We have a male betta fish that is very bloated and we are concerned that it could be dropsy. We started noticing it

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Customer: Hello!
JA: Hi there. What type of animal are we talking about?
Customer: We have a male betta fish that is very bloated and we are concerned that it could be dropsy
JA: I'll do all I can to help. How long has the betta fish had this bloating?
Customer: Thank you! We started noticing it about two weeks ago, but this past week it seems to have gotten much worse. We thought it might be from overfeeding, so for the past 3 days we haven't fed him and today gave him two pieces of a green pea peeled. We cleaned his tank yesterday, and the water tests show that everything is fine but he has mostly been staying at the bottom of the tank and staying in his house
JA: What's the betta fish's name and age?
Customer: His name is***** and we got him 9 months ago (not sure how old he was when we got him)
JA: Is there anything else the Vet should know about Agador?
Customer: We have been feeding him Omega One fresh seafood formula pellets and have only just introduced other food (like the pea)
Answered by Terri in 16 hours 2 years ago
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Terri
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48,414 satisfied customers

Specialities include: Dog Veterinary, Cat Veterinary, Bird Veterinary, Reptile Veterinary, Exotic Animal Veterinary

Customer
Our betta fish has been quite bloated for the past two weeks, but in the beginning of this week he didn’t seem to be pineconing so we thought that he was maybe just bloated from overfeeding. We had him fast for the past 3 days, and today fed him about half of a green pea without the shell. He has mostly stayed in his home but seems to be swimming okay, however some of his fins seem to be a little shorter (not sure if it is fin/tail rot). We are in the process of getting him Daphnia to eat instead of the green peas, but we are unsure of what to do next. We have epson salt if we need to give him a salt bath, but don’t know for sure if he has dropsy or is just bloated still, and we’re unsure if we should continue to feed him or continue the fasting. The tank water was changed yesterday, and the tests show that everything is normal (except the water hardness shows as “very hard”). He has been eating with no problem when we feed him, but at the moment his feces is long, white and stringy (not sure if this is a parasite). We’re also unsure if the water is too cold, as we don’t have a water heater and read that betta fish do better in a warmer water. Any suggestions are greatly appreciated, as we've done lots of research and are at the point that we don't know what is the best solution to help him moving forward.

can you post a pic so I can see his condition?

Customer
File attached (255MGZ4)

Thank you for the great pics.

The symptom you describe is definetely an indication that the fish is suffering from problems with it's swim bladder, an advanced case. The name of the disorder is called Swim Bladder Disease.

The swim bladder is an organ that fish have that when functioning properly enables them to swim up and down at will. It also enables the fish to maintain it's buoyancy.

When the swim bladder becomes blocked, infected or too full of air it ceases to do it's job thus the fish's inability to swim or swim properly. Many fish, because of their odd shape are highly suceptible to swim bladder problems

If the fish is being fed dry flake food then this could definitely cause a problem as dry food tends to expand in a fish's stomach thereby causing problems for some fish and as many species of fish tend to gulp their food this would even add to their susceptibility to swim bladder problems.

The recommended treatment plan is to fast the fish for 2-3 days and then begin to feed the fish canned peas or parboiled frozen peas without the husk

The pea diet should be fed in between 2 days of fasting the fish. So in essence feed the pea diet for 2 days then fast the fish for 2 days etc etc. Do this routine for 2 weeks.

It also helps to lower the water level if possible between 25-50% as this puts less water pressure on the fish thereby making it a little easier to swim.

The symptom you describe is definetely an indication that the fish is suffering from problems with it's swim bladder, an advanced case. The name of the disorder is called Swim Bladder Disease.

The swim bladder is an organ that fish have that when functioning properly enables them to swim up and down at will. It also enables the fish to maintain it's buoyancy.

When the swim bladder becomes blocked, infected or too full of air it ceases to do it's job thus the fish's inability to swim or swim properly. Many fish, because of their odd shape are highly suceptible to swim bladder problems

If the fish is being fed dry flake food then this could definitely cause a problem as dry food tends to expand in a fish's stomach thereby causing problems for some fish and as many species of fish tend to gulp their food this would even add to their susceptability to swim bladder problems.

The recommended treatment plan is to fast the fish for 2-3 days and then begin to feed the fish canned peas or parboiled frozen peas without the husk as you have been doing. Usually it's best to crush the peas before feeding and feed 1-2 peas a day depending on the size of the fish. The pea diet should be fed in between 2 days of fasting the fish. So in essence feed the pea diet for 2 days then fast the fish for 2 days etc etc. Do this routine for 2 weeks.

It also helps to lower the water level if possible between 25-50% as this puts less water pressure on the fish thereby making it a little easier to swim.

In addition to the pea diet it would be a good idea to treat the fish with an anti-bacterial medicine such as Maracyn 2 as the pea diet alone will sometimes not be enough as you have seen.

The excess intake of air is a primary cause of swim bladder problems which is why it's also better to soak flake food prior to feeding as mentioned earlier many fish tend to gulp their food when eating.

So try the fast, the pea diet and Maracyn 2 but keep in mind that sbd can be a stubborn and sometimes impossible ailment to cure.

It's truly one of the pestering problems that fish keepers encounter all too frequently.

I have listed below a link which will give you a view of Maracyn 2.

Good luck and please let me know if you have any questions.

https://www.petco.com/shop/en/petcostore?ref=dfs

So try the fast, the pea d

days of fasting the fish. So in essence feed the pea diet for 2 days then fast the fish for 2 days etc etc. Do this routine for 2 weeks.

It also helps to lower the water level if possible between 25-50% as this puts less water pressure on the fish thereby maintain buoyancy

.

I hope this information has been helpful. I will be standing by if you have other questions. Let me know if I can help further. Also, before signing off today, please take the time to use the star rating system at the top of the page to leave a rating for me (bottom of the page if using the app). A 5-star rating is appreciated as top notch answers are my focus. If you feel you have received anything less, please reply so that I may help until you’ve received the assistance you need. Until you issue a rating, the website will not compensate me for helping you. You will still be able to chat with me even after issuing a rating at no further charge on this thread.Kind regards,

Terri

Customer
Okay great thank you that is very helpful! We were also going to pick up some freeze dried daphnia because I read that could help but should we just stick to the peas for now? Also would you recommend giving him a salt bath?

my pleasure

get daphnia, it will definitely help

lets wait on the salt bath

Customer
Okay thank you very much!

my pleasure

Customer
Sorry one more question, would you recommend getting a water heater so that the tank temperature is warmer? We currently do not use one but have read for bettas the tank should be around 70 degrees. Also should we alternate the pea and daphnia while doing the fast or just stick to one over the other? Thank you in advance!

yes, because a temp below 70 is harmful to bettas

use daphnia

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