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Help please. Raised scales, ick, ammonia burn...


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Hi guys,

 

It's been a while. Sorry I've been MIA... school and work has been keeping me so busy.

 

Anyway, I found the sweetest ranchu at Petsmart a few weeks ago and I'm having loads of trouble with her. I tried copying the D/D questions but I can't paste and I don't have time to figure out why so I'll answer the few questions I remember you guys needing in order to help.

 

FullSizeRender4_zpsvt99wnjj.jpg

 

Ammonia <.25

Nitrate Not quite 0, not quite 5.. so I suppose 2.5

Nitrite 0

pH 7.2

Temp 76

Only fish in tank, she's approx 4 inches long

Bare bottom with a couple dozen glass marbles

20 gallons

A/C (or Fluval now, I guess) 70

No heater

Started salt treatment for ich July 17 ended it July 23

Started API Ick Cure treatment July 24 ended it July 27 by doing large w/c (due to pineconing)

Acting normally

Eating normally

On a diet of Hikari Lionhead once a day

 

A few days after I got her, I spent 3 nights at a horse show so she went without water changes during those days. Although ammonia was definitely present, it was not very high but she had major burns. I did a huge water change every day and she was totally back to normal in 3 days.

 

The tank is not seeded as my cycled 55 was hit with a bacterial infection of some kind and killed all but one within 48 hours, so I'm still waiting (a long time) to make sure that tank has calmed down before I put anything in it or transfer any media from it. I figured I'd do pretty big daily changes and the ranchu's 20 gallon will eventually cycle. The thing is, she's so sensitive to ammonia, this was proving to be really difficult.

 

Anyway, about a week after the ammonia burn incident, she showed signs of ick so I treated the tank with kosher salt (while still doing large changes and replenishing the salt). After a few days, the ick was actually getting worse so I bought API Ick Cure and have been treating with that since Sunday.

 

This morning I was doing a large change with the intention of doing another ick treatment because although it's getting better, it's still not gone, and I noticed her scales are raised so I proceeded with the large w/c but didn't add any more meds.

 

Basically, there is currently no medication or salt in the tank, she has raised scales, still a bit of ick, a couple small spots of ammonia burn, and my reading are all over the place.

 

I don't know what to do. There is so much going on between the ick and the lack of cycle and the sensitivity to ammonia and the dropsy... I'm at a loss. She's so friendly. Her mood hasn't changed since day one and she has a huge appetite. I honestly don't think I'll be getting another goldfish if I can't at least keep this under control for a while... because I know dropsy always comes back and she'll more than likely die from it sooner or later.

 

I've been out of the game for a long time so maybe I'm doing something wrong. If someone could please help me, that would be wonderful because I really like this little fish.

 

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Here's the form:

 

  • Test Results for the Following:
    • * Ammonia Level(Tank)
    • * Nitrite Level(Tank)
    • * Nitrate level(Tank)
    • * Ammonia Level(Tap)
    • * Nitrite Level(Tap)
    • * Nitrate level(Tap)
    • * 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?
      • * What is the name and "size of the filter"(s)?
      • * How often do you change the water and how much?
  • * How many days ago was the last water change and how much did you change?
  • * How many fish in the tank and their size?
  • * What kind of water additives or conditioners?
  • * What do you feed your fish and how often?
  • * Any new fish added to the tank?
  • * Any medications added to the tank?
  • * List entire medication/treatment history for fish and tank. Please include salt, Prazi, PP, etc and the approximate time and duration of treatment.
  • * Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt," bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus?
  • * Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.?
Edited by Jared
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Are Formalin/Malachite Green the active ingredients in the API Ich Cure?

 

Sometimes Ich appears to be getting worse after you start a salt treatment, but it's important to continue the treatment for about 2 weeks.   I would like to confer on the others before making a recommendation.

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Hi Jared

 

Benzaldehyde Green is the main ingredient in the API Ick Cure. I believe it's known to destroy BBs but I don't have a nitrogen cycle anyway.

 

I knew it might take a while for the ick to go away. I got impatient and stupid... but now I'm VERY hesitant to put salt back in the tank due to the dropsy.

 

Also, thank you for your reply and sharing the questions. I remember back in the day I used to paste that over and over and over and over and over and over because people just couldn't get it LOL. I just legitimately physically couldn't paste it for some reason and I was late for work so I just pulled the biggies from memory.  I'll get the rest when I get home.

 

In the meantime, any input would be so greatly appreciated.

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Okay, Benzaldehyde Green is just a Synonym for Malachite Green.  So, let's start with this until I hear back from the others.

 

1) Complete the rest of the form questions.

2) Do a 100% water change and add 1/4 Teaspoon of Epsom Salt (Magnesium Sulfate not Sodium Chloride) per 10 Gallons of water.

3) Disinfect any water changing tubes or other equipment after this (and all water changes) until the Ich is gone.

 

Do you have any antibiotic foods or powders on hand?

Edited by Jared
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Of course the big words have synonyms because why not?

 

I'll do that as soon as I get home. Can I just run bleach through the python?

 

I have a really old bag of Medigold. I can't find my MetroMed. I may have given it away in batches years ago. Is metro the kind of thing we're looking for? Also, do you think we might need a heater? I probably have one but I can grab one after work just in case.

 

Sorry for all the questions.  Thanks again for you help.

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  • I've done a 100% w/c and added the epsom about half an hour ago, but these are the results this morning, BEFORE I did that.
  •  
  • Test Results for the Following:
    • * Ammonia Level(Tank) <.25
    • * Nitrite Level(Tank) 0
    • * Nitrate level(Tank) 2.5
    • * Ammonia Level(Tap) 0
    • * Nitrite Level(Tap) 0
    • * Nitrate level(Tap) 0
    • * Ph Level, Tank (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines) 7.2
    • * Ph Level, Tap (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines) 7.0
    • Other Required Info:
      • * Brand of test-kit used and whether strips or drops? API Freshwater Master Kit drops
      • * Water temperature? 76 F
      • * Tank size (how many gals.) and how long has it been running? 20 gal, 3 weeks
      • * What is the name and "size of the filter"(s)? AC 70
      • * How often do you change the water and how much? 50% daily
  • * How many days ago was the last water change and how much did you change? This morning, about 75-85% (this is pretending I'm filling this out before I did the 100% change and added the epsom this afternoon)

     How many fish in the tank and their size? 1 fish, 4 inches

  • * What kind of water additives or conditioners? Prime
  • * What do you feed your fish and how often? Hiakari Lioinhead, once daily
  • * Any new fish added to the tank? No
  • * Any medications added to the tank? See original post so this doesn't get confusing
  • * List entire medication/treatment history for fish and tank. Please include salt, Prazi, PP, etc and the approximate time and duration of treatment. See original post so this doesn't get confusing
  • * Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt," bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus? Yes. Streaks/ammonia burns and ich spots as well as raised scales, especially around the belly area. See picture in first post.
  • * Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.? No. Happy and hungry.
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Of course the big words have synonyms because why not?

 

I'll do that as soon as I get home. Can I just run bleach through the python?

 

I have a really old bag of Medigold. I can't find my MetroMed. I may have given it away in batches years ago. Is metro the kind of thing we're looking for? Also, do you think we might need a heater? I probably have one but I can grab one after work just in case.

 

Sorry for all the questions.  Thanks again for you help.

Yes, do a bleach solution of 19 parts water to 1 part unscented bleach.

 

No on the Medi Gold...I would toss it.

 

Let's hold off on heat for now.  

 

Metroplex is what you want.  Let's try the Epsom Salt + Metroplex + Malachite Green, first.  I also recommend daily 100% water changes and lights off during the treatment.

 

It would also be good to get some Oxytetacycline or some Sulfaplex and perhaps some Focus by Seachem. 

Edited by Jared
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Okay. I just ordered the Sulfaplex, Metroplex, and Focus. They'll be here by tomorrow afternoon and I already have the Malachite. The Oxytetacycline will take a few days.

 

As far as the daily 100% water changes go, should I retreat with the Malachite daily after each change? I know I should replenish the epsom. How long can they be in epsom?

 

Edit: My, how things have changed. The only things I recognize here are epsom and metro. That's what I get for leaving, I suppose.

Edited by Emily
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Okay. I just ordered the Sulfaplex, Metroplex, and Focus. They'll be here by tomorrow afternoon and I already have the Malachite. The Oxytetacycline will take a few days.

 

As far as the daily 100% water changes go, should I retreat with the Malachite daily after each change? I know I should replenish the epsom. How long can they be in epsom?

 

Edit: My, how things have changed. The only things I recognize here are epsom and metro. That's what I get for leaving, I suppose.

What are the instructions for the Malachite Green?  Is it to dose every 48 hours?  Regardless, you will want to redose it after each 100% wc.  Let's avoid partial water changes for now.

 

Once we begin the antibiotics, we may try doing a water change every other day with Seachem Prime added on the day in between.  Part of the reason for these large water changes is to diminish the parasite population.

 

The Epsom can go for quite some time, so no worries there.

 

We used to use Metro Meds for Dropsy, but it has been discontinued.  However, it's ingredients were Metronidazole, a Sulfa and Oxytetracycline.  I am just helping you to create a close copy of that.  The Focus allows you to make this into an antibiotic food if you wish, which many believe to be a more effective delivery method.

Edited by Jared
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The Malachite instructions do say to re-medicate after 48 hours but I like your game plan.

 

*Maybe* her scales are flattening a tiny bit? It could just be me getting my hopes up, I'm not sure.

 

There is significantly less ich on her, but I also did a 75% change yesterday morning and a 100% that afternoon... so this may be temporary.

 

The ammonia burns are healing, which is nice.

 

I don't mean to stray from the topic, but my python is crazy old and I'm never able to get all the water out so there are places where water just sits in there, which may be causing my problems... because I've been relatively problem free for... 3 years now? Has there been an updated python or a better siphon produced in the past few years?

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Okay, we will probably go to a 100% wc every other day and redose the meds every 48 hours.  Light feeding and Prime on the days in between should keep the water quality within acceptable parameters.  Remember, lights off!  Let me know when the meds arrive.

 

The Epsom is probably helping with the fluid retention.

 

As for something comparable to the Python, there is just the Aqueon model which is more or less the same.  After you finish each water change, run the hottest possible water through the python for a few minutes.  Then:

 

1) Fill a clean bucket with the 19:1 bleach solution (19 parts water, 1 part bleach)

 

2) Place it on a counter somewhere higher than the sink.

 

3) Put the gravel cleaning end in the bucket of bleach water.

 

4) Turn the faucet on to get the flow going from the bucket into the sink. 

 

5) Turn the faucet off and just allow the Python to slowly siphon the bleach water through the tube into the sink. 

 

This should effectively disinfect the Python as well as clean any gunk out of it.  To remove excess water, hold the tube higher than the sink as you roll it up, allowing the water to drain into the sink from the faucet end.

Edited by Jared
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Ok, sounds good. I'm also keeping a little diary of what I do and when so we don't get confused.

 

Most meds are here. I have MetroPlex, Focus, SulfaPlex, epsom (still), and Malachite (still). The Oxytetracycline will be here tomorrow.

 

This is excellent.

 

lol, now. What do I do with it all? The box instructions look pretty straightforward but you never know. Thank you again.

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Ok, sounds good. I'm also keeping a little diary of what I do and when so we don't get confused.

 

Most meds are here. I have MetroPlex, Focus, SulfaPlex, epsom (still), and Malachite (still). The Oxytetracycline will be here tomorrow.

 

This is excellent.

 

lol, now. What do I do with it all? The box instructions look pretty straightforward but you never know. Thank you again.

So you have the option of:

 

1) Adding the antibiotics to the water (easier, but maybe less effective for dropsy) and dosing every other day after the water change.

 

or

 

2)  Trying to make an antibiotic food (harder but probably more effective for dropsy) using the Focus + Antibiotics.

 

Let me know which method you would prefer.  Either way, we will continue with the Malachite Green and Epsom Salt in the water.

Edited by Jared
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I'll go ahead and make the food. I used to do the Soilent Green thing so I'm somewhat familiar w the process (although this is a frozen food as opposed to gel).

Just follow the directions on the boxes?

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I'll go ahead and make the food. I used to do the Soilent Green thing so I'm somewhat familiar w the process (although this is a frozen food as opposed to gel).

Just follow the directions on the boxes?

Yes, combine the food, Focus, Metroplex and Sulfaplex per the Focus package directions.

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I don't want to be too optimistic but she's looking alright. She scarfed down the medicated food last night and this morning she was very swimmy and happy.

 

The scales near her tail are still visibly raised but it looks like the others are starting to relax. I try to take pictures twice daily to make sure it's not just my imagination.

 

So for time being:

-She is being fed the frozen MetroPlex/Focus mixture with some normal pellets soaked and smooshed in to help with interest. I did not add the SulfaPlex because the box directions didn't say it could be fed, it just says it's a water additive so I haven't done anything with the SulfaPlex. It's still in the box. Should I add that to the food or to the water? (It sounds like you wanted me to add it to the food but I just want to be sure so I don't go killing the fish you've been so kind to help me save)

-I will add the oxytetracycline to the frozen food mixture tonight when it comes in.

 

The tank water contains:

-Epsom

-Malachite

-It's consistently at 74-76F and I don't use carbon unless I'm trying to remove meds

 

Edit: I'm also disinfecting the python after each use. I discovered that if I stand on a chair in front of the sink, it's easier to get the majority of the water out when draining lol

Edited by Emily
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This is what I intended (since the infection is internal), along with the Metroplex:

 

Dosing in Food

SulfaPlex™ is most effective when used in the water, but it can also be added to the food. Feed the medicated food mix (recipe below) every day until the infection clears or up to 3 weeks.

  • 1 scoop SulfaPlex™
  • 1 scoop Focus™
  • 1 tbsp food (preferably pellets or frozen food)
  • A few drops of water if using a dry food

http://www.seachem.com/sulfaplex.php

 

But, let's add the Sufaplex "or" the Oxytetracycline, not both.  My inclination is to start with the Sulfaplex/Metroplex/Focus as it is intended by the manufacturer to be used in this way.  If this combo fails, then we will try the Oxytetracycline at a later date.

 

How easy/difficult was it to make the food?  

Edited by Jared
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Oh gosh, I have no idea why I didn't see that. I read the box at least 10 times. Sorry.

 

I'll add the SulfaPlex this evening and I'll have the oxytetracycline on hold just in case.

 

The food was super easy to make. I made the main batch and poured it into a few disinfected plastic caps from water bottles (filling them about halfway) and stuck them in the freezer. After they were frozen, I took a cap and ran the bottom under some room temp water so the frozen food mixture popped out. I cut it into fourths and that seemed to be a good bite size.

 

My husband used to raise discus and we made their food from scratch. I mean, after you've put a cow heart in a food processor, making goldfish food is much less traumatic.

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...I mean, after you've put a cow heart in a food processor, making goldfish food is much less traumatic.

Hee, hee!

Edited by LisaCGold
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That's great!  How is the Ich today?  The scales?  How are you doing the water changes now?  Is the water quality staying within safe parameters?

Edited by Jared
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