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Scales Lifted, Shallow Breathing, Stuck In "c" Shape


Julie

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Giovanni is, I feel, extremely close to death. I'm not even sure she'll make in the time it takes me to type out this topic.

Phoebe is experiencing scales lifting as well, is still swimming like normal, but bottom sits. I want to include her, as I fear she's going down the same path as Giovanni.

TANK PARAMETERS

Ammonia - 0

Nitrite - 0

Nitrate - 5.0

Tank PH - 7.6

Tap PH - 7.6

Brand of test-kit used and whether strips or drops? API Drops

Water temperature? 76 F

Tank size (how many gals.) and how long has it been running? 75 gallons, running since November 2010

What is the name and "size of the filter"(s)? Emperor 400: 400gph, Topfin 60, 300gph

How often do you change the water and how much? Weekly, 80-90%

How many days ago was the last water change and how much did you change? 4 days ago (Wednesday) around 75%

How many fish in the tank and their size? 4 total: 3 medium-small to medium, 1 larger (4 inches w/out tail)

What kind of water additives or conditioners? AmQuel Plus last waterchange, now Prime

What do you feed your fish and how often? Algae sheets mainly, with oranges, peas, bloodworms, krill, shrimp, 1-2x a day

Any new fish added to the tank? None

Any medications added to the tank? Prazi before the Wednesday waterchange

TAP PARAMETERS

Ammonia - 0.5

Nitrite - 0.25

Nitrate - 0

PH - 7.6

Giovanni

Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt," bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus? Scales lifted, "lump" on "throat"

Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.? Curved into a very "hard" C shape (if held right-side up, she'll quickly flip back on her side), scales lifted, not eating, breathing VERY shallowly, her gill plate stays "hovered" open, not moving, very weak

Here are some thumbnails of Giovanni's situation right now. I'm sorry that they're no good; I tried to bother her as little as possible. They are really big, though.

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Phoebe

Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt," bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus? Black areas (but I haven't gotten readings of ammonia at all in the past.) forming on gill plates, nose, mouth, and now some of the caudal fin, scales lifting slightly, developing the same "lump" on "throat" as Giovanni, which is probably her swelling up.

Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.? Bottom sits frequently throughout the day

Here's the best photos I could get of Phoebe's scales, and some of the black as well. These photos also big, so they'll take a while to load.

th_IMG_4836.jpgth_IMG_4831.jpgth_IMG_4828.jpgth_IMG_4813.jpg

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I'm sorry this is happening. Do you have a QT set up? Both are showing signs of dropsy, with Phoebe having a lesser degree of scale lifting. I would go ahead with epsom/heat. Also, if you have metro containing food, I would go ahead and start feeding them that.

Edit: I just wanted to add that if you think Giovanni's condition is not going to improve, and I think I agree with you, it might be best to let her go :(

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I am so sorry you're going through this. I'm going through the same at the moment (dropsy) and it's not nice at all. I'm not sure if it's any help but my thread is here: http://www.kokosgoldfish.invisionzone.com/forum/index.php?/topic/90718-really-worried-dropsy/ and I was given so much good advice that has been explained in really simple terms that even I could understand hehe so I'm not sure if that's worth looking through?

I really do wish you the best of luck and please keep us updated.

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Hey guys, I'm so sorry I posted and bolted; I had to go to a practice. And I took forever writing this.

I've mostly set up the QT. Its got an Aquaclear 20 and heater. On my way back home, I picked up some Epsom Salt... I've never shopped for this, and wasn't sure if there was anything to watch out for like you have to do with regular salt. hopefully it's the right kind?

"Active Ingredient: Magnesium Sulfate USP (heptahydrate) 100%"

And under "Other Information" it says:

Magnesium Content 495 per teaspoon (5 grams)

Also, I've got some Zeolite; would that help with the ammonia or would it "clash" with the epsom?

And the dosage is 1/4 teaspoon epsom per 10 gallons, with 78 degrees F?

I ordered some MetroMeds from GoldfishConnection, but I don't know if it would come in in time. At the pet store, we found some Maracyn Two... not sure if that would do much good.

I'm sorry this is happening. Do you have a QT set up? Both are showing signs of dropsy, with Phoebe having a lesser degree of scale lifting. I would go ahead with epsom/heat. Also, if you have metro containing food, I would go ahead and start feeding them that.

Edit: I just wanted to add that if you think Giovanni's condition is not going to improve, and I think I agree with you, it might be best to let her go :(

Thank you. I'm honestly heavily considering it. Gathering the courage to even go to the store for clove oil has proven much more difficult than I thought. :(

I agree. I'm so sorry this is happening. :( The C-shape isn't a good sign,No stray electrical current right?

Yeah, as far as I know, no electrical current; everything seems to be in its place.

I am so sorry you're going through this. I'm going through the same at the moment (dropsy) and it's not nice at all. I'm not sure if it's any help but my thread is here: http://www.kokosgold...worried-dropsy/ and I was given so much good advice that has been explained in really simple terms that even I could understand hehe so I'm not sure if that's worth looking through?

I really do wish you the best of luck and please keep us updated.

Bluebird, yes that helps me a lot, thank you soooo much. :) :) I hope Lily pulls through, she looks like a sweetheart. :)

Did you change anything at all in the tank or in your regular mantainance?

Did this happen quickly or over time?

The hose I use to fill up their tank stays outside, though I rinse the end of it before I put it in the tank, maybe something from outside made its way into the tank? Other than that, the only change I can think of right now is removing one of their bubble walls in late March, I think and quickly cleaning out one of the filters with old tank water, which I think happened way back in February.

In hindsight, I believe this happened over time; over a couple of months, really. Phoebe was bottom sitting A LOT, and Giovanni joined her, clamping fins. The only conclusion I could come up with at the time was flukes, so I prazi'd the tank a couple of times, with no real effect. I remember noticing that lump-looking swollen area in Giovanni's throat about a week or two ago but thought nothing of it; I figured that was just a physical "thing" I never noticed before. On Wednesday, she started getting stuck to the filter and drifting around, and as the week progressed, she turned on her side, then did the "C" thing, and now pineconing. So the state she is in right now happened over a few days, but I think this was going on for a long while and I just never considered it would turn into this.

And thank you guys so much for the support. It really means a lot!

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Commis, the epsom you got appears to be correct, and the dosage is correct also. You are right on the temp also :)

I don't know about the zeolite, but perhaps it's best not to use it and just stick to water changes.

I remember that Ashlee used Maracyn II for Kenny when she was pineconing just recently. I know she'll check in soonish and tell you. If I remember correctly, she did use it, and it definitely helped. So this is a real option. Federica also used it to treat her betta, and that definitely is working.

Good luck! We're here for you!

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I did use it with Kenny but only after she had fully pineconed. Although I was starting to think that her dropsy was caused by either eggs or an injury so the epsom would have worked fine. Either way, she has made a full recovery. So if you are willing to give it a shot, I think it couldn't hurt anything at this point. Sakura said to keep the tank dark though since light deactivates it.

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This is so strange, and so sad. :( I'm sorry your fish are having these problems Commis. Giovanni was always my favorite of yours. Her condition sounds so bad that I would consider euthanizing her... I think it's the kindest thing in this situation, but I know it's so hard to do. It makes it so "final" and it's horrible knowing that you made that final decision. But in many cases, it's actually the most compassionate thing to do. You will know when the time is right.

And for Phoebe, if you haven't already, you really need to set up a QT for her and get her isolated. Like others have said, heat and epsom are a good starting place. But because her condition is so similar to Giovanni's (and considering how bad Giovanni got) I would start with something that is more likely to give results. Medicated food, absolutely. MetroMeds is the best, but Jungle anti-bacterial or anti-parasite food will do in a pinch as well. I've also used Maracyn 2 for dropsy cases before with some luck. Remember though that the M2 will kill all the good bacteria, so if you use that you need to get enough of it so that you can do daily water changes and redose the med every time.

p.s. Ashlee is totally right about the light with M2. You need to keep the tank completely dark for it to be effective. I covered the tank with two towels to make sure it was fully covered.

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Thanks so much for the information; I would have never guessed about the medicine not working under light! I think I'll hold off on the Maracyn for Giovanni for at least tonight.

I'm going to set up a QT for Phoebe in the morning (its 12am here); I'll have to buy a new filter and tub for her.

We'll see what happens.

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Thanks. She was so fun to watch swimming around; it's hard to imagine she's not going to be in her tank anymore. I guess at least she's not suffering anymore. I'm still crying like an idiot from time to time.

For Phoebe, If I were to do a 100% w/c, could I just put her in the QT Giovanni was in and redose the epsom? Giovanni was in there only for about 9 hours, and I can't imagine Phoebe getting something she wasn't already exposed to.

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Thanks. She was so fun to watch swimming around; it's hard to imagine she's not going to be in her tank anymore. I guess at least she's not suffering anymore. I'm still crying like an idiot from time to time.

For Phoebe, If I were to do a 100% w/c, could I just put her in the QT Giovanni was in and redose the epsom? Giovanni was in there only for about 9 hours, and I can't imagine Phoebe getting something she wasn't already exposed to.

Yes, I think it should be fine. Do you have a heater and metronidazole-containing food?

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Okay. Yeah I have a heater, not the metronidazole food. I'm making a trip in a little bit to see if the pet store has some of the Jungle anti-parasitic food.

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Okay. Yeah I have a heater, not the metronidazole food. I'm making a trip in a little bit to see if the pet store has some of the Jungle anti-parasitic food.

Sounds good. The Jungle AP food is annoyingly floating, even though it's supposed to sink. So, it might be beneficial to soak and smush it to get it to sink.

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oh dear I am so sorry you are going through this! Poor little Phoebe has been through so much already :(

At this point I can only recommend a few other things:

- Epson gets absorbed by Zeolite. Zeolite can really NOT be used with anything water born.

- I hope you find the Jungle. I have had great results with it. It is important to soak it in very little water (so most is absorbed) and then you must squish it a little before feeding so it sinks.

- I am not familiar with your tank set up, but there must be something which caused this. It is just to much of a coincidence that two fish in the same tank get dropsy. Do you have gravel? Ornaments? Potted Plants with gravel or soil? Are your filters clean?

- What I always thought helped my dropsy cases was very frequent water changes. As long as you get perfect pH and temp matched water (and as long as the fish doesn't get stressed from this) you can even do back to back water changes to really clean everything out.

I would almost feel like salting the main tank to give the remaining fish a bit of help with immunity.

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Ok, got the Jungle AP. Phoebe's in the tank, Epsom's in the tank, and I've given her 5 pellets.

Let's see... I know that I have never cleaned the Emperor filter, so it probably has quite a lot of gunk. Maybe this is what's caused it. I've only rinsed the TopFin back in Feb.

As far as tank set up, there's river rocks scattered around, but otherwise it's barebottom. There's a bubble wand, a breeder net, and a vegetable clip that's been drifting around the tank. Perhaps if not from the filters, maybe something developed from the water/air bubbles trapped beneath the suction cups, or even stuff building up in the breeder net?

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