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  1. Why did I not like the sand? For starters, I had it in acrylic tanks, and no matter how careful, it would scratch the sides during cleaning. Also, I did not like how it doesn't settle as quickly as rocks and seems to leave a "dust" on decorations and plants. I also did not like finding sand in my filter. The filter impeller in one of my small tanks kept blocking up with the sand any time there was a disruption. I had to be careful not to suck up sand when I did water changes. I also did not like seeing every poo piece sitting on top of the sand. Althought it made it easier to detect for cleaning, I felt like I was poop-scooping a litter pan trying to keep the tank looking nice. The rocks I use are very fine, not like the average aquarium rock sold in bags at the pet stores. It is a natural tumbled rock measuring between 3-4mm in size. I find it an acceptable size for the fish to sift without getting pebbles stuck in their mouths and yet does not leave a dust storm behind them. I've had nightmrare results with larger stones. Ever tried to remove a rock lodged in an oranda's mouth? Not a good time. If you use sand or have a bare bottom, and it works for you, that's great. Each to their own. I think I'll stick to my rocks for now.
  2. I've tried sand in my smaller tanks and hated it. And my personal preference is that bare bottom tanks aren't esthetically pleasing. I've had this tiny gravel for over 20 years, only adding to it when I upgraded from 55 gallons to 125 about 5 years ago. I fed the 1mm pellets(soaked) today. They seemed to sink a little slower than the 3mm pellets. Most of the food was gobbled up mid tank. Thank you for the advice.
  3. The reason I asked about substrate is because I am concerned with these tiny pellets getting lost down in my fine gravel and causing water problems. I was curious if dnalex had the same substrate. I am going to give the 1mm pellets a try though.
  4. This fish weighs nearly 400grams (should be there shortly), eats 1mm and 1.5mm pellets. He also eats really tiny brine shrimp. I bought some of the 1mm today. Dnalex, what substrate do you have in the tank with your beautiful ryukin?
  5. I'm so glad I stumbled upon this thread. I've been feeding the NLS goldfish pellets in the 3mm size. My ranchu and one of my orandas has been "floaty". I got the larger size because I thought the smaller size would just get lost in my gravel. Even at the 3mm size, I thought it was small for my big fish (baseball to softball size fish). I soak the food before feeding it. They also get a varied diet of proteins, algae and peas with the occasional broccoli. Could somebody please explain to me why the smaller size is better, even if being fed to very large fish? I feel like feeding them the 1mm pellets would be like feeding them dust.
  6. After a soak in some clove oil water, followed by some vodka, my big blue boy is no longer suffering. He went peacefully. This is the part where I wish I was like those people who could care less about a goldfish's life. To hurt this bad over losing a fish just doens't seem like something I'm supposed to be feeling. I know my coworkers and even the pharmacist where I bought the clove oil think I've lost my dammed mind doing so much to save "just a fish". I'm going to miss Shane. This fall I'll start searching for another blue or white oranda to fill the tank. It looks so bare without him. Rest in peace, Shane. I want to thank all who helped me in this journey. I appreciate all the comments, support and advice. I'm glad this forum exists.
  7. Update...... Shane is still not swimming. He still just rests on side side on the bottom of the tub. I am still switching him into a clean tub daily. He will eat if I put food directly in front of his face and he sucks it in. He is having normal looking bowel movements. I only have two doses of antibiotics left. I am at a total loss for a cure for his lack of mobility. It may be time to send him to the big pond in the sky. Sigh!
  8. Shane update: I quickly ran into the pet store on my way to work yesterday and bought a package of Maracin. I thought Maracin 2 might be a better choice, but they only had Maracin. I dosed him last night before bed. This morning, he is still on the bottom, on his side. However, he did react to me putting my finger in front of his face. He struggled but swam backwards to get away from me. I tried to pick him up and he put up a small fight but quickly exhausted himself. I tried to give him another pea, but he still won't eat. He had a bowel movement. It was quite thin and long. The Maracin is supposed to be administered once a day for 5 days. I've been putting him into a fresh tub of water every day. Would it dilute the benefits of the meds to do that? I'm trying to determine if I just need to leave him in one tub for 5 days while he's being medicated. If so, I would assume I need a fiter set up. Suggestions? JOY! Before I clcked "Post" on this message, I checked on him again. He ATE 4 pellets of New Life Spectrum food!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I dropped the pellets one by one into the water and they drifted down by his face and he ate them!!!!! I've never been so happy to see a fish eat!
  9. BTW dnalex, LUUUUUUUV your quote "The darkest places in hell are reserved for those who maintain their neutrality in times of moral crisis. (Dante Alighieri)"
  10. I'm at work right now. I don't get off until very late. I don't remember Walmart carrying Maracyn (or any other decent fish supplies). Unless it's something they carry, I won't be able to go to the pet store and get meds until before work tomorrow, then actually administer the meds late tomorrow night (midnight) when I get home. There are no pet stores in my town. Just in the town where I work, 30 minutes away. When I left today, he was still pretty much motionless, but he did wriggle a little for me. He is still on his side though. If I saw his eyes darting around or his gills moving rapidly I would have probably euthanized him this morning, but he seems peaceful, almost comatose. He "waves" his pectoral fin around, but that's about it.
  11. Shane update........ He willingly lets me pick him up to put him into the next tub. That tells me how week he is. Normally holding Shane was like holding a bull. He has (had) amazing strength for a little fish. He would not eat the pea I gave him last night. He's still on his side, not moving.
  12. I talked to a man today who recently opened up a business setting up and maintaining salt water aquariums in people's homes and businesses. As soon as I told him where I live, he asked if I had trouble keeping nitrates under control. I told him what I was going through with my tank and Shane. He said he cannot keep nitrates under control in his customer's tanks in my town. Our city water is NASTY. I will not drink it, unfiltered. We came to the conclusion, the problem is starting with the municipal water, plus the challenge of keeping goldie water clean. He was NOT a goldfish lover AT ALL. When I told him what I was doing to try to save Shane, he said "No offense, but I wouldn't go to the bother for just a cheap goldfish". I gently but firmly reminded him that not all goldfish are 28 cent feeder fish, and even if they were, their life was still worth something to me. We agreed to disagree.
  13. I'm heading out the door for the day. I will let him rest in his clean water an check on him tonight. Thanks to all who have offered support and advice. I'm delighted to have knowledgable people who care helping him. I will be in the area of some pet stores today if there is any type of items you think I should pick up that could assist, please post it and I will try to check the messages on my phone. Thank you again!
  14. I checked. His belly is firm but not bloated. His gills are pink. He has not eaten in 3 days. I see no visible signs of distress. Would methyline blue help him breathe? I'm worried about him not eating. I don't want him to starve to death. I put three sinking pellets in the tub in front of his face and he did not react. If he does not eat them soon, I will remove them. I'm wondering if he will react diffently to his favorite... peas.
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