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monapica 07-06-2008 06:26 PM

Sick Betta: Swims on side..
I have had a Betta male for about 4 1/2 months now, and he has always been healthy...a fast swimmer and eater, with vibrant colors. His water temperature is just fine, mid-high 70s, so cold temperature isn't an issue.

Yesterday, however, I noticed he was very slow, and his face was greyish in some parts, instead of the usual black. His colors started to fade somewhat, and he was swimming on his side. It still hasn't gotten better, although he eats normally and tries to swim as best he can. He swims crookedly and on his side.. I have already changed his water.

I read online about bladder disease that can cause fish to swim on their sides, but the page said that it's usually caused by overfeeding. I have not changed his feeding schedule or anything, and he has not been eating more than usual. Does anyone know what his problem could be?? Is it bladder disease, or could it be something else? What can I do about it...and will he get better soon?

Kim 07-06-2008 06:32 PM

How much are you feeding him? It may be that he is eating just a little too much every day and the cummulative effect has given him swim bladder disease. There are several illnesses that could cause a betta to bloat, but from what I know none of them except for swim bladder disease would cause them to have difficulty swiming upright. I would try not feeding him for a few days and seeing if this helps. I hope that your fish is feeling better soon.

monapica 07-06-2008 07:17 PM

Thanks for the reply... I had no idea that the longterm effect of eating too much could cause him to swim on his side. I will stop feeding him for a few days and see what happens...I hope he gets better. He is still swimming, and his colors have gotten a bit brighter, so hopefully that's a good sign. I will update his recovery

monapica 07-06-2008 07:19 PM

Actually, I feed him flake food, a tiny bit twice a day....I think that was probably too much, and he should only be fed once a day. I also had one day a week where I did not feed him. He also has freezdried bloodworms a couple times a week.

Flashygrrl 07-06-2008 07:34 PM

How many bloodworms do you usually feed him? The twice a day feeding isn't such a big deal as long as you do it in very small amounts. Usually betta pellets are better for them and more recommended due to the uniformity of the pellet size so no guessing (how much did I feed him last time?) and probably formulated better than even betta flakes would be.

Kim 07-07-2008 08:36 AM

I'm glad to hear that he is doing a little better. It seems as if you were doing everything right, maybe your betta just has a really small stomach!
Good luck.

ErinBBC 07-07-2008 11:37 AM

Betta pellets are a much better staple than bloodworms, I'd feed him pellets and supplement with bloodworms a couple of times a week.

Also do you have a heater? I know you said it was warm when you checked it but if you don't have a heater the temp of the water dips overnight when the house gets colder and that can shock the fish.

monapica 07-08-2008 12:46 PM

:( I have some bad news...yesterday morning, I noticed my fish was sitting at the bottom of the tank, and he started swimming erratically (almost like somersaults). I have no idea what was wrong with him- he was fine a couple days before, he was swimming quickly, had bright colors, etc., but the next day he started getting worse. I transferred him to another bowl, with lower water level, and he was on his side as usual, gasping for air. When he did swim, he was on his side. Unfortunately, he died last night. I have no idea what could have caused him to get sick and die within two days... but thanks everyone for the replies.. I was hoping he'd get better, but unfortunately he only got worse

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