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Old 06-05-2007, 08:55 PM   #1
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Goldfish Acting Strange

Long time no see guys!

My goldfish Flare has been acting weird for the last few weeks. At first he was acting like a normal goldfish swimming around and doing great. Then he started like...getting himself stuck under my whisper filter, going sideways and unable to really get out, getting stuck in rock caves. Yesterday I saw him resting upside down until I went over to the tank and he fixed himself. He's just been resting more than normal. Today he's not been swimming, but resting at the bottom unless I feed him, then he's perfectly fine.... He's such a food hog. Even when he's swims down the bottom he floats back up vertically, then fixes himself back and he swims normally, it's really strange. But this is really worrying me and I don't know what's up. I mean he's flopsy because he's got a deformed pectoral fin and a missing eye but he's never THIS clutsy. The second time he got stuck under my filter he scraped some scales off and they've since grown back but I'm worried that something might be going on with my poor fishy T.T I can't give you guys tank perameters but the rest of my fish are perfectly fine, it's just him, and he's one of my really hardy fish, nothing phases him at all. He's switched tanks and then went straight to grazing the gravel and swimming around all happy once he's in there. I just can't figure out what's up. Any suggestions?

++I think his eye might be a little swollen but I'm not too sure.
++ Maybe bacterial infection?
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Old 06-06-2007, 01:08 PM   #2
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Actually this sounds like swim bladder problem .... prob not too bad at this point as he is still able to right himself actively, but as soon as he gets tired, he is upside down, getting stuck, etc.

Size of fish & breed (comets, fancies, etc?), tank temp, NO3 level (or PWC schedule), tank size & other occupants are helpfut bits of info to have.

Most common casue of swim bladder malfunction is constipation or "gas" (usu. food related... what are you feeding?). Try feeding some peas (shelled, blanched & chopped). Increasing the temp to high 70's also help the gut move as well. These are simple things that will do no harm even if the diagnosis is wrong, so worth trying.

A harsher way to clear out constipation is using MgSO4 (feed a grain in a pea for big fish, or use as a bath). And a salt bath (aquarium salt at 0.5-0.9%) is also purgitive as well. I'd only do that if you are sure it is constipation & the peas & temp don't work.

It is possible to get swim bladder malfunction with bacterial or viral infection too .... is there other signs of disease - spots, bleeding, white poop, etc?

Finally, is his spine deformed? Goldies with bent spine (usu. associated with malformed fins - dorsals mostly) are prone to swimbladder problems as they grow. You can't do much in this case.

One more - you sure it is a HE? A SHE full of eggs might be clutsy like that as well .... belly full, looks pregnant?
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9 fancy golds, 1 hillstream loaches, 1 rubber-lip pleco (C. thomasi), 3 SAEs, small school of white cloud minnows, planted.
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Old 06-06-2007, 05:08 PM   #3
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He's a fancy oranda goldfish, temperature is about 78-80, I change the tank water once every week or two about 25% each time, 20 gal long, a couple gouramis & cory catfish are in the tank with him at the moment.

Feeding goldfish and tropical fish flakes.

No signs of disease. He's got a regular fat fancy golfish spine... arches upward and then down. No I'm not sure of the sex of my godlfish lol I couldn't tell you if Flare is fat or not, Flare's always been pudgy because of his species... ^^;

I'll try feeding him peas. He's still a food glutton.

++ Flare is a girl and right now she can't correct herself and is now sideways.
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Old 06-06-2007, 05:34 PM   #4
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Don't want to darken the mood, but my mum had a fat fantail goldfish which had the same symptoms, wobbly swimming, floating when tired, only moved to eat or if disturbed, and unfortunately it passed away, not sure of it's sex either but was always referred to as a she...

Personally I don't like the fatter variety of goldfish, as they seem to die easily. My Mop is a fairly chunky fish, but not as wide as his predecessor was (I got him to replace the deceased fish), and none of the other fish had any similar symptoms, so I guess it's a genetic thing leaving those fish more sensitive than other similar fish to changes or what they eat etc. resulting in swimbladder troubles...

I do hope I'm wrong and your fish pulls through...
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Old 06-06-2007, 07:06 PM   #5
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It's weird though, I've had her a year and she's been perfectly fine other than one of my fish gouging out her eye and her fin ^^;
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Old 06-07-2007, 05:43 PM   #6
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Flakes are not optimal for goldfish, and fancies often get gut problems if fed flakes exclusively. Ideally, you should feed sinking pellets (or if floating type, soak in water until they sink.) I'd stay away from goldfish flakes altogehter. Dry flakes often form gas in the gut. A gut full of air will tend to flip the fish over, and the fish will tend to float.

This is a bit more on the issue: http://www.marquette.edu/~buxtoni/pu...ing%20problems

I'd feed her peas exclusively for the next few days & see if things improve. So far, IME, my golds had always responded to peas in a day or so. For the last year or 2, I've been feeding veggies weekly, in addition to sinking pellets & had not had any swim bladder problems since.

Tropical flakes are also bad for goldies. They contain too much protein & tend to cause bad constipation in golds. With golds being pigs, it is pretty much impossible to feed your tropicals without them eating the lions share. This is another reason not to mix tropicals & golds.

Finally, orandas are rather finicky with water parameters, and high nitrates tend to give them trouble.

About the bent spine, I am refering to a permanant bend in the back when looking at it from the top. This is a common condition in fancies, although breeders tend to cull this out before selling.
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Old 06-07-2007, 09:03 PM   #7
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She won't eat the peas, I've tried. She gets freaked out when she eats now because she can't maintain her posture for very long T.T She's been resting under a plant for hours and just breathing heavy. She ate one and then like...didn't eat anymore and will only come up to eat if it's fish flakes.
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Old 06-09-2007, 11:17 AM   #8
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Lethagy & heavy breathing with swim bladder disfunction is not a good sign ....

You might consider doing a fish physical to get a better handle on things .... instructions here: http://www.marquette.edu/~buxtoni/puregold/disease/technique/technique.html#Jo%20Ann's%20Fish%20Physical

The physical exam is easier on big golds & koi, but the article should give you an idea of some things to look for.

It would be useful to check the water parameters. If that is not possible, I'd do a big water change just in case there is something in the water. Putting the fish in shallow water might make it feel better if there is swim bladder disfunction.

You might consider fasting the fish for a day or 2 before feeding more peas. She won't eat her veggies if you keep feeding her chips (flakes)!

If peas don't work (and water is good), I'd personally go next to salt dipping. You'd get rid of a lot of parasites, plus it will purge the fish & cure most gut problems. It is not difficult to do, although it is better if you have some experience with it before treating a sick fish as you need to know when to remove the fish. <Healthy golds will withstand high salt concentration - even full marine - for quite a while, but weak ones might get into trouble.> This is a pretty good howto: http://www.kokosgoldfish.com/Salt.html
http://www.goldfishparadise.com/foru...ic.php?t=16355

If you or the fish had never been exposed to salt dipping, you might consider starting with a lower concenrtation (say 0.3% = 3 g/l or ~3 teaspoon/gal) before working up to the full dose.
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