Need Advice Regarding Sick Shubunkin & Tank
Just need some quick advice on how best to help my poor Shubunkin, Shibby, feel better. Poor guy has a case of fin rot... has a pretty bad rip in his tail fin. I've been trying to get him through by treating the tank with Melafix for a couple weeks. It helped a little, but not much. So today we drove to the nearest Petsmart (50 miles away), and got enough Maracyn Two for a 5 day treatment. (I have a couple packets left over from last time, so I have a total of 34 packets.) I also bought a small package of Aquarium Salt, because I vaguely remembered reading somewhere on the AC that it was a good thing to add when you are trying to heal a sick fish.
I have not yet done anything, because I want to make sure I do it right and don't mess something up by not knowing. First, the necessary info, followed by my questions:
Tank - 55 gallons, contains 2 Shubunkin; one is 9"-10" long, the other is app. 6" long; and 1 (young) Sarassa Comet; app. 5" long.
Tested the water a few minutes ago, with the following results:
pH - 7.6
Ammonia - 0.25
Nitrite - 0
Nitrate - 40
Last water change (40%) - 4/22/12 Treated water with AquaSafe and Algae Destroyer according to directions on bottles.
No carbon filters, since I've been treating with Melafix.
Water is currently CLOUDY. I think our next-to-last cleaning of tank was maybe too vigorous? We transferred fish to a 14 gallon tank (filled with water from the 55 gallon tank), and removed all the water from big tank. Cleaned all decorations, scrubbed down inner tank walls, outside of air hoses, filter tube. Rinsed bio-filters in tank water before putting them back in filter. (The bio-filters are thin, and probably need to be replaced, but I can't find replacements anywhere. Not really sure what to do about that?) When we refilled the tank and replaced the fish, we added back the 14 gallons worth of water from the other tank, and treated with appropriate amounts of AquaSafe and Algae Destroyer. The tank went through a cycling period afterwards, but cleared up after a few days, only to become cloudy again after the last water change on 4/22.
I think that's all the info... so my questions are:
1.) I know the cloudy water isn't a good thing, and that the ammonia level should be at 0. What steps do I need to take in order to clear up the water and lower the ammonia levels? Can this be rectified simply by doing a water change? If so, what percentage? And if not, what do I need to do in order to clear the water and bring the ammonia level back down to 0?
2.) Am I correct in thinking that adding aquarium salt will promote the healing of my fish? How much should I add? (The package instructs that 1 tablespoon per 5 gallons of water should be added, but that seems like a LOT of salt for freshwater fish!)
3.) My final question kind of loops back to my first question... before I add the Maracyn Two and Aquarium Salt, would it be best for the fish if I did a water change first?
I just want to do what's right for my fish... it's killing me to see Shibby ill and stressed out. Please help me make it up to him!
Let me just start by saying I havent had to dose my fish with medicine and I dont have goldfish.
With that I would put shibby in the 14 gallon tank you talked about to do treatment. It will be way fewer meds and you wont have to stress out your healthy fish.
That's not really a viable solution for me because I don't have a place to keep the 14 gallon set up and running for an indeterminate amount of time. Except for the rare occasions it used (for a few hours) as a holding tank, it is stored in the box it came in when we bought it.
Thank you for the suggestion, and an even bigger thanks for taking the time to reply to my post. I really appreciate your kindness in trying to help me.
I can't wait any longer for advice, so I guess I'll just have to wing it. Hopefully I won't do anything that will end up making it worse for Shibby. Fingers crossed!