URGENT - Help needed

Oh no! Sick fish?! Come here and see if someone can help!
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Read this before posting!!

Since this board has been up, we have found there are several questions that routinely get asked in order to help diagnose problems. If you can have that information to begin with in your post, we'll be able to help right away (if we can!) without having to wait for you to post the info we need.

1) Your water parameters - pH, Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrates and salinity (if appropriate). This is by far the most important information you can provide! Do not answer this with "Fine" "Perfect" "ok", that tells us nothing. We need hard numbers.

2) Tank size and a list of ALL inhabitants. Include algae eaters, plecos, everything. We need to know what you have and how big the tank is.

3) Feeding, water change schedule and a list of all products you are using or have added to the tank (examples: Cycle, Amquel, salt, etc)

4) What changes you've made in the tank in the last week or so. Sometimes its the little things that make all the difference.

5) How long the aquarium has been set up, and how did you cycle it? If you don't know what cycling is read this: Fishless Cycling Article and familiarize yourself with all the information. Yes. All of it.

We want to help, and providing this information will go a LONG way to getting a diagnosis and hopeful cure that much faster.

While you wait for assistance:
One of the easiest and best ways to help your fish feel better is clean water! If you are already on a regular water change schedule (50% weekly is recommended) a good step to making your fish more comfortable while waiting for diagnosis/suggestions is to do a large water change immediately. Feel free to repeat daily or as often as you can, clean water is always a good thing! Use of Amquel or Prime as a dechlor may help with any ammonia or nitrite issues, and is highly recommended.

Note - if you do not normally do large water changes, doing a sudden, large water change could shock your fish by suddenly changing their established water chemistry. Clean water is still your first goal, so in this case, do several smaller (10%) water changes over the next day or two before starting any large ones.

Re: URGENT - Help needed

Postby J-P on Wed Jul 11, 2012 8:28 am

it could be the juice from the blood worm cube that is causing the problems. We usually strain off that juice before adding the worms to the tank.
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Re: URGENT - Help needed

Postby Lukedt95 on Wed Jul 11, 2012 8:41 am

Well I haven't fed her today, but in the future I will strain them, she doesn't seem any better though. I'm hoping by the end of the 3 day course she'll at the very least be moving around a bit.

Should I feed her at all during this time period?
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Re: URGENT - Help needed

Postby Pufferpunk on Wed Jul 11, 2012 9:41 am

Cycle is garbage in a bottle & nothing more than dead bacteria. Return it & get Prime. You can order it online.
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Re: URGENT - Help needed

Postby Lukedt95 on Wed Jul 11, 2012 11:14 am

Pufferpunk wrote:Cycle is garbage in a bottle & nothing more than dead bacteria. Return it & get Prime. You can order it online.


I don't have time to wait around for an order to come in, she needs help now. No where near me sells Prime. Plus I've already used the Cycle, there's no way they're going to accept me wanting a refund of CASH now. The best they'd do is give me a credit note which would be useless.
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Re: URGENT - Help needed

Postby puffykid on Wed Jul 11, 2012 1:43 pm

How did you add the tetra safe start the first time? Can you get another bottle today and add it to the filter box for your puffer? That will take care of the cycling and the water changes for you to be able to order prime, after you add safestart you don't do water changes for a few days so you can let the bacteria settle in.
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Re: URGENT - Help needed

Postby Lukedt95 on Wed Jul 11, 2012 1:46 pm

puffykid wrote:How did you add the tetra safe start the first time? Can you get another bottle today and add it to the filter box for your puffer? That will take care of the cycling and the water changes for you to be able to order prime, after you add safestart you don't do water changes for a few days so you can let the bacteria settle in.


All of this treatment has already cost me a lot of money, that's not including the cost of the tank and decoration/fish itself etc. I can't really afford another £10 bottle of Safe Start.

I don't mean to sound demanding, and I know it's very difficult to know what's wrong with her, but if I'm to spend money again I need to know for sure it will help her recover.
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Re: URGENT - Help needed

Postby puffykid on Wed Jul 11, 2012 2:03 pm

Understandable, from what you have told us with him laying on the ground, the products that are unfortunately gimmicks which you were mislead into buying, and you trying to help him by giving him food the tank parameters are probably not in the best of shape. I'm also not sure how you added the tetra safestart in the beginning, what I suggest is to go get your water tested again by the lfs and ask for specific numbers and not just if its good or acceptable. Make sure they test with a liquid test kit and not a test strip 1!

Good numbers to have would be Ammonia - 0 Nitrite - 0 and nitrates - under 20

if your tank is cycling then you'd have something more like Ammonia -.25 Nitrite -.5 nitrates - 35 nitrates being varied based on feedings water change schedule etc.

If your tank appears to be cycling then I strongly urge getting the tetra safestart and adding it as previously suggested because puffers are very sensitive to ammonia and won't survive until you can order prime. The products that you are using right now don't work as they advertise besides tetra safestart, I understand your frustration as I experienced similar troubles before I joined this forum and listened to their advice.
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Re: URGENT - Help needed

Postby Lukedt95 on Wed Jul 11, 2012 2:12 pm

Ok, so I need to get some Tetra Safe start, and what, do I put it into the filter sponge? Will this improve her health?
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Re: URGENT - Help needed

Postby J-P on Wed Jul 11, 2012 2:14 pm

can you get any used filter media from your LFS? Get as much as they are willing to sell or 2x your filter capacity and you'll have that puppy cycled in no time.
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Re: URGENT - Help needed

Postby puffykid on Wed Jul 11, 2012 2:29 pm

Thats a really good point, if you know anyone else with a healthy fish tank you can ask them for some extra media just make sure you get it from a fresh water tank. Do you have a big filter sponge and is that your only filter material? You may want to get some more of that for more surface area for your beneficial bacteria, or do what j-p said. Getting some established fresh water media would also make him feel better and will get your tank out of it's cycle.

As for the tetra product just pour into the filter and don't do water changes for a few days he should begin to feel better overnight.
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Re: URGENT - Help needed

Postby Lukedt95 on Wed Jul 11, 2012 2:35 pm

'He' is a She :wink:

the filter has two sponges, a large one and a smaller one, So I pour the tetra safe start into that?

This is putting a nasty dent in my wallet.
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Re: URGENT - Help needed

Postby puffykid on Wed Jul 11, 2012 2:42 pm

Lukedt95 wrote:'He' is a She :wink:

the filter has two sponges, a large one and a smaller one, So I pour the tetra safe start into that?

This is putting a nasty dent in my wallet.



haha I apologize I will call her by the proper gender now.

Yes, just pour it into that after you shake it I believe that is what the instructions say follow those. Then pour into the sponges, might as well turn out the lights too after it'll make her feel safer. She should be fine in the morning hopefully, the good news is that your free from doing wc's for 48 hours now.

It's impressive how much you can spend for 1 little fish I know how that goes. Once she hopefully feels better you'll feel repaid by her personality, begging, and general cuteness that is a puffer fish.
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Re: URGENT - Help needed

Postby Lukedt95 on Wed Jul 11, 2012 2:46 pm

puffykid wrote:
Lukedt95 wrote:'He' is a She :wink:

the filter has two sponges, a large one and a smaller one, So I pour the tetra safe start into that?

This is putting a nasty dent in my wallet.



haha I apologize I will call her by the proper gender now.

Yes, just pour it into that after you shake it I believe that is what the instructions say follow those. Then pour into the sponges, might as well turn out the lights too after it'll make her feel safer. She should be fine in the morning hopefully, the good news is that your free from doing wc's for 48 hours now.

It's impressive how much you can spend for 1 little fish I know how that goes. Once she hopefully feels better you'll feel repaid by her personality, begging, and general cuteness that is a puffer fish.



I'm just praying she'll survive the night again. I'll get the SafeStart tomorrow and get that going, and put the Prime on order.

Should I feed her at all while she's like this?
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Re: URGENT - Help needed

Postby puffykid on Wed Jul 11, 2012 2:50 pm

I am really hopeful that she does too. A healthy fish can go about 2 weeks without eating, and even a fish who is under stress can go over a week. I wouldn't bother I doubt she would eat as she isn't feeling well, and it just adds extra pollutants to the tank.
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Re: URGENT - Help needed

Postby Lukedt95 on Wed Jul 11, 2012 3:02 pm

Well thanks so much for the help, it really is appreciated.
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