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shadowbaby25

is my fish dying?

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my goldfish Squeak is sitting at the bottom of the tank, he wont really swim unless I go near the tank, he did eat some peas this morning and I thought he had a new lease of life, but he's been like this for a couple of days, seems to be deteriorating. 2 days ago we did a 75% wc and he started floating on his side on the top, he has been going between floating on the top or just sinking down and sitting on the bottom, but he always floated upright like in a trance, this was the first time he was on his side. He was also being bullied by my other fish. I thought he had swim bladder disease and also that he was being stressed out by the other fish but now they're separate he barely moves at all. I've had him for about 6 years, I think he's about 8 because he came to me when he was about 2 (friends who didn't want the fish when they realised how much work was involved after getting them). as Im typing he's just sitting in the corner resting nose down, fins clamped, he just had what seemed like a major spasm and really frightened me, he started spasming and swimming erratically straight up and back down. when he's in the corner he looks peaceful but I have no idea if he might be in pain. I thought he was going to die in the spasm and it look horrible, like he was suffering a lot, then he just went back to the bottom.

I am so scared if I euthanise him and I shouldn't be because he is curable, then Im just killing him, but I don't want him to suffer if thats not the case, he means so much to me but I am not a fish expert and i cant exactly take him to the vet. everyone else keeps telling me to kill him because he's just a fish. But he's not just a fish to me, i've looked after him for 6 years, he's one of the family pets and I am not even sure I have the strength to euthanise him, Im just so sad, is this the end? can anyone help me? my water levels and info are all below: the other fish is fine, the tank levels seem fine, I've been running the filter over a year and it was cleaned out about 2 weeks ago so its all clean. I have stopped feeding him anything, I fasted him for a day then gave him peas which he ate this morning, although the other day when he was floating on his side he spat them out when i tried to hand feed him them. he has always been a bit of an air gulper and I thought it was just sbd from taking in air but now I think its more serious than that.His spasm almost looked like he had been possessed by something he was all twitchy. I have no idea what he is going through or how to help him. its horrible.

I will try and add a link to a video now.

help?

Please copy & paste fill the following form and fill it out to the best of your ability when requesting help for Goldfish Problems:

  • Test Results for the Following:
    • * Ammonia Level(0)
    • * Nitrite Level(0)
    • * Nitrate level(0)
    • * Ammonia Level(0)
    • * Nitrite Level(Tap) will check and add
    • * Nitrate level(Tap) will check and add
    • * Ph Level, Tank (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines)
    • * Ph Level, Tap (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines)
    • Other Required Info:
      • * Brand of test-kit used and whether strips or drops?
      • * Water temperature?
      • * Tank size (how many gals.) and how long has it been running? 40 gallons, 4 and half-5 years (was smaller tank before that)
      • * What is the name and "size of the filter"(s)? eheim 2213
      • * How often do you change the water and how much? once a week, about 50-75%
  • * How many days ago was the last water change and how much did you change?2 days, 75%, also did a full filter clean which was the first time since I got it- only about 1 year ago- eheim run for a while and I have the really good media and substrate for the eheim- the ceramic noodles and balls.
  • * How many fish in the tank and their size? 2 - squid (goldfish)- about 12cm, squeak (shubunkin)about 17cm
  • * What kind of water additives or conditioners? sometimes a tiny bit of prime to help settle after a change but otherwise nothing
  • * What do you feed your fish and how often? tetraflakes- always swirl it down to the bottom to try and stop them feeding at top- and more recently ive fasted them and theyve only had a few green peas
  • * Any new fish added to the tank? no
  • * Any medications added to the tank? no
  • * List entire medication/treatment history for fish and tank. Please include salt, Prazi, PP, etc and the approximate time and duration of treatment.
  • i have not put medication in the main tank, squeak was in a hospital tank when he was little and i nursed him back from finrot. also had the same problem with squeak about a year ago and treated him for sbd after coming on here for advice, he went back to normal again until now. I occasionally use gold buffer to adjust the ph levels, thats it. we did move house about 6 months ago and the tank now sits in more daylight next to an outside wall, also the heater got broken int he last tank clean so the water temp is lower than i used to keep it but I read that goldfish are better in colder temps so I didn't replace it.
  • * Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt," bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus? they have had red streaks appear in their tails and I have taken that as ammonia poisoning and increased the tank changes from once fortnightly to once every week, the red streaks did fade but they never went away completely, I dont think their fins are frayed but they might be and im not recognising it.
  • * Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.? yes, as I describe above, although he seemed keen to eat this morning which i though was a good sign. right now not looking good at all though :(

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:hi I'm sorry your fish isn't feeling well. Would you be able to post some pictures?

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and this was him after I gave him some peas- he does seem to pick up quite a bit which is why I'm confused- sorry about all the long vids- just trying to give a sense of all his various 'mood' stages.

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I'm not sure :(. I'm sorry I can't help. But a mod will be by soon to help! :). I hope he is okay. :hug

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looking closer I've just noticed what looks like yellow food colouring around the top of his head under the orange and black, it might be nothing but though I should mention it. he's also doing a lot of gulping it looks like or even what looked like a yawn? do fish yawn? again sorry for all the posts, I just keep thinking the more info I add the more it might be easier to work out whats happening.

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:hi

Have you seen his poop?

What test kit are you using?

When you change water, do you typically vacuum the gravel also? Can you tell us what you mean when you say you did a "full filter clean"?

Please post your tap parameters and your tank pH. I find it a little curious that you don't have any nitrates in your tank . . .

What country are you in? (Need to know what meds you might have access to if needed)

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i will do the tests again and see what the levels are, these were from the last time we did it about a week ago. i thought there would be nitrate or nitrite levels too but there weren't at that time.

I'm using API freshwater master test kit.

The weird thing with squeak is he doesn't seem to poo ever- well Im sure he does but i never see- squid poos all the time, I think i saw squeak poo the first time ever the other day and it was pink ( the colour of the tetra flakes) and kind of disintegrated into the tank straight away, didn't stay in tact and float off like squid's do.

I always hoover the gravel when I do a water change although I had found it seemed to be getting a lot dirtier more quickly than I could clean even every week, so thats when I investigated my filter and did a full clean- I closed the taps and detached & drained the cannister, then soaked the sponge and the substrate in part tap part tank water and cleaned the outer cannister in tap water. also the tubes which seemed to be dirty on the inside. and I re cut new filter sponge disks and threw away the old one along with the carbon disk which i don't have in there anymore. i made sure to clean some with the tank water to keep the bacteria so added about 25% clean water and 75% tap when i restarted it.

Im in NZ.

results coming..

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Hi There,

It would really help if you can get those param. like Lisa (fantailfan1) had suggested. What size tank is your fish in now? Is this a qt tank or his permanent home? From what I can tell it looks extremely small for him.

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Hi There,

It would really help if you can get those param. like Lisa (fantailfan1) had suggested. What size tank is your fish in now? Is this a qt tank or his permanent home? From what I can tell it looks extremely small for him.

The OP says it's a 40 gallon. :) and to me, that seems like it's the main tank.

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Thanks Mikey, I saw that also. The sides of the tank looked real close together like it was a small tank. You can see the fish swim to one end to the other. I was just wondering if this could be a possibility for his illness. (just a question on my part and an observation) :)

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  • Test Results for the Following:
  • * Ammonia Level(0)
  • * Nitrite Level(0)
  • * Nitrate level(dark yellow bordering orange, between 0 - 5.0) !! :(
  • * Ammonia Level(0)
  • * Nitrite Level(0)
  • * Nitrate level(0)
  • * Ph Level, Tank (7.2 Ph)
  • * Ph Level, Tap (7.8 Ph ) !!!

so on second testing the levels are not what they were, you were right, there are nitrates in the tank. and the tap ph is too high I think? could that pH level have a bad effect too? really cross with myself letting that happen. to be honest my boyfriend did the last lot of tests because I was in bed sick, i'll make sure i do them myself from now on, not sure he knew what he was doing now (and he doesn't care about the fish as much as I do). I hope its not too late for squeak, can I make him better do you think, or is he past it?

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The tank is a 40 gallon, it measures 95x40x40 - I was told they needed 20 gallons each? it looks small in the vid maybe because there is a divider in to keep them apart and I was filming Squeak's side only. I will put up a shot of the whole tank so you can see if it looks big enough.

yes, thats the main tank, I havent got another although I was thinking I might have to get a hospital tank setup going for him- I gave away all my spare tanks and accessories to a friend a while back so I will have to buy them all again from scratch-which means it might be a few days before I could get him into qt.

Edited by shadowbaby25

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You levels are perfectly fine. :hug the nitrate is at a perfect level :). We shoot to have it no higher then 20 ppm. And goldfish like a high pH and it's not much of a difference from tank and tap that would affect anything :) and why is there a divider?

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Oh well thats good and bad news because it doesn't explain his state of depression/illness then so its also worrying because I don't know what else might be wrong that I can fix. the divider is in because Squid has been really harrassing Squeak and I hated seeing him chasing him around, nipping at him, pushing him down or swimming under and pushing him up following him everywhere, trapping him in corners, when he was trying to rest or just seemed exhausted. Squeak has been constantly trying to escape Squid with no let up. I couldnt work out if Squeak might be getting worse because he was being terrorised or if he was being terrorised because he is sick, or if its just becasue its springtime and squid has very prominent breeding stars and theres no female in the tank. Either way, i put the divider in last night to give him a break. its not permanent, in fact when its on the lid wont fit so we have to leave the top open and the cat has to sleep in the bedroom with us or be locked out to stop any accidents happening.

how do i add my tank photo?

Edited by shadowbaby25

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You can also use a sterilite tub for QT preferably 10 gallons or more :). And you can get an air pump and air stone and put it on the tank and not use a filter. Just do a 90-100% water chane daily and dose with prime :)

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Facebook links aren't allowed unless the admin approves. Would you be able to take it down by editing it?

Thank You :)

Edited by Mikey

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i think my facebook link is gone now- just not sure how to get my tank photo up...

thanks for all your guys feedback- Mikey do you think i need to go ahead with the hospital tank setup then? do you mean a 90-100% daily change on the separate Quarantine tank? and what is a sterilite tube?-

also does all this mean he isn't dying and I shouldn't consider euthanising him or that he might have a chance of recovery- he seems to have a will to live but he also seems very depressed and ill. (so confusing :no: )

and would it be better to keep the divider in, therefore cutting their space by 50% each or letting squid get to squeak and opening up the main tank until I can get a second tank?

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The tank is a 40 gallon, it measures 95x40x40 - I was told they needed 20 gallons each? it looks small in the vid maybe because there is a divider in to keep them apart and I was filming Squeak's side only. I will put up a shot of the whole tank so you can see if it looks big enough.

yes, thats the main tank, I havent got another although I was thinking I might have to get a hospital tank setup going for him- I gave away all my spare tanks and accessories to a friend a while back so I will have to buy them all again from scratch-which means it might be a few days before I could get him into qt.

I appreciate your reply back in regards to your size of tank. It did look small in the video. I'm glad to hear that your fish aren't residing in a too small of a home/tank. That was a concern of mine. With your fish chasing your other fish constantly I would have done the same thing as you in regards to separating them with a divider temporally. That could be stressing out your fish also. Hopefully a mod will be able to assist you soon. Hang in there.

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I'd like for you to pay attention to whether he's been pooping or not, and if he has, what the poop looks like. When a fish just plops down on the bottom like this, constipation is the very first thing we think of, followed by flukes and/or other external parasites, and then some sort of internal infection. So, we have to start eliminating possibilities.

Did you ever treat for external parasites?

How long have you had the fish?
Did you notice any fin clamping or darting/flashing?

Have much food do you feed?

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he never seems to poo, i never see him and I have been watching him closely -

i saw him poo i think i few days ago for the first time ever and it was pink, not solid, just kind of disintegreated into the water, there was hardly anything of it, just after the last time i fed them flakes before he started to float on his side on the top. thats when i stopped feeding them both.

i used to feed them a scattering of flakes (which i would swirl to make them sink) morning and night but I have been fasting squeak for 3 days now although yesterday i gave him about 4-5 green peas.

I've had him for about 6 years ( I calculate that he's about 8 years old), I've never treated him for parasites, the only thing he's ever had apart from this is finrot which i nursed him from when he was little, he lost his tail and fins, but he made a full recovery and grew to a good size ( called squeak because he was so small and fragile when i got him).

I've never seen flukes or an external parasite so wouldn't know what to look out for but yes there was the unusual thing when he had the spasm yesterday and also the darting to the top of the tank like he's gulping for air and then back down. there was also a weird like yawn? it looked like he was yawning, and he has been quite skitty- when he was floating at the top on his side he suddenly started swimming erratically, up and down and around and kind of upside down and banging hard into the bottom and sides of the tank, which was scary to watch- like he was hurting himself, very jerky movements, like a kind of epileptic fit in a human i guess you could describe it as - he hasn't been like that before- didn't seem like he had much control over his body. anyway after that, he went back to slumping on the bottom, his dorsal fin is tightly clamped and then occasionally he just lifts up and does the swim to the top and back down again, and then he sometimes has a mini fit again, i think ive seen 3 now between today and yesterday- or he will swim around a little bit if i approach the tank, as I think he thinks i might feed him. (i probably will give him some peas again today, but nothing else- does anyone know how many is too many peas?)

what is flashing?

darting and fin clamping- big yeses-

dnalex, do you think he has a parasite? how can i find out?

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flashing is basically the goldfish rubbing their side on the gravel. They usually do it with a certain speed then dive sideways to rub their sides. It's a sign there are external parasites usually. Ick, anchor worms, etc..

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You can post photos using photobucket it another photo sharing site :)

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i haven't seen anything like that, unless thats him doing his kind of somersaults..

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