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Anna, Pet Expert/Biologist
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 11455
Experience:  40 yrs.: herps, pocket pets, rabbits, poultry, dogs, horses. Biology degree. Vet assistant.
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I have a gold fish in a bowl with fin rot on her tail - I am

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I have a gold fish in a bowl with fin rot on her tail - I am moving flat at the weekend a plan to buy her a good tank with proper filter etc as was not allowed a tank or filter here. I have bought anti fungus and finrot from interpet anti fungus and finrot treatment. She has torn tail and although I have put treatement in (also using a bit of aqurium salt) her tail has gone all stringy. She is swimming about but is resting more that usual. she has also has black areas on her tail and one one gill but this happen months ago and was told at pet shop that it could be her changing colour I noticed where I bought her last year the goldfish do have black on them and they are healthy so seems a mixed bred. I put in the treatment two days ago. I have another bowl which I am cleaning and filling with water conditioner and salt and hope to put her into that when ready with a new dose of the interpet is that okay? and when should I do this? also I am moving at the weekend it is only a 15 minute walk and I plan to have her new tank set up before I move her will it be okay to move her like this? She is such a wonderful fish and has a lovely personality I would love her to live a long happy life and have read up on that they actually need as big a tank as one can buy. please advice.

I apologize that no one has responded to your question sooner. Different experts come online at various times. I just came online and saw your question. I'm sorry to hear your goldfish isn't doing well. What you have planned with the second bowl for continued treatment is fine. The sooner you can do it, the better, but wait until the water in the second bowl is the same temperature as that in the bowl Pebbles is now in. A sudden temperature change is bad for her. The fin rot may not heal until you have her in a bigger tank. Poor water quality makes it nearly impossible to cure such illnesses, and small bowls almost always have poor water quality.

Goldfish can change colors, but black on the areas you mentioned is often a sign of ammonia toxicity. The ammonia causes damage resulting in red streaks, and as the damage heals, it becomes black. It may or may not change as time passes. Goldfish need to have ammonia at zero, and in a bowl, it is nearly impossible to keep it that low.

A tank is an excellent idea, but make sure it's big enough. Goldfish produce a tremendous amount of waste, and your tank has probably not been able to cycle properly because of that. It used to be recommended to have about 4 liters of water per inch of fish. That still holds true for tropical fish, but not for goldfish. I find they do best with about 100 liters per fish, regardless of size. I’ll share my own experience with 12 inches total of goldfish (3 fish). They are in a 90 gallon (about 340 liters) tank. I have an undergravel filter, a hanging filter, and a powerful canister filter. It takes all three of those filters to maintain perfect water quality. Regardless of tank size, frequent water testing and changing is needed. Goldfish tank size is an area where pet store personnel often give out incorrect information. They may not know, or they may simply want to sell more fish.

If you get a bigger tank, you'll need to cycle the tank before putting Pebbles in. If you skip that step, you'll just have more trouble. We now usually cycle tanks without fish. There are other ways to cycle a tank. The following website gives detailed instructions and also explains cycling in depth.

If you have more questions, let me know by clicking on REPLY. I hope you'll be able to quickly return Pebbles to health.

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Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you for relpy have changed bowl (how often hould d his ad add treatment untill get her ak set up? I a buying tank tomorrow and shall hve keys to my new flat then so can set up tank tomorrow and shall look at cyle etc. She is just sleeping at bottom of bowl just now. She is weak but she is a fighter. Is it likely when she is put in tank that she will improve?

You're welcome. You only need to add more treatment when you change the water. Otherwise you could overdose her on medications and/or salt. Whether she will improve when you put her in the new tank depends on how sick she is. Fungal and bacterial infections that start on the fins or scales can eventually result in systemic infections that affect the whole body. It can eb nearly impossible for a fish to recover from them. So, there is no way to predict what will happen. We can hope that the improved water quality and greater oxygen concentration in the new tank will be enough to help her recover.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

thank you so much for your advice it is very much appreciated.

You're welcome. I hope your move goes well and Pebbles will survive and recover.