My Betta has lost half his tail!! Updated pics - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 22 Old 07-24-2008, 11:19 PM Thread Starter
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He's worse

I've been treating him for 3 full days now. I had convinced myself that at even if it wasn't better, at least it wasn't worse...

Until this afternoon. I noticed that (I think) his tail is more moth-eaten, and... now it's at the tip of his (dorsal? top?) fin, too.

And when I called Petsmart, PetsNPals, and Petco, they all recommended Melafix or Pimafix. I told them that that was tea tree oil, and would help if they were healing, but not if it was getting worse. They didn't seem to have any suggestion, except Erythromycin (and I could tell the girl had walked to the section, and was just looking through the medications, not talking from experience).

I asked them all if they had Jungle "Fungus Eliminator", and none of them had it. Two tried to suggest "Fungus Clear", which, unless I'm mistaken, is used to remove fungus from stuff in the tank, not from the fish. So I don't know what to do.

Today I did a 30% water change, vacuuming the bottom of the tank really well. There was more poop than I thought, hiding under the bridge. Because I had added 3 tsp of aquarium salt before (1 per gal), I didn't add any more, as I got the feeling I might have overdone it, although that was the recommended dosage per most websites I saw. Then I added in the tetracycline.

I took some pictures... I worry so much about him! And the problem, he is my fish at work, and I'm not supposed to go back in until Monday. I have staff that feeds him on Friday, and occasionally once on the weekend. But I don't want to go back and find him dead!

I have a staff member feeding and adding the tetracycline tomorrow, and I'm considering driving over to see how he is doing (as I'll be within 20 miles of there). And if he's not doing any better? I need to figure out what to treat him with, then go do it on Saturday or Sunday. Which will mean driving 40 miles round trip to work, then 60 miles roundtrip (opposite direction) to help him.

So please, everyone! Tell me what to do!!!

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post #12 of 22 Old 07-25-2008, 12:10 AM
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Treating with pimafix and melafix, although it says to only do this in extreme cases (this seems pretty extreme) will cure fin rot.

You could also try this stuff

Lol now I'm not saying go and dump all these different meds in your tank. But give these a shot.

Have I already mentioned that if there is carbon in your filter it will be sucking up your meds you add? You must remove carbon from your filter during treatment, then put it in to remove the meds from your tank.

And just before you laid dead weight upon its shores, I stung you in the face for that's the nature of my core.
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post #13 of 22 Old 07-25-2008, 01:34 AM Thread Starter
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I should have removed the filter?

I read the instructions that came with the Maracyn-TC, and it said that if the filter was over 6 days old, it didn't need to be removed. And mine was well over a week old, almost two.

Why can't they give proper directions?!? I read the entire pamphlet before I used it!

So should I continue to treat (as there is only 1 more day to go), and remove the filter, or should I just do the last day, give him a "drug holiday" for Sat/Sun, and start with another round of Tetracycline (this time without the filter) on Monday?

I can't seem to do anything right...
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post #14 of 22 Old 07-25-2008, 09:26 AM
You seem to be having the same troubles that I have had. I tried melafix (which I don't think does anything but gunk up the water), Maracyn TC, and Fungus Clear. So far I can't decide if the Fungus Clear worked or not but I think it did more good than the other two. And yes, it is for treating the fish (never heard of it treating the tank ?) I have heard that other people here had used it and that it worked for them. I am guessing this is because it treats both bacterial and fungal infections so you get rid of any possibilities. I would take the carbon out of the filter just to be safe. If you have a filter that takes those pads that are filled with carbon, just empty the carbon out and put the flossy stuff back in so that you still have filtration. How often do you do water changes, unless otherwise directed by the medication, maybe you should do twice a week changes instead of weekly ones. The cleaner the water, the easier it is for them to heal and avoid re-infection. I would say that if the fin rot is getting worse, don't do another dose of the medication because it is not working. Give him a day (maybe 2 if it does not get too bad) to clear the water of any medication and try the Fungus Clear. Put the carbon in the filter to clear the meds. and do a partial water change and gravel vac. I hope that this helps, I sure hope that it actually did work for me! Still can't tell though.
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post #15 of 22 Old 07-25-2008, 09:27 AM
Oh...sorry to double post. Don't use salt with the meds. because most of them contain salt and you can overdose. Good luck.
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post #16 of 22 Old 07-25-2008, 11:02 AM
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You never have to take the filter out!!! The filter stays in 24/7 The only way I can see you would want to remove your filter is if what your adding destroys beneficial bacteria... And in that case... don't use the medication.

Take the media out of your filter, cut a little bit on the flossy side shake the carbon out and put the media back into the filter. But you will need carbon once your have to remove the medications.

Have you had carbon in your filter the whole time during treatment?

And just before you laid dead weight upon its shores, I stung you in the face for that's the nature of my core.
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post #17 of 22 Old 07-28-2008, 09:41 PM Thread Starter
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He's getting better!

On Thursday, I did a 30% water change, then added the Tetracycline. I took pics, because obviously I'm not that observant, and I need to be able to see differences back to back to notice them.

On Friday night, *after* taking out the carbon filter, I added the Tetracycline.

I had to work Saturday & Sunday in a town 60 miles round trip the opposite direction. So I didn't go back Saturday.

Sunday morning, I went back, vacuumed his tank (about 1/3 water change), and added meds. He didn't look worse, but not significantly better. I took pics.

Today? I noticed what I think is a little frill of almost clear tissue healing back, filling in the spaces between the spines (which are also very short now). So after 3 days on *unfiltered* meds, he's improving.

Here's my problem.

As previously said, I nuked the tank (ie - got rid of the gravel, rinsed everything in hot water with a scrubby brush), because that's what the first website I read said. I should have researched more thoroughly, but that's water under the bridge.

I tested the water today. Now, realize... since Friday night, there has been no filter, because it's one of those carbon ones, and I had to take it out. I have the Eclipse 3 gal, takes size Z filters.

And I did a 100% change on Monday, 33% change on Thursday, 33% change on Sunday... and when I dip checked it? 3 ppm Nitrite! It said to do a 25% water change, but he has his meds in the morning, and I don't want to dilute them. So I'm going to go in early, do the change tomorrow morning, and add in the Tetracycline. I plan on 5 days of dosage without filters.

But... obviously the water quality is going down. I know, I *nuked* it. But... I have the BioWheel system (how much does tetracycline hurt it), and the bacteria are in there, not in the gravel... or not *only* in the gravel...

I don't have gravel in there now, just a few glass beads, so I can more easily vacuum up any debris when I make my water changes. But do I *need* it? If I put in more substrate (glass gems) with that work? I had that before, but got rid of it because I had a nitrite spike, and because food fell between them and decayed (it was the danio tank), ruining the water. And whenever I changed the filter, I lost a lot of bacteria (I had a Whisper filter on that one).

Anyway... do I need gravel? Or can I just use a few scattered glass gems, 5 fabric plants, and an aquarium decoration (along with the BioWheel) to support a healthy flora for him?

Any advice is very welcome!
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post #18 of 22 Old 07-29-2008, 08:33 AM Thread Starter
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Updated pics - he's a little better!

Big Blue is doing a little better. He's starting to regrow his fins, or at least the bones aren't sticking out like they used to, so I'm assuming he's adding to the meat, not losing the bones. And it *looks* better.

But now I'm having troubles with a nitrite spike (3 ppm), and I worry about diluting meds, but I *have * to do at least a 33% water change.

And I'm still wondering if I *need* gravel? I mean, is it up because I "nuked" my tank, and it will come to equilibrium again, or is it because I took the filter out on Friday to keep the meds from diluting, or do I really need the gravel to keep bacteria there? Because when I went to clean it before, it's amazing how much ick it traps and holds onto...


Here is a pic of him before any problems. I can't believe it took me so long to notice!
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post #19 of 22 Old 07-31-2008, 06:37 PM
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Check this link out:

The first three paragraphs contain information about Nitrite's role towards having beneficial bacteria in your tank. As long as the Nitrite does not exceed 20 ppm, you should be fine. I'm still new to taking care of Bettas. If any of this is wrong, please correct me.

I wish you and your fishy the best of luck :) You guys will pull through. Looks like he is doing much better in the pictures.

Take care
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post #20 of 22 Old 08-01-2008, 07:28 AM
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hey it could be because of those plastic plants you have in there does he like to brush up against them
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