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LittlePrince
07-12-2010, 07:27 AM
I got home from work tonight to find my 4" shubunkin stuck inside of a rock formation. The poor thing managed to wedge itself in a hole in the lava rock. After assessing the situation I decided that smacking the rock with a hammer was the best option and luckily the rock busted in just the right way to safely free my poor fish and not injure any other fish in the tank. (I kept the rock in the tank when I smashed it so that my fish would not have to be out of water.)

His pectoral fins are shredded and his anal fin is tattered and showing bright red. The caudal, dorsal, and pelvic fins all look fine, though. He's got a bloody spot near one eye from smacking his head into the rock when I accidentally touched him while picking up the rock. His eyes are really sluggish and almost cloudy looking now. Also, just before the dorsal fin he's got a deep wedge of flesh missing from wriggling around in the rock.

He's swimming around just fine, but slowly of course. It looks as if his slime coat is gone and he's "shedding" all over his body, too.

Besides the physical trauma, he looks okay. He just came up to the glass to "say hi" like he always does when I get up close so I don't think he's in any way disoriented.

My question is, is there anything that I can do to help him recover? How long will it take for him to recover? The other two goldfish seem to be taking an awful lot of interest in him right now. I took the rock out of the tank, added a few gallons of fresh water and some SeaChem Prime to help him build up his slime coat again.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I'm really attached to this fish so I want to do the best that I can to get him back to top shape.

Lady Hobbs
07-12-2010, 08:36 AM
I hate fake decorations for just that reason. Most of them are death traps for fish. A person is better off with terra cotta flower pots with the bottom knocked out.

More frequent water changes now will help him to heal and prevent secondary infections. Many of the water conditioners on the market contain slime coat or aloes for healing added. As long as you use a water conditioner, he should be fine.

Fish tend to pick on the weakest of the group and he's been beat up pretty good by that decoration. Just make sure the others are not poking at him or you may have to separate them or use a divider. Melafix added to the water may help with healing but I think just good, clean water will do as much.

LittlePrince
07-12-2010, 06:51 PM
The other fish seem to be leaving him alone now and he's mostly just lingering at the top of the tank. He's eating so that's good. I had to drop the food right in front of him, though. I got the lava rock for the dojo loaches that are also in the tank. I'll have to find something else for them, I suppose. Thanks, Lady Hobbs, for the advice.

Lady Hobbs
07-12-2010, 09:41 PM
PVC pipe works well.

Time-Out
07-12-2010, 11:05 PM
I have to disagree with fish always picking on the weakest. I once had a fish that jumped out, over the landing, landing a full storey lower. The only thing that got him through was his little buddy holding him upright against the glass.
Bless him.

LittlePrince
07-14-2010, 06:36 PM
Awe, that is too cute about the buddy fish.

On another note, though, it looks like my dare devil goldfish is going to be just fine. He's behaving normally again so now I'm just waiting for his fins to grow back.