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Help goldfish has serious fin rot.


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Thank you for the numbers! Everyone has already given you excellent advice re. changing the water asap.

Can you clarify something for me:

- Main tank = 20 gallons with 2 fish correct?

- How large is the small tank and what is in there?

Yes. the other one 5.5 gallons with 2 small fish in it,

What kind of fish are these?

The nitrite is present and high in this tank too, so you will also need to do big water changes in this tank to help them

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  • Regular Member

Thank you for the numbers! Everyone has already given you excellent advice re. changing the water asap.

Can you clarify something for me:

- Main tank = 20 gallons with 2 fish correct?

- How large is the small tank and what is in there?

Yes. the other one 5.5 gallons with 2 small fish in it,

What kind of fish are these?

The nitrite is present and high in this tank too, so you will also need to do big water changes in this tank to help them

They are all common goldfish. Water changes everyday? Thanks.

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You will need to do either 100% or an 80% followed by another 80% change immediately on both tanks.

Sadly if you have 2 goldfish in a 5.5 gallon tank then you will need to be doing 100% w/c every couple of hours :yikes They produce a lot of waste and this is one reason why they require a big tank with a large volume of water, to dilute this waste.

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  • Regular Member

You will need to do either 100% or an 80% followed by another 80% change immediately on both tanks.

Sadly if you have 2 goldfish in a 5.5 gallon tank then you will need to be doing 100% w/c every couple of hours :yikes They produce a lot of waste and this is one reason why they require a big tank with a large volume of water, to dilute this waste.

But they are still small and have a filter thats good enough for 10 gallons. Do I still have to do many water changes?

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Make sure you match the temperature as best you can also ;)

If you have a thermometer you can hold it under the tap and get a reading, otherwise a finger temp test will work too.

Do you have an easy to way to drain out 75-80% of your tank, and refill it twice? Like do you have a water changer or pump etc?

The temperature is good. It will be getting colder so I will get a heater. Yes I do.

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She means match the tank temp and the newly changed water as closely as you can. :) I don't have a heater on my GF tank. It depends on how cold the tank gets in the winter.

They may be small now but they will grow fast. The best way to determine a water change schedule is frequent water testing to monitor the water parameters. Once ammonia or nitrites get above 0.50 I would change the water. That will not take long with 2 comets in a 10 gallon. :(

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You will need to do either 100% or an 80% followed by another 80% change immediately on both tanks.

Sadly if you have 2 goldfish in a 5.5 gallon tank then you will need to be doing 100% w/c every couple of hours :yikes They produce a lot of waste and this is one reason why they require a big tank with a large volume of water, to dilute this waste.

But they are still small and have a filter thats good enough for 10 gallons. Do I still have to do many water changes?

Yes, even though they seem small, they can still produce a lot of waste and make the water dangerous very quicky. That is why it is extremely useful to have your own testing kit, you can test and see exactly how fast the water gets fouled.

When did you last do a water change on the small tank?

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So I just do a 100% water change and everything will be fine? Are you able to tell me how much time I have left until the cycle is over?

Its hard to say for sure but because both tanks have nitrites and nitrates thats a good sign and usually the nitrite phase is shorter then the ammonia phase. I think my nitrite phase lasted about 3 or 4 weeks and it was a pain but I did change the water daily. Were you able to get a test kit at the store this weekend?

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Are you able to purchase a sterile, food-safe container around 20 gallons? These are quite cheap and a much better alternative than keeping the fish in the 5.5 gallon. You will still need to be doing 100% changes daily, but not every few hours. You will not be able to maintain good water quality at all even with a cycled filter in a tank so small, so it is best to have them out of that tank as soon as you can.

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You will need to do either 100% or an 80% followed by another 80% change immediately on both tanks.

Sadly if you have 2 goldfish in a 5.5 gallon tank then you will need to be doing 100% w/c every couple of hours :yikes They produce a lot of waste and this is one reason why they require a big tank with a large volume of water, to dilute this waste.

But they are still small and have a filter thats good enough for 10 gallons. Do I still have to do many water changes?

Yes, even though they seem small, they can still produce a lot of waste and make the water dangerous very quicky. That is why it is extremely useful to have your own testing kit, you can test and see exactly how fast the water gets fouled.

When did you last do a water change on the small tank?

Yesterday. But I will do one tonight.

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So I just do a 100% water change and everything will be fine? Are you able to tell me how much time I have left until the cycle is over?

Its hard to say for sure but because both tanks have nitrites and nitrates thats a good sign and usually the nitrite phase is shorter then the ammonia phase. I think my nitrite phase lasted about 3 or 4 weeks and it was a pain but I did change the water daily. Were you able to get a test kit at the store this weekend?

No :( I'm broke right now :o But i will try to ASAP

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So I just do a 100% water change and everything will be fine? Are you able to tell me how much time I have left until the cycle is over?

Its hard to say for sure but because both tanks have nitrites and nitrates thats a good sign and usually the nitrite phase is shorter then the ammonia phase. I think my nitrite phase lasted about 3 or 4 weeks and it was a pain but I did change the water daily. Were you able to get a test kit at the store this weekend?

No :( I'm broke right now :o But i will try to ASAP

I'm sorry :( Keep up with daily big changes until you can buy one and figure out where you are at. The tail will heal up once the water parameters are better.

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Then this will explain how scarily fast the water can become toxic; you changed your water less than 24 hours ago, and already your nitrites in that tank are registering at 10+, when they need to be at zero :yikes Your poor fish are living in extremely toxic water right now which is why it's so important to get them fresh, clean water immediately and sort out getting them a bigger home to help dilute their waste better.

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Are you able to purchase a sterile, food-safe container around 20 gallons? These are quite cheap and a much better alternative than keeping the fish in the 5.5 gallon. You will still need to be doing 100% changes daily, but not every few hours. You will not be able to maintain good water quality at all even with a cycled filter in a tank so small, so it is best to have them out of that tank as soon as you can.

Where can I find them at?

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If it is not safe, why do pet stores sell these small tanks? They also have one that is 2.5 gallons :o

In some countries they actually are not allowed to sell goldfish bowls. Sure wish they weren't here in the U.S.

A betta fish would do ok in a 2.5 gallon tank, but I think even with them, 5g would be better, just not a goldfish.

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Then this will explain how scarily fast the water can become toxic; you changed your water less than 24 hours ago, and already your nitrites in that tank are registering at 10+, when they need to be at zero :yikes Your poor fish are living in extremely toxic water right now which is why it's so important to get them fresh, clean water immediately and sort out getting them a bigger home to help dilute their waste better.

I feel so guily :( I am going to change their water right now this second.

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If it is not safe, why do pet stores sell these small tanks? They also have one that is 2.5 gallons :o

Because sadly they sell easily and make the shop a profit and pet stores often do not know what many animals actually need.

An example would be cigarettes; they are dangerous to humans but yet they are sold all over the place because they make good profit

Smaller tanks can be used to house other aquatic life such as Betta fish, so they are not 'useless' but just not suitable for goldfish who produce a lot of waste

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Then this will explain how scarily fast the water can become toxic; you changed your water less than 24 hours ago, and already your nitrites in that tank are registering at 10+, when they need to be at zero :yikes Your poor fish are living in extremely toxic water right now which is why it's so important to get them fresh, clean water immediately and sort out getting them a bigger home to help dilute their waste better.

I feel so guily :( I am going to change their water right now this second.

Please do :)

Either change the entire 100% of water, or change 80%, refill and then change 80% again immediately. This should bring everything down to zero, but be aware that in such a small tank it wont stay at zero for long, within hours it will be creeping higher and higher again.

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Don't forget that your other tank is also registering nitrites at 5, they need brought to zero as well (their tank wont get as bad as quickly, but it will still need daily 100% changes until you are fully cycled).

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I feel so guily :( I am going to change their water right now this second.

No one wants you to feel guilty! We've all made lots of mistakes here with our first fish and the whole cycling process. You came at the right time to Koko's while your fish still can be helped :) thats more then some of us can say.

Edited by cmclien
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^This. I think many of us started off overstocked (my first GF I kept in a bowl for years. I don't know how he survived .) and unaware of the whole cycling thing. Trust me, you are in good company.

You are doing a great job. For now, the best thing you can do is keep up with your water changes. :)

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