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Acro

Oranda's Wen Looks Unhealthy

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Hello again, it is update time! Thanks again to everyone who has replied or just read my post!

Krang has perked up a bit. She has been trying to swim more, even though she is still not very well balanced and still hangs around the top of the water, however I saw her dive down a few times and that is a good thing.

Her eating has much improved and that I am thrilled about. Whatever I offer now (she is trained to hand feed) she eats and she even chased down and stole some of the sinking food that I was giving to her tank mate Isis! I think her wen is actually looking better, still bad looking, but I think some of the under red color is going away. I am actually more worried about her balance/float issues now. I've read plenty of stuff on sbd and whatnot, but it is all mixed up in my head at the moment. Can someone explain how the water quality, or bacteria infection, or whatever is going on, could be affecting her balance?

As for new pictures, I'm going to wait on that. I had to take so many before just to get the few I posted. I am glad you know what I am talking about amynmitchell. Hopefully the next pictures I show will be of a happy healthy fish! And hopefully none of you will ever have to see an unhealthy wen in my pics or on any fish ever!

As for my fish Isis (Krang's tankmate), he is really being nice to Krang. He always goes up to swim next to her and it seems he tries to get her to swim down with him. He will swim around rooting for food as normal, but he always goes back up to swim by her side and give her gentle nuzzles. They would always nuzzle each other and hopefully Krang will feel well enough to swim around nuzzling Isis soon.

Thanks again for all the help!

I thank you and Krang thanks you (and Isis does too)!

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Can someone explain how the water quality, or bacteria infection, or whatever is going on, could be affecting her balance?

I thank you and Krang thanks you (and Isis does too)!

Nitrate:

as with NitrIte, the major toxic mechanism of nitrAte in aquatic animals is the conversion of oxygen-carrying pigments (e.g hemoglobin) to forms that are incapable if carrying oxygen. but due to low gill permeability to nitrate, it's uptake to fish is more limited to that of ammonia or nitrite, resulting in relatively low toxicity. effects appear to reflect damage to hemoglobin.

Nitrate level is a surrogate indicator of the overall water quality in a culture system. The build up of nitrate occurs concurrently with accumulation of other deleterious compounds such as over feeding, not enough water changes that are less easy to measure, so keeping nitrite levels low via water changes also reduces the levels of these compounds.

Bacteria:

bacteria becomes present with few or no water changes. when we over feed, even just a little, have stagnant water, fish waste and that is not cleaned up with weekly water changes, the waste begins to decay and form bacteria. even the filters need regular maintenance and care as to not disrupt the beneficial bacteria that has formed in order to maintain the cycle.

Swim Bladder

either one, or both of these factors can create swim bladder problems. high nitrates are known to be the likely factor to a floaty fish when floating is out of character. bacteria can also be known to float fish, but is less likely than nitrates. hence why we insisted you have the nitrates tested as soon as possible.

Overall:

the only way to reduce nitrates and possible bad bacteria not requiring antibiotic medication is to make several water changes. the immediate solution to reducing nitrates is to perform 2 or 3 back to back water changes of 70%. this will also reduce levels of any nitrite and ammonia problems, but definitely nitrates.

Your treatment is still in early days.. lets treat with salt as planned and see how this may help with the swim bladder also. One step at a time.

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Glad to hear Krang is looking/acting a bit better :)

Can someone explain how the water quality, or bacteria infection, or whatever is going on, could be affecting her balance?

Nitrate is not as toxic as ammonia or nitrite so it doesn't tend to have the acute effects that those chemicals do, but when it builds up it tends to weaken fish and leave them more open to infection (see Helen's great post above). There are almost always 'bad' bacteria in our tanks and when a fish becomes weakened by nitrate, it is much more likely that his immune system won't be able to fight off these pathogens. Nitrate can cause lethargy and slowed growth as well.

As for the swim bladder...there are many ways it can be disrupted. It can become over inflated (the fish floats), it can accumulate fluid (the fish sinks) or one of the chambers can become displaced (balance issues and/or floating/sinking). There are lots of things that can cause this. Bacterial infections are one. Kidney problems are another fairly common one, as the bladder rests near the kidneys so swelling, etc. can make the kidneys press on it. And also things like tumors. But a swim bladder issue doesn't necessarily mean SBD (a permanent condition). It may just be that the fish is not doing well overall and needs some changes in terms of water and food, then it's own immune system will kick in and it will get back on track :) In cases like that, the balance issues are just a symptom of the underlying issue.

He always goes up to swim next to her and it seems he tries to get her to swim down with him. He will swim around rooting for food as normal, but he always goes back up to swim by her side and give her gentle nuzzles.

I saw this in swim bladder fish as well, their buddies would seem to sympathize (I don't generally apply human emotions to fish, but that was what it seemed like :) ).

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I have good news!

Krang is not staying at the surface any more! She is basically swimming like normal, still tends to roll a little on the sharp turns, but besides that, she has been swimming at all levels of the tank and most importantly, she does not go back to the surface. Also, she is no longer tail up, head down, but she stays horizontal like a healthy fish should!

Krang's wen still looks bad but we are on a good path.

Thanks for explaining how the nitrate could have been affecting Krang. I had read up on nitrate, but I couldn't get a clear view of how it was affecting my fishie. After reading enough of that stuff, all the info starts to blend together.

Its funny, when I started out seriously keeping goldfish, I remember reading (in some book) how nitrate was the last stage of the cycle and it was the least problematic (and it is fairly true). I even remember reading about how it was not very important to test for it. That's why, after all these years I never bothered to buy a test kit for that. The impression I first got stayed with me, even after reading other info. But now I know better, had to learn the hard way.

Same thing with the water changes, my tanks (plans and fish) have always been really healthy I've even had several anubias flower. However, the tanks were right at the level, if something went wrong, then it had the potential to go from good to bad. And adding that little "green house" tipped the scale and things went bad. I had become so used to monthly water changes, and very healthy fish, that I didn't realize that I needed to do more to keep things safe and give myself that extra wiggle room. I mean, 4 years with out problems (till now) is pretty good. But now, they will be even better!

Thanks again! I am learning all the time, I think we all are. Krang is still not out of the woods, so please stick with me. However I feel that she will soon be better and it has a lot to do with your help!

Thanks again!!!!!!!

I thank you and Krang thanks you!

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best wishes for you and Krang! :goodluck

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good work.. happy to hear of the positive progress.. i bet Isis is mostly happy to have Krang behaving like herself again :)

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Time for a Quick update...

Today Krang has been bottom siting all day!!!!!

Just when I thought things were getting better. Thanks for the wishes Martha, it seems Krang is going to need them!

I am about to do a water change and clean out the filters. When I used salt before, I only used 40 scoops (because there is only 40 gal in that tank). So if I do a 90% water change, I should replace 36 scoops of salt right?

Well I am off now to do some tank work.

Thaks for the help, thoughts, sggestions and positive energy!

Edited by Acro

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I'm sorry to hear that Krang isn't doing as well today, and I hope he will recover quickly.

Would it be possible for you to update with a video? Sometimes it is very helpful to have vids so people can grab more details...

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I won't offer advice since I have little experience with wenned fish, and even less with wen problems, and everyone has already gone over water params and quality. But I do want to give you a good luck, and let you know that we're all hoping for the best! Hopefully someone will be by asap to help. And, if you feel this is an emergency situation you can always start a 911 thread for faster advice. :)

Is only salt in the tank? No other treatments have been tried?

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Back with an update and pictures.

So everything is clean and resalted. Krang is still at the bottom with Isis hovering by her side. Its odd not to see activity in that tank. Krang is still eating and that is the only time of day when she perks up. Her wen's appearence has changed. It has some pitted areas that are pink. Another thing, somehow Krang managed to snap the fin ray at the end of her tail. Dont know how a fish involved in so little activity could manage this.

Here are the latest pictures:

Notice the pink pitted parts on Krang's wen.

1_.jpg

2_158064_.jpg

On the right side of her wen you can see the orange markings she has, left of that is the unhealthy pink coloration.

3_.jpg

4_93776_.jpg

Also notice the white outlining each bump on Krang's wen. In this next photo I used the flash to highlight the white outline and the discoloration of her wen.

5_.jpg

Last, this is the break that somehow happened on Krang's tail. Normally, not much to worry about, but this just adds to Krang's ordeal. It was red/bloody at first, but looks better now.

6_.jpg

If there is anything else I can be doing, please let me know. Should I keep going with the salt or is it time to move on to med food? Should I look for a fish vet in my area? Thoughts and suggestions are so very welcome. Im worried about my fishbaby.

dnalex,

Thanks so much for the reply!!

I dont have a video camera, not even one on my phone but I hope the new pics can add more details.

Amber,

Thanks for the wishes!

Do you think this problem is 911 worthy? I always thought the 911 area was for fish that were knocking on death's door. Krang is not at that stage, but I know she is feeling bad.

Yes, I've only saltaed the tank, no other treatments tried yet.

Thanks again everyone. I thank you and Krang thanks you (and Isis too!).

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Acro, I think it may be time to consider medicated food if after two weeks of salt there has been no appreciable improvements. Do you have access to Medi-Gold or Jungle anti-bacterial food? I hope you'll get other opinions soon :)

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I agree with Alex

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Gosh, the poor girl is looking rough. I think now is the time to get her in QT if you can. I think she needs a safe low stress space to heal. I am inclined to think that you want to keep up the salt, but may need to try something else now as well.

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I've been quietly observing your thread. I know you're stressed out, believe me, I know how it feels... I have kept tropical fish for nearly half my life and this sort of thing has kept me up countless nights.

You're received some excellent tips from forum members. I won't add too much primarily because for all my years with freshwater fish, I haven't really kept goldfish before. Still, if it were my fish I would probably do the following;

1) I would just wait it out and allow the treatment to work assuming of course your water parameters are good and stable. I have read the posts about the HP bath vs no HP bath debate. Again, speaking as a tropical fish keeper who is quite new at goldfish keeping, I would save that as a last resort. Understand that some very experienced forum members have used that treatment before. If they believe that it is an effective remedy, then I will respect their opinion. For me though, I would rather use that as my last option. I would be happy to debate the pros and cons of HP in a respectful and friendly environment in a separate thread or in private.

2) I would not bother looking for a fish expert. Most vets know very little about advanced fish keeping. Even if there was one knowledgeable enough, the stress of transporting your fish back and forth may worsen his condition. I also honestly believe that the experts you need are all in this forum. It's hard to beat hobbyists who have years and years of practical experience. All those dear fishes they lost over the years? It just helped these guys improve on their knowledge.

3) I would darken the tank for the most part of the day. Again, I have not used this on goldfish before but whenever my tropical fish were in recovery mode, I would place a towel over most of the glass. I feel the darkness helps them relax and recuperate much better. Don't forget to check your fish regularly though. The last thing you need is for his condition to worsen but you missed it because the tank was half covered.

I really hope your buddy gets better soon...

Edited by showcase

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ill agree with showcase on the vet part. We seem to have many people here who really care and have a ton of experience with goldies. They say "there is nothing stronger than the heart of volunteer" and i think that applies here.

i am also quietly watching your thread to learn from Krang, hope she gets better for you

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It is update time once again!

Since it is late at night now, 2 days have passed since I last wrote.

So that first day (since I last wrote) Krang just sat the bottom. She did eat and that was the only time she would perk up. I make this splash sound at the surface of the water (with my finger) and that is Krang's call to get hand fed. Well, up to the surface she came with force. She would eat, and swim for a few minutes, then back to the bottom. That's how that day went.

Today, Krang was at the bottom of the tank. At her first feeding she came up with force again and swam around for an hour and a half!!! But then,back to the bottom. Through out the day, she would get up and swim for a few minutes, but always back to the bottom. She has been up, maybe 5 times through out the day, at least that's what I was able to observe. Finally, at her 2nd (last) feeding of the day, she swam around for about two hours! But then back to the bottom. So that is the good news, Krang has been swimming a little.

Now for Krang's wen. Well, it is looking worse, the pink pitted parts are deeper and there are 3 white dots by the break in her tail. Check out the pics:

From above with out flash

sk1_.jpg

From above with flash

sk2_.jpg

Tank side

sk3_.jpg

sk4_.jpg

sk5_.jpg

sk6_.jpg

Notice all the white between each bump on her wen

sk7_.jpg

Notice the three round white dots at the bace of her tail break

sk10_.jpg

sk9_.jpg

sk8_.jpg

Im not sure if you can see it in the wen pictures, but there are the same little white dots on the pits in her wen too, maybe 5 of them.

So that is where is stands with Krang.

As for me, I have kept the tank salted, it has been stripped down to about quarantine level (took out all but a handful of gravel, took out the wood, all that is left is some floating anubias to keep the light level low and one statue for them to rest on.

I will go by the pet shop in the morning and see if the test kit came in. I've ordered Medi-gold.

Should I get the Jungle antibacterial food from the pet store if it may be outdated? If I start Krang on the Jungle antibacterial food now, would it be bad to switch her to the Medi-gold when it arrives?

My original plan was to salt and then move up to the medicated food if needed. Now, I'm not sure. Do I stick with salt if Krang acts healthy? Or do I use the med food because of her bad looking wen?

If/When I start the med food, do I do it along with the salt, or stop using the salt?

Again, thank you all for the help! Thanks to the quiet observers too, extra thanks to those quiet observers who have spoke up!

I noticed, that with Krang sick, I've taken the most pictures I have ever taken of her. When she gets better I want to correct that. I should be taking the most pictures of her (and all my pets) when they are healthy, not when they are sick! So once she is well, from my efforts and all your help, I will post many beautiful pictures of her, my other fish and the beautiful aquascapes in my tanks!

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Hi :)

I would move him to a QT. I wouldn't keep him around others. This would also allow you to keep a low water level to help his energy and swimming.

What are your updated parameters?

I would start it on an antibiotic food right away. What you have been doing now doesn't seem to be aggressive enough. The Jungle is just fine, you don't have to switch when the MediGold arrives. Just do an entire course of Jungle. Feed lots of small meals (3-4) to keep the meds at stable levels in the body.

I would also look into some sort of disinfection. Is that break in the tail new? I would either look into Potassium permanganate baths PP baths. Or possibly a salt dip.

I know everyone has different opinions on methods etc. This is just what I would do if it were my fish :)

Hope his pretty wen will be fine soon.

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Just my two cents guys but this is starting to look like "Hole in the Head". The last few pics just seem like that to me. :(

http://www.goldfishconnection.com/articles/details.php?articleId=168&parentId=12

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If Koko is right then you can start the Jungle AntiParasitic instead of the anti bacterial. It has Metro so it super good for HITH. But it you already started the bacterial that is fine.

Do still look into disinfectant treatments. You want to be sure you treat both the inside and outside of the fish.

Especially with the rednesss in the fins like that I wouldn't wait too long. If it becomes more spread it could be harder to treat.

Obviously assuming your water is perfect :)

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It's getting worse... I would QT him quickly and go with whatever treatment plan you feel most comfortable with. Good luck!

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It's getting worse... I would QT him quickly and go with whatever treatment plan you feel most comfortable with. Good luck!

EDITED: Redundant post. I did not see Captain's recommendation to QT him.

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This is really freaking me out now.

Well, I just got home. I was able to pick up the nitrate test and the Jungle antibacterial food (even though it may be outdated).

I had thought that Krang would be better off in her normal tank, but I see your points, I will be setting up a Q-tank tonight.

So now I am confused...do I use the antibacterial food, or should I try to get some antiparasitic/metro-med now? Should I use one or both?

I dont know if this is hole in the head, but something is totally making pits in Krang's wen.

Last of all, should I be treating Krang's tank mate Isis? And what about the tank and plants, does that need to be bleached or something?

Ahh, why are my eyes feeling wet....

Thanks again all.

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If there are definite holes in the wen, then you'll want to use Metro-Med, as this medicated food is specifically designed with hole in the wen in mind. You'll need to order it from goldfishconnection.com. Here's the link to the part about hole in the wen

http://www.goldfishconnection.com/articles/details.php?articleId=131&parentId=12

Here's the link to the Metro-Meds

http://www.goldfishconnection.com/shop/details.php?productId=9&catId=1

I think this is one of those cases where you want Metro-Meds instead of something that contains Metronidazole. I would not treat Isis. Only Krang!

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I agree that the MMs would be better, but they can take a bit to arrive and in that case I would go for the Jungle AP (they have metro in them). Qt for sure. I would be less inclined to do a bath or a dip on this fish, because so much is already happening andI am betting Krang may be weak. I would however take a qt dipped in hp and swab the break in the tail. It does look red to me and a quick swab is the safest bet here. I forgot to add that you don't want to treat Isis if she looks fine.

Edited by amynmitchell

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Acro how is Krang?

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