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Regurgitating Food


Guest maude2000

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Guest maude2000

I have a single comet in a 20 gallon aquarium with a large 20-40 gallon Whisper power filter, one air stone and a 20 inch air bubble rod. Maudie did not eat for three days and she stayed at the far end of the tank. She is now trying to eat and is excited about eating but she regurgitates her food. This regurgitating has been going on for three days. 60% water changes are done every six weeks using bottled spring water. Ammonia, nitrates and nitrites were retested by a petshop earlier today and were all fine. I thought maybe I was doing something wrong and my tests were not accurate. The pH was high at 8.0 and I added a regulator. She is 5 years old. I do not want to lose her. I can tell that she is losing weight. I soak her food which is TetraFin Goldfish flakes combined with Wardley Goldfish crumbles. I add finely chopped Romaine lettuce or thawed frozen peas at least once a week. She has had trouble with constipation in the past. I keep absolutely no gravel in my aquarium, thus there could not be any gravel stuck down her throat. I also do not keep any ornaments in my aquarium. Any suggestions as to what I can do will be greatly appreciated. I contacted a veterinarian's office but they do not "do" goldfish. Thank you.

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Guest Chishower

Welcome to kokos! Too bad it couldnt be on better terms.

Could you get the actual numbers on those tests for us? Sometimes what pet stores say is 'fine' turns out to be not so fine.

A pH of 8.0 is fine for goldfish, as long as it is stable. Adding chemical regulators can cause pH swings which can cause much more harm than good. You also might want to up your water changes to a 25% change every week, and tap water is fine as long as it is dechlorinated before hand.

Can you tell me if and how you clean the filters, as well? I suspect bad water quality, even though she has the perfect tank size. :)

Are there any outward deformaties? Fin shaking/clamping or anything else like that? Any other odd behavior?

Hopefully we can get this all sorted out. :)

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  • Regular Member

Pick up some All natural Sea salt or Acqurium salt while your out too.

What are all da symptoms?

Stop feeding her for 3 days for the consa (yikes pardon me, I just had a forgetful moment and please fill out the rest of the word for me, I can't spell it). Then feed her frozen peas. It will help clean her system out.

do a 25-30% water change

Add the salt that you picked up to a .03% (1 tea sppoon per gallon of water for 3 days so it be 20 teaspoons a day for 3 days) mix it up well.

What is her gills looking loke? And her breathing?

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Hi maude - I too suspect water quality issues. If you're only changing 60% every six weeks, that may not be enough.

Is there any way you can post your nitrate reading?

Also, just to help as much as possible, it would be an enormous help if you could answer as many of the questions in the white box as possible. It helps narrow down possible causes :)

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Guest maude2000
Welcome to kokos!  Too bad it couldnt be on better terms.

Could you get the actual numbers on those tests for us?  Sometimes what pet stores say is 'fine' turns out to be not so fine.

A pH of 8.0 is fine for goldfish, as long as it is stable.  Adding chemical regulators can cause pH swings which can cause much more harm than good.  You also might want to up your water changes to a 25% change every week, and tap water is fine as long as it is dechlorinated before hand.

Can you tell me if and how you clean the filters, as well?  I suspect bad water quality, even though she has the perfect tank size.  :)  

Are there any outward deformaties?  Fin shaking/clamping or anything else like that?  Any other odd behavior?

Hopefully we can get this all sorted out.  :)

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Guest maude2000

Thank you for all the responses and the welcome. I did a 25% water change last night and will do a 25% change every week from now on. I did not get the results of the water tests from the petshop yesterday, so I took the readings today. Ammonia is zero. Nitrate is between zero and 2.5. Nitrite is zero. pH is 7.6. She opens her mouth really wide when I stand by the aquarium but she has always done that. It is not like gasping for air. Her gills are working normally. She is active and not depressed. After she eats, she works at swallowing for a long time and opens her mouth very wide like something is stuck. The food comes back out. Is it possible that she could have an intestinal blockage? She had a very small poop last night (2 mm) which I thought was a hopeful sign. She has an appetitie which is also a hopeful sign. She is swimming without effort. Her tail fins are a little bit frayed at the edges. All fins are working. They are not clamping. There are no fungus or spots. She does have a solitary thin red streak that runs along the bottom of her tail fin. I do notice that a few very tiny air bubbles from the aeration stones are sticking to her. I completely break down the filter mechanism and scrub it with only hot water and a brush at the same time I do water changes every 6 weeks which I will now do more frequently. In between water changes, I replace the filter cartridge at least once. I will go out today, buy the salt as suggested and place it into the aquarium. I am not comfortable with not feeding her for three days since she has not been able to keep anything down for a week as of today which includes the three days she did not eat at all. She also lost her color this summer. She is normally all white with a little bit of orange. The orange has disapperaed. I hope that this information helps.

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Guest Chishower

Your water sounds good. Something to make your life easier: let your filter be. The only thing you should need to do is swish the pad off in used tank water when it becomes too gunky, and replace it when it starts to fall apart. Thats where all the good bugs live. :)

I am wondering if this isnt a case of gill flukes. Is it possible for you to check the color of the gills? You can gentley life the gill cover with a thumbnail to peek underneath, it shouldn't hurt the fish if you do it carefully.

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Great to hear she is perking up some bit! Since she hasn't ate for 3 days, just consider your 3 dyas already done. Feed her frozen peas that are cooked and squashed. May have to cut into small bites for her. Also, if you don't have a vacuum for the gravel, get one too. its good to vacuum the gravel to get the poo and other hiding stuff there too.

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Its funny, Andy - I had the same thought about the gill flukes the moment I read the topic title!

With a parasitic infestation of gill flukes it is entirely possible, and very common, that fish spit their food back out. The gills get attacked and infected by those tiny gill flukes, and since water is processed through the gills during eating, it is painful for the fish, so he spits it back out.

One very good treatment for gill flukes is Prazi. You can either get it from Goldfishconnection.com, or if ordering takes too long (which I suspect it might, since the fish hasn't swallowed much of his food in a week), you can get a product called Parasite Clear from Jungle. Most pet stores, even nnnnnn, carry them for little money, and it contains prazi as well as other "goodies". It is easy on the fish, doesn't harm the beneficial bacteria in your filter and very effective.

I hope your fish pulls through - he sure sounds like a fighter! :thumbup

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Guest maude2000

My 5 year old comet is doing much better. She is able to keep more food down without spitting it back out. Thank you everyone for all of your help in rescuing my goldfish. She is a real tough sport and I am so happy that she is okay now.

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Great to hear that your fish is doing much better, Maude. Just to be on the safe side - keep an eye on him... :)

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