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Yikes - I'm New And Hope I'm Doing This Right ...


Guest boodleheimer

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Guest boodleheimer

Hi! I have two fish - Dewey and Louie (my son named them when he was 4 years old) - I've had for 4 years.

My name is Becky and I am a Clueless Goldfish Mommy. :(

I don't know which kind of goldfish they are - one bright orange, no dorsal, very slight head growthy thing (ranchu? lionhead?). Other is very pale with a pale orange (really really big) head growth and big, long trailing fins (fantail?).

They started teeny in a bowl, then moved to a 2-gallon, 10-gallon and now are in a 20-gallon tank.

Just changed the water yesterday - low, low ammonia levels. Never tested for nitrates (gotta get that test). Each fish is about 3.5-4.0 inches long (not including tails). Again, they're in a 20-gallon tank with (unfortunately) a lot of algae right now.

Anyway, the bright orange one (Louie) is just hanging out on the bottom of the tank.

I looked under the fish diseases FAQ and found info on constipation, which I'm following best I can.

The link to more information about swim bladder issues doesn't work for me.

So, he won't eat peas. Can't seem to eat anything unless it's floating in front of him, but eats voraciously when he can get it. He appears to be gasping (wide, open mouth). He struggles to swim around (I've removed a big, decorative rock cos he kept getting stuck) and gets decidedly excited when I feed them or just when I walk into the room.

I swear, they wag their tails!

Anyway, I don't know what to do here.

Just got information that I'm supposed to feed these guys softer foods. Told you I'm clueless.

Will continue with soaking sinking pellets, weekly water changes and get a nitrate test 'til I hear from you, OK?

Thanks so much in advance!

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  • Regular Member

Hello and welcome. Don't feel bad, we all usually start out clueless with our fishie friends.

To begin with I will let you know that the water quality is everything for a fish. Getting the tests for nitrItes and nitrAtes are very important, along with PH and the ammonia you already have.

By the way what are the ammonia readings? Posting the numbers for us is much better.

While cycling a tank (you should read up on and if any questions just ask), you have to have some ammonia present in the tank to get things going, but this is very hard on the fish, so you have to balence things by water changes and testing every day.....sometimes twice daily.

Now on to the "floaty" issue. It does sound like SBD swim bladder disease. I know you say the link is not working, but in the treatment area it should give you tons of info.

Fasting the fish is good to do when this is acting up. 1-2 days is good, then feed 1-2 days of thawed deshelled peas.

Feeding sinking foods that are soaked are best to help ward off a fish with SBD.

Do you have a airstone with oxygen going into the tank?

Do you have a heater? WHat is the temp of the tank?

There are some other questions at the top of the page that we need you to answer, like filtration etc......

Post back soon and we will do what we can to help you.

Cute names for the fish by the way!!!

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Guest boodleheimer

Thanks so much!

I got a test for nitrItes - didn't know there were nitrAtes too! Arrrggghh!

Numbers:

Nitrites: 0

Ph from tap: 7.0

Ph from tank: 7.5

Temperature: Don't have a heater or thermometer.

Ammonia: 0

Filtration: Penguin 170 biofilter.

Tank: 20 gallons

Aeration: Big ol' long air stone.

I'm so worried about Dewey. He's been on the bottom so long that his bottom fins are starting to get these bubble-like formations on them.

I also worry because I have extremely "hard" water - lots of calcium & lime. We filter from the sink - that's the only water I use to treat and put into the tank - but, still, there is lime and/or calcium buildup on the filter and lid of the tank.

Again, thank you so much for responding! :)

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Are you using a water conditioner? Prime is an excellent one. I would recommend this every time you do a water change. Not sure if it gets calcium and lime, but it may.

GF can live in alot of different water conditions.

Have you tested the hardness of the water? THis would be a test to get also.

I would recommend a water change about 25% and see how he does. Also the fasting, see if constipation can be an issue with him.

Gf are fun, but they are a puzzle to figure out if something isn't right with them.

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Guest boodleheimer

Laurie - thank you again!

I use a water conditioner every time I add any water - Next one I get will be Prime.

I did 25% water change the day I joined here! That's when I learned water changes were NOT the same as adding a gallon to top off the tank! I kept testing for ammonia and thought I was doing fine. I blew it when I stopped testing.

I think checking if he's constipated is a good idea as a first step, too. I'll bet the other one has the same problem.

I'm trying so hard not to worry about my other fishie, who has septicemia. Both fish have tail rot. That would be ammonia, for certain.

What do you think about antibiotics in the tank now, as opposed to later?

Bless you, Laurie! You're a conscience saver! :heart

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Thanks but it is my pleasure to help.

The septicimia concerns me, could you tell more on that? That is one disease that is nasty!! Worse than dropsy in my opinion.

Ok, go thru the list of all of what is wrong again with each fish, just so we have it straight. And post the water results again.

Then we can determine if meds are called for.

Hmmm septicimia, not good.

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Guest boodleheimer

Ok. Here goes, Laurie. So sorry I just couldn't answer all the questions like I was supposed to from the beginning!

Nitrites: 0

Ph from tap: 7.0

Ph from tank: 7.5

Temperature: Don't have a heater or thermometer.

Ammonia: 0

Filtration: Penguin 170 biofilter.

Tank: 20 gallons

Tank location: right next to a window - only place possible in a small house.

Aeration: Big ol' long air stone.

Recent changes: Got rid of all snails and as many of their eggs as possible. Took out plants for washing (more eggs) and took out rock to prevent injury.

Currently: Fasting the fish for 2 days. Today was day 1.

I use a water every time new water is to TOUCH my tank.

Fishie #1: The Sinker (Louie). Has some tattered fins/tail. Has bubbles formed on bottom fins. He's unable to stay floating, but struggles around the tank, especially when fed. Has very little equalibrum, if that's what you call it with fish. Seems to sort of list to the side.

Fishie #2: Has some tattered looking fins/tail, but also has little red veins on them too - I thought this was septicemia. Hope I'm wrong! Some of his scales appear shiney, while others appear dullish, making him look as if he is missing scales.

I think that about does it. I'm determined to get a healthy tank here! Hope Louie makes it, but am prepared if he doesn't.

Thanks again, in advance, for your help!

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