Jump to content

100% Water Changes


Recommended Posts

  • Regular Member

Hello again everyone... I'm just posting up a storm today, well... for my standards at least. Anyway, I apologize if this isn't in the right place. Here it goes! I regularly do 80% water changes in my tank at least every 3-5 days. My tank is covered in nasty brown algae and I'm planning on doing a 100% water change. You see, with an 80% change, I still have just enough room to leave my fish in the tank. But today, I won't. So, where do you put your fish when you do GIANT water changes?!

I have a cat and she's been known to hunt in the past... so I'm kinda scared. And, I'm watching my ex's cat while he's on tour, and she's just CRAZY. So, I don't want to risk the cat's being able to access the fish, in any way. I live in a studio and there's no extra room to lock them away temporarily. I don't have any large containers or anything.

But, I've got a couple ideas... Please bear with me, they may be ridiculous, but my fish are small...

1. I have a fairly large tupperware container. This way I could keep all the fish and snails together. I could drill holes in the top that way it can be closed so the cats can't get to them.

2. I have some large jars/ vases I could use by putting each fish in their own container.

3. Place fish in large bowls and leave them on the kitchen counter. Meanwhile, pray!

3. Grab a cardboard box and throw the cats in there, tape it shut. Put in some ear plugs and get working on the tank. It's only for an hour, right.

* Just kidding.

Also, this may take longer than my average water change. How long is it safe to have them in an unfiltered err, bowl?

Any suggestions and/or advice are greatly appreciated! :)

Edited by Desiree
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

When I do a 100% change, I put my fish in a bucket, and put my air stone in with them. You will want to use the largest container you have. The more water you have, the longer the fish will last before the ammonia builds up.

I don't have cats now, but we did when we were kids. I remember that our fish tank didn't have a lid, but when we got the cat, my dad put an atlas, and a pile of books on top to keep her out. Maybe you can rig something with books, a board, a large plate, etc. that will leave a small air gap, but not a paw gap. You also want to make sure the container isn't something the cats can just knock over.

My final piece of advice is to keep the fish near you, so you can see what the cats get up to!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

Thanks Claire! I don't have any extra airstones to put with the fish when I take them out. I was thinking I could put my whole bubble wand in there, but that might be bubble overload, if you know what I mean. I'm afraid I don't really have anything to place on a container, except maybe the lid to the tupperware... but, I'm afraid that will be too little oxygen. Hmmm...

I'm really worried about doing this. Thankfully, the cats seem rather sleepy today, it's hot here and they are well fed, so it's nap time. Hopefully, they will remain in this sleepy state when I get around to changing the water. Also, the water change means running from my living room to my bathroom with 3 gallon jugs 10 times, (30 gallon tank). I'm afraid I won't be right by the fish the entire time, which makes me nervous.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

Here are few more wacky ideas. You could put the tupperware with the fish in a cupboard (can the cats open cupboards)? Or you could put a towel over the bowl, tucking the ends underneath. That might let more air in that a plastic lid. Or you could put the bowl in the aforementioned cardboard box and tape the fish in.

Maybe some others will have more ideas, or more experience in thwarting cats!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

Or I could grab some rope, and tie up the kitties... Hahha! Maybe I'm paranoid, but I'm also afraid of the fish jumping out of the container. If they were in a cupboard, I wouldn't the wiser until it was too late. Oy vey!

I do have a bookcase in the living room that is about waist high... My cats are rather rambunctious, but I don't think I've ever seen them up there. Also, if I use a large bowl that's solid colored (not clear), then the cats wouldn't be the wiser, right?

The things we do for our pets...

Edited by Desiree
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Admin

One good reason to keep a painter bucket on hand. You can find them at Homedepots......I have 2 of them. One is for changed gravel or tank work, the other I use if I need to take them out of the tank. There great cause there tall and have a wide surface for O2 :D Just a thought :D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

I agree with Koko-- 5 gallon buckets are immensely useful!

But Desiree-- your fish won't jump out for no good reason. As long as the water is mostly clear of ammonia and they have enough oxygen, there's absolutely no reason they should jump out.

As for the cats, placing a piece of cardboard or something else to keep the cats from getting in should work. However, depending upon the sizes of the container you're going to put them in and the size of your tank, could you just put the container inside the tank? I mean, leave your little sea monsters in the tank until you hit the 80% mark, and then fill the container with fresh water, set it in the tank, and move the fish in it? Then you can continue to suck up the rest of the water while keeping them safe from the kitties.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

why not just lock them in a room??...by them I mean the cats...or lock urself up with the fishies in the fishie room..let them have an access to the rest of the place but the fishie room??..umm am sorry but do you doors on all rooms...umm..maybe???

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member
why not just lock them in a room??...by them I mean the cats...or lock urself up with the fishies in the fishie room..let them have an access to the rest of the place but the fishie room??..umm am sorry but do you doors on all rooms...umm..maybe???

Desiree lives in a studio... only 1 room. :P

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

Shut the cats in the bathroom? A cabinet? Closet?

I have two kittens and as soon as they figured out water was involved, they wanted nothing to do with the fish.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member
1. I have a fairly large tupperware container. This way I could keep all the fish and snails together. I could drill holes in the top that way it can be closed so the cats can't get to them.

2. I have some large jars/ vases I could use by putting each fish in their own container.

3. Place fish in large bowls and leave them on the kitchen counter. Meanwhile, pray!

3. Grab a cardboard box and throw the cats in there, tape it shut. Put in some ear plugs and get working on the tank. It's only for an hour, right.

* Just kidding.

I do personally like door number 3! That's hilarious!

You gotta have at least one door in that place besides the front door! A closet, the bathroom? Shut the cats up in there. No?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member
why not just lock them in a room??...by them I mean the cats...or lock urself up with the fishies in the fishie room..let them have an access to the rest of the place but the fishie room??..umm am sorry but do you doors on all rooms...umm..maybe???

Desiree lives in a studio... only 1 room. :P

hahahaha..see didnt know that... :D ...

Shut the cats in the bathroom? A cabinet? Closet?

Ah....there we go...I never have had cats before...would they fight in a small place like a bathroom???...oh and please be careful of the flush..I totally imagined the scene from Meet The Fockers...tht was hilarious... :P

Edited by SunshineGurl
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

Sucks that you have a studio, because I always just put the cats in a bedroom and do what I need to do.. But a bathroom would work if you had to... You could move their litter box. It seems mean but it's better than fishies for lunch LOL

Whenever I do my 100% water changes I move the fish into a large bucket.. I take the filter media out and place some of it in the bucket with the fish so that hopefully that will keep the ammonia from building up in the bucket. If it's convienient I move in an air stone, or even the one that is in the tank. If it's not, I just work fast!!!

One time I had the bucket in the room with me and didn't lock up the cats and my 1 yr old cat kept nosing around... I also get to just pull the mommy card and say "Taylor sit with the fish bucket!!!". She is my little fish watcher : ) Don't think you wanna have a baby just for that reason though LMAO

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

If you have a closet shut the FISH in there. Put something on top of the container so they can't get out until you are done.

I also have 2 five gallon buckets that I use. When I do 100% wcs, I put the fish in there with tank water and an airstone. When I painted the living room, I hooked one of my HOB filters onto the bucket also.

But then I also have 2 bathrooms, so I can shut the fish in one where the cat can't get in there. Also maybe you could put the fish container in the tub and shut the shower curtain so the cats can't see them?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

I would be careful of stacking things on TOP of the fish containers (buckets or whatever) - such as books or cardboard or whatever. A curious cat will instinctually want to sit on it and look down on the fish. If the book stack or cardboard has a cat land on it, the cat, books and all will go plunging into the fish bucket - dumping it and perhaps squashing fish.

I usuualy drop an airstone in the bucket. A bubble bar, half inserted into a bucket would fizz inefficiantly but sufficiantly for the time. Cleaning a 30 gallon tank should not take more than an hour to completely clean and scrub. There should be no problem. Drop your media into the bucket if you wish, though.

What about bagging your fish for the hour? I have put fish in the cupboard (that is a GOOD idea!). Do you have a plastic container that you keep shoes in? WHat about a large cooking pot lined with a plastic bag?

Cats can be curious. Most will not bother TOO much, but all it takes is ONE cat and you can have a serious mishap. Get your squirtgun. Wet the cats down when they come close. Do it several times. They will leave the fish alone for the hour it takes to clean the tank.

(Actually - the cardboard box is not a bad idea..... I try to bring home a larger box for my cats about once a month. I cut cat sized door hole flaps in the side, close it up, toss some catnip inside and tell them, that, under NO circumstances are they EVER allowed to go in that box or do ANYTING to the box. This guarantees that they will then spend many hours climbing in and out of the box, chewing more holes in the box to alter it to their specifications, jumping on each other and getting high on catnip. Then they zone out in a catnip haze. MEanwhile, I get other things done (steamcleaning the kitchen floor, etc!) )

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

Hello everyone! Thank you all for all the great ideas and suggestions! I was really, really nervous about this. A few years back I remember reading some really sad stories about a cat that went um, fishing... So, even though my cats have a good track record, I've always been a bit weary. Thankfully all went well.

One good reason to keep a painter bucket on hand. You can find them at Homedepots......I have 2 of them. One is for changed gravel or tank work, the other I use if I need to take them out of the tank. There great cause there tall and have a wide surface for O2 :D Just a thought :D

This is such a good idea! I am definitely going to invest in some of these. I ended up putting the fish and snails in large um, serving bowls for lack of a better descriptive word. It's much bigger than that sounds. But, it was clearly not enough surface room as the fish began to gasp almost instantly. :(

But Desiree-- your fish won't jump out for no good reason. As long as the water is mostly clear of ammonia and they have enough oxygen, there's absolutely no reason they should jump out.

I know, but I'm paranoid. Actually, they were swimming around really fast in the bowl so I ended up adding a bubble wand then covering the bowl with saran wrap (with holes in it!) over the bowl, so if they tried to jump, they wouldn't become kitten chow.

Shut the cats in the bathroom? A cabinet? Closet?

I would love to, and essentially would not have posted this question if that would have been a possibility. My studio is big, but it's um... lacking in the storage department. I have a sliding closet door, and a bathroom with a door. That's it. I would have locked the cats in the bathroom but that's the water source for my water changes. :)

Don't think you wanna have a baby just for that reason though LMAO

Sue, you have no idea how much this made me laugh! You are too funny! But, um... just the thought is giving me cramps. Hahah! ;)

I would be careful of stacking things on TOP of the fish containers (buckets or whatever) - such as books or cardboard or whatever. A curious cat will instinctually want to sit on it and look down on the fish. If the book stack or cardboard has a cat land on it, the cat, books and all will go plunging into the fish bucket - dumping it and perhaps squashing fish.

I agree, I was really afraid of that. My cats are pretty curious and I was expecting the worse! You know, all this stress and worry was really over nothing. Even when I was moving the fish around and there was potential for the cats to take notice, they were dead to the world, zonked out and tired. It pays to keep stock in catnip... Hahah! ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

Okay, so I'm a total nerd and chronicled my water change adventure. A photo essay, if you will. :rofl

yourgonnawhat.jpg

Leviathan realized what was about to happen.

inbowl2.jpg

Not exactly TVR's.

inbowl.jpg

But I still think they're lovely.

babies.jpg

Remember the snail family? Well, apparently there's five more than I previously thought. Yep, ten snails.

backathome.jpg

snail.jpg

And finally, back at home...

NewinSeattle018.jpg

And the reason for alarm, Spazz. Don't be fooled by her coy expression, this Norweigan Forest Cat is pure ferocious Viking stock. ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Regular Member

I loved your photo essay (Then again, coming from a fellow nerd, doesn't say much! lol)

Everything went well! : ) YAY!

Aww look at that little evil kitty! LMAO We were all soooo concerned and she's just sleeping away LOL

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...
Guest Orandaa

I put my fish in a very large bucket. It's meant for making your own beer at home, and it holds the beer while it's aging. It's about a 20 g bucket. You can get them at any homebrew store and they're very cheap. My dad owns a homebrew shop and you'd be surprised how much stuff proves useful for fish caretaking :D

518.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...