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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 15623
Experience:  I am a small animal veterinarian and am happy to discuss any concerns & questions you have on any species.
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I have a pearl scale goldfish a month. He used to be very

Customer Question

I have a pearl scale goldfish for over a month. He used to be very happy, social and energetic fish. Don’t know the sex and the age of the fish because I adopted it.
Over the weekend I was away so for 3 days he had a Nutrafin basis 3 days block. When I came back home he was still in the corner on the ground. He didn’t have much appetite. I removed the remaining of the block and changed half of the water and vacuumed the gravel. He didn’t get much better.
Next day he developed tiny red dots bellow the tummy, like a capillary lines as on the photos attached. I panicked and went to the pet store, they couldn’t help but I checked PH and Ammonia in the water but that was normal. So I changed all the water in the aquarium. I believe that caused him to develop bubbles on his skin right away when I put him in the water. I think I made a mistake in changing whole the water plus the temperature change might have influenced him.
Now he is remaining up at the surface and is very passive. Please help because there is no vet for fish in Malaysia.
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Pet
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 4 months ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.

Have you been able to check nitrites and nitrates for this water?

Are the red dots only on the belly or are the veins in the fins also prominent?

Was the new water treated? Had it been colder or warmer then the tank's water? Does he have bubbles on his skin now?

You noted posting a photo but it doesn't appear that they have been added to this conversation. Can you repost them now? To post them online, you can use the paper clip icon above your text box. Or if you cannot see that on your phone/computer, just post them on any site (ie Flickr, Photobucket, Imgr etc) and paste the web link here for me follow.

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Thank you for the answer. The red dots are mostly on the belly. Fins are ok.The problem is that I treated the water just as they told me in the pet store, tab water to which i added salt, Aqua Nice H2O protection and Stress Zyme. I believe the water was sligtly colder than usual. I left it on room temperature but not enough time. He developed one bubble right away last night and now he has 3 bubbles.
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
I haven't checked for nitrites and nitrates
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Also I will like to add that his stool was quite thin today. I tried to give him green peas yesterday but he didnt eat.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 4 months ago.

Thank you,

Where on his body are the three bubbles?

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Can you see the photos? One on his front fin, one on his back fin. one on his head and 2 smaller on his head as of now
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 4 months ago.

Hello again,

I can see the photos but they are not in focus enough to differentiate the bubbles from his pearls. So, thank you for letting me know where they are. It will take a moment for me to type my full reply, so I will repost again shortly.

Speak to you soon,

Dr. B.

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Here are more photos. I think there is his stool hanging there, very thin.
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Photos of his food during the weekend and the water treatments used.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 4 months ago.

Thank you again,

First, since the bubbles are dissipating and aren't involving the eyes or gills; we'd just want to monitor and avoid any more cold water shock with him. Otherwise, we do need to monitor those stools since their reduced bulk could be related to appetite loss as opposed to constipation. That said, if he refuses peas, you can try cucumber, spinach, or Daphnea from the pet store.

Furthermore and more importantly, I would strongly advise having the nitrites and nitrates checked since these are highly suspect to have played a role in at least his initial signs. If you cannot do so, then we tend to use low level frequent water changes (I’d aim for 50% total change over 24 hours) to rule out nitrogenous waste issues. Though you may not need to do this now with the total water change. And I have to note that with the big change that was done, we' likely have a degree of temperature induced shock but also nitrate shock (since they need to be weaned down). So, its worth making sure these are clear and using the above approach if they aren't or give us future issue.

Otherwise, based on the vasculitis pattern you are seeing on the body wall, we’d be worried about a bacterial septicaemia. Therefore,w e would want to consider initiating treatment with a broad spectrum antibiotic. Antibiotic wise, consider covering them with a combo treatment of doxycycline/kanamycin (ideally a 2 week course) to cover our bacterial differentials. If you had noticed white mucoid diarrhea (a sign of GI flagellates), then you might consider metronidazole treatment. That way we can cover our bacterial angle and give him the best chance of recovering from both the infection and these recent shocks.

Please take care,

Dr. B.


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