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My Fish Are Dying


Guest angelica1973

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Guest angelica1973

i had 2 goldfish for 9-10 years. got a new one 3 weeks ago. new one was found dead 3 days ago. my 2 older ones seemd to be all blood marked like they had been beaten up. one died today and the other one seems to be getting worse. please help? i dont want him to die too but i think it may be too late. i phoned the pet shop but they were no help at all. :(:(

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:welcome

i am so sorry to hear this, what size tank do you have? do you test the water? if so what are the results?

Is there any other signs of illness, acting strange etc?

cheers

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Hi Angelica, and :welcome !

Too bad that you found us under such tragic circumstances, but we do our best to help you. There is a big white box on top of this section - can you answer as many questions as possible, in order for us to pinpoint more exactly what causes your fish to look like this and die.

Usually the water parameters are the most important (ammonia, nitrites, nitrates, pH), but I do get the sneaking suspicion that your new fish has brought something with him from the store, and your other fish got infected.

My first idea would be septicemia or a heavy parasitic infection. Septicemia is especially fast and lethal in most cases, and at this point there are just a few things you can do. First, do a bigger water change with dechlorinated and temperature matched water - something in the range of 70%. Add some salt (aquarium pickle, kosher, rock, or solar salt, not cooking salt, they have poisonous "ingredients") to your tank. The salt will take care of most parasites, and eases any stress that the fish obviously is going through right now.

Add 1 tsp per gallon of water into a container with tank water (for example, if you have a 20 gl tank, add 20 tsps. :) , let the salt dissolve and pour the content of the container into the tank. Putting salt directly into the water might give your fish burns to its gills, and we don't want that at all - he is stressed enough already. That dosage brings you up to 0.1% solution. Wait 12 hours, do the same procedure again, and again after 12 hours. Now you have 0.3% salt solution in your tank.

Does your fish eat? If you can find antibiotical medication in the pet store, something like Kanacyn, you can soak its food in it - that way he gets antibiotics into him fast. Or Maracyn or Maracyn II, they both are great with bacterial problems, like Septicemia is, and come in tablet form, that you dissolve in their tank.

Usually I would recommend to get Medigold from Goldfishconnection.com, that is a wonderful and one of the best medicated food for bacterial problems, but I am afraid by the time it gets shipped to you, it might be too late.

Remember, any harsher medication than salt or the Maracyn, that you put in at this time, might stress your already weakened fish even more, and get him over the edge.

Hang in there, we'll do the best we can for your fish! Please, don't forget the info requested on top.... :hug

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Guest angelica1973

just a small hexagonal tank for goldfish not sure what size. no havent tested the water. dont know how to. no other strange behaviour. still eating ok.

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Lets see what we can work with here then....

How tall is your hexagon tank? That way we can figure out how many gallons it holds - there aren't all that many variations around. Is there a filter on the tank, and what kind?

As for water testings, you either can get test kits at the pet store. They sell an excellent master test kit, which looks like Master test kit from vvvv (its the 4. from the top).

Or, as another option, you can bring a sample of your water to the pet store, and they'll test it for you, usually for free. Just make sure they give you actual numbers, not the generalized "everything is okay".

Were your two original fish always in the hexacon tank, or did you change anything recently besides the new fish? Any new plants, snails, algae eater, anything in that direction? (Just covering all the bases)

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Guest angelica1973

thanks andrea, i dont know much about water testing and stuff like that weve had these fish over nine years and havent done anything like that before and they have been fine. i had a suspicion the new fish brought someting with it. when i phone the pet shop they said that all their fish had been quarantined. but they also said that they had never heard of any diseases where the fish go all bloody. show how much they know.

i have a small stingray fiter for tanks up to 25l

No additives or conditioners

i feed them Nutrafin max goldfish flake food

change the water about once a month- all of it

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Guest angelica1973

the tank is about a foot tall. the two fish were always in it. theonly thing new is an ornament and the filter is new too

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Okay, then, lets see if we can give you some things to read up on on what a goldfish needs, and what test kits do for your fish.... :)

10 steps to a healthy goldfish

Cycle of the tank

The cycle generally discribes what the filter goes through until it holds all the beneficial bacteria that the tank needs to "eat up" fish waste and ammonia, that builds up naturally in a fish tank from fish poop and breathing. Once the cycle is complete, your ammonia and nitrite readings always should be 0, and your nitrates ideally somewhere under 40 ppm. If you would see ammonia or nitrite readings in an established tank, like yours is, then there is something wrong. Either the tank is too small to suplement the fish (what I strongly think it might be as well), or something destroyed the beneficial bacteria (a water change with chlorine in the tap water, or most fish medications will do that as well to a degree). Since you don't add any dechlorinator to the water, which would take care of the chlorine and other nasties, that could be a thing to look at.

I also realized you are not in the US, which makes it somewhat harder to get your hand on most antibiotics for fish, especially in the UK, and probably Ireland as well, it is a daunting task.

A foot tall hexagon, hm? Maybe I can find out how much gallon or liter it holds... :)

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Okay, did a little snooping around and found a hexagon tank which holds 15 US gallon and is 15 inches high and 20 inches deep. Does that sound about right?

If thats the tank size (roughly anyway), then it would barely hold 2 fish, and even less 3 fish. A goldfish really needs 10 US gl per fish as a bare minimum to fully thrive (some fish like the comets even more), and I would think that since you had the fish for 9 years in the same tank, that they probably didn't grow as well as they could have in a bigger tank.

Although you must have done it right, since you managed to take care of them for such a long time - that is an accomplishment that not everybody manages! :thumbup

You say the filter is new, hm? Was there another filter on the tank before, and if so, did you use the filter media from the old filter to seed the new filter with the all important beneficial bacteria? If you didn't, then the new filter had to build up all the neccessary bacteria all over again, which can easily take a month to 6 weeks, and during that time your fish are exposed to high ammonia and nitrite readings, which are lethal to fish.

Btw, got the salt in yet? (Don't wonna forget the little patient while we get a crash course in cycling in here... :) )

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Hopping to the post office really fast, be back in 30 minutes! Hang in there, Angelica! :)

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Guest angelica1973

there are two small pet stores that i can go to tomorrow and get stuff. hopefully22 still be with us tomorrow

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Guest angelica1973

no i didnt take anything from old filter. it was broke and i just threw it out. i didnt know.

i have no salt unil tomorrow

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Hope is all we can do then... Btw, the salt I mentioned (except for the solar or aquarium salt) you can find in the spice isle at your grocery store.

Looking forward to any news tomorrow. :)

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Guest angelica1973

thanks for all the advice andrea. at the minute hes just staying around the middle of the tank. not really moving a lot. it is a 14 litre tank. i will get back to you tomorrow and let you know how he is. just hope he survives until i get something for him.

Thanks again :cry1:(

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Guest angelica1973

Hes still with us today. got to pet shop today, done the salt and got a traetment called melafix to add for seven days. hopefully this will do the trick. he just looks the same though as he did yesterday

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That is good news that he is still with you, Angelica! And sometimes "not getting worse" is a step forward already.

I do have my doubts about Melafix though - it is a mild medication that is only used for aiding mild outside problems with the fish. Unfortunately, with your fish's problems, he would need something more heavy. Can you remember from the top of your head what other things they had at the pet store? Gosh, its so hard to recommend something when I can't even be sure you'll get that in Ireland... sigh... :)

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Andrea, this is a UK site that ships to Ireland off hand are these any of the meds that would be good? to give an idea of waht may be able to got hold of.

http://www.aquatics-online.co.uk/listsecti...retp=322&rets=X

EDIT: the Waterlife Aquarium Water Treatments are supposed to be good & strong, i got some but havent used them yet.

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Guest angelica1973

andrea the pet shop just reocmended the melafix, i didnt see what else he had. on the shelf he had stuff for septicemia, but for some reason he recommended the melifix. he said he had never heard of fish looking like that so the melafix probably is the wrong treatment. the fish seems to be swimming a bit better now but no change with the blood streaks. the guy aat the shop said to use half a capful a day for seven days and do a quarter water change after that. if hes still here on monday i'll go get him something else. Thanks Andrea, i@ll keep you posted. :)

Thanks Loz i'll check that site out. :)

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Guest angelica1973

MY little fishy is still here this morning. I am so releived. hes still swimming and eating , but the blood streakes are still there although they have not gotten any worse. i'll get to the pet shop tommorrow and get something else for him. Any suggestions? :)

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Well, that is encouraging news! :happydance Well, since the salt/melafix combination seems to work in a sense of not getting any worse at all, I would say continue in that direction. Streaks can take quite some time to go away, especially if they have been really bad.

In addition to the treatment I would get a water change done, but not 100% like you usually do. Normally goldfish need a waterchange once a week, up to 50% of the water. If you take water out, remember that the water that goes in there needs to have the same temperature, and no chlorine in it, which means you use some sort of chlorine remover. Here in the US we use things like Prime from Seachem a lot, but there are plenty out there that basically detoxify ammonia (although they claim they remove it) and nitrites, chlorine, some take care of heavy metals as well.

Also remember, when you take water out and add new water, that the meds and salt also need to be renewed in the amount of what you have taken out. Lets say you take out 50% of your water, then the correct amount of salt and melafix needs to go in the tank as well, otherwise there would only be half the dosage in.

Does that make any sense? :)

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Guest angelica1973

Andrea, its now Monday and there is big improvements in little fishy. hes swimming around, eating great and the blood is barely noticeable. i can see a few small streaks near his tail and under his chin (if fish have chins). i am so happy cos on friday i thought he was a gonner.

the guy in the pet shop said to use the melafix for seven days and then do a 25% water change then. do you think i should go ahead and do a change now?

Thank you very much for all your advice. it has been nice talkin with you and i will take your advice on board and start looking after this fish properly now and hopefully it will last another few years(my youngest daughter is seven the fish is even older than her) so you can imagine how devastated she was on Friday when the other one died. we are thinkin of opening a fish graveyard in the garden lol.

:)

Thanks again andrea, if there is any more developments i will let you know :D

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Guest angelica1973

me too loz and thank you for your advice. i checked that site but i just wasnt sure what to get. but things seem to be ok for now. I;ll keep you posted and thanks again. :D

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That is great news, Angelica!! :happydance When the melafix calls for a waterchange after the full course of treatment, yes, then I would wait until then. Unless of course you would see a problem with your fish, or ammonia and/or nitrites would appear, or pH would fall.

The most important investment, and most valuable tool in fish keeping, are test kits. They will tell you everything you need to know about the health of your filter and tank.

I am really happy that your fish made it - and imagine him being older than your daughter! :thud The idea about the graveyard isn't all that far fetched - we have one as well.

Good luck to you and your fish, and hope to see you around! :hug

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