doing some research into them as I'm quite interested in eventually having a few, but if they've lived in a 5.5 gallon tank for three years...I'd think they're stunted and sickly from that, and may be reaching the end of their lives from those conditions. Goldfish really do get very large, especially those 'feeder' goldfish...those guys get MASSIVE if given the right care. Sounds like a swimbladder issue, from the goldfish being unable to grow properly.
Also, goldfish are very dirty animals, they produce a lot of waste. With 3 goldfish in an unplanted tiny tank...daily WCs may not even be enough.
Sorry to be blunt, but goldfish require a lot of care and maintenance..
You should really do some research, and if you can afford it then upgrade to a larger tank. Those fish are being poisoned by their own waste, even if you reduce feedings. I'm sorry but there's really no quick fix here, the only way to get the fish healthy (even though the other two may appear 'fine', they are suffering from burned gills, and deformed growth. Their physical bodies literally can't fit in that tank, but their internal organs will still grow) is to upgrade to a 55 gallon tank, depending on the type of goldfish you have.
Common goldfish get to be really, really big. Like over a foot long big. A 55 gallon wouldn't even cut it. Although the filter helps with how dirty they are, there is no way around them needing large water changes weekly or more often if you can (talking about a big tank here. On the tank you have now you may want to consider large daily water changes.)
I'm not a goldfish expert by any means, but from talking with a few and researching, researching, and researching, goldfish require a lot of work and a lot of water.
Honestly, if there's any way you can donate them to someone with a pond, you may want to consider it.
Hi and welcome to the forum! I'm sorry you've come under such bad circumstances, but we're glad you're here.
I've been keeping goldfish for 7 years now and have to say that they are actually more difficult than your basic tropical tank. Their large size and high waste load is what makes them so difficult. It seems like your friend knew about how messy they are, but thought that goldfish grow to the size of their tank. This is a myth as a properly-cared for fish will outgrow its tank.
I honestly think the only fix here is to get a larger tank. In that small of a tank, you will just need too many water changes and it will stress the fish out even more. Surprisingly what the pet store told you was very good advice. Weekly water changes are a must with goldfish and some people even do twice weekly water changes because the waste builds up so quickly.
If they have lived in that tank for 3 years, they are stunted, but they might still grow some when give weekly water changes. They still have the potential to get 6 inches or longer. If you plan to keep them, I would suggest getting a large plastic tub (30+ gal) and placing them in that along with the gravel and filter. This will minimize the effects of moving on the cycle. Despite what the pet store said, any level of ammonia is harmful. You can read about the aquarium cycle here: http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/f...m-cycle-38617/ They will live in that tub for a few months while you find a larger aquarium. Aim for something between 100 and 50 gallons, but the larger the better.
If you think they are just too much for you, then looking for someone with an ornamental pond would be best. Please do not dump them into local waterways. Goldfish can survive near freezing temperatures and will likely survive in your local waters. This is already causing problems elsewhere in the US and world: Researchers: Giant Gold fish Threatens Lake Tahoe - ABC News
Okay, thanks for the advice guys! I have been looking on craiglist to see if I can get a good deal on a 55+ gallon tank. I am going to do a water change tomorrow and hopefully it'll lessen the effects for a bit. I did go down to feeding them every other day too. Actually, you're absolutely spot on, the previous owner claimed they get as big as the tank they are in. Clearly, its a myth. Thanks again with all the help. I think if I can get a tank fast enough, they'll take a turn for the better quickly.
Unfortunately, my Goldfish died today :( I don't think I had enough time to make a significant impact and help the situation. I did water changes every 3 days, ensured the filter was working properly, and reduced the feeding. I almost went out and got a tub, like a previous post suggested, however I just managed to get 70gal aquarium. I still need to get a new filter and a few more things and let it cycle before I transfer them.
For now, I still have the other two goldfish in the tank and I think I am going to do a partial water change tomorrow. Is there anything additional I should do to make sure the water will not be contaminated?
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