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Goldfish Skin Bags & Fluid Around Eyes


Guest charliegoldfish

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Guest charliegoldfish

Hi. I'm hoping someone well help my goldfish Charlie get better. He's an ordinary goldfish, but has gradually developedbags around his eyes, almost like a balloon. They appear to be filling up with clear liquids. I have tried various fish medications with no luck (mainly Mela and Pimafix.) I've done numerous water changes and that doesn't help. I've tested the water and it seems fine. The other goldfish which I've had just as long does not have these issues. I've scoured the Internet and have come up empty-handed. I just noticed that recently, the other side of his face (under his eyes) is starting to enlarge as well. I've attached a few photos for your reference. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

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  • Regular Member

Would you please answer these questions in order to expedite help? Thanks.

[*]Test Results for the Following:

[*]Ammonia Level?

[*]Nitrite Level?

[*]Nitrate level?

[*]Ph Level, Tank (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines)?

[*]Ph Level, Tap (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines)?

[*]Brand of test-kit used and whether strips or drops?

[*]Water temperature?

[*]Tank size (how many gals.) and how long has it been running?

[*]What is the name and "size of the filter"(s)?

[*]How often do you change the water and how much?

[*]how many days ago was the last water change and how much did you change?

[*]How many fish in the tank and their size?

[*]What kind of water additives or conditioners?

[*]What do you feed your fish and how often?

[*]Any new fish added to the tank?

[*]Any medications added to the tank?

[*]List entire medication/treatment history for fish and tank.

Please include salt, Prazi, PP, etc and the approximate time and duration of treatment.

[*]Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt," bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus?

[*]Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.?

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Guest charliegoldfish

[*]Ammonia Level?

[*]Nitrite Level?

[*]Nitrate level?

[*]Ph Level, Tank (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines)?

[*]Ph Level, Tap (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines)?

[*]Brand of test-kit used and whether strips or drops?

I used some test strips a while ago and everything came up within range. My other fish haven't experienced this problem.

[*]Water temperature?

Apartment temperature which is around 71 degrees F.

[*]Tank size (how many gals.) and how long has it been running?

55 gallons with two goldfish total. It's been running for several years and I've had tanks for around 10 years total.

[*]What is the name and "size of the filter"(s)?

Two Whisper Power Filter 60s.

[*]How often do you change the water and how much?

Once a month roughly.

[*]how many days ago was the last water change and how much did you change?

A few weeks ago but this has been an ongoing problem. I change around 3/4s each time.

[*]How many fish in the tank and their size?

Two

[*]What kind of water additives or conditioners?

Very rarely add anything other than 10-12 tablespoons of aquarium salt per water change.

[*]What do you feed your fish and how often?

Sinking Pellets. Sometimes sinking spirulina and deshelled green peas.

[*]Any new fish added to the tank?

No.

[*]Any medications added to the tank?

Sometimes I'll add Melafix or PimaFix.

Please include salt, Prazi, PP, etc and the approximate time and duration of treatment.

[*]Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt," bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus?

Fins seem somewhat malformed and occasionally I think I see some minor bloodstreaks but can't tell if it's simply discoloration.

[*]Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.?

They generally stay at the bottom but they always try to eat. They're several years old and huge, so maybe that's why they stay on the bottom a lot.

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Your fish has massive popeye. You need to get your water tested immediately. Changing the water only once a month is not nearly enough. We usually do 50% water changes weekly or bi-weekly. Also, do not add salt with every water change but only when needed. Because it is added so much, you make bacteria tolerant to salt and harder to treat.

For now, do back to back water changes of at least 80%.

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I used some test strips a while ago and everything came up within range. My other fish haven't experienced this problem.

Testing the water is one of the main parts of fish keeping. The water is their main life support so having that poisonous will harm them. Just because one isn't showing the same signs doesn't mean that the water is fine. Some fish are stronger than others. However, it looks to me as both are lying on the tank floor.

Ashlee is right. The fish has massive popeye. Like she said you need to do lots of large water changes and clean out your gravel well also. Remove any hollow ornaments you might have as well as those are breeding grounds for bacteria.

You can keep the salt in at 0.1%.

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Guest charliegoldfish

Thanks everyone for your helpful diagnosis and advice. It's really appreciated.

I didn't think it was popeye, mostly because I had popeye with previous goldfish where their eyes stood out. I just assumed it was a bag of skin similar to the tops of their heads. I had also used Melafix in the past, and the problem never went away so that's another reason why I assumed that popeye wasn't the issue here. I'm very glad that I wrote this forum and have to thank you all for responding.

I went away for a few days, and the problem became severe by the time I got back. I wasn't expecting it to grow so large almost overnight.

I just bought several medications from the pet store: Maracyn, Maroxyl, Melafix, and Aquasafe for Goldfish (Tap Water conditioner from Tetra.)

I changed the water (approx. 80%) and added some aquarium salt but at half the dosage I normally do. My understanding of freshwater conditions is that there should always be some minor level of salinity for the fish otherwise the water causes burning. Is this true?

I added the Maracyn and Maroxyl - the Maracyn instructions said I could use Maroxyl in conjunction. Then I added the Aquasafe. I left out the Melafix.

I also replaced the carbon in the filters, but did not turn the filters on as I heard that could remove some of the medicine.

If anyone has any other suggestions, that would be great. I'm thinking of changing the water after in 5 days after this Maracyn treatment.

I have a very thin layer of gravel on the bottom of the tank and use a Python type of vacuum system. I vacuumed the stones, but left them in there. I don't have any other items/decorations in the tank to make cleaning easier.

Also, if anyone has recommendations as to food, I would like to buy some higher quality goldfish food so your advice would be greatly appreciated (I simply don't trust any of the pet stores around here. No offense to anyone, but most of the people working in the stores around here are clueless.)

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Since you started the meds you must continue.

Remove the carbon from your filters. It will remove the meds from the water but your fish need the filters.

Do you turn off your filters often? Doing that can cause your cycle to die off. Add to that the monthly water changes and it could very well be the cause of the popeye.

My goldfish love progold from goldfish connection. They have had an amazing growth spurt since I swithed them over.

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in the future try not to jump to drug cocktails right away. those are way too aggressive for fish who are often treated with extra tank cleanings and salt.

and no, freshwater fish like goldfish should stay in fresh water unless they are sick and need salt.

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Unfortunately sometimes there is a misconception that goldfish should be kept in a slight salt solution for some reason.. When I got my first fish from Pets!mart and joined Koko's everyone also was surprised when I said I had added salt to my tank and quickly asked me remove it.. I'm not sure why the people at the pet store told me to add it but they said it was a "stress reliever" which it is.. but it should be saved for times like these when the fish needs to be medicated with it.. salt is a rather gentle way to medicate a fish.. but when the fish is immune to the salt treatment because he/she has been in salt solutions continuously.. this salt treatent unfortunately doesn't work and leads to needing to use stronger types of medications.. :( - It's ok though you were in the same boat as me but unfortunately never knew until now! In either event I hope we can get this popeye figured out! :angelstaf:

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Guest charliegoldfish

Thanks again for the reply. I actually had a militant vegan working at Pet$mart give me the look of death when I told her I didn't add salt. So I did a little research and started adding it to the tank, but I'll cut it out as of now.

I also noticed on Koko's Dropsy link that she mentions keeping the water at 78-80 degrees. I thought that was too warm for most goldfish. Correct me if I'm wrong please.

Edited by charliegoldfish
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Guest charliegoldfish

Well, all I can do for now is keep their water changed and in check, and also keep up the med regime. I think the other fish had started to come down with dropsy as well. Just have to cross my fingers. Thank you for this forum.

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if the other one starts showing signs you should take a look at where you could be having some bad bacterial overgrow. Like in the filters? Or something in your setup? Filter pipes? All these can cause problems.

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How many doses does the treatment call for? Once the current one is done, I would add the carbon back to the tank to make sure it is removed. Then give the fish a break with nice clean water.

Remove the aquarium salt and start epsom for the dropsy. 1/4 teaspoon per 10 gallons of water. Give the epsom and heat a try for a little while before adding any meds.

Good luck :)

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  • 3 weeks later...
Guest charliegoldfish

I've been changing the water more frequently the past two weeks now. I thought for a while that with two Tetra 60 filters in a 55 gallon tank, that this should have been more than adequate for filtration. Guess my assumption was incorrect.

The other one does have some signs. The meds called for 5 days then discontinue. I went a week with a new water change but they didn't seem to get any better. Used Maracyn 2 (a vet at Angell Memorial here in Boston recommended it) and the water became cloudy. After 5 days of that, I changed the water a course of two more times. Now the water is mostly clear and their symptoms are reduced. I added back a fish tank heater.

I also cleaned out the filters pretty well with some brushes and carefully bleached the pipes.

I'll try the epsom salts tomorrow. I'm thinking of possibly adding some sort of gravel cleaner to the tank. I use mostly a thin layer of large stones as I found the smaller ones in the past harbored a lot of waste. I might consider going ahead and boiling the rocks next water change in a couple of days.

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Maracyn 2 can kill your cycle. Be sure to keep checking your parameters. This could explain the cloudy water. The tank also needs to be covered by a towel since the med deactivates in light.

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