MY 22 inch Koi has a bacterial infection red streeks on tail are. It is floating on its side and still alive and I have put it in quarantine and I have put 1% salt. Should I put it out of its misery or continue with salt treatment
Type of Animal: KOI
Age: 22 inches
1% salt to be tried 3 days in a row
Thank you for your question.I agree that your koi is likely suffering from a bacterial septicemia, where the bacteria has infiltrated the blood stream. And as you will be aware, this carries a guarded prognosis.I am glad to see you have isolated him, but are you using any antibiotics besides the salt therapy?
No antibiotics yet
Thank you for confirming that.If there isn't a specific reason for not using antibiotics (ie. organic set-up, etc), and you wish to try treating this fish then I would strongly advise that you start antibiotic therapy in this fish as soon as possible. Bacterial sepsis needs to be treated aggressively with antibiotics to clear the bacteria and give any chance of survival.If this koi was human, he would be hospitalized and receiving IV antibiotics (because it is that serious a condition). Now hitting a vein in a fish is not something we do often, but this doesn't mean we don't want to treat this bacteria as best we can. In this situation, you will want to use an antibiotic like oxytetracycline or doxycycline. This can be administered by treating the water, adding it to the feed, or using medicated feed preparations. Typical treatment length is 10 days (longer if not totally back to himself). Do remember that if you do use these antibiotics, protect your biofilter and monitor water parameters closely. You may also need to do partial water changes between doses. (how much/how often will depend on the water parameter findings).
Overall, he is a sick fish and this sounds to be quite advanced at this stage. Therefore, we do have to appreciate that his prognosis is guarded. Still I would say he deserves a chance. Since he is so advanced in his illness, you may wish to treat for a few days and consider euthanising him if he isn't showing signs of improvement (to give him a chance but not prolong his suffering if he is too far advanced).
General practice veterinary surgeon with a special interest in cats & fish.