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FAQs About Goldfish Disease/Health 34

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 9, 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 Health 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

Fish Problems??? Goldfish... crowded in an uncycled system... fighting...  9/13/07 Hi, my name is Fran and I bought a Shubunkin and a black moors about 4 days ago...I put them in a 5 gal tank together <Mmm, need more room than this Fran... and for the system to be "cycled"... Do you know what this refers to?> ...At first I thought the Shubunkin was just following the black moors like follow the leader but now I have noticed that in the morning and evenings when I feed the fish that the Shubunkin runs up to the top of the tank grabs a few pecks of food and the black moors stays near the bottom...when the black moors tries to come up the Shubunkin will start being a bully to it <Yes, symptomatic of the crowding mostly> ...Shubunkin chases the black moors and almost seems like it attacks it without biting of course...eventually, the Shubunkin gets distracted and leaves the other one alone but it keeps happening quite a bit...I thought these two fish got along but I am starting to wonder...Please help me if you can... ~Fran <Only you can help yourself, these goldfish... Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/gldfshsystems.htm and the linked files above till you understand... Bob Fenner>

Enquiry regarding a goldfish... orientation    9/12/07 Dear Crew, <Caitriona> I am contacting you with a question regarding my goldfish (age unknown as he was quite big when I got him - approximately six inches long including tail, anyway). I have been a long-time lurker on your site and have found it extremely useful; it is mainly thanks to you guys that all my fishes are happy and well...until now, at least! <Yikes!> My problem is that my fish is occasionally resting at a diagonal of around 40 degrees; head down, tail up. I've read all your relevant documentation regarding swim bladder problems and related dietary issues, but I'm unsure of the cause. <Can be a few...> Relevant information; I do frequent water changes and test results are pH 7.5, ammonia 0mg/L, nitrite 0mg/L, nitrate 5mg/L. These values are all relatively constant with minor fluctuations dependent on the water changes (I do dechlorinate the water). Temperature is usually around 20 degrees Celsius, which I know is too warm but it's impossible to get it down at the moment, even with a fan turned on the tank. Tank size is 28 UK gallons. He's fed peas every day along with the occasional algae wafer and sometimes flakes (held below the surface so he doesn't ingest air bubbles) or small soaked sinking pellets to provide variation. I have recently taken to soaking his food in vitamins and a lipid preparation (Zoe and Zoecon) as I read many times (including on WWM) that Selcon was good to add to goldfish food and it isn't readily available here in the UK - I finally obtained Zoe and Zoecon, a hopefully acceptable substitute when mixed, from the only person selling it on eBay UK. Phew! <Are fine; very similar> He is, other than the very occasional resting at a strange angle, a very busy and friendly fish. He scavenges a lot and eats large amounts of Elodea and Cabomba aquarium plants. There has been absolutely nothing except dechlorinated tap water introduced into the aquarium for at least ten weeks and possibly longer, as the plants regenerate rapidly. He gets no live food, so I can't think of any source of parasites or crustaceans. There is hopefully no grounds for infection as I change large amounts of his water often (on advice observed from Neale, who states that more water changes equal healthier fish - I hope he's happy to hear I've taken that very seriously!). <Am sure he will be...> I'm always very careful to wash my hands well before touching anything to do with him (preparing food, etc) and I wash the equipment with boiling water before every use - I like to believe I'm on the good side of obsessive, though my family think it's debatable, but I'd rather be safe! <Good> There seems to be no prompting factor with this problem; not food, not lack of food, not changes in diet, not even sleep disruption. I'm out of ideas. In short, I suppose I've been wondering if I might be causing some harm with the vitamins/lipids. I haven't read anything suggesting that, but that doesn't mean it couldn't happen...although I've been using the vitamins for about a month and the problem has only been this last week. The other information provided is just in case I'm missing a problem I wasn't aware of! <Mmm, maybe try stopping the vitamin additions for a few weeks... To determine if this makes a difference> Thank you all very much for maintaining this site; I've been very glad to have it in the past and I really appreciate the time you take to answer questions. It'll be a big relief to hear from you! Best wishes, Caitriona <Thank you for sharing. Bob Fenner>
Re: Enquiry regarding a goldfish 9/12/07
Good afternoon Bob, and thank you for the quick answer. I'll give that a go. Take care, Caitriona <Thank you my friend. Please do follow-up with your observations. Cheers, BobF>

Goldfish with (probably) swim bladder problems... Treated/poisoned w/ Formalin  9/5/07 Hi there, <And you> We have two goldfish in a 160 litre (what's that about 40 gallons?) <Yes...> tank with an inbuilt (and pretty powerful) filter. We regularly test for ammonia and nitrite, infrequently for nitrate and PH - we've never had any water quality problems at all. We do a partial water change (about 30%) and gravel clean each week. <Sounds good> We bought one of the fish (Lewis) about six weeks ago, and a week or so after we got him we noticed that he was getting small white patches on his fins. One patch would form, then fade after about three days, >Maybe flukes; Trematodes< then another would develop. It didn't seem to affect his behaviour or bother him at all, so we left it for a while to see if it was just stress related from the move from the shop. Eventually, having been advised that it was most likely a bacterial problem, we treated with Waterlife's Myxazin (formaldehyde-based - <Yikes> don't know what the US equivalent would be, we're in the UK). This seemed to clear up the problem, and for a week or so he was fine. <Very toxic> Yesterday we came back from three days away (they weren't fed while we were away) and found that Lewis was very lethargic, sitting in the corner of the tank barely moving. <To be expected> He stirred himself enough to grab a bit of shelled pea last night, but wasn't terribly alert and looked like he was having trouble with balance. This morning he was the same, and today when I came home from work he was wrapped around the filter inlet, unable to move enough to free himself. I freed him (and have covered the filter to stop him getting stuck again). He's now mostly lying on his side - he does move around from time to time but can't keep himself straight. His breathing is very laboured, but there are no other visible symptoms. <Could be just poisoned> Am I right in thinking this is likely to be a swim bladder problem. If so, other than continuing to feed peas, is there anything else we can do? <Optimized, stable conditions is about it> Also, is there any risk to our other fish (who so far seems completely fine)? We don't have a quarantine tank set up - we have a 25 litre tank currently empty of water (and which we don't have good filters for) which we could use at a push. Any advice very much appreciated. Thanks Simon <Do keep monitoring nitrogenous accumulation... it may be that your bio-filter is mal-affected. And please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/formalinart.htm Bob Fenner>

Goldfish deaths... No useful data    9/4/07 Hi I wonder if you can help me we have had several goldfish in a small fish tank that has a filter <How large a tank, what sort of filter? What are they fed? How was the system cycled?> but they keep on dying from the first goldfish to the next and then the last one that we buy. We take our water samples back to were we bought the goldfish from but they say the water is fine <Water samples change with time, moving...> but the fish still die, We have had white spot and parasites so we decided not to buy any more fish for three weeks and re-clean the tank and put fresh water in the tank and waited the full three weeks for the water to be clean before we bought any fish and now he lies on top of the filter sideways any help thanks Darren. <Need more detailed information... Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/gldfshsystems.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Sick Oranda, Flukes, mixing med.s  8/15/07 Hi. My Oranda has flukes so I was treating with CopperSafe which worked wonders for a couple of days but then the water got really cloudy (ammonia etc levels OK) and I could see lots of white stringy things (parasite eggs?) floating around. Started dosing with PraziPro and the Oranda seems a bit better but came down with fin rot. Can I treat with antibiotics while there's still PraziPro and CopperSafe in the water? The Oranda's gill function is still not normal so I assume I'll have to continue treating with PraziPro. Tried Melafix but doesn't seem to be doing much for the fin rot. Thanks. YM <Greetings. No, you should not use different treatments at the same time. Always finish one course of drugs, do a big water change (at least 50%), and then start the next course. Melafix is overrated as a medication for Finrot. Go buy some real anti-Finrot medication and use that instead. Cheers, Neale>
Re: Sick Oranda, Flukes?    8/18/07
Hi. Thanks for your help. Came home to find my Oranda curled up at the bottom of the tank and barely breathing. Changed the water 50% and he revived. I checked the pH and ammonia before the water change and they were all normal. Does PraziPro suck the oxygen out of the water by any chance? I have a Fluval 2 turned on at max plus the venturi thing on. <No, doesn't remove oxygen. But most medications are more or less poisons, and they can have negative effects on fish. It is important to increase aeration, which you're doing. Do be careful you're doing the right dose, and never, ever mix with any other medications at the same time unless expressly told to do so.> Anyway, he seems to be throwing off these long white stringy things from the gills --- parasite eggs? <Quite possibly the worms themselves. But I have no personal experience of treating this disease so can't say for certain.> I started him on tetracycline for the fin rot as his whole tail and all fins were very red. Threw in replacement CopperSafe --- it's OK to combine these 2? <Almost certainly NOT safe to mix. I'm not a vet or a medic, so I can't give advice here really. But generally, drug companies don't recommend you mix medications, and I'd concur with that.> Why are the gill flukes proving so hard to eradicate? <Because they just are. They're a major problem in the salmon farming business for just this reason. In the wild, they're not a big deal, and as you probably know lots of fishes extend "cleaning services" to other fish. Around the UK coastline, various juvenile wrasse seem to do this, and have been experimented with on fish farms for just this reason. But for the fishkeeper, flukes and other gill parasites are one of the most difficult things to deal with once they become established. That's why we always say buy fish from a trustworthy store with healthy fish, quarantine new fish, optimise living conditions, and treat at the first sigh of trouble. In the meantime, follow the instructions on the medications, perform water changes in between treatments, aerate the water, and generally be nice to your goldfish. He should recover, and with luck go on to live a happy and healthy life.> YM <Good luck, Neale>

Daughter's Goldfish, help   8/15/07 My daughter (seven) is distraught......she is the only one in our family who has managed to keep a goldfish alive for more than three days. Thunder will turn one in a few weeks. She LOVES Thunder and cannot imagine life without him. Thunder has made it through an interstate move and several other difficulties with flying colors. Our only problems began once we moved Thunder out of a small fish bowl and into a fairly large one-fish tank....(it's orange and came with orange rocks....three gallons??).... <Mmm, needs more space than this...> I once changed Thunder's water with tap water and we nearly lost him. That was months ago and I quickly learned that this was wrong because, as my daughter put it, "Thunder looks sick, Mom." I changed his water to bottled and he was all set. <And not bottled water... tap, treated, stored ahead of use is best> Thunder thrived beautifully for months.....over four or so...and last night my daughter noticed he didn't look right. (She is amazing.. she can really tell what Thunder is feeling like). I changed his water and put him back in. Not only did he look worse (I just learned that I should have done some percentage instead of whole change)...but he began to sink to the bottom. I immediately took him out, emptied the gravel and the plastic plant and put bottled water in (again) and replaced Thunder in the now only water-filled tank (the gravel and plant I kept out)......he perked up and seemed fine. Tonight when my daughter went to check on him, she told me, "MOM!! Thunder's BLEEDING!!" and sure enough, red cut looking things on his back end and above his eyes...and he was sinking again.....the filter did not look right to me, so I pulled it out and opened the lid (for air??). He perked up and we fed him....he is now acting better but is still pale and has the "cuts"....any help is greatly appreciated. I'll stay up all night again if necessary...thanks! <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/gldfshsystems.htm This fish's troubles are environmental... Fix its world and you'll have this fish for many years to come. Bob Fenner>
Re: Daughter's Goldfish, help 8/15/07
Bob Fenner, you are wonderful. I can't believe how quickly you replied....my daughter was so excited. Thunder didn't look so hot.....we cleaned out the poop at the bottom, cleaned out the filter (duh!)....the black spongy thing was filthy.....and we'll see what morning brings. Thunder seems better but pretty pale and bloody looking still. I'll let you know. Thanks for being so kind to us. <Welcome my friend. Life to you, your daughter and Thunder. BobF>

Red dots on goldfish - 8/14/07 Hello, <Hi there> I'm hoping you can help me with a crisis in my pond. I have a 2000 gal pond with an exceptional filtration system and a UV light. About four weeks ago, I entered five new Koi fish into my pond. <... not quarantined I take it> I have three comets who are three years old and one large Koi who is also three. In one day, three of the five new fish disappeared. <?!> The other two died within two days. About a week later my comet (white in color) began showing red pimple like dots on the sides and fin. It spread quickly on the fish and as a result the other two comets also began showing signs of red dots. I started a treatment of Melafix <Not a fan> in the pond for four days. There was no change in symptoms. I then isolated the fish in a container of distilled water, <Not a good idea... the osmotic difference here can be extremely stressful> salt and Lifeguard all in one treatment. It is a non antibiotic agent. <Am familiar with this Jungle product.> Sorry, no real chemical description on the container. <"Halo shield..."> I treated for five days as suggested and the spots began to go away on all the fish. I took out approximately 50% of the pond water and replaced it with hose water and salt treatment along with Melafix. After a week, the spots again returned. This time worse than before. I am dire need of some assistance. I don't want to lose my fish. Can someone help? Thanks Ann <Can only guess as to causes here... but likely "something" brought in with the new fish... Possibly bacterial... but could be protozoan, helminthic... even viral... Your best course of action is to "ride this out"... keep the system stable... and hope. Mmm, there are aquatic veterinarians that might diagnose one of the mal-affected specimens... Perhaps a perusal of your Yellow Pages... Bob Fenner>

Fancy goldfish questions  8/14/07 (Re-sent as I'm not sure you received this the first time; if you have, please ignore.) Good afternoon Bob, Neale and anyone else who noticed our problem when we wrote in last month. As you may remember, my partner and I rescued her Veiltail goldfish (Smudge) from the accidental mistreatment of her parents (through ignorance rather than malice, but of course it's all the same to the poor fish!). When we got him home, he was suffering from obvious stress, slight pop-eye and pretty nasty Finrot. We treated him with combined fungus and Finrot medication, which stopped the spread of the Finrot and eliminated what looked like patches of fungus on the tail. Since then, we have been trying to aid the healing process with water changes every second day, to keep water quality as high as possible without crashing the tank's cycle (this has happily got rid of the stress and pop-eye, hurrah!). We were wondering what will happen with the white tips of the tail? <Can regenerate> The usual orange of the tail is (very) gradually growing back in, but hasn't reached the tips yet - we wanted to know if we should leave it be or treat again for Finrot (I'm not sure this is a good idea, as the situation's improving rather than degenerating). It's been about a fortnight since we stopped medicating, if that helps your diagnosis. <I would avoid medicating> We also would like to know if there are any foreseeable problems with adding Smudge to our new, larger tank (27.5 UK gallons) where he will be sharing with our fantail Horatio (with whom you're also unfortunately very familiar!). We were thinking that it'd be a good idea to leave Smudge in his treatment tank until he was entirely better (worries about transmission to Horatio/worsening of Smudge's condition/Horatio picking on him) - but the treatment tank really isn't big enough, so the sooner we can get Smudge in the bigger tank, the better for him. When in your opinion would this be a good idea? <Up to you, your judgment> Finally - since we're writing in anyway - we would like to ask you one of those questions which you guys seem to get on a regular basis (of the "I already know the answer but I need someone to tell me firmly" variety)...we have another fish, a Black Moor called Spook who was another rescue - seriously, our soft hearts will bankrupt us! He's also technically still in quarantine, though can be taken out in a day or two - we wanted to know if Horatio (4" fantail), Smudge (2" veiltail) and Spook (1" Black Moor) - all measurements without the tail and obviously approximate! - could go in the 27.5 gallon tank together for a while until we can arrange something better. <Depends on their size, your maintenance...> Obviously they're all fancy fish, which is good, and I know it won't do them for long, but we wondered if they would be okay together for a few months as long as we do frequent water changes. We just don't want to put Spook in solitary confinement for the next few months if we can avoid it. Thanks very much in advance for your help and, as ever, our sincerest thanks for the wonderful service you provide. Have a great weekend! Sarah and Oliver <BobF>

Weak and Blind Common Goldfish   8/12/07 We have three common goldfish that are our family members and we worry about one of them. He appears to be blind and ill. All three are in the 50-gallon aquarium with two filters (one is for 80-gallon aquarium and the other is for 100-gallon aquarium). The water is tested regularly and has safe levels of nitrite, ammonium and nitrate. <How much?> Fifty percent (50%) of water is also changed once in three days <Wow!> and aquarium salt for fresh water aquariums is added every time the water change takes place. <Mmm, I would NOT continuously add/expose your goldfish to salt. There are some definite drawbacks to such practice> The API Stress Coat and Stress Zyme are also added. The fish are about three-years old and from 8 to 9 inches long. They are fed twice a day. Half of their diet consists of HBH Super Soft Small Pellet Fish Food, Aqueon Color Enhancing Goldfish Granules (slow sinking), Natural Max Goldfish Flake Food and Wardley Goldfish Crumbles (slow sinking). The other half consists of boiled peas, oranges, cucumbers, zucchini and various berries (such as raspberries, blueberries and strawberries). <Sounds deelish!> About once in several months they are also fed bloody worms. Two of them were active and looked healthy when we first got them three years ago. The smallest one however had an injured gill (it looked like he had difficulty breathing) and was not really active at first. We bought some sort of an antibiotic for fish (not sure which because it was almost three years ago) and his gill healed in about a week and he looked healthy after that and became active for about a year. But shortly after that he started losing color in his eyes that made one of his eyes look like a mirror. <I see this in your excellent photograph> A little bit later his other eye started getting some white dot inside of it that over time grew bigger almost covering the eye. Now it appears that he is blind because he cannot find food as fast as the other two and often he has to be held in order to receive a proper amount. He also often appears tired preferring to stay in one corner rather than swimming around and is not as active as he used to be about two years ago. The other two however are active and don't appear to have any health problems. Whenever the fish scratched or injured themselves (such as loosing one or several of their scales) they were treated with API MelaFix Antibacterial Fish Remedy and the injuries would always heal. But whatever is happening to the smallest one it does not seem to heal even with MelaFix. Is where a way to help him get better? Sincerely Marina <Well... the one fish may well be a "victim" of a less hearty genetic constitution... and/or have been damaged developmentally when it was young... I don't think there is much you can do treatment-wise here, and nutritionally am very sure all is fine... The one "wild card" here is the environment... these three fish actually need much more room... like at least twice this volume, to stay healthy... I suspect that "metabolite build-up" is the common cause for the bulk of the one fish's poor behavior. Do your nitrates creep up to, exceed 20 ppm? Likely so. And remember, this/these measures are only a glimpse of what is going on... Bob Fenner>

Goldfish and Dwarf Puffer Update 8/10/07 I am sorry for forwarding this, I didn't intend for these to go on the FAQs unless you want to share but I do want to make sure you get them. I am going to do a read receipt this time to make sure it gets there. Enjoy the pictures. :) <Thanks Bob!> Dear Crew, <Shellie > It has been some time since I have mailed you due to an absence of any problems. However, with all the problem posts you have, I thought it might be nice to get one telling you everything is fine. I have enclosed a picture of the tank so you can see how much they have grown! I didn't leave out Pufferpunk, there is one of Lightning as well. As you can see, he has a permanent scowl. <Those wrinkles at the beginning of his eyes means he is a male.> He never did get another friend and seems quite happy to have the whole 10 gallon to himself. You could add 2 females for him. Here is how they are sexed: http://www.thepufferforum.com/forum/library/puffers-in-focus/sexing-carinotetraodon-travancoricus-the-dwarf-puffer/> I even catch him fighting with his own reflection. <At least he keeps himself occupied!> I apologize for the algae in the picture, I need to replace the plant bulb now that I no longer have the plants. I was thrilled to see a picture of my Sara as the heading on one of your Goldfish Disease pages. <She's a star! (For all the wrong reasons...)> One last thing, Sara did finally develop pop-eye, bad Fisher kept burying him in the gravel. He is doing wonderful for now, that was some months ago. For a long time we thought his one eye would be permanently flat. As you can see, the telescoping effect finally came back. <Resilient fish. Huge weekly water changes are recommended for the messy goldfish. Serious GF keepers do 90% weekly.> I thought others that have had a problem with this might like to know that sometimes the eye does return to normal. Enjoy the fish! Shellie <Thanks for the pics! :o} ~PP>

Hurt goldfish, please tell me what I should do... 8/10/07 Dear WWM crew, I contacted you awhile back with a different question and I'm very grateful and thankful for the quick and very helpful response. However, I have another urgent question to ask. Today while I was cleaning my tank, my goldfish scratched and hurt herself. She's lost 4 scales, one of which is still hanging on to her by her slime coat (I'm assuming). Please would you suggest what I should do in order for her to heal completely? Should I remove the scale that is still hanging on to her? I'm afraid that it may hinder healing or stay stuck to her once her "skin" has grown back. Please also tell me if I should keep changing her water so that no bacteria or fungus can grow on her wound. I feel SO bad for hurting her! All other help and advice would be very much appreciated. Thank you so much for your time and knowledge. Sincerely, Phylicia <Hello Phylicia. Goldfish quite often lose scales for one reason or another. Usually clumsy netting is the problem, or scratchy ornaments or gravel, so you might want to check off those possibilities first. Anyway, yes, treating for fungus/Finrot pro-actively is probably a good idea, though assuming the tank has good water quality and the fish is otherwise healthy infections shouldn't set in. This is one of those times when dosing the tank with Melafix rather than a standard Finrot/fungus medication could make sense. Losing scales to a fish is a bit like losing hair on a human, it happens periodically and new scales grow back. I personally wouldn't pull the loose scale. The risk is you do more than good by damaging the tissue underneath. The scale will fall away by itself in good time. In the meantime, just keep caring for your goldfish well, and let nature take its course. Hope this helps, Neale>

Oranda in trouble 8/10/07 Hi Crew, <Fed> My Oranda fish (around 6yrs) has been lying on the bottom of the tank since last night. He does swim from one end to another slowly only to lay on the rocks just like the picture. I also have a red cap goldfish (2yrs) in the same 55 gal tank. The red cap seems fine. The water parameters are: ph 7.4 ammonia 0.0 nitrite 0.0 nitrate 0.20 <Do please check the units here... is this 20 ppm?> temp a bit high 77.5 <Mmm, should be fine> As you can see, his tail and some of his skin is really red. <Yes...> The tail seems limp and fragile. I did feed him this morning 4-5 peas and he responded well. I am assuming its a bladder infection but not sure. <Mmm... what do you feed?> I also added 10 tablespoons of Epson <Not the printer co.> salt in the tank this morning. Is there anything else I can do? Please help! Thanks. Fed <Can't tell much from the input you offer... I would do serial water changes, and read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/gldfshsystems.htm and the linked files above... to see if something "becomes live to your consciousness" here. Bob Fenner>

MGBs, Fantails and Soot  8/9/07 Dear Neale, good afternoon to you across the pond. <Hello Lisa,> I think I may have created a precedence with this particular incident. <Indeed?> First let me draw an analogy. <OK.> When I was a teenager, I happen to be passing the back end of my dad's MG as he turned over the ignition. Black soot sprayed out of the exhaust pipe onto my lower leg. This soot remained on my leg for days despite several washings. <I see... Nice car though. Which one was it?> A few days ago, I was vacuuming the black gravel in the goldfishes' tank. As I was releasing the suction, the orange fantail brushed by underneath it. <Whoops.> The fantail now looks like my MG leg. <Oh.> I tried cupping the fish in my hand while submersed in the tank and gently stroke his scales to whisk away the soot no avail. <Don't worry about it. Stroking him will likely to more harm than good. The dirt is stuck to the mucous, and will fall away as the mucous is shed. I keep fish in tanks with sand, and sometimes they get completely covered in silt and sand. A day later, they're fine. Since fish, especially carp like goldfish, are adapted to silty water conditions, they're not even bothered by it.> I've got three tanks and each time I approach one of the tanks, the fishes' eye grow large as if to say "oh no, what is she going to do or try NOW?!" <Hah!> I have to say that I've cared for community tanks since I was a kid. However since I found your resource in the last couple weeks, I have learned volumes, volumes about fish husbandry. Thank you. <There's always more to learn. That's the joy of the hobby.> Anyway, the fantail seems fine although now he looks like Pig Pen from the Peanuts. This soot won't hurt him will it Neale? He's acting just fine and the two of them seemed to have recovered from the previous "poisoning incident." <No, the silt is harmless.> Thanks again. Lisa <You're welcome. Neale>
Re: MGBs, Fantails and Soot
  8/9/07 Relieved about the incident - thank you. <Cool.> In our salad days, three of us in my family owed up to 5 MGs. Dad bought a couple as parts cars. My brother had a beautiful burgundy MGB GT. I had a 75 (rubber bumper) and then bought a later model and restored it - it was "pageant blue." We had a lot of fun with the cars - went to British car shows often. <How funny. Over here, there are American car shows, too. But often people want those 1950s things with the fins and the phallic tail lights. And then they dress up as Buddy Holly or Sandra Dee, and scoot about between Ye Olde Pubs looking ridiculous.> A few weekends ago we were up at an Inn in Maine and one of the guests had a TR3! It was in mint condition. <You see the odd TR3 still tootling about, but like a lot of British cars they tend not to age well. An American family member of mine who loves Jaguars owned one for a time, but learned the hard way she also needed a spare one for when the primary Jaguar was being repaired. Still, good looking car.> Unfortunately we don't have any more MGs however I have a picture in my hallway of my high school graduation day. In the pic, I'm waving at the camera while opening the door and getting into the one I got blasted with the soot. Great memories! <Indeed.> Have a good day and thanks again! Lisa. <Thanks! Neale>

Black Moor Goldfish: Eye Torn Off... Mixed in a tiny sys. with tropicals...    8/8/07 I searched all over your site <Not obvious here...> and I am sorry if this was already asked, but I couldn't find anything. Okay, so I have a 2.5 gallon tank with a Red Female Betta [[Sakura]], three little Neons, one Cory Cat [[Sprinkles]], and I had a little Black Moor Goldfish [[Rainbow]]. <My friend... Goldfish and the tropicals you list are incompatible... "Like" different water quality, foods... Can't be kept together well. And a 2.5 gallon system is too small for even one goldfish...> This is not my first fish, I used to have a huge tank of them and I used to have a little goldfish in a bowl [[Juicy J.]] (who surprisingly, to my unintellect of fish back then, survived a long time). Anyways, my fish seemed to have been having a great time together. My Female Betta never attacked the Black Moor or any of the other fish, they seemed to get along fine. But, today, I looked into my tank, and notice that my Black Moor was laying in one of the long flowy plants. I moved him and he swam a little until he got caught into another one. He may have been trying to keep himself from floating up, I don't know because he was still "breathing". So he did try to swim a little and seemed to struggle and floated on his side, while still living. I took a closer look and I saw that one of his eyes were hanging halfway off!! I couldn't believe it, I was freaking out. After a few minutes he just stopped looking around, stopped moving his mouth, and moved with the filter. I took him out and put him in a bowl, but he was dead. Also closer inspection, his colour seemed to be fading fast. He was almost completely black with a goldish tint. But during this, he was turning white! He was not a very big goldfish, only slightly bigger than my Betta. Also, there were no nipped or bitten fins. I checked the ammonia level, and it is fine. The temperature was between 76-78 degrees. I had just put them all in this tank less than a week ago. There is nothing really hard besides a plastic skull and he went nowhere near it. This happened pretty much all of a sudden, I'm not really sure what happened but it makes me not want to take chances with a Black Moor again. Do you think one of the other fish tried to rip it off or that he cut it on something, or something else? <...> Thank you, Ray Ray <Have just skipped down. Read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/gldfshsystems.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Damage is Done. Goldfish... sys., hlth.   8/6/07 Hello there (Neale?). <Hello Lisa,> I have a problem with a 44 gallon tank of goldfish. Subsequent to a gravel change, I added a chemical directly to the tank to clear cloudy water. <You added a flocculent to the water. Usually harmless.> I am a very active hobbyist and have never taken this type of approach. I have since lost two fantails within the space of a week - my largest fantail hyperventilated for 2 straight days. The poor guy actually showed large brown spots on his body which I assume was a death in tissue as a result of oxygen deprivation. When I knew their demise was certain, I placed them in some aquarium water in a Ziploc and placed them in the freezer (is this the right thing to do in terms of euthanasia?). <Argh... no, not a nice way to die. There's a Euthanasia FAQ somewhere here at WWM.> I located on Fenner's Goldfish FAQ that hyperventilating is a result of the existence of high nitrites or "poisoning." <Certainly one possible reason. Poor water quality generally causes fish to rise to the surface of the tank to pass oxygenated water across their gills. To some degree goldfish (like other carp) can gulp air and extract oxygen directly.> Since then I have taken your advice and done 10% water changes daily - a 25% change last Saturday. I also changed the activated carbon (per Fenner) and changed the foam media and cleaned out the canister by gently sponging and rinsing it out with aquarium water. <Remember, you can't use carbon AND medication at the same time. Carbon removes medications. So, I prefer to leave out carbon except in circumstances where it's required.> I have two little guys left - one Pearlscale is fairing well and the remaining fantail is seen often lying on its belly (not all too uncommon for goldfish but unusual for this guy). <Not promising.> Shall I continue with partial daily water changes with my regular dose of ½ teaspoon of API salt per gallon? It seems that by now I have moved out any remaining chemical? Anything else I can do to save these guys? <Yes, keep doing the water changes. The more & the bigger they are each day, the better. This is one situation where adding salt is beneficial, because it detoxifies nitrite. But once the nitrite drops to zero and water quality remains consistently good, you can stop using it.> I have read Fenner's "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist" and especially note his words of actively and knowledgeably caring for our charges. I love these little guys and it is such a joy to care for them. I can't believe I made such a mistake. I guess we never cease learning. <Indeed. It's a shame everyone assumes goldfish are easy. They're not. They're among the most difficult freshwater fish to care for, at least in indoor aquaria. So you're having to learn to run before you can walk! Keep reading, keeping asking questions, keep caring about your charges.> Thank you very much for very informative website. It's great to know I have a trusted resource. <Thanks for the thanks.> Lisa. <Good luck to you & your fish, Neale>
Re: Damage is Done.  8/6/07
Thanks for your response. I feel sick. I don't understand what happened - if it wasn't the flocculent. <Hello Lisa. I can't rule out the flocculent 100%, but I've used in multiple times even with sensitive species like puffers, and never yet had problems. Of course, dosage is always important, so check you didn't overdose.> I am not adding any medicines to the tank. <Good.> I am faithful with my water changes and it would completely blow me away if this was due to nitrites or ammonia. This is an established tank, no changes. <It's hard to know by looking -- test the water. Nothing beats having a nitrite test kit in your aquarium toolbox. I happen to like those dip-strip types that come with a variety of different tests including pH, hardness, and nitrate as well as nitrate or ammonia. Slice them longitudinally to make two tests from each strip (I'm cheap, and like to double my money!). While perhaps not as accurate as "real" test kits, these strips are cheap and convenient, and the best test kits are the ones you use regularly, not the ones that sit in a cupboard.> I will take comprehensive chemistry readings when I get home and continue with water changes. <Cool.> Thank you Neale. Thanks so much. <You're welcome.> (I am progressing with my Mbuna tank, "weaning them off salt" like you prescribed with daily 10% water changes over a two week timeframe. Also bought some crushed coral which I will add to the filter media. I am planning to move the bumblebee cats to my community aquarium where the water remains soft with neutral pH - as I mentioned before all fish are bigger than the bumblebees' mouths so all should be safe!) <All sounds fine. Do some searching of a problem called "Malawi Bloat", a dropsy-like disease. Although not known 100%, one of the likely factors seems to be the use of aquarium salt in Lake Malawi aquaria. Check the hardness in the aquarium to see the crushed coral is doing its job. Anyway, good luck, Neale>
Re: Damage is Done.  8/6/07
Thank you Neale! I took readings across the board last night with the fantails' tank. 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites, 5-10ppm nitrates, pH 7.4-7.5. All good. I siphoned the gravel last night with very little trace of waste. <That all sounds ideal for goldfish. The only "extra" is to check the hardness. Goldfish like hard water and hate soft water, so if you have a water softener in the home -- don't use it! Give the goldfish "liquid rock" as well call it here in England. They love it!> I take readings in all my tanks on the weekends. <Good.> Maybe I did overdose with the flocculent. <Perhaps.> Regarding Malawi Bloat, I read that it could be caused by too much protein intake. Funny thing is I placed a cooked scallop with an elastic around a rock in the evening for the bumblebee cats. The Mbunas tore the thing apart and the largest Mbuna was darting around the tank with half of it in his mouth. Oh God! Another mistake...Malawi bloat expected in the morning! <No-one really knows what causes Malawi Bloat; as I said last time round, salt is one of the suspected factors. It's most likely caused by different things in different circumstances, since it isn't a "parasite" but a symptom of organ failure. So like a fever in a human, can be cause by all kinds of things. That said, Mbuna are herbivores (more or less) so you want to balance the diet in favour of greens, not meat. A good meaty food is raw mussels. These contain a lot of marine algae, so are brim full of vitamins, and most fish love them. They're also very cheap, and best of all, among the most ecologically sound food animals on the planet.> He seems to be doing fine. Can't wait to move them from the 30 into a 55. I feel cramped just looking at them. <Cool.> I can't get my Plecos to nibble on lettuce or seafood. Any tricks or shall I just keep trying? I placed a romaine lettuce leaf in his favorite hang out last night and he ignored it. Zucchini the night before...didn't touch it (the guppies on the other hand are a different story). <Above all: patience. Vegetables contain mostly water and little protein, so don't pollute the aquarium. Even if they fall apart to green gunk, that stuff is harmless. So you can't really "overfeed" greens. Lettuce should be blanched first to break the cellulose cell walls. Plecs have adapted to eat algae (mostly) which is easier to digest than plant material. Hence we need to cook the plant material a bit to break the cells and make it more toothsome for the catfish. Vegetables like carrot, sweet potato, and zucchini often need to soak for a few days before the catfish catch on. But believe me, once they learn, they love it! Cucumber is another good food, though it contains little nutrient value and shouldn't be relied upon. As you've notice, many other fish enjoy their greens, too. It's often overlooked, but many of the fishes we keep are primarily or extensively herbivorous in the wild: cichlids, livebearers, barbs, characins etc all enjoy greens and will be healthier and have better colours when provided with it. Even predatory fish often enjoy some greens and will eat them at certain times of the year. Big predatory catfish take fruits and seeds during the seasons when fish are scarce. I have a pufferfish that enjoys cooked peas! So experiment, since you're unlikely to cause harm. Just wash, and perhaps blanche, any greens you have to hand. Obviously avoid anything potentially toxic, like chili peppers or rhubarb!> Not important you get back to me on this one. Thanks again, I so much appreciate your service. <No probs. Neale>
Re: Damage is Done. 8/7/07
Neale, regarding hardening the goldfish's water, am I essentially reintroducing trace elements and minerals? Here's a product I located: Aqueon - Goldfish Water Renewal - 4 oz. Replace your goldfish aquarium water's trace elements with this simple formula. These essential compounds are necessary for fish and plant survival and become depleted over time. Special liquid restores these minerals and promotes health, color and vigor in your goldfish. Thanks again! Lisa <Lisa, sounds like garbagio to me, real snake-oil stuff. Anything that says "promotes" in the description gets a suspicious look from me, because that doesn't commit the product to doing anything either way. Kind of like when breakfast cereal says it "may help reduce heart disease". Yeah, right... Anyway, skip that stuff, and just to regular water changes. I've forgotten what your water chemistry was. If it's hard and alkaline right out the tap, then the goldfish are fine. If it's soft/acid, then fill one of the compartments in the filter with some fairly well pulverised crushed coral. That will raise the pH and hardness automatically without any further work. Periodically it'll need cleaning or replacement, but otherwise it's idiot-proof. What you're aiming for with goldfish is pH 7.5, hardness 10-20 dH General Hardness. Cheers, Neale.>

Red rimmed eye deaths... Goldfish... something toxic...   8/6/07 My goldfish and comets seem to be dying overnight. I can see two more dying now. Their eyes seem to have a red rim and they are treading the surface. <Sounds like you have water quality problems.> I do not see any surface scale or fin problems. I have done a 30% water change. Dechlorinated. Tested the water and all seems okay. I have removed the potted plants in the water with the exception of the lilies, hyacinth and lettuce. <Define "all seems okay". Ammonia and nitrite should be zero; nitrate something below 50 mg/l; hardness "hard" on whatever scale you're using; and pH around 7.5.> I had water cress and sweet potato vines that had become adhered to the water fall filter and lava rocks. The plant material was removed but the small roots are still embedded in the filter and lava rocks. <Lava rocks are tricky. While technically safe in aquaria, there's no question they leach some stuff out because they gradually turn the water reddish-brown. They may also acidify the water very slightly. In a tank or pond with high hardness levels, this shouldn't be a problem, but if the water is soft, it could be enough to cause problems. Goldfish HATE acid water.> The water is clear except for slight brownish color (which I always have). <OK.> Please help. This has been going on for about three weeks. I treated the water with parasite treatment and then reseeded with enzymes. <Randomly adding medications is never a good idea; indeed, it usually makes things worse. Identify the problem, then treat; don't treat, hoping you don't need to identify the problem.> This will be my 6th death in three weeks. <Not good.> What else could be wrong? <Many, many things. Let's get some facts: how big is the pond? What filter system are you using? Has anyone sprayed nearby with insecticide or some other chemicals? What is the water temperature in the pond? The symptoms your fish have -- bloody eyes and difficult breathing -- are pretty generic but typically go along with poisoning of some type. Could be something as "simple" as nitrite or ammonia poisoning, but it could equally easily be weed-killer. So, get back to me with some facts, and we'll take it from there. Cheers, Neale>
Re: Red rimmed eye deaths. Goldfish  8/7/07
Hi thanks for answering my email. <No problems.> The nitrates and ammonia are perfect. pH is at 7.5 in the morning and higher at night. 2500 gallons. I have three more that appear lethargic but are eating. Spawning has begun again. <Define "perfect". Don't tell me what you think of the values -- tell me the values themselves. You want ZERO ammonia and nitrite. Odd the pH goes up during by nightfall. Probably related to photosynthesis by the aquatic plants, which are using up the dissolved CO2, raising the pH (dissolved CO2 is a weak acid). But still, check the ammonia in the morning and at night -- ammonia raises pH, too.> But...many of the fish seem "jumpy". Like something has frightened them. <One sign of poisoning is nervousness. Fish can't always identify the problem (they didn't do Toxicology 101 at school!) but they do know when they're unhappy.> The salts are low. Using about 6 -8 drops before purple appears. <I have no idea what this means. What are "salts"? Please, tell me what type of test kit you are using (General Hardness or Carbonate Hardness) and what the scale is on the results card (mg/l of something, ppm of something, or degrees dH or KH).> Water is very clear except for brown tint (always have it). <Clean water can be deadly poisonous, while cloudy water full of life.> I have placed and aerator in the deepest part (3.5 feet deep). Yes it's hot. Water temperature heading upwards towards 90 degrees. We've had very very hot weather and hotter weather is on the way for a while - about 100 degrees. I have a reasonable degree of floating plant material to shade areas but without choking out the oxygen. I was worried too many plants would be harmful but I'm not sure. <Way too hot for goldfish. May be part of the problem. In really hot areas, it's advisable to create some non-plant shade, like a "boardwalk" over one end of the pond where the fish can cool down. High temperatures don't help the filter bacteria, either, especially if the dissolved oxygen levels drop.> I don't use any insecticides, weed killers, fertilizers, or any chemicals at all around back. I can't say the same for my neighbors though. <Should be fine.> Their appetites seem better today. But I am feeding them lightly (low protein) because of the heat. <Don't feed at all this week. See what happens. Increase the aeration or splashing somehow. See if the problem is related to heat stress.> Water smells okay despite many birds that bathe in the stream. Any thoughts? <As above. Again, keep tabs on the water quality. 9 times out of 10 mysterious fish deaths come down to water quality issues, so this is always a good place to focus. Good luck, Neale>

Swim bladder problems, GF, just using WWM   8/4/07 Hi, <Hello there> We have a fantail who has the worrying habit of sleeping at odd angles, or even floating upside down. <All too common...> She also has a growing number of white flecks on her tail, and as of today has a bloody mark on her side as if one of the others has attacked her. She's reasonably lively, and when awake doesn't act as if she's ill: she always swims towards you and gets excited if you stand next to the tank. She's also always been able to right herself so far. But nonetheless, we're concerned that there's something up with her swim bladder. Does anyone know what might be up with her? Is there anything we can do? <Oh yes... Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/gldfshmalnut.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner> Thanks for your help, Jonn

Re: Swim bladder problem  8/4/07 Hi, (Apologies for the duplicate: extra information I forgot to include.) We have a fantail who has the worrying habit of sleeping at odd angles, or even floating upside down. This is a habit she's always had but it's become worse of late. She also has a growing number of white flecks on her tail, and as of today has a bloody mark on her side as if one of the others has attacked her. <Maybe... but not the root of the matter here. Genetics, diet and env....> She's reasonably lively, and when awake doesn't act as if she's ill: if you stand next to the tank she always gets excited and swims towards you. She's also feeding fine, and has always been able to right herself so far. But nonetheless, we're concerned that there's something up with her swim bladder. <Mmm, this and internal fatty degeneration/accumulation> The water has slightly too many nitrates and nitrites, but we change it regularly to keep the levels down. The temperature is 32C, the pH is fine and the tank is comfortably large for three fairly small fish. We've also given her Myxazin, but it doesn't seem to have helped. <Ah, no> Does anyone know what might be up with her? Is there anything we can do? Thanks for your help, Jonn <Please read where you were referred to. BobF>

Goldfish lice -- 08/02/07 Hi how are you. <Tolerably well, thank you.> I had emailed earlier for the goldfish lice. <Yep.> It had happened to all my 9 fishes. But then I removed it with my hand and then all of them became fine except 2 which died. <OK.> Now after 3 months I again discovered 2 lice on my 2 fish. However I have removed it and now none are seen in the tank. But pls tell me that what more precaution can I take. Any medication. Or what. <Try and understand how the lice get into the tank, for example, by buying fishes from retailers with a goldfish lice problem.> Also pls tell me that why these lice happen. Any reason behind it. <Reason? Evolution. Parasites have evolved to take advantage of host organisms. But why they occur in your tank? Simple: you aren't quarantining your fish. If your fish are isolated from infected fishes, they won't get the parasites. If you dump infected fish from the shop into your aquarium, your fish will get infected.> I had bought 3 fishes a week before and added in the tank. Is it because of them because among the 2 which got infected one was the new one. <Likely, yes, assuming you killed off the lice last time round.> Pls tell me the reason behind it and what precaution should I take <The usual precautions will work: buy healthy fish from trustworthy retailers. Quarantine new stock, treating for parasites if you suspect they are infected. Hope this helps, Neale>
Re: Goldfish lice -- 08/02/07
Thank you for your efforts and advice. Pls tell me that how can I quarantine the new stock. Any medicines. Also the fish vendor from whom I purchased the fishes say that the fishes are always under the medication in his shop. Pls tell me any medicines or antibiotics so that I can cure them. Also after finding 2 lice what more precaution can I take so that other fishes don't get infected. Pls help <Hello Mr Bond. Quarantining is described in most aquarium books, and is simple enough to understand: keep new fish in a *separate* aquarium for a few weeks, long enough for you to observe their health. Six weeks should do the trick. In that time, you should see evidence of fish lice, Whitespot, or whatever and be able to treat it safely. After quarantining is over, you move the fish into your display aquarium. All fish retailers will say they quarantine their stock. Can you imagine them admitting otherwise? To be fair, most actually do quarantine their stock to some extent. But the problem is that display tanks in the store mix lots of fish together -- they have to, since the retailer can't place one goldfish per aquarium! So, simply by being placed on display, the fish are exposed to diseases. Medications for treating fish lice depend on what's available in your area. In the UK, it's products such as Interpet #12 Anti Crustacean Parasite and Waterlife Sterazin. In the US, you have things like Mardel CopperSafe and Aquarium Products Fluke-Tabs. Visit your retailer, and see what they have available. Saltwater dips might also work. In this case, add 20-30 grammes of salt per litre of aquarium water in a bucket. Net the fish, and immerse in the bath for 5-20 minutes depending on the size of the fish (bigger fish tolerate dips for longer). Repeat daily, and with luck the lice will drop off. I'm not a vet, so can't comment on antibiotics, but since antibiotics are for bacteria, there's no reason they would work on lice. Hope this helps, Neale>
Re: Goldfish lice -- 08/02/07
What are the medications available in India for fish lice. Here all stupid people sell fishes and so they don't know anything. Pls recommend it. Is there any particular reason why these fish lice happen <Mr. Bond, some manners please. How about saying "please" or "thank you"? Over here in England we still take these things seriously. Anyway, as for brands of fish lice medication in India, I haven't a clue. The following medications are used in the US, UK, and Europe to treat fish lice, and some may be available in India. For all I know, there may be Indian pharmaceutical companies producing their own brands. A bit of time spent visiting aquarium stores or shopping online may help. - API General Cure - Aquarium Products Clout - Aquarium Products Fluke-Tabs - Aquarium Products Life Bearer - Hikari CyroPro - Mardel CopperSafe - Seachem Cupramine - Seachem PolyGuard - Interpet #12 Anti Crustacean Parasite - Kusuri Parazoryne - Waterlife Sterazin - JBL Gyrodactol - TetraMedica ContraSpot You probably want to see if there's an Indian or local fishkeeping club you can join. That's often the best way to make friends among fishkeepers near home, and so learn about the best places to go shopping and what products and traded. As for "why" parasites happen, I think I explained that before. When a healthy fish and a parasitised fish are brought together in one tank, then there's a good chance the parasite will infect the healthy fish. Your job is to prevent that happening. Bob's written a nice intro to the subject, here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/quaranti.htm . Hope this helps, Neale>

Koi with raised white bump on tail, goldfish env. dis.  8/1/07 My five year old son has two $0.79 cent goldfish <Not the same species as Koi> that have grown to be the size of my hand. We just upgraded again, now to a 20 gallon tank after they developed fin rot and septicemia. Following the instructions for broad spectrum antibiotics, I have removed the carbon filter and am also changing the water 25% with the third treatment and fourth treatments They are looking better but... the smaller one now has a 2mm white pimple near the base of its anal fin that seems to be growing. It is now surrounded by a red circle of irritation. It is protruding more on one side of the fin than the other. As far as behavior goes, there were lethargic but now, after protesting their new digs, they are both happy, swimming and eating well. The fuzzy white edge and small fuzzy spots on Goldie's tail are gone and after two days of treatment the red lines seem to be fading. Still the bump on Superfish worries me. Should I be doing something else for treatment or could this be part of the bacterial infection. Anything you can offer would be appreciated. My son and I have grown very fond of his buddies). Heather <Likely the root problem here is/was environmental... With improving these animals world, this problem should solve itself. Bob Fenner>

Goldfish still bloated after 5 months  -- 07/30/07 Hi there <<Hello, Catherine. Tom here.>> Thank you for your wonderfully informative website. I have spent many hours reading through your wealth of information. <<I'm pleased and, thank you for the compliment.>> About three years ago my daughter was given the classroom pet goldfish because the teacher was leaving the school. All went well up until a few months ago when Bubbles started to get bloated. I immediately started to search for possible causes and remedies and came across your website. <<Glad you found us, Catherine.>> After reading similar queries I concluded that it was probably constipation from lack of a varied diet (as mentioned on your goldfish malnutrition page). I then started feeding Bubbles peas every second day and soaking the goldfish flakes in cod-liver oil before feeding (which were given very infrequently). It is now about 4 or 5 months later and although he seems to be able to poo more easily he is still very bloated. (see attached pictures - top and side view) <<I've looked at these, Catherine. Gorgeous specimen but a little 'plump', as you mentioned. More than a "little", actually.>> Will this bloating ever diminish and will the goldfish return its streamlined self? <<I'm going to 'waffle' on you a bit, Catherine, by telling you that I don't know for certain. He might be genetically disposed to this. From the pictures, he's swimming as he should which tends to negate swim bladder problems. The 'bloat' is symmetric based on the top view photo. (I'd be far more concerned if it were contained to one side or the other.) The scales aren't protruding as you'd expect from an internal organ issue (Dropsy) and there's no red blotching or streaking around the body or fins. In short, he looks like a nice, fat, little Goldfish. :) Now, lest we embarrass ourselves here, if Bubbles is a "her" rather than a "him", there's an outside possibility that the fish is "egg-bound", which means that she can neither lay her eggs nor reabsorb them into her system. (I've mentioned the use of Epsom salts later.)>> Is it causing him any pain or discomfort? <<Doubtful. You'd have seen behavioral displays of 'stress' if he were uncomfortable, i.e. erratic swimming behavior, hiding or hanging out at the top/bottom of the tank, lack of appetite, et. al.>> How can we know if the peas and cod-liver oil are the answer or helping if the bloating remains? <<Good question. One indicator that you've already mentioned is that he's eliminating waste more easily. I'd like you to stick with the peas in his diet and add more greens like spinach, zucchini, etc. Brine shrimp (stick with freeze-dried since the frozen style would be cost-prohibitive for one fish) can also be supplemented since these all will have a laxative effect. (For what it's worth while we're discussing fish poop (how can anyone not find it fascinating? :) ), a healthy 'download' should be short and dark, not stringy and white/light in color.)>> What other treatments could we try to try and help poor Bubbles? <<Read up on the use of Epsom salts if you feel that the diet isn't addressing the issue adequately or, if you feel that Bubbles is egg-bound (in the event this is actually a female Goldfish). Also, keep in mind that Bubbles can go quite some time without eating so a 'fasting' regimen might be another way to go. You surely don't want to 'medicate' the fish. Other than being a candidate for Weight Watchers, perhaps, there's nothing that I can pinpoint for you that says this animal is sick.>> Also, could you please identify what type of goldfish Bubbles is? <<Sure. He's a Fantail Goldfish. The double tail fins and dorsal fin (some double-tailed Goldfish don't have these) are the giveaway. (Nice photos go a long way!)>> Thanks for a great site. Catherine <<Happy to be of service, Catherine. If you've other questions, you know where you can find us. Best regards. Tom>>
Re: Goldfish still bloated after 5 months 8/1/07
Hi Tom <<Greetings, Catherine.>> Thank you for your prompt, comprehensive and informative reply. I will try the Epsom salts treatment and try to get hold of some freeze-dried Brine shrimp as you suggested, although I have never seen these before. <<San Francisco Bay, Hikari and Nutra Fin are but a few companies that market brine shrimp in this form, Catherine. Shouldn't be a big problem to find.>> I will do some phoning around to see if I can locate these anywhere locally. <<I don't think you'll have to dig very far.>> Otherwise the greens sound like a good idea as they are more readily available at the local shop. <<For what it's worth, more than a few folks I've spoken with have fed orange pieces to their Goldfish, as well. Might be worth a try to keep things varied.>> Thanks again for a great site - I have it bookmarked as my comprehensive resource on all "fishy matters":-) <<There isn't a 'fishier' crew around than this one, Catherine. Thanks for the 'bookmark', by the way.>> <<My best. Tom>>

Lumps keep appearing -- 07/30/07 Hi, <<Greetings, Kirsty. Tom with you.>> Hope you can help. <<I hope I can, too.>> Our fish has been developing lumps on it body over the past few months. The scales protrude from the skin and the lump swells . We have read that it could be caused by stress in the environment so we removed a water plant that had rapidly grew and did a water change with salt water solution which helped. However, yesterday I noticed another lump appear and today it has swollen even more with what looks like white candy floss on it. The fish is eating and swimming as normal but concerned as it keeps reoccurring. <<Having looked at the excellent photos you shared with us and reading your description, I don't know that I can help as much as I'd like to. (Bob will have the opportunity to, hopefully, refute my 'diagnosis' but based on your photographs and the description you've provided, I would suggest that the fish has Nodular Disease.) The photos suggest the creamy/off-white nodules (cysts?) that display themselves with this infestation. In simpler terms, single-cell Sporozoans (already not simpler, right?) are ingested by the fish and work their way through the organs. They finally (to our eyes) show up like a pimple/cyst on the outer body of the fish where it, ultimately, breaks open sending many more of the spores out into the tank. The salt you referred to adding aided in healing the wound but didn't cure the problem because, to date, there isn't one where killing off these Sporozoans is concerned. Sadly, however, the process keeps repeating itself. The fish can appear to be just fine but has this one 'small' problem going'¦and going and going. Unfortunately, it's highly contagious and can/will affect the other fish in the tank. That I'm aware of, there is no known cure and, the 'prescribed' remedy is to isolate the fish to prevent infesting any tank mates.>> Our other fish is perfectly fine. <<Not always easy to tell, Kirsty. This is one of those problems that can slip by without someone noticing. I'd like to be wrong, quite frankly and, perhaps, I will be.>> Many thanks Kirsty <<Someone else will have a look, Kirsty. As I said, I hope to be wrong. Best of luck. Cheers. Tom>><Is a likely guess... I would try a "one shot" treatment with Metronidazole/Flagyl here. Particulars are posted on WWM. BobF>

Re: Lumps keep appearing. Goldfish dis.  8/1/07 Hi Tom <<Hello, Kirsty.>> Thank you very much for getting back to me. <<Happy to do so.>> I am keeping my fingers crossed that it's something not so bad as they make a great pair but we will arrange to isolate Mindy tonight. <<Hopefully you've read the current Freshwater FAQ's on the main site, Kirsty. Bob suggested that a one-time treatment using Metronidazole/Flagyl might be of benefit. This, frankly, wouldn't have occurred to me which is why Bob's input is much appreciated. I would further add that the condition I spoke of can be self-limiting. The fish, for lack of a better way of putting it, can go into remission with this infestation so there's no reason to give up hope, by a long stretch.>><Oh, and I did/do send comments on to the original enquirers Tom. RMF> Thanks again Kirsty <<You're quite welcome. I wish you and Mindy the best. Tom>>

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