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Blinkishereyo182
09-06-2009, 05:11 AM
Hello

About 2-3 weeks ago i was at a local Petco. I spotted a beautiful reptile ornament. I asked 2 of the employees at the store if the reptile ornament was ok to put in a fish tank. They both said it shoudnt be a problem. I was wondering if the reptile ornament contaminated the water?

Yesterday i noticed my betta (Jeremy) was breathing a bit deeply, but i thought nothing of it because he was fighting his reflection, so i figured he was probably a little exited.

Today the deep breathing continued, and he seems a little bit less active. Hes still eating and swimming around but, clearly hes not 100% ok.

Currently i switched him over to a 1 gallon tank with new water, and im letting water dechloronize so i can do a complete water change on his permanent tank.

If there is anything else i should be doing please let me know. Any medications or treaments.


thank you very much for your time

-Jason-

Little Embers
09-06-2009, 05:42 AM
WELCOME Jason :ssmile:

Did you wash the ornament before adding it? Do you know what it is made from? That may not be the problem though.....What size is Jeremy's permanent tank, how long has it been set up, was it cycled and how often do you do water changes. Are you testing regularly for ammonia, nitrite and nitrate? Does it have a filter and heater? What is the temperature of the tank?

Sorry for all those questions....I think it would be wrong to say YES or NO to your question, when it may not be connected to the ornament at all.


Currently i switched him over to a 1 gallon tank with new water, and im letting water dechloronize so i can do a complete water change on his permanent tank.
Do you use a dechlorinator?....that will make the tank safe for fish immediately.

I would not use medication until there is an actual disease symptom showing....If you are in doubt about that ornament, I would remove it and do a partial water change and even add some Activated Carbon to the filter if you want, in case it did contaminate the water.

Deleted User
09-06-2009, 12:42 PM
Also, how old is your betta?

I love ours, too, but I've read they only live a couple of years. If you've had yours for awhile, or if he was older when you got him, it would be awful for you to be worried you did something that is really just nature taking its course.

Hopefully though he will be feeling better soon! They sure have lots of personality, don't they?

Lady Hobbs
09-06-2009, 02:14 PM
If in doubt I'd return the ornament. Betta's do not need ornaments and they are only for our eyes, anyway.

Blinkishereyo182
09-06-2009, 05:36 PM
Hey, thanks for all the feedback.

-Yes i did rinse the ornament well before installing it.

-I have not idea what its made of.

-His tank is a 6 gallon tank

-Its been set up for about month or 2.

-I dont use a dechlorinator, but i always refil a 5 gallon jug i have after every change so it sits for 10 days.

-I am not sure what you mean by cyvled, but i do change his water every 10 days or so.

-I dont really test the water. The tank does not have a filter or heater, but his tank is always between 76-82. Most of the time is steady at 80.

-I have had Jeremy for 5 months, im not sure how old he was when i got him. Coming from petco, he was prob like 6 months old im assuming.

Blinkishereyo182
09-07-2009, 06:09 AM
I noticed another sympton. He seems to arch his head upwards and swim really fast when he goes up for air.

I really wish i knew what is wrong with him so i can get him some medication,

iZinedane
09-07-2009, 06:16 AM
IMO always use dechlorinator.
letting it sit for 10 days only evaporates chlorine
but not chloramine.

Little Embers
09-07-2009, 07:29 AM
-Yes i did rinse the ornament well before installing it.

-I have not idea what its made of.
If unsure, I would simply remove it....I think the problem is more than just the decor though...I think it has more to do with your tank maintenance.


-Its been set up for about month or 2.
You are probably getting high levels of ammonia and nitrite in the tank (possibly even nitrates)...You need to do more frequent water changes...


-I dont use a dechlorinator, but i always refil a 5 gallon jug i have after every change so it sits for 10 days.
Unless you are using Well water that contains no chloride, chloramine or heavy metals....I would always use a dechlorinator. Chloramine is often present in tap water (city water) and it doesn't evaporate (as iZinedane just mentioned), so letting it sit for days will not remove chloramine (which is toxic to fish) or some of the heavy metals that may be present also....


-I am not sure what you mean by cyvled, but i do change his water every 10 days or so.
Cycling a tank is basically the process whereby the necessary beneficial bacterium establishes themselves and deals with the ammonia, nitrite and nitrate (which are all toxic to fish to differing degrees) that are present in the tank. Fish will sooner or later die if the tank isn't cycled. I would advise you to get a filter for the 6 gallon tank, as the filter plays a big part in keeping the bacteria established.
Please read this sticky thread on cycling, which gives much more information......http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/aquariumforum/showthread.php?t=36492


-I dont really test the water. The tank does not have a filter or heater, but his tank is always between 76-82. Most of the time is steady at 80.
I would advise buying the API Liquid Master Test Kits for ammonia, nitrite and nitrate, they are particularly necessary while a tank is getting established. As you do not have a filter at present, I would strongly recommend doing partial water changes of 30-40% daily or every second day....leaving it go for ten days is too long to go without a water change when you do not have a filter IMO.


-I have had Jeremy for 5 months, im not sure how old he was when i got him. Coming from petco, he was prob like 6 months old im assuming.
It is possible he is getting old as well.


I noticed another sympton. He seems to arch his head upwards and swim really fast when he goes up for air.
This is normal when he is in a hurry to get to the surface.....You don't need medications IMO,... you really need to go and get the test kits and do more frequent water changes (until getting a filter) and use a dechlorinator.. I really think that is Jeremy's problem...I think it is safe to move him back to the 6 gallon if you do those things.

Blinkishereyo182
09-08-2009, 05:40 PM
I got the declorinator and test kids. According to the kits everything is fine execpt for the nitrate and nitrite. I dont understand why they would be elevated. I did a full tank change 2 days sgo, and a 50% water change today.

Im pretty upset now. I noticed his fins.tail are looking funny =( He barely swims anymore. He spends most of his time near the surface.

According to the symptons, he might have swim bladder. I been trying to feed him peas, but they all seem to sink to the bottom.

Blinkishereyo182
09-08-2009, 05:50 PM
http://i11.photobucket.com/albums/a167/Blinkishereyo182/IMG_0097.jpg

This is him just starring at the pea lol

Faith_at_Large
09-10-2009, 07:12 PM
Bettas are typically not sold in the petstore until they are mature so that they have the full finnage to show off. Yours could have been anywhere from 6 months to a year before you bought it.

But while typically they only live about two years, they can live for much longer than that. I have heard of some living up to 8 years, and I have seen a neighbours Betta (which we cared for over several summer vacations) live several years. And yes it was the same one.

Your tank is probably in the process of being cycled with your fish, but unfortunately, the cycling process usually kills the fish that was used to acheive the cycle - that's why many here recommend cycling without fish.

If you know a friend who keeps an aquarium, beg for some used filter material (transfer it quickly in some tank water) and put it immediately into the new filter you should be buying very shortly if not already. This will provide the bacteria you need to consume the nasty nitrites and nitrates before they become ammonia. This will be instant and help your fish.

Watch the intake on your filter and turn the flow down lower to protect his fins from being pulled in. Bettas do not like fast moving water, but should have filtration to keep the tank nice.

Using AquaPlus will make your water safe for water changes, and you can have your Betta happier in no time.

It sounds like you do not need a heater, unless your tank cools off a lot in the winter.

Good luck.

Blinkishereyo182
09-12-2009, 03:02 AM
Just incase it happens to anyone else. Jeremy is actually a lot better now. Maybe at a 95% recovery.

The 1st thing i did was a complete water change, and added water safe plus that i got from petco. Water safe plus is a water conditioner that removes chlorine, chloramine and heavy metals, it also adds beneficial bacteria. I also remove everything out of his tank including gravel, plants and ornaments. I left him one plant, just so he had something to hide under.

After doing that i started treating him with pimafix (treats fungal infections), and melafix (repairs damaged fins, ulcers, and open wounds). Both treatments are safe to use together. They are not harmful to the fish, and are good to use just to be on the safe side.

Both treatments are 7 day treatments. Tonight is the 3rd night that i am treating the tank and Jeremy is almost 100% recovered.

Hopefully this is helpful to anyone with a sick betta. I know its tough to see a sick buddy.

I will also like to thank everyone for their input.

-Jason-

Faith_at_Large
09-12-2009, 06:10 PM
One word of caution. While Melefix is sold for Bettas as Bettafix (same thing just different concentrations for different sized tanks), I have heard that it can cause problem with Bettas and other similar fish due to their specialized "lungs".

Bettas have labyrinth organs which can be coated by the Melafix which can lead to breathing problems.

I have used it before with a previous Betta and did not have any trouble, but you may wish to have other meds for future use and be very specific with what you are treating. At the very least be watchful with Jeremy.

Pimafix may pose similar problems, but I do not recall for certain. I think that it was just Melafix.

Other fish that do not breath air at the surface are not harmed by Melafix or Pimafix and I find that these are a great remedy for most fish, I think that they are close to being miracle workers.

I hope that your fish will get all the way better soon, but please do consider a rapid cycle for your tank with a filter. There are a lot of products with bacteria in them to help, but except for a few, none are a substitute for a properly cycled tank.

Otherwise, you will need to test regularly and do frequent water changes to keep Jeremy from getting sick again.