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FAQs About Goldfish Disease/Health 9

Related Articles: Goldfish Systems, Goldfish Disease, GoldfishGoldfish Varieties Koi/Pond Fish Disease, Livestock Treatment SystemBloaty, Floaty Goldfish, Gas Bubble Disease/Emphysematosis, Pond Parasite Control with DTHPHole in the Side Disease/Furunculosis,

Related FAQs:  Goldfish Disease 1, Goldfish Disease 2, Goldfish Disease 3, Goldfish Disease 4, Goldfish Disease 5, Goldfish Disease 6, Goldfish Disease 7, Goldfish Disease 8, Goldfish Disease 10, Goldfish Disease 11, Goldfish Disease 12, Goldfish Disease 13, Goldfish Disease 14, Goldfish Disease 15, Goldfish Disease 16, Goldfish Disease 17, Goldfish Disease 18, Goldfish Disease 19, Goldfish Disease 20, Goldfish Disease 21, Goldfish Disease 22, Goldfish Health 23, Goldfish Disease 24, Goldfish Health 25, Goldfish Disease 26, Goldfish Disease 27, Goldfish Disease 28, Goldfish Disease 29, Goldfish Disease 30, Goldfish Disease 31, Goldfish Disease 32, Goldfish Disease 33, Goldfish Disease 34, Goldfish Disease 35, Goldfish Health 36, Goldfish Health 37, Goldfish Health 38

FAQs on Goldfish Medicines: Antifungals, Antibacterials, Anti-protozoals ( Copper, eSHa, Metronidazole, Formalin, Copper, Malachite Green), Dewormers, Organophosphates, Salts, Mela- et al. non-fixes, Misc. Med.s,

Goldfish Disease by "Types", Causes:
Environmental 1, Environmental 2, Environmental 3, Environmental 4Environmental 5,  Environmental ,  (Absolutely the Biggest Category)
Floaty Bloaty Goldfish
Nutritional (Second Largest)
Eye Troubles
Lumps/Bumps/Growths (including idiopathic tumors)
Viral and Bacterial, Fungal Infectious
Parasitic: (Ich, Protozoans, Flukes, Worms, Crustacean/ Anchorworms/Lernaeids, ) Fish Lice (Argulus),
Goldfish Swim Bladder Problems
Anomalous (Misc., Injuries, etc.)

New Print and eBook on Amazon

Goldfish Success
What it takes to keep goldfish healthy long-term

by Robert (Bob) Fenner

Medicine Madness On/With Goldfish Hi! <Hello> I have four Black Moors that range from about 2" - 4" in a 20 gallon tank. <This is getting to be too crowded> I have recently bought a much larger tank because I was told this one was too small (I haven't put them in the new tank yet.) Some time ago one of my fish got Ich along with a fuzzy white patch on its tail identical on both sides. I treated it with fungal and Ich medicines and it cleared up completely. About two weeks after this I noticed that the same fish had a milky colouring to her one eye and she started to swim on an angle.  <Likely from the medications> The same angle as her "infected" eye. All stores were closed at this point and by the next day the other three fish were swimming on the same exact angle with a slight milky colour in their eyes as well. I spoke with someone at a fish store (They deal only in fish.) they recommended Mardel Maracyn (For Tail Rot, Popeye and "Body Fungus") I followed the directions exactly and they have improved very slightly. Not enough in my opinion that I should keep using it.  I am now using Life-Bearer (Eliminates Gill Flukes, Fish Lice and Anchor Worms) the person at the store knows that my fish don't suffer from any of the symptoms that are labeled on the box (Stops shaking and rubbing of fish) but said this will clear their cloudy eyes and that it won't harm them. I do frequent water changes and have changed their diet as well. I even tried feeding them peas which they won't even go near. I should also mention that other than these symptoms all four fish are very active and LOVE to eat and are growing like crazy!  From the very beginning I have taken out every book from the library, called vets, talked to people at the fish stores and still not much of an improvement or any real idea of what is going on. I don't know what else to do. If you could suggest something....anything I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks so much for your time. Krishenka and "The Fish" <In simple terms, you've poisoned your livestock. Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/gldfshdisease.htm and the many Linked Related FAQs above, and cease "treating" this tank. With luck, over time your fish will self-cure. Bob Fenner> 

Injured Goldfish 5.20.05 My bubble eye goldfish got stuck under some decorations when we cleaned the tank...days ago...found him today...still alive but not much.  fins and scales worn off.  I moved him to a very small bowl with water conditioner for slime coat, etc....laying on the bottom. <Hello.  Moving the fish may have only added to his stress.  All you can do is provide the best water quality and as little stress as possible and hope he pulls through.  Best of luck, -Gage>

Black Moor Goldfish question urgent Hi, My name is Tara and I have a 33 gallon tank with a Fluval filter system with one fancy orange goldfish, 2 smaller calico colored goldfish and a black moor goldfish. We had a problem with the water always turning green so we got a UV sterilizer and solved that problem. Since then my Black Moor has been swimming really funny, like he has no control and spends a lot of time lying on the bottom of the tank. <Mmm, I think the addition of the sterilizer is just coincidental here> His fins had looked really shabby for a few days but then they seemed to grow back and look almost brand new again. There are no other visible marks on him, he looks fine in color. I added some salt to the water (a small scoop of water from our marine aquarium) <Good move> Any ideas on what I can do for him. Is there vitamins or something I can add to the water? My other fish in the tank are all fine. I thank you in advance for any advice you can give me. Tara Forbister <The most likely root of the difficulty here is actually nutritional. Do read over our Goldfish Feeding/Nutrition archives on WWM, and look to adding more natural, whole foods and less dried, flake, pellets... Bob Fenner> 
Re: Black Moor Goldfish question urgent
Thank You, I am going to look this up right now. Last night, before I got your response, I moved him into a bowl with an airstone and guided him upright with my hand gently and got him to eat 2 shelled peas, and some blood worms. I also noticed when I moved him that he had what almost looked like a blood blister under his front fin. It has disappeared since I put him in the bowl. I have kept water prepared for frequent water changes in the bowl. Do you think this is a good idea? <Excellent thus far> or should I move him back in the main tank? I have done water refreshes on my tank as well on a regular basis. Thank you again, Tara <If you can/will maintain diligent water quality checking, changing, the shallow bowl will be easier for you and this fish to interact, stay upright. These events often take a good long while to bring about a cure. Bob Fenner> 

Goldfish trouble? Go to WWM! Hey! My fish I just got it like 3 weeks ago its a gold fish. It all of a sudden has brown spots starting to cover his body. <Unusual> He sometimes just sits at the bottom of the tank and doesn't move!! I'm afraid it will die! Maybe its because of the water?? I don't know! Some people say I don't have the right water...what kind should it be? I don't want it to die!! Please help! <Please help yourself... read on WWM re goldfish systems, feeding... disease. Bob Fenner> 

Goldfish Help Please, She's "The Bee's Knees" (With "Graphics") Hi, I have a rather large goldfish in a 39 gallon bow front tank, double filters, flow type, hang on side. As well as bubble maker. Fresh water. No Fresh plants. Goldie used to eat them or dislodge them. She likes her tank her way.. {:-) First, She is a rescue from an outside pond that puppy discovered and made holes. {:-) She is a common feeder goldfish. I guess a comet. She is listless, Sitting in one spot in bottom. Fins tucked in. She isn't eating very much. Was fine two days ago. She looks to the naked eye, ok.  However, I found these worms things clinging to the filter material in one of the filters. One of the worm things is segmented and black or dark brown about this long > --- < It was alive and moving. The other is like a bug looking thing. It has a head and a body about the same dark color. It is about this long > _ <  I Feed pond pellets and flakes with dried shrimp pieces. No heater. Clean filters weekly and there is no top (do have multi spectrum light) on this tank so water evaporates and is added to almost daily. Use Tap water after sitting out for 24 hours. No odors coming from tank.  She also poops, huge poops that are the length of tank, but in the last few days small thin poops. I don't know what else to add. She is about 6 years old maybe 7 years old. No problems till now. What are these filter animals? < Pond fish pick up all kinds of things from being outdoors. I would guess a plant leech and maybe a fish louse.> Do I need to and how do I get rid of them? < Fluke-tabs will get rid of both of them.> They don't cling to her. I don't see any injuries or strange marks on her. NO Ich or velvet.. Is tank too small ? < As long as the filter is moving at least three times the tank volume per hour and the nitrates don't exceed 25 ppm then it should be fine.> Should I put her back in pond.? < Sure if you want to but not while she is ill.> It has been refilled and more fish added and been healthy for several months. I am afraid to spread these worm - bug thingies and her problem.. I would be most grateful for any advice you could give. Please help me rescue Goldie one more time. She is the bee's knees in goldfish world. Bright and inquisitive and funny. She is alone in tank.  I have a 65 gallon tank with 13 inch black shark (Blackie) 6 catfish and a Pleco and 2 silver dollars. No problems there. Thanks in advance and God bless, Jan < The bug things are easy to cure. I would only feed her enough food so that all of it is gone in two minutes once each day. If she has an internal bacterial infection and she begins to bloat then I would recommend a 30% water change while vacuuming the gravel. Clean the filter and treat with Metronidazole.-Chuck> 

Goldfish health... Our goldfish has been lying on it's side all night. This morning he looks barely alive. He is kept in a 3 gallon bowl and we have had him for almost a year. This has been the first time he has not been healthy. I changed bowls this morning, but it's not helping. He won't swim, just occasionally flutters a fin. Can I help him? <Maybe... perhaps adding a bit of salt will help here... is this tank filtered, aerated? Please take a read on WWM re Goldfish Set-Up, Disease, Feeding...> 

I am Destroyed by Albert's (the goldfish) Death He kept floating for three days because of the swim bladder problem and died last night. His abdomen was swollen and his fin tail were bent on one side. <<Marcellino, I am heartbroken. I honestly have NO idea why this may have happened other than the bacterial infection you'd mentioned the lab said took Teena. Please, I want you to know that even the most experienced fishkeepers lose animals (mostly goldfish and Koi) to this disease every year. If it presents internally, then we may not even realize what it could be until it's too late. I am VERY sorry.>> I am not going to be a fish keeper no more. It's over. <<I am sorry to hear this, but I also do understand. When I lost a whole pond full of fish once, I stopped keeping fish for quite some time.>> I have a few things in which I could blame my self. That could be a better oxygenation, the brown algae and a better general hardness which lately lowered to 3dgh. <<I still disagree that those particular factors caused his demise. Strongly.>> All the other parameters were perfect, ammonia 0; nitrite 0; ph 7.4; nitrate 25ppm; no swings of temperature; a very good air pump; two biofilter respectively 300 gallons per hour and a small one of 25gph capacity; a 17 watts fluorescent bulb; a 30 gal tank; water change of 20% every week, every two weeks cleaning the gravel; every month cleaning power filter canisters and changing the pad filters; feeding no more than he could have eaten in five minutes once a day, mostly daphnia, spinach, lettuce, peas and blood worms. I've respected all rules possible and imaginable, I've read all existing books on the market about Goldfish, lots of care and maintenance, at the end, to get to this point where I've first lost Teena and 3 weeks later Albert. <<I understand your feelings, I really do. What is absolutely MADDENING is that another person across the street may have taken the same kind of fish, given them the worst possible care and they would be swimming along just fine. I REALLY don't think it's anything YOU did or didn't do, honestly.>> Their death is too much pain, too much to start wonder if I am enough competent to be a fish keeper or if I would need more expensive tools to make an aquarium closer to their natural habitat. <<You are VERY competent, and one of the MOST conscientious people I've ever interacted with, Marcellino. You can take my word for this, I've met a lot of people through this fish thing.>> Thank you so much to have helped me with your advises, bye. Marcellino and Alice <<You're welcome, I'm just very sorry I didn't have the right advice or answers to help your fishes, may they rest in aquatic peace. I have to admit, it took me a couple of days to answer this because it really hit me hard. I do hope someday you might like to try again, understanding that there are some things we can't measure or test for, some things that are caused not by the owner, or any particular parameters. Again, my deepest condolences, I'm going to go get a hug from my fiancé. Here are some hugs for you in the Dutch style "knuffels". Marina>> 

My black moor I have a black moor whom I "saved" from a tank that was too warm for a human bath! He/she has been through an awful lot (moving across country, being in with tropicals and attacked by a maddened shark are just some of them) and now he is too big for my wee tank. But before I take him to the local fish shop I just wanted to have a few mysteries solved.  He/she develops dots on the gill plate regularly, does this mean it is a he or a she, or means nothing at all? <Could be "nothing at all"... a recurring mark from an old injury... manifesting itself under stress> My previous red Oranda and my current chocolate Oranda like to chase him about and nose at his bottom, is this normal Oranda behaviour or is it that my moor is actually a she? <Likely just agonistic behavior amongst these fish period... from being too crowded> He had swimbladder problems a short while ago which I think I resolved but since then he still winds up upside down sometimes. <Too much, too long being fed just dried food> This seems to be accidental and I'm putting it down to being too cramped in his tank. Is this possible or do swimbladder problems never really go away once they have struck? <Not often> finally he is now a whopping 4 inches in his body, about 7 inches if you count his tail. Is this a good size? Can his age be guessed from this? <Mmm, not really... their fins get kind of glassy at about a decade of age...> he is kinda goldy on his stomach too, but I'm sure this is normal. I'm very proud of him as he has survived so much and id like to know a bit more about him before I say goodbye. Maxine. <I'd get a bigger tank and keep this fish! Bob Fenner>

Emergency! Oranda's head caught in an Eheim filter Please help me! The strainer fell off my Eheim filter <Very unusual... must not have been placed on all the way> and my Oranda got the top of his head sucked into it. It tore out a chunk of flesh and there is some red pulpy tissue hanging out of his head. What can I do to help him? He is bleeding and sitting on the bottom of the tank.  He is a very big fish so I am wondering if he can pull through this or if he needs to be euthanized. <Please read on WWM re Goldfish Disease... I would add Aquarium Salt to the system, and hope for the best. Bob Fenner>

New Fish keeper needs Help with New Tank Hello, My name is Jodi and I have a 10 gallon tank. I inherited from an aunt so I am really new at this fish thing. I am sorry about that. < No problem, we all had to start somewhere.> I have an extra large fin goldfish ( Wolfgang) and a really small white goldfish that has a red splotch coloring on his head ( Helmet ). Now Wolfgang keeps getting Ich and now it looks as though his fins are all dirty. They are black on the tips. What is wrong with him?? Is this Ick too??? < Ich is a protozoa infection. The dirty fins may be a bacterial infection.> Tried to do some research but the info doesn't really supply pictures so I am not exactly sure. Then Helmet has been gasping for air. I have quarantined him in a really small tank. He's about the size of a quarter.  I put about 10 % of the water from the other tank in with him then the rest I gave fresh water for him. I use salt all the time and I also put in Ick cure in with Wolfgang. I just changed the water on Friday and then again on Sunday just to try to get everything good for them. In the 10 gallon tank I also have a sucker fish a mini Koi and a brown goldfish he's about the size of a silver dollar. I know that this is it for the fish and I am ok with it but with these two sick what should I do? I am sorry that I am not really experience with fish and I enjoy having them they are a nice addition to the family. Please help me be a better tank owner. Thank you for your time. Jodi <Stop using salt. Change 30% of the water, vacuum the gravel and clean the filter. Make sure that you use a good water conditioner when you replace the water. Get one that takes out chlorine and Chloramine. If you truly have Ich, then you would see little white dots on the fishes fins and body. This disease is deadly and must be treated. There are two types of medication to chose from. One is copper based and I don't recommend them. The other is a malachite green and formalin based medication. It is called Rid-Ich by Kordon. If the tips of the fins are starting to get eaten away by bacteria then they can be treated with Nitrofurazone. As a new tank owner with an established aquarium you need to get to get educated quickly. Please go back to the WWM homepage and do a search for new aquariums. This will get you caught up on the basics that you need to know. Feed you fish once every day and only enough so that all the food is gone in two minutes. Any left over food needs to be removed right away or it will rot and pollute the tank. The things you need to know are on this site. You just need to look.-Chuck.>

Lethargic goldfish We have recently dug a much larger pond for our fish and stored them in a smaller tub with the original pond water with filter working as in the original pond. <Good> None of the fish seemed overly stressed by the change in environment but after a couple of days one of the goldfish appeared more lethargic than  usual. The goldfish in question, Satsuma is about 3 years old and has a slightly deformed mouth which has sometimes given it difficulty in eating but it always seems to manage. It was bought from a tank of comets because it had an extra tail?! <Neat. Happens> and compared to the comets it's body is shorter and rounder in shape with a slightly bigger head and since it was put in the original pond has grown very long tails and fins like in a Japanese painting. It has always been a bit slower than the comets and more awkward in it's movements so nothing was thought of it's lethargy in the tub. We filled the new pond, approx 1350 gallons, dechlorinated it, put plants and oxygenators in, transferred as much of the original pond water as possible, added biological bacteria and a parasite preventative as recommended to us and transferred the fish. Since then all of the fish bar Satsuma appear to be doing well. Satsuma on the other hand appears to be floating at the top of the pond though when startled Satsuma does swim off quickly and even submerges completely for a while before swimming to the surface again and resuming the floating. Also whilst Satsuma is happy to take food it will then spit it out again half "chewed". Also it's body has tiny black speckles down the sides and it's head looks almost like the skin is peeling slightly. Is there anything I can do? I really do not want Satsuma or any of the other fish to die and will try anything! Please can you help me? Laura. <Mmm, if it were me... I'd return Satsuma to the smaller tub or an aquarium, add Epsom Salt (see WWM re) and keep careful watch over her/him. Bob Fenner>

My Black Oranda needs help Good Evening.  Bubba, my Black Oranda needs your help. I just started my aquarium about a week ago and the next day I bought Bubba. For the past week I have been checking my water quality everyday. Turned out to be okay. However, today, I took a sample of my aquarium water to PetSmart where I bought Bubba. They said my ammonia, nitrate, and nitrite levels are off. <W/o using some source of nitrifying microbes...> So they recommended Kordon's Amquel Plus, which removes nitrate, nitrite, ammonia, chlorine, and chloramines. <Mmm, only temporarily> While I was there I started to describe another problem Bubba had. He had white spots only on his face/head. Would you consider this to be Ick? <Mmm, no... reaction from being poisoned by your poor water quality> This has been happening for the past week. One day it would be there and then other day it would disappear. Also, I have been noticing him swim against the gravel sideways where the white mark on his face is. PetSmart, said it was an Ick, I was not sure. They recommended Kordon's Rid Ich Plus. So I bought it because I didn't want Bubba to die. <This treatment will kill your fish faster than Ich here> Bubba is one of the cutest fish I've ever seen, so that's why I am so concerned about his health. <No... if you were concerned you would learn what needs to be done, do it> Before I did my Ick treatment I did a 25% water change. Added all the additives and then added my treatment. It made my water blue. I am just scared that Bubba will get hurt. <Good> How can I tell the treatment is working and how long do I need to do this? Also I have been noticing that Bubba would stay on the bottom corner at time resting and would come out when someone approaches the glass or when we feed him. Is this healthy? Is he sleeping? Or is he stressed? Last question, Bubba sometimes swims vertical, I always feed him flakes in the middle of the tank by submersing the flakes. Will it lead to swim bladder? Please let me know ASAP. Bubba and I thank you in advance.  P.S. Is aquarium salt safe? <Stop! Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/fwestcycling.htm re cycling... and the Related FAQs linked above... do you recognize the errors/omissions? Then here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/gldfshsystems.htm... then... the general article and FAQs on goldfish disease... Your fish has "environmental disease"... Look for ways to cycle your system... Don't feed this fish anything until your ammonia, nitrite are below 1.0 ppm... Convert your notions of desire to care for this animal into focus in study, action for its welfare. I wish it and you well. Bob Fenner>

Oranda breathing heavy after a <poisoned> formalin bath hi, I kept my Oranda in a formalin solution for 10 min. 3 hours back and when I put it in aquarium it was acting as if it was chewing and spitting out something. since then it is continuing this behaviour. its gill flaps are also rapidly moving as if it is having problems in breathing. will it go off in some time or is a serious problem? what can I do? <Read... on WWM re formalin use. And hope. Bob Fenner> 

Fish Lice Killing Goldfish Hello All, I've been to your website a few times in the past and have found it to be very helpful when I'm lost and don't know what else to do.  So I am emailing you guys again in hopes of a cure for some goldfish that I felt so sorry for and decided to volunteer in helping.  I personally have a 90 gallon African cichlid tank and doing very well thanks to you guys. =o) My boyfriend's mother has a 150 gallon tank full of dying goldfish.  She HAD 20 of them.  We were visiting and I noticed 2 of them flopped to the side and dying and a handful of others that were in hiding and was covered in mucus like film and of course some fungus growing on them.  I decided to take action and do something about it.  So the next day, I came back with some tests to test the water and strange as it was, the water quality checked out fine. The  pH was 7.6, no ammonia or nitrate detected, water temp was about 78.  Confused as I was, I decided to net out all the fish, since they all had some kind of infection or was already dying.  THEN I noticed a small thing floating in the water that looked like a bug, it was pretty gross.  I took the net and tried to scoop it and noticed it moving on the side of the bucket and then it attached itself to a goldfish as it swam by.  I took a closer look and some of the fish had a few of them stuck to their fins.  I did some research on the net and discovered that it was fish lice or Argulus. They looked gross to the naked eye but on the net, they had bigger pictures and that's even worse!  I've never dealt with this kind of situation before and all the sites that I've looked at said to manually remove them.  Other places say to use Dimilin but I guess that's hard to obtain.  I feel so bad because out of 20 goldfish, there's only 10 left and they're still dying 1 by 1.  Turns out that my bf's little brother had purchased a handful of these goldfish from a lady who had a pond. The others that were already in the tank were never exposed to outdoor ponds. Would this have something to do with the infestation of these parasites? < We always recommend that new fish be quarantined before they are introduced to a new tank.> Is there another method I can use besides with a tweezers and manually "plucking" them off? < There are a few medications like  Fluke-Tabs and Clout that will work very well.> That's sooooo gross and I really don't want to do that unless I have no other alternatives. So here's what I did so far. I took them home and put them in a 10 gallon bucket added lots of aeration and 1 tspn of salt. Sorry not sure if I should've added the salt or not. Please let me know if I shouldn't. < It is pretty ineffective against the lice.> I had them in there for 24 hours before I did anything or added any medication.  I also placed a heater in there but haven't raised the temp yet....should I? <No. Raising the temperature will only increase the metabolism of the fish and stress them even more.> I went out and bought APPlus Anti-Fluke drops.  Next day, I changed 40% of the water and didn't add any salt this time I waited a few hours and then added the Anti-Fluke drops. It's been 48 hours now since I've added the medication.  Today I am going to change 50% of the water.  It got really cloudy.  After the water change, I plan to leave it for another 24 hours before adding more medication.  Can you tell me if I'm doing the right thing? < Your efforts are better than nothing. You now have an ammonia problem with the cloudy water and need to keep it under control with water changes.. I've read so many sites and each tell me different stuff and not sure if what I'm doing is helping, I'm afraid that I'm not helping but instead killing them slowly.  Also, I've read about salt dips. Would this treatment work better to have the parasites drop off rather than manually removing them? < Removing them manually is not the way to go.> If I were to do a salt dip, how much salt per gallon?  I've never done salt dips either and was wondering do I do the dip in a small container holding a gallon of water or what method should I use.  I am so lost and unfamiliar with all this stuff because I've never had my fish get so sick.  I guess I've been keeping my own cichlid tank free of these things and am very good with the maintenance on it. I wish my bf's family would do the same for theirs.  Please please please, any advice is much appreciated.  I apologize as I didn't think my email would be so long but I want to make sure I let you know exactly what I did and what's going on. Well I guess that's it for now, I will do my best to save these goldfish, even though they're not mine.  It'll be good for experience if anything.  Thanks to you all for all your help! Sandy < I would treat the main tank for lice even though there aren't any fish in there right now. Change the water in the bucket every day and do not feed the fish until they are cured and do not add any salt. Follow the directions on the package and make sure it says it will treat lice. When the fish are placed in the main tank you need to watch for ammonia spikes. The medication may have affected the good bacteria needed to break down the fish waste. You may need to add Bio-Spira to replenish the bacteria that has been lost due the medication.-Chuck>
Goldfish With Lice II
Hi Chuck, Thanks for getting back to me. These last few days, there have been 10 goldfish that died and now I have 10 left. So far no more goldfish have died which is improvement I guess, for now anyway. Last night I changed about 50% of the water, didn't add any medication. Today I plan to change 25% of the water and medicate them. I have been changing the water everyday from 25% - 50%. A bit of ammonia was detected but hopefully with daily water changes, it'll help a bit, hopefully. The fish do seem to be doing better. All are active but some still have lice on them. I guess only the ones that were first infected and had other complications have already died.  My bf's mom tore down her tank and washed out everything.  She got really disgusted with the lice so in case they laid eggs, she decided to flush everything and start new. I plan to go to her house and test the water and take some gravel from my tank to help with the cycling process, just to be safe and then later take only the healthy goldfish back to her. The baby ones are still healthy and show no signs of infection so hopefully the other tank is ready to go.  I want to get the healthy ones out ASAP so they don't get infected. I'll hang onto the ones that still show symptoms and take them back once they're healthy again.  Personally, goldfish are not my fish of choice but the fact that I do have an aquarium, I am concerned about these fishes health and do care and so I will do my best to help them. Any experience is good experience I guess. How long do I have to keep up with the medication until all the lice have been killed? <Depending on the medication I would hope that if it were to work at all that the medication would be done in a week.> Will frequent water changes help with killing these things?  < No but it does make the fish feel better by reducing some of the stress.> I know the water changes helped a lot on getting rid of the fungus growing on some of these goldfish. I've had these guys since Sunday and today will be the 2nd time I use the medication on them. So far it's every other day for meds with daily water changes. I plan to not do anything else like adding salt or a salt dip and especially manually removing these parasites. Are the tabs more effective than the drops? < Dry medications seem to keep their effectiveness longer that wet medications. That's why I always recommend dry medications as opposed to the wet ones.> While researching, all the sites mentioned the use of tabs and not the drops. I tried to find Clout but so far no luck so I ended up buying the drops instead. Well thank you for your advice. I feel better knowing that what I'm doing is not necessarily the wrong thing and I do see a little of improvement so hopefully it'll work out fine. Take care, Sandy  < We are aware that not all the medications are available in all areas of the country. All the medications that I recommend can be found online at DrSmithFosters.com -Chuck>

Sick Black Moor Goldfish Hi! My son has a Black Moor in an established 35 gal aquarium. The fish is losing scales on his body from time to time. There are also some white spots in the area. Also, it seems that it has a hard time seeing the food. We feed it flakes and pellets. His eyes look OK. They are not swollen. When I fed him today, he had a very strange looking poop. It was clear and appeared to have air bubbles in it. What do you think? KM < Do a 30% water change, vacuum the gravel and clean the filter. Feed once a day and make sure that all the food is gone in two minutes. Siphon out any leftover food. If the scales keep falling off then treat with Nitrofurazone as per the directions on the package.-Chuck>

Goldfish at top of tank I read a lot of FAQ's and I couldn't find my problem exactly so thanks for any help you can give. First, I made a lot of mistakes about 6 weeks ago with feeding and my tank got very dirty. I spent much time rehabilitating the water quality and just had it tested for the nth time two days ago and the quality was very good. I had 2 Danio fish and 2 3" goldfish in the tank at that time. The two goldies were at the bottom with red in their tails which I know is not good. <Correct... due to poor water quality likely... this system is big enough, filtered? Some water changed out weekly?> I was advised to move the Danios as they are (and I have noticed it lately) aggressive and was told perhaps they were bothering the goldies. I saw some improvement in my goldies within a day but noticed that one of them is now seemingly stuck at the top almost in a trance. He eats when I feed them and does move at times but he's been at the top for quite a while. I have nursed these fish quite diligently and don't want to lose them. Any ideas? Thanks again, Jen. <Do you feed just dried food? Please go back and re-read on WWM re goldfish systems, foods/feeding/nutrition, and disease... Bob Fenner> 

Oranda turned white in patches Hi, <Hello there> Hope you can help. I'm having a few problems with my fish. I've had the same 5 fish in the tank for 5 months with no problems. Last Sunday I bought some new plastic plants and a plastic log for the tank. I scrubbed the new stuff in clean water for about 10mins before putting them in the tank. I also cleaned the inside of the tank and the gravel and did a 30% water change. <Sounds good> On Monday I bought 2 new fish - a black moor and a big goldfish (not sure what kind). They both seemed fine but the black moor went quiet on Wednesday night and died on Thursday. I put it down to stress of changing tank but is a 25% water change and added some Interpet Liquisil General Tonic just in case it was something more sinister. Unfortunately, though my Oranda has changed colour since this morning. The majority of it's body and one side of it's tail fin has gone white and it's not shiny on the white areas.  I'm not sure if the scales have fallen off or of they're coated 'cos the fish moves around too quickly for me to see properly, plus I'm not sure what the scales falling out should look like. It also seems to be very red under the gills but not sure if that's normal. It is feeding and swimming OK, if anything it seems to be more active.  I've also noticed the new goldfish is missing parts of it's tail. I only noticed this last night and I'm not sure if it was like that when it came. It's tail is mostly black and the edges are sharp cut but tinged in white. Again it seems to be feeding and swimming fine. <Okay... do you have water quality test kits? The sudden change in color is concerning...> I am very concerned about the Oranda 'cos I've grown quite attached to it. Any suggestions? <I would at least test your water for ammonia, nitrite and add a bit (one level teaspoon per five gallons) of aquarium salt... Your Oranda may have a bacterial (looks like fungal here) infection, or just be exhibiting a reaction to the changes in its environment... mainly the tonic... Bob Fenner> 
Re: Oranda turned white in patches
Thanks for taking time to respond Bob, <Welcome> I added the salt on Saturday but nothing much changed.  The instructions on the box suggested 1 teaspoon per 1 gallon but I didn't feel comfortable adding so much so I added another 2 teaspoons. (It is approx. a 14 gal tank). The white is becoming more transparent now, which is good, but I noticed both goldfish seem to be taking BIG breaths, its almost as if they're retching. <It's the salt...> I sat and watched them closely for 10-15 minutes last night and it looks as though they've got Ich. The big new goldfish has 2 spots, one on his tail and one on his side. The Oranda has maybe 8 - 10 spread over his fins but it's difficult to see on his body 'cos of the white stuff, plus he seems to have developed a dislike to being looked at and hides at the back of the tank when I come close. I did an immediate 25% water change and added another 2 teaspoons of salt. I was going to get some specific medication on the way home tonight but my main concern with this is the other fish in the tank.  I have 4 little black widow tetras in the tank and from what I can gather they can't cope with levels of salt or medication needed to treat effectively.  <Tropicals and goldfish should not be mixed...> Should I dose at lower dose for a longer period or should I buy another tank and treat them separately? Also, I've read conflicting advice regarding water changes. Can you advise how often and how much water I should change while treating the Ich? <... These fishes need to be separated, both treated, the Tetras, other tropicals at elevated temperature, best with half doses of Malachite Green... Water changes are covered on WWM. Bob Fenner>
Re: Oranda turned white in patches
Thanks again Bob. <Welcome> I only found out last week that the Black Widow Tetras are tropical.  They were sold to me as coldwater fish and were in the coldwater section of the shop I got them.   <...> They've have been in my tank for 5 months now with no problems until this unfortunate series of events.  I guess ignorance is no excuse, especially when it's a poor fish's life at stake. I'll separate them and find them a new home once I'm sure they're healthy. Marion <Real good. Bob Fenner>

Grey patches on Ryukin's gill cover (Operculum) Hi, Firstly - what a great site you've got!! Loads of information which is really handy!! I have 2 Ryukins - One of which (Fluffy) I have had for almost a year from when it was very small, and I kept it (stupidly!!) with a comet goldfish. The comet unfortunately died (it came from a fair!) for no apparent reason, and I decided to get a new tank for the Ryukin. I bought a 32 litre Bi-orb (Roughly 10 gallons???) and Fluffy absolutely loved it, but I felt she'd get lonely by herself - so I went out the other week and bought another Ryukin of around the same size (Cecil). Unfortunately not a good plan, as Cecil just chases Fluffy round and around the tank for a lot of the time. Although it doesn't look like Cecil is actually attacking her, he is seriously stressing her out, as she has started darting around a little, which she never used to, and the other evening, I came in to find her crashed on the bottom of the tank looking very sorry for herself. She has since made a recovery, and seems to be swimming around OK now. I take it this is because the tank is far to small for two Ryukins (roughly 3.5" each inc. tail) - so they are fighting over space? Or are they just trying to mate? < When fish are put together they often establish a pecking order. You are observing this behaviour now.> What I have noticed is that Cecil now has grey patches on both of his gill covers - on one side, it is a small patch, though on the other, it seems slightly larger. When he turns round, they look less grey, but I didn't notice them when I bought him. Now I'm left with two dilemmas - should I take the 2nd Ryukin back to the pet shop - I don't want him to chase Fluffy to death, and should I remove him from the tank quickly as he might be diseased? I don't want any harm to come to either of them ,and it would be sorry to see Cecil go, but I don't want him to tear Fluffy to shreds!!! Can you help me at all? Thanks for your help!!!!! Mike. < As the less aggressive fish is being chased it probably damaged its gill covers by scraping objects in the tank and have come down with a bacterial infection. I would separate the fish and keep the one you want to keep and take the other back. The tank should then have a 30% water change, vacuum the gravel and clean the filter. Treat the tank with Nitrofurazone or erythromycin for the infection.-Chuck>

Sick Goldfish I have fantail goldfish in newly established 58 gallon tank, they have recently gotten over Ich and now have a secondary bacterial infection called fin rot. I have been treating MelaFix for about 2 weeks and salt and it doesn't look like its improving, it will start to get better but then it goes right back to worse, they also have blood streaks in their tails. Now out of no where they are starting to get a brown color on them like they played in the mud or something. What could this possibly be? Thank you so much Ashley < I personally think that the "cure all" Melafix is very over rated for treatment of diseases. I don't use it and would recommend that you do a 30% water change, vacuum the gravel and clean the filter. After the tank has been cleaned I would treat the tank with Nitrofurazone as per the directions on the package.-Chuck>

Curved Goldfish Spine *Hello, <Hey, MikeG with you this morning> Could you please advise me of the best course of action or possible choices. <I'll do my best to assist.> My daughter has 3 small fish, 2 comets and 1 Shubunkin in a 18 litre tank <Well, that tank is extremely small, even for three small fish. Goldfish have an amazing growth potential, that is, they can attain sizes of up to 18 inches. They are active, messy fishes, as well, so 5 gallons (approximately... 4.752000000000001 if you care to be exact) is a wholly inappropriate environment for the lives of three goldies. I do hope that you intend to purchase a larger tank when they get larger.> One of the comets (Fred) has developed a curved spine at the base just before the tail fin - one side of his body looks flattened, I assume this is because of the now curved spine. This happened yesterday and I am unsure as to what action to take next. <Well, if Fred can otherwise eat, swim, and compete with the other fishes, is not lethargic, and seems in all other respects to be "normal," I wouldn't fret about it. So long as the fish's ability to sustain itself/live out a regular life is not compromised, I see no reason to worry.> Is euthanasia the only action, I don't want him to suffer because I am unsure as to what action to take on his behalf. Is there any other treatment at all for this problem?.  <Not that I know of.> Is this problem likely to cause him pain and stress and a slow death, if so what is the most humane way to dispatch him. <Again, if he seems otherwise fine, I would just let him be.> ( Is there any chance of recovery or a pain free life with curved spine) The other two fish appear to be healthy with no signs of change.  Thank you in advance for your advice <Best of luck, MikeG> Kind regards Caroline from Kent* 

Goldfish All Choked Up Hi, I have a bubble eye goldfish that is dying and I wanted to know if there was anything I could do to prevent this from happening. He does not seem able to breathe, and it looks as though one of the other fish may have bit him. The bite is not the cause of the breathing problems though. Earlier he kept getting stuck in the filter, but I don't know if this is as a result of his choking or what caused him to be choking. Right now, I moved him into a separate container and he is lying on his side, on the bottom of the tank breathing intermittently. His mouth is also open, he is not closing it. Is there anything I can do? Thank you < Do a 30% water change, vacuum the gravel and clean the filter. The bite marks may actually be a bacterial infection that may spread to the other fish. In the separate tank change 50% of the water with r/o, filtered or bottled water from the store. Do this every other day until it looks like the fish is coming around. When it starts breathing normally you can treat it with Nitrofuranace. It may already be too late for this fish but hopefully not for the others.-Chuck>

Goldfish with Disease Problems Hi, I used a medication called Fungus Clear on my 30 gallon tank is this safe for my Goldfish? < If the medication said it was safe for fish , then it should be ok as long as the directions are being followed.> It says it treats other conditions not only hemorrhagic septicemia (H.S.), but they also have white spots on all there fins. I was reading your many articles you suggest Kanacyn for (H.S.) but I'm not sure what the other condition is. Please help. My tank has 3 outside filters 2-10 gallon and one 20 to 30. I checked all water conditions and they are were they should be .Just to let you know I have only been keeping goldfish for three years so I'm still an rookie. < You have a couple of issues going on. First do a 30% water change, vacuum the gravel and clean the filters. Do not use any carbon in the filters. The bacterial infection should be treated with Nitrofurazone or erythromycin. The white spots are probably Ich and should be treated with rid-Ich by Kordon. When the treatment is completed, follow up with a 30% water change and add the carbon to remove the medication. When the medication is gone then add Bio-Spira to replenish the "good" bacteria that may have been affected by the treatments.-Chuck>

Swim bladder damage in a goldfish May I ask about another question? I have another fish that I believe has something called swim-bladder disorder. What is the best treatment for that if there is one? I got him last spring and he has had it since then, but I thought he was just a little retarded or something. He stays mostly under the plants but when he does come up he floats over backwards. <Depends on the root cause, but at this time, the damage is irreversible. Bob Fenner>

Goldfish "U" Hi, I have a 'mutt goldfish'. She started out as a feeder fish many years ago, but survived hiding behind plants or whatever. Now she's the only fish left in a 50 gallon tank. Today she is in near the bottom of the tank, bent into a U shape. She has always been responsive to my voice but is not today. I touched her and she moved very little staying in the U position. What can I do for her? Thanks in advance for your help. Sandee <Your goldfish has an internal bacterial infection. Do a 30% water change, clean the filter and vacuum the gravel. Treat the tank with Metronidazole. If the fish is eating then you may have a chance to save the fish.-Chuck> 

Goldfish Problems I have a goldfish in a 30 gallon aquarium. A couple of days ago I noticed a white colored strip on his gill right behind his eye. Later in the day the strip seemed to have gotten bigger and the area was turning a pink color. I thought maybe he scratched it on something so I didn't worry too much.  I did a partial water change to keep the tank clean so that if it was just a scratch it would hopefully not get infected. The next day the whole gill had turned red color and the white strips looked a little fuzzy. I observed him and found that he is still eating well and swimming fine so I decided to wait one more day to see if it started healing.  I have researched goldfish diseases and I am not having luck figuring out what is going on. Now today the gill does not seem to be getting better and there is a small white strip appearing on the other gill. Please help. My son loves this fish so much. It was a replacement for one that we had before who died of red streak disease. < You have a bacterial problem and needs to be treated. Do a 30% water change, vacuum the gravel and clean the filter. Treat with Nitrofuranace and follow the directions on the package. It may affect the good bacteria so I would add Bio-Spira after the medication is gone.-Chuck>

Sick red cap Oranda Hello my name is Nicole. I have a Problem with my Red Cap Oranda. I was wondering if you could help me. I noticed he has been losing his scales on his tummy and is starting to go bottom up. I didn't think nothing of it because when I first got him over a year ago some of his scales were gone. It has gotten a lot worst now. So if you can help me out that be great. Sincerely, Nicole <Please help yourself. Read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/fwlivestkindex.htm.  Scroll down to the Goldfish area... read re their systems, disease... Bob Fenner>

Goldfish disease Hi, I have a 58 gallon fish tank just sat up a couple weeks ago, it has 4 fantail goldfish and a Pleco which I already had and I just recently bought a Oranda about 1" long, very cute. My question is they have been in there for a week, but just last night I noticed that the 4 fantails have white spots on their fins and a couple of them, including the new addition have split tails. To be safe I took out the Pleco and added salt to the water and added a medicine I think it's Mega-Plex or something like that but it treats various diseases such as tail rot. What do you think this could be possibly? The baby has no white spots visible on him. Thank you <Sounds like white spot, "Ich"... please go over WWM re Goldfish Disease, Ich... and quickly... could be deadly. Bob Fenner>   

Goldfish tumor Hi, <Hello there> I have a gorgeous orange/red Oranda that I brought to my home tank from my school tank last June (6/04) as I noticed she was getting what looked like a tumor on the side of her head. <Yes> Sure enough, it has grown much larger and she now has several small tumors over her body and fins. The tumors are an off-white, and one has a black spot. However, she seems happy, eats, swims well, and seems to have the most fun out of the 5 fish in my 55 gallon tank. The fish are well filtrated, get weekly water changes, fresh food plus several different dried fish foods. Is she OK to live like this, and how do I know when to put her down? I know how to do this, I just don't want to if she's relatively healthy and happy. <The fish does look otherwise healthy to me... I would wait till it appeared ill, was not eating before making such a commitment. There is some chance it may spontaneously cure. Bob Fenner>

Bacteria, Bubble Eyes, and Betta food My Bubble Eyed Goldfish (J.D) looks like he's bleeding. The red stuff is all over his gills, and on the bottom of his neck. <Not bleeding, likely bacterial in nature. My first guess would be that it was brought on by environmental conditions. Check your water quality, the answer may lie within the numbers.> The food that I have been feeding him is Beta food. <Goldfish should eat Goldfish food. Bettas should eat Betta food. Goldfish should not eat Betta food. Bettas should not eat Goldfish food. Most foods are specifically formulated for a specific group of fishes. Bettas are carnivorous by nature, and goldfish are herbivorous by nature. There is a big clash in dietary requirements, hence the separate foods. I would suggest you buy some real goldfish food.> What is this?! <Probably bacteria.> He looks like he is in pain. Please HELP!!!!! <I suggest that you treat the tank he is in with a broad-spectrum antibiotic, I prefer MelaFix. Feeding Antibacterial foods may also be a wise decision. Best of luck, Mike G> 

Dying Black Moor Dear Crew@WetWebMedia.com, <Lucy> We have newly acquired an aquarium (approx 37 gallons) around 2 months ago. Currently we have in it 2 black/orange moors, an Oranda and 3 smaller common gold fish, and 4 sucking loaches. Lately there have been some problem with our moors. The black fins on the larger one (left) have gradually turned white. As you see in picture <<Lucy, no photos attached.>> 1 the pectoral fins have already turned white (left moor) and on the smaller one (right) his fins are starting to turn white but more seriously his scales have turned this white silver colour and there is a huge chunk of missing scales. (approx 2 cm by 2cm)- see picture 2. The scales look cracked/dry and slightly pink and there is a chunk missing from his tail. A few days ago the eyes (middle) of the smaller moor looked almost white but now it looks a dark red. >The change of colour and the state of the scales seemed to have happened overnight. But the other Moor and the other fish seem fine. Just the one with the scale problem seems to be stationary in the middle of the tank or hiding behind the water plants. He is still eating but not as much as before. >I was worried the loaches were attacking the moors, because I've seen them trying to "suck" at the moors and the larger one has 2 missing scales, so I have removed them all. <Good... you are likely correct here in assessing a/the root cause of the problem> I have added aquarium salt and this "aqua remedy" (consisting of .4g/L Methylene blue, .425g/L malachite green and 2g/L Acriflavine) and a bit of anti- chlorine. I have tested the PH - it was a little high (7.4) <This is okay> - but I've got it back to neutral. I have no idea about the ammonia / nitrate / nitrite levels but I am considering doing a 50% water change tomorrow. <Water changes are almost always a good idea... and I would acquire/use ammonia and nitrite test kits> >Please help me and tell me what is wrong or suggesting ways to make the fish better. >I am extremely worried about the moor and whether he'll live. thank you for your help Lucy <Please see here re goldfish disease/care: http://wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/fwlivestkindex.htm.  Scroll down to the Goldfish articles, FAQs area... read re their systems, compatibility, disease... Bob Fenner>

Black moor with bulging, wiggly eye Hi, I have had a Black Moor fish (Bob) for about 3 years now. One eye has had what looks like cataracts (grayish in color with 2 solid spots over the pupil) from the beginning, while the other eye got caught in the water filter about a month after I got him. Needless to say, he has trouble seeing and has had special care. He lives alone in a 10 gallon tank, which is cleaned weekly, and is fed sinking pellets in the morning and at night. Anywho, the eye that was damaged in the water filter has (as of yesterday) become swollen and wiggles when he swims. (it's VERY disconcerting to see his eye flopping around) It looks like there is a sac behind the eye. There are no signs of blood in the eye. Could this be pop-eye?? Could this be the result of bumping his eye on something? <Is a sort of Popeye/Exophthalmia... and is very likely directly related to the physical trauma... like our eyes, those of fishes are highly vascularized (lots of blood flow there) and "bulge out" if damaged...> I will be testing the water tonight, but would appreciate any input you could give me! I am afraid he is in pain (though he still acts cheery; his behavior hasn't changed) or that it will pop. Thanks for your help! -Jennifer <I do hope your goldfish will be okay. They can still live quality lives if their eyes are damaged, or missing. Bob Fenner>  

Death of Goldfish Through Aggression (Goldfish Love, According to Don) Hi all, I've been going through all your FAQs and have seen lots of questions about goldfish aggression. However, this is a slightly different case, and I wonder if you could help. We (had) 3 goldfish, Nemo, Sparkle and Tiger. Tiger is very much the rampant male, particularly this time of year towards Nemo, and Sparkle has often tried to get in the way between them when Tiger chases Nemo. It always seemed to be lust, to be honest! However, this morning we found Nemo lying dead at the bottom of the tank. She was terribly bruised and had some of her back fin missing. She has been in excellent health her entire life (around eighteen months) so we're sure it wasn't due to ill health. In addition, Sparkle appears to have bruising around the one side of her head - is it possible that Tiger attacked Nemo, and Sparkle got in the way? Sparkle is now fine in herself, swimming around like usual, but I'm concerned Tiger could turn on him too - although I haven't seen him behave like this towards Sparkle before. Should I be concerned? Thanks, Kate <Goldfish love can be aggressive. If Nemo was the lone female then things should calm down. But should you be concerned? Of course. Keep an eye out for more aggression and be prepared to separate them. Don>

Floating goldfish, sigh... hi wondering if you can help ... my daughter has got 4 fantail goldfish that have been healthy for about 6 months but now one of them floats around the top of the tank on its side and tries to swim down but keep floating back up again .. it has done this now for 24 hours.. can you please tell us if there is anything we can do to help this fish .. thanks  Megan <Sounds like the age-old problem of too much in the way of a dried food diet. Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/fwlivestkindex.htm Scroll down to the goldfish area, read re disease, nutrition. Bob Fenner>

Please Help... yourself. Goldfish (environmental) disease I have three goldfish and one of then used to have an Orange tail and just in a matter of 1 1/2 or maybe 2 days its tail became clear and only has little bristles and when I woke up this morning some of the bristles are already disappeared.  I've been looking online everywhere to find out what's wrong with it but I haven't had any luck left.  Do you by any chance know what could be causing this and how I could treat it? Thank You. <Yes... posted here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/fwlivestkindex.htm Scroll down to Goldfish Disease, and read on! Bob Fenner>

Injury to goldfish's mouth Hi, we have a fan tailed goldfish and he seems to have lock jaw. He can't close his mouth. we checked for stones, and he looks clear. we can shut his mouth, but then it pops open again, with a slight clicking. He's having a hard time eating, and has labored breathing. His eyes are starting to bulge. Is there any help, or is he slowly starving to death. <I do hope your goldfish can self-repair. It does seem that it has injured its mouth... perhaps by swimming into something, maybe by getting a rock stuck temporarily in a mouth joint. Only time will tell. Bob Fenner>

Injured Goldfish I'm sorry if you have answered this question before, but I'm extremely distraught about my son's goldfish Monster right now. We have a 50 gallon tank that held three goldfish. Two common goldfish and Monster I'm not sure about. All three were purchased from Wal-Mart. (I know that's not exactly wise.) We have had these three for a year and a half with no problems until now. I am not exactly an expert on fish care but I do 50% water changes two to three times a week and test the water for nitrates and such and have never had any major water quality problems. We were out of town for two days and when we returned Monster was floating at the top of the tank. At first I thought he was dead but on closer inspection he was still breathing and he will still swim around the tank for a short period. His fins look ragged with one fin missing completely and red spots that look like he's been bleeding around all his fins. <Yikes> This is my son's favorite fish and he is extremely upset. We removed Monster from his original tank and put him in a 10 gallon hospital tank, but I don't know if he has some sort of disease or if he was attacked by the other goldfish or if he was stuck behind the filter. I just don't know what happened. Any advice would be great. Right now we are just hoping he survives the night. <I do think you've done the right thing by isolating the one fish... I would add salt to the water, monitor ammonia... be ready to move a good deal of the water out and replace it with the water from your fifty... Please read here re goldfish disease: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/gldfshdisease.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>  

Goldfish Tumors? Hello WWM Crew. I'm seeking advice about what I think are tumors growing from the side of a very large goldfish. I'm adding a link to a picture of the goldfish. The fish is approximately 2 years old and developed this condition about a year ago. It appears to be healthy in all other aspects and my parents are quite fond of the fish, "Buddy", but would like to know if there is anything that can be done to rid him/her(?) of these growths. Thank you for helping, Troy <Is apparently as you state, a tumor of some sort. I would ignore this... rather than try experimental surgery or harsh chemicals. There are as yet no efficacious anti-viral compounds for such growths on/in fishes. Bob Fenner>

Goldfish fins Hi there, I would really appreciate some advise about my goldfish. He started to develop a white edge to his tail fin, so I kept an eye on it and it slowly started to look a bit worse, then he got red lines developing along his tail fin and the edge started to look a little tatty. <Good observations> So I thought it must be fin rot and went to seek advice from my local aquatic centre. They recommended a fish treatment from 'King British' for fin rot and fungus control that has the active ingredient Phenoxyethanol. <Mmm, what about the root cause here? Likely diminished water quality... do you have any water tests to relate?> I have been using this once a day for several weeks now but he doesn't seem to be getting any better, though I don't think he is getting worse, the tail fin is no more tatty, but it does look a little redder. His other fins seem to be unaffected, and he is the only fish in the tank because he was born with one pectoral fin missing... <Happens> ...and so I haven't put any other fish in with him. Can you help? I have been making regular water changes, but only small proportions, but do you think I should take out the carbon filter and just use the sponges? Hope you can help. Amy <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/fwlivestkindex.htm.  Scroll down to the Goldfish articles and FAQs area... and read re this species System and Disease areas. Bob Fenner>

Spinning Goldfish, Sabrina's Take - II - 04/05/2005 Sabrina, sorry for the misunderstanding.  <No worries!> When I replied to the letter I just clicked on reply to so the person who sent it will get the reply. <Yeah, no worries. Just to give you an idea of what happens to an email when it comes to us, all the emails sent to the crew kinda land in a general inbox, then we sort through them and the ones that are replies usually get sent to the person who answered the initial question. It makes things MUCH easier if the crewmember's name is in the subject, as we get dozens and dozens of emails daily, sometimes. If the crewmember that answered before simply can't get to the reply email, sometimes they will try to pass it on to someone else in the crew who can help. That's why it's so important to attach any previous correspondence. But enough of that, on to your questions!> I will try to go in detail.  <Thanks kindly.> I started out with 10 goldfishes that were very very small in a 10 gallon tank. Two died at that small size. Long after I rescued another one from my brother's tank that another of his fish was trying to kill (my brother had a mixture of different fishes that do not like one another). Now I had 9 goldfishes. I went on holiday and one jumped from the tank under the person's care who did not notice. So now I have 8.  <This really is way to many fish - especially goldfish - in a ten gallon tank....> I trained them to come up and eat from my hand. They are great pets. <Agreed. Goldfish are one of the neatest fish out there!> I used to change their entire water every two weeks.  <For that many fish in such a small tank, that's good. Smaller changes more often is perhaps better.> These fishes would eat more than 3 times a day sometimes. <Woah, WAY too much food!> I also did not see it as a problem because the feed label said feed them several time a day of what they can consume in 5 minutes.  <The label probably says this so that you will run out of food faster and be parted with more money. Goldfish will do fine on one feeding every two or three days; just be sure to provide them with edible plants, as well, like Anacharis/elodea/egeria.> My fishes grew and I bought a 29 gallon tank for them. <Better.> On one of my favourite fish, which I call Bigger (it was the biggest one), I saw something on its mouth. I did not know that it was a fish disease but had thought that it got tore on a stone in the tank. Therefore, I use a fingernail clip and cut off the thing. It took so long to heal that I went to the pet shop and there I found out that it was a disease. Regardless of what I bought and put on it could not heal. I kept it alone and was treating it. At one point I put it back in the 10 gallon tank and it began to hurt itself by banging on the tank. I even tried to treat it naturally.  <By "naturally", what do you mean?> I put the fish outside in a pond for over a month with some other fishes and it got better. <I very much suspect that Bigger had what we call "fish pox" or "carp pox" - this is a viral illness that cannot be medicated, is usually not fatal, and will go away with improving water quality. I would hazard a guess that the pond has much better water quality than the 29g tank. Eight goldfish can make a very serious mess of the water. Are you testing regularly for ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate?> In trying to catch if from the pond it got some bruises I thought it would die. However, it lived through the bruises.  <Have you considered leaving Bigger, and perhaps some of the other fish, in the pond?> The fishes got bigger and I bought a 55gallon tank. With this tank it is very hard to clean that often. (I bought it last December.) So I tried to clean half of the water according to the booklet. One day when I was putting in the clean water I noticed that Bigger started spinning. It seems worst after a time so I put it outside back in the pond. But it cannot eat in the pond as at times it grab to the feed and misses so because of this I think many days it is hungry. I then put it back in the tank inside. (you know the rest of the story).  <Gotcha.> It is spinning as if it is floating upside down. <Ahh, a good clue, here. Does the fish actually float?> Sometimes as it stops spinning it began to eat as nothing happen. Most times it spins in trying to get the feed at the top and sometimes it gets the feed normally, that is without spinning. If the other fishes have too much quick and fast movement it triggers its spinning too, sometimes.  <It may be that an inadequate diet has led the fish to have a bit of a gut blockage, or be a bit "gassy", for lack of a better term. This can cause the fish to float uncontrollably. PLEASE test your ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate. Ammonia and nitrite must be maintained at zero, nitrate ideally less than 20ppm. More on dietary needs in a moment....> But, while eating on the bottom it is o.k. I bought bottom feed for it but it does not eat it. It might sound funny but the fishes spit out the feed when they do not like it. <I don't like cauliflower. If I find cauliflower in my mouth, I'll spit it out. Makes sense to me!> Bigger spit out the bottom feed. Now and again it might keep it in its mouth. I just change 1/2 of the water yesterday instead of all. <Alrighty, now to address some dietary concerns. As above, I fear that you may be seriously overfeeding the fish. I urge you to try to get some plants for the goldies to munch on, like Egeria/elodea/Anacharis, or other stem plants like that. Goldfish need more greens in their diet than you might expect, and too much of the "wrong" foods will cause some goldfish to float or bloat. You can offer Bigger (he's the floaty one, right?) bits of thawed frozen peas, just squeeze them from the shell first. Please withhold other foods for a while - maybe a week or so. The plants, some thawed frozen peas, and perhaps some thawed frozen spinach, will tide them over beautifully. If Bigger is still floaty after that, add some Epsom salt (magnesium sulfate) to the water. Use one to two tablespoons per ten gallons. This, along with the peas, will help him to pass any blockage in his gut. If after a few days of Epsom salt he's still floaty, do a 50% water change and dose Epsom salt in the water again. If he's STILL not recovered after that, I would urge you to consider moving him to the pond on a permanent basis. Don't worry about him not getting food, as long as he has plants to munch, he'll be just fine. Also, plenty of bugs and other goodies get into ponds all the time, and he'll nibble those, too. A more natural environment may be what he needs to recover. How large is the pond? Are there any fish living in it right now?> Thank you. <You bet. Wishing Bigger a swift recovery, -Sabrina> 

Teena the Lionhead is Lethargic, Check the Quality of BMs... >Hi Marina this is Marcellino. >>Hello Marcellino, how are you? >Teena is been lethargic for four days. The water is perfect, all the levels are fine and Albert is doing great. Teena doesn't leave the gravel and the corner in where she hides, though she eats well and has no signs of parasites or anything weird. She seems to not be able to swim at middle levels. What is going on? I want to remind you that I am feeding them frozen daphnia, frozen bloodworms, frozen plankton, brine shrimp, peas that are peeled and crushed. I soak the frozen food in a little bit of tank water for 20 minutes then I give it to them. I feed them half of the frozen cube either once or twice a day. Then I put the rest in a glad bag with a few drops of KENT ZOE vitamins. Please let me know what you think could be wrong with Teena. Thank you, Marcellino and Alice >>First, I really don't like feeding brine. I know it helps boost colors and all, but it's like Pringles for fish, not much nutrition, and in fancy goldfishes can bring about or exacerbate constipation. The rest of it sounds really good, except that the fishes' diet is just to high in meaty foods, they need more veggies.  >>Second, you know how some days you may just feel sleepy, tired, not so energetic? This can happen with goldfishes as well. As long as she is eating and POOPING (I was brought up by a family most interested in bowel movements, I even have a chart, because healthy feces are the way to health and beauty), showing no other signs of problems, this sort of thing is simply to be expected.  >>Your fish, as I said, are quite healthy, although, remember, I mentioned that Teena's poop indicated a bit of constipation. Spinach, romaine lettuce, arugula, good healthy greens are good for them. Peas alone aren't enough, in my opinion. Oh! Did you visit Koko's Goldfish, the site I linked you to? Remember, they had a lot of information just on goldfish poo. Marina 
Teena the Lionhead is Lethargic - Thanks
Thank you very much and I'll let you know what happens. <I'm sure she'll be just fine. She couldn't have a better owner. Marina> 
A Sad, Sad Day - Teena Has Died
Marina, Teena has died this morning. There are no signs on her body except a bit of darkening color. <<Oh, Marcellino! I am so sorry.>> This was the second day I had put tablets of Maracyn two in the tank because I had a feeling of a bacterial infection. <<All you had described was "lethargy", nothing else would have indicated a bacterial infection with this fish. At this point, I honestly don't know what to tell you, other than don't treat in the main tank. I'm going under the assumption at this point that you were continuing to test for nitrogenous wastes and found levels acceptable.>> I am going mad to understand what caused this. All the water levels are fine. Please tell me where I can send Teena for an autopsy and if I should put her in the freezer to save whatever killed her.  <<Marcellino, I honestly have no idea where you could send her, especially in Italy. Out here we might try to find a willing veterinarian, biology professor at a school, or similar.>> I do want save Albert, he is fine right now but who knows. I must discover what caused Teena's death. Thanks <<Marcellino, again, I am very sorry to hear of this. I am, unfortunately, at a loss to explain why this happened. If you have a university nearby that has any sort of ichthyology program I suggest contacting them. Again, very, very sorry. Marina>> 
Teena's Follow-up
Thanks Marina.  I do live in New York LONG ISLAND but I am Italian. <<Oh! (Woops, I was going to ask you where in Italy you are..).  Then allow me to first do the Homeric "D'oh!", then get over laughing at myself.  Then let me apologize for the delay in responding, my fiancé had surgery on the 8th and I've taken some time off to care for him.>> I found this Koi Vet where you can ship your live or dead fish for all kinds of diagnoses. It is the Koi web site. I hope it can be of help for others. I am shipping Teena overnight FedEx. Hopefully I will know what caused this. Albert is completely fine. <<Yes, I've come across the site, but haven't visited in some time.  This sounds like an excellent service.>> I wonder if it was a low level of oxygen 6-7 ppm at a temperature of 74 Fahrenheit. <<That is indeed a low level, but you would have, in my opinion, more likely seen the two of them gasping at the surface FIRST.  Also, remember that surface agitation I'd mentioned?  If you have this occurring - remember, needs to be turbulent like a stream or brook - then you have the necessary O2-CO2 exchange (just as important for sufficient CO2 outgassing as for O2 saturation).  However, 74 degrees is rather warm for goldfishes.  To get to the point, though, I do not believe this to be the cause.>> It could have been 40ppm of nitrate... <<VERY doubtful.>> ...a little high or the brown algae that are invading the tank. <<Again, very doubtful.  I've not experienced die-offs/deaths caused BY a diatomaceous or algal bloom unless it is very clearly plague proportions (blots out all else).>> These are the only possibilities as far as I can know that could have caused her stress making her susceptible to all kinds of attack. All the other levels were perfect. I'll wait for the results and I will let you know. I will keep treating the tank until the results because I do not want Albert to die. <<Marcellino, if these were the root causes of Teena's demise, then no amount of antibiotic would suffice to prevent Albert's demise.  If these were my fish, I would not treat without being absolutely positive of a root cause, as treatment with medicines so haphazardly can certainly cause harm.  I WOULD, however, perform more water changes, do what I could to lower the tank's temperature and ensure sufficient gas exchange.  Chances are good that these fish come from a large-scale breeder.  This would explain the lack of culling (demonstrated by poor conformation of the fish).  This can also explain a possibility of many, many other problems that home hobbyists simply cannot determine with our limited sets of test kits and treatment options - we do not have labs.  We can purchase inexpensive microscopes, and books, and learn what we can about internal problems.  Remember that I mentioned Teena's poops were not right, as well as the fact that these fancy goldfish do often suffer internal organ troubles, especially intestinal. In any event, DO keep me posted, my heart fell when I got your last email.  Marina>> Follow-up on Teena the Lionhead's Death Hi Marina. Thanks. <<Hi Marcellino, how are you doing? I must tell you, I am *still* upset about Teena. And I never even met her! Thing is, I've only cried over fish once in my life, it was my entire pond-full of handpicked Koi, and the original goldfishes I'd bought for my infant son to watch while he was recovering from illness. An extremely hot Memorial weekend (120 daytime - in the shade - 100 overnight), and poorly monitored water change brought death to ALL.>> The lab called me and told me that Teena died because of an internal Aeromonas. <<Oh my.. ok. At this point, Marcellino, be prepared mentally/emotionally. Aeromonas are the bacteria associated with Furunculosis, or "ulcers", usually seen externally. This stuff always rears its ugly head with the onset of spring, and can be VERY difficult to treat. So, what they're telling you is that she had an internal infection with the stuff.>> They'll tell me more on Monday. What do you think about this bacteria? <<I think bad thoughts, and put out bad vibes to this bacteria. It's just "doing its thing", but its thing is really awful to watch.>> Shall I treat the tank? And how I should treat it? <<Absolutely you MUST treat the tank, with what will take a bit further research. I'm going to start with recommending antibiotic foods prepared for pond fishes. Smallest amount I could find was a 1-3/4lb. bag. My bookmarks are to follow (did some research last night, you're getting some links).>> Albert seems fine but I wouldn't want him to get ill all of a sudden like it happened to Teena. <<No, you sure don't. You can DEFINITELY start with adding salt, go with "treatment" levels, 1 tablespoon (non-iodized, this means Kosher, table sea salt, saltwater mix salt) salt per 5 gallons of water. This will help alleviate osmotic pressure differences, and once we sort which antibiotic is best it will allow it to do its work more effectively. If you believe he needs a saltwater bath, then use 1 tablespoon per gallon of water, but remember he can't be left in that.>> The tank water has a tiny little bit of moldy smell. The last thing is that the brown algae now have covered half of the glass of the aquarium tank including decorations and gravel seeming to keep growing. <<This is normal, especially in goldfish tanks, has nothing to do with the presence of disease. More than anything, is an indicator of excess nutrients. If it smells like mildew (completely different from an aged aquarium scent) and you see black spots, then it's more of a problem, but likely not harmful to the fish as long as it doesn't smell like rotten eggs - a sign of anaerobic conditions.>> When does this going to stop? And how that happens? Thanks again for your help.  <<These organisms seem to be quite virulent, in my experience at least. Some fish also appear to have a natural resistance to them, while others succumb at varying rates of rapidity. When it stops is a matter of many factors, how it happens is fairly straightforward, though HOW fish are infected seems to be up for debate - especially when we're talking about fishes that have been completely isolated from others for a period of time. I can tell you, though, be ready for weeks of treatment using your observations of the fish as your guide. If he shows the same symptoms as Teena, then you KNOW something is up. Otherwise, I would start with medicated food, feed for the recommended period of time, do keep using salt at the minimum of 1 tablespoon/5 gallons water. Here is a list of links for you to follow, read. Before beginning treatment (also waiting on this lab to recommend treatment for you), have on hand enough aged, aerated water to do at least two full water changes. During treatment you'll have to remove carbon, but keep mechanical filtration. From what I've gathered, actually raising the temperature of the tank water can help, 75F-80F, though this WILL deplete oxygen - surface agitation, OR reduce the water in the tank by 1/3 (assuming filtration can still occur with water low). Expect the treatment to kill nitrifying bacteria, thus the need to have this pre-prepared water on hand, change water as tests indicate (re-medicating if treating the water, not feeding). http://www.wetwebmedia.com/PondSubWebIndex/holedispd.htm  http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/gldfshdisfaqs.htm  The following may be difficult to slog through, but contains the most useful information, in my opinion: http://ag.ansc.purdue.edu/courses/aq448/diseases/bacteria.htm  http://srac.tamu.edu/478fs.pdf  (if you don't have Adobe Acrobat, you should be offered a free download, or Google this one to view in html) http://www.goldfishinfo.com/ailment1.htm  Remember, Aeromonas is an entire genus of bacteria, not one species. They can all *generally* be assumed to take hold when environmental conditions aren't as good as is necessary for the fishes' well-being. Also, let's not rule out the breeding of the fishes here, it may very well be possible that Teena and Albert should have been culled from the batch of fry, or maybe their parents shouldn't have bred in the first place. Depressed or otherwise compromised immune systems can undo the best efforts to maintain a good environment, something not normally to be considered with pet fishes, but in my opinion it's as pertinent to highly bred goldfishes as it is to highly bred horses, dogs, cats, etc. So, for treatment, medicated feed would be my first choice in treating Albert. The .PDF link has excellent information, and while geared towards aquacultured fishes, has information on cyprinids as well.  I am assuming he's still eating. If not, then you may need to look to potassium permanganate (do be careful with this stuff, stains a beauty, can easily be overdosed if not careful, which you are), Nitrofurazone, or possibly Spectrogram (one of my favorites, actually). There are some other antibiotics, DO read these links carefully to consider which might be best, and do communicate such with this lab, get their input here if possible. Here's a link to one medicated pond-fish food, consider Albert a pond fish at this point. http://www.webbsonline.com/catalog/meds/ (scroll down to Debride DW, bottom for Jungle's antibiotic feed). http://www.ponddoc.com/Store/FishHealthProducts/BacteriaTreatments.htm#Medicated%20Foods  Found via: http://www.ponddoc.com/Store/FishHealthProducts/Diagnosis.htm  I know this is a lot, but I also know that you'll do just about anything you can for your pets. Let me know what else the lab has to say! And sorry for the length of this, but I wanted to be as complete as possible (I've left out a LOT of links Googling "Internal Aeromonas goldfish"). Marina>>

Re: death of my Oranda Hi Bob I had bought two pairs of small Orandas a week back and had kept them in quarantine tank. one died the very next day , one had Ick and I treated it. but one of them looks sick it is very inactive stays at the bottom and the colour of its fins is turning black. it had black lesions on its fins which I thought is ammonia burns. but it is spreading more and more. there aire no signs of any parasite, it has a good appetite also. I have put some salt in the tank and yesterday put a tab of disprin. is it bad or good for the gold and will it survive??? <What? Your spelling, grammar is atrocious... Please proof your messages and correct before sending. And read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/gldfshdisease.htm  and the linked files above... NOW re your livestock's health. Bob Fenner> 

Dropsical or Swim Bladder Damage, or Too Much Dry Food Goldfish My grandmother has two goldfish. One of her fish has gotten this huge stomach and now floats upside down but she's still alive and eats like nothing bothers her. We had her since she was young and after a while (about November) it looked like she gained a little weight, so we called her Nibbler playfully. But now, she looks HUGE. My family has had goldfish before many times, but this has never happened before. What can we do? I've attached a picture if that helps any. Thank you, Daniele <It looks like one of three possibilities here... as I've named them in the subject title. Please read over here: http://wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/gldfshdisease.htm and on to the Related FAQs (linked above) re these issues, causes... I would add a teaspoon per five gallons of Epsom Salt to the fish's system, lower the water level if this is practical, cease feeding any/all dried food... Bob Fenner> 

Fancy tail goldfish loses entire tail My brother has one fancy tail goldfish that was about 2 1/2 inches long from his nose to the end of his tail. Yesterday while visiting my brother I noticed that the goldfish has completely lost his tail! <Yikes... sometimes called "fin or tail rot"... caused by poor water quality, perhaps linked to inadequate nutrition...> He now measures about 1 1/2 inches from nose to where his tail use to be. He is in a 5 gallon tank with a tiny little frog that is about the size of a penny. The frog's behavior is normal. My brother said that his goldfish's tail looked like it was getting stiff and not spread out and flowing like it normally was about a week ago. Since losing his tail he stays floating at the top of the tank with his nose up and his butt side down (like a 45 degree angle) Is there any hope for this goldfish? What could have caused this? My brother has had the frog and goldfish together for almost five months and this is the first time there has been any problems. Thank you for any help! <There is always hope. Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/gldfshdisease.htm  and on to the Related FAQs (linked above)... a salt addition along with improving water quality (check for ammonia...) will likely restore this fish to health. Bob Fenner>

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What it takes to keep goldfish healthy long-term

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