How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Anna Your Own Question
Anna, Pet Expert/Biologist
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 11549
Experience:  40 yrs.: herps, pocket pets, rabbits, poultry, dogs, horses. Biology degree. Vet assistant.
Type Your Pet Question Here...
Anna is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My beta fish has a big stomach and big backend the middle

Customer Question

My beta fish has a big stomach and big backend the middle look like it is disintegrating, what does this mean?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Pet
Expert:  Anna replied 2 years ago.

Hello and welcome. I apologize that no one has responded to you sooner. Different experts come online at various times. I just logged on and saw your question. I'm sorry to hear that your fish is ill. This post is not your answer, but is a request for more information that will help me figure out what is wrong. So, don't rate my service yet - we are just beginning. Do you know how old your betta is? Are any of his scales standing up in the swollen area - making him look a little like a pine cone? Does he eat well yet? How well can he swim? Thank you. Anna

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank you Anna

He is about 1 year old, upon very close examination it looks like something is eating away at his mid-section with a bit of for lack of a better description a whitish algae. he seems to be disoriented he comes up for food then swims away.

Expert:  Anna replied 2 years ago.

Thank you for getting back to me. I am working on your answer, and will post it as soon as I have it typed up.

Expert:  Anna replied 2 years ago.

Thank you for waiting. Your betta is very sick, and it may be too late to save him, but we can try. It sounds like he has more than one illness. Start with a water change. Use water the same temperature as what is in the bowl, and taht has been dechlorinated. I recommend that you add aquarium salt (available in the pet store) at a rate of 1 teaspoon per gallon of water. That helps fish deal with any kind of stress, eliminates some external parasites, and improves water quality. You can also use some Melafix according to directions on the bottle. Melafix is sold in most pet stores.

The whitish growth is either a fungus or columnaris. Both the salt and Melafix can help with that, if it isn't too advanced. It sound slike your betta is also suffering from swim bladder disorder. The salt can help with that. The other step to take for it is to feed him nothing but thawed out and peeled frozen peas for a few days. You may have to hold them right in front of of his face.

In summary, do a water change, add aquarium salt, feed peas, and medicate with Melafix. If you have more questions, let me know in a REPLY. I hope your betta will be able to recover.


My goal is to provide you with excellent service – if you feel you have gotten anything less, please reply back, I am happy to address follow-up questions. Please remember to rate my service only after you have all the information you need. Thank you!