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Black Moor


Guest tash

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:o My black moor (named Shakes) has a serious problem. His eyes have popped right out of their sockets. They are just dangling by a nerve and he cannot see. What is this condition, what caused it, and is there any hope for him? I don't want this to happen to any of my other fish (he is the only goldfish). Just prior to his eyes popping out we added a sucker fish.
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  • Regular Member

I am so sorry to hear about your fish! :( Causing him to lose his eye like that can be a few things....

Are there any sharp opjects in your tank, like ornaments, plastic plants with spiky or pointy leaves, rocks with sharp edges, even the intake tube of the filter not covered with some sort of material could do damage like that. Telescopes and moors are prune to injure their eyes if there is anything sharp in their tank, just like the bubble eyes can pop their bubbles on things.

If there is nothing sharp in your tank, my next suspect would be your sucker fish. What kind of sucker fish is it? Most of that species are not good companions for goldfish, since they tend to "feast" on the goldies slime coat and making the fish therefore suspectible to all kinds of problems. How big is that sucker fish you got? I have seen sucker fish go merciless after goldfish and basically hang at them like glue.

HOw big is your tank, and how many other fish are in with them?

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Just prior to his eyes popping out we added a sucker fish.

Oh dear, I suspect that's the culprit right there. :( Is the sucker fish a pleco by any chance? These do tend to attack other fish sometimes. If it is a pleco, get it out immediately and either take it back to the shop or give it a separate tank of its own.

So, the eyes are just dangling? OK, you have two choices: you can either attempt to put them back in their sockets, or you can cut the optic nerves and let them go. If it's any comfort, blind goldfish adapt very quickly and can move round the tank very easily. Fish have other senses which tell them where they are in their surroundings, so they don't seem as bothered by the lack of vision as other creatures can be.

If you want to try and put the eyes back I would suggest the following procedure:

Get yourself a helper to watch the fish while you 'operate'.

Shake up 5 drops of oil of cloves in a little dechlorinated water until it has thoroughly emulsified. Then add this mixture to a 1 gallon container of declorinated water and stir very well. Have another 1 gallon container containing only clean fresh dechlorinated water nearby. Both these containers must be the same temperature as in the tank.

The oil of cloves is an anaesthetic so the fish does not feel any discomfort. Gently place the fish into this container, watching it carefully. If it shows any sign of distress e.g. thrashing about, then immediately remove it to the clean water and slightly dilute the clove oil water. The try again. You will know when the fish is feeling the effects of the clove oil because it will roll over in the water and seem lethargic. This is the time when your helper must watch the fish very carefully and check that its gills are moving regularly. If they slow down significantly or become spasmodic in movement then quickly remove the fish from the clove oil water to the clean water and keep it there for a couple of minutes until it starts breathing faster again. Then put it back in the clove oil water. You're aiming to keep the fish anasethetised but not so deeply that it stops breathing. You may have to move it back and forth between the containers several times during the operation - this is normal.

Once the fish is anaesthetised, work quickly and carefully: take each eye in your finger tips and very very gently attempt to push it back into the eye socket. Rotate each eye slowly to help it slide in.

If this does not work, i.e. you can't get the eyes back in without damaging them, then cut the optic nerves with a small pair of scissors and let the eyes fall away. Then move the fish to the clean water. The sockets will heal quite quickly.

Whatever the outcome of the operation, when you repace the fish in the main tank, salt the water to help prevent any infections creeping in. Add 1 teaspoon of salt per gallon. You can use any salt (except Epsom) as long as it does not have anti-caking agents in it. Dissolve the salt completely first in a little old tank water before pourig it in, taking care not to pour it directly onto the fish or filter.

Hope this helps, but if you need more advice or help then please do post again. Good luck! :)

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Thanks both of you for your help, but I fear there may be more to it than just the sucker fish. The black moor's fins look like they've deteriorated, his breathing is labored, and he frequently gets stuck in the plants and can't get himself out. Today when I came home from work I found him stuck upside down in a plant. He isn't eating, either. He isn't doing well at all. His eyes actually look like they've swollen so large they won't fit back into the sockets. Should I put him out of his misery, or should I try the operation. My only concern is that he is sick and won't make it.

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I don't want to sound mean :angry: but I can't stand to see something suffering. I don't think I would try to save it if you say that there seems to be more than just the eyes popping out. :cry

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Hi Tash

I'm sorry to say that I think your poor fish is probably beyond recovery if he is that sick. You could try putting him into a large aerated container (or hospital tank) of fresh clean water with a teaspoon of salt per gallon if you want to try to save him - it might help. Personally however, I think I would probably put him to sleep at this stage (that's only my view though - it's entirely your choice).

To euthanise a fish, use oil of cloves but this time shake up 10 drops and add to a gallon of old tank water. Then place the moor in the container (if he shows signs of distress remove him immediately and dilute the mixture). The clove oil will make him drift painlessly to sleep very quickly. Leave him in the container for at least 10 minutes after he has stopped breathing to be sure he has passed away before removing him.

I'm so very sorry. :(

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