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Old 01-07-2012, 02:41 AM   #1
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Exclamation first hospital tank set up-advice please

ok, I found out about 5 days ago one of my two blue rams has ICH.
my emerald catfish is not looking good at all either (separate tanks). He lays on his back motionless; I thought the poor little guy was dead he was so still, and when I went to "collect" the body, he moved suddenly. He then reverted back to laying motionless on his back after swimming around blindly running into stuff. MAybe this is the popeye disease? One of his eyes IS bulging pretty bad. With two sick fish from 2 seperate tanks I have decided to attempt my first Hospital Tank.

RAM: he lives in a 55 gallon planted, community, running CO2. I did not see any other fish infected
emerald catfish: : he lives in a 16 gallon aqueon community, plastic plants.
This is how I have HT set it up:
10 gallon tank, Topfin 10 filter (I removed the carbon from the media pad), submersible heater, one rock for cover, and a few plastic plants, thermometer no substrate.

There is so many different medical options to choose from, I was "gun shy" on what to do, so I set the HT tank's heater to 86 degrees F, and added the recommended dose of aquarium salt to treat diseased fish.

This is what I have done so far, (a few hrs into this).
Have I missed anything? should I medicate with something else?

Thank you in advance.
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Old 01-07-2012, 10:21 AM   #2
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I think first you need to diagnose what it is. And if the two fish are suffering from two different illnesses it may not be possible to treat them in the same tank. Are you sure the Ram has Ich? What are the symptoms? Usually if one fish has Ich then it's safe to say that the whole tank is infested even if other fish aren't yet showing symptoms so it may be best to keep the Ram where he is and treat the whole tank for Ich by slowly raising the temp to 86 (1-2 degrees per day until the desired temp is reached). You can just use heat to treat and not salt if other fish in the tank will be bothered by the salt. But again I'd try to confirm it's Ich first.

For the catfish: so he's just laying on his back? Any other symptoms? Clamped fins? Gasping? Is he eating?

Have you tested your water for toxins (ammonia, nitrite, nitrate)? What is your water change schedule and when is the last time you did a water change? Are both tanks cycled? Usually the first thing to do when fish are showing symptoms is test the water to either pinpoint or rule out toxin issues and do a 50% water change.
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Old 01-08-2012, 02:04 AM   #3
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I'm pretty sure the ram has Ich- he has the white spots on his fins and on his body. Not a lot, but they are definetly white spots that were not there when I brought him home.

I took your advice and turned up the heat on the entire 55 gal. tank.

Catfish: he lays on his back, then he swims wildly and frantically in no particular direction, then lays back on his back or side. parameters are fine in both tanks, and other fish are happy. I feel terrible and helpless.

Thanks for responding by the way.
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Old 01-08-2012, 02:05 AM   #4
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I will put the ram back into the big tank tomorrow.
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Old 01-08-2012, 02:13 AM   #5
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I have to agree with LibraryGirl's advice.

The ram with ich (if it is ich) needs to be treated with the other fish, as it is a parasite that will infect all the fish before symptoms actually appear.

If you use heat (86 degrees, not one degree less) Kordon's Ich attach is a very good med to use that is easy on sensative fish and will not harm plants or inverts.

As for the cat, hard to say what ails it. If it is popeye, it needs a good antibiotic treatment in the hospital.
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Old 01-08-2012, 02:38 AM   #6
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I agree with librarygirl as well. The whole 55 is infected with ich not just the ram. You need to treat the tank. If he has been in the same tank as the catfish you can assume he is infected too. Keep a VERY close eye on your other tank/s if you have used the same equipment (buckets, syphons, nets, etc). I would keep the catfish in QT and put the ram back into the 55 and treat with heat and maybe a small dose of salt (half or third).
You are looking at daily water changes on the QT. Can you post a picture of the catfishes eye? What are the exact numbers of ammonia, nitrite and nitrate? Most fish diseases are brought on by stress and/or poor water conditions.
http://www.aquahobby.com/articles/e_ich2.php
Here is an article on ich.
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Old 01-08-2012, 02:59 AM   #7
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Thank you for your advice, I truly appreciate it. I removed the ram from the HT and put back into the 55 with heat turned up, and added salt.

I am testing the water from the catfish's tank and will get back to you all on those results in a bit. Also it is night time here so I am struggling to get a good pick of the cat, but will post tomorrow with the rest of the info.

best,
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Old 01-08-2012, 03:08 AM   #8
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How long have you had the cat?

Also, I wanted to congratulate you for taking the big but important step in setting up a hospital tank.

It can also make a great qt tank so when you get new fish you can keep them seperate from healthy fish and treat for disease if any crops up before new fish infect your healthy ones.
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Old 01-09-2012, 12:38 AM   #9
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Here is the latest.
I took the cat to the LFS and had one of the guys look at it. He didn't notice any bacterial or fungal infections, and apart from the sporadic swimming then lying on his back he did not notice anything out of the ordinary. He asked how old the cat is. It is about 1 yr old I told him. he said my fish could simply be dying of old age too and/or it is just his time. He still is doing the same behaviors, but I will continue monitoring

On another note my Nitrates were pretty high on that 16 gal. 80ppm, ammonia 0, PH 6.8.I immediately did a 25% H2O change

I will continue monitoring his situation. right now he is floating at the top of the tank. I don't know what else to do.
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Old 01-09-2012, 12:41 AM   #10
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Keep doing water changes to bring the nitrate down. You need it below 20ppm. I highly doubt he is dying if old age at one. I don't know what else to suggest.
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Old 01-09-2012, 01:11 AM   #11
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Are you medicating the cat with anything at this time?
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Old 01-09-2012, 11:59 PM   #12
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sorry to say, the cat died tonight. He tried to hang on, but he could not overcome.......

Thanks for answering the call AA friends, I guess when the time comes there is no stopping it.
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Old 01-10-2012, 12:18 AM   #13
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I'm sorry to hear that. how is the ram?
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:17 AM   #14
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Ram is doing well. He still has the white spots on him though. It's been about 10 days. Does it usually take this long? I turned the heater up from 77 to 89 F, but the thermometer says it is 80. Is this a high enough temp? I ordered a new 150 watt heater in case I needed to add some more heat to the tank. Your thoughts?
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:19 AM   #15
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The temperature will need to be 86-88F by the thermometer. Any lower will just increase the ich life cycle and cause more fish to become heavily infected.

Once the temp is up to 86-88F then it will take 2 weeks (sometimes more) to cure the ich.
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:42 AM   #16
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wow, ok. I guess I need more heat. I just received an Aqueon 100 watt heater made for tanks for "up to 30 gallons." Should I add this heater to the tank to supplement for the rest of the heat missing? Also I am unsure what temperature to set the new heater on since the other heater already has the temp at 80. I'm thinking they should both be at 89 F.
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:44 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by akagochi
wow, ok. I guess I need more heat. I just received an Aqueon 100 watt heater made for tanks for "up to 30 gallons." Should I add this heater to the tank to supplement for the rest of the heat missing? Also I am unsure what temperature to set the new heater on since the other heater already has the temp at 80. I'm thinking they should both be at 89 F.
Yes, add the other heater. You will need to continue to adjust both heaters until you thermometer reads 86-88F. Most heaters temperature gauge are incorrect.
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