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Anna
Anna, Biologist, pet expert
Category: General
Satisfied Customers: 11137
Experience:  40 years experience with fish keeping
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Found my 12" koi floating at the surface with s head down.

Customer Question

Found my 12" koi floating at the surface with his head down. Fish vet is already closed today so I need to know what I can do for it at home. Any suggestions greatly appreciated.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Fish
Expert:  Anna replied 1 year ago.
Hello and welcome. I appreciate Louise for the delay. Different experts come on at various times. I just logged on and saw your question. I'm sorry to hear of this problem.
This is a difficult situation because we don't know what happened to your koi. He may have been injured or he may be ill. The best thing to do would be to place him in a hospital tank. If you don't have one, one of the large RubberMaid totes will work. Fill it with water from the pond and provide aeration of some sort. There are two things you can add to the water. One is pond/aquarium salt. Add one teaspoon per gallon of water. You can also StressCoat according to directions on the bottle. Both of these things are sold in pet stores.
Sometimes swim bladder disorder can cause a fish to float abnormally or be unable to swim. If the fish will eat, give him some thawed out and peeled frozen peas. Constipation can put pressure on the swim bladder, leading to the problem.
If a hospital tank isn't possible, you can treat the whole pond with the salt and StressCoat. It won't hurt your other fish. If the fish was injured, for example by a power surge through equipment or being bumped against rocks by other fish, only time will tell if he'll be able to recover. Regardless of what's wrong, the two medications I recommended can help with stress. That may be enough to keep him going until your vet is open again.
If you have more questions, let me know in a REPLY. I hope your koi will be able to reach a full recovery.
Anna