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Old 03-14-2012, 10:07 PM   #1
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How do you maintain your aquarium when you are sick?

First, I'm putting this in freshwater because that is what I have and freshwater maintenance is different than saltwater.

I got home from a trip and got the worst cold I've had in years. No fever, but weakness and aches, and all the dripping, sneezing, etc. The aquarium had received a full cleaning/water change 2 days before the 4 day trip. I got home, one day later I was down, and the weekly maintenance was due. So I didn't do everything I usually do. I didn't vac the gravel. I did bail about 25% of the water and replace it. I also cleaned the filter media.

That was my strategy for keeping up with it when under the weather. This is the first time since I've had the 29 gallon tank, that I've gotten sick. How do you handle tank maintenance a short term illness? I'm looking to develop a better strategy for next time.

(In case you are wondering I did a very thorough cleaning and large water change today. Fish seemed to weather it just fine)
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Old 03-14-2012, 10:18 PM   #2
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If your tank is well established, properly stocked with appropriate filtration, I'd say you can go well over a week without doing any maintenance ... especially if you do a thorough cleanup before leaving. For example, there have been several members that've gone for over a week on vacations (myself included) and the tank was as they left it when they returned (assuming the fish were not overfeed by the caretaker).
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Old 03-14-2012, 10:21 PM   #3
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I do my tank every 2 weeks. I feel my filter and biological filtration will pick up the cleaning when I'm not. Just don't overfeed and the tank will be fine. Hope you feel better soon.
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Old 03-14-2012, 11:41 PM   #4
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LOL! I have two small children and one teenager, four cats, four tanks and a household to tend to... I suck it up and continue life as usual.
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Old 03-15-2012, 12:00 AM   #5
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Sick? What's that? Lol I don't have time to be sick. I'm like blert. 2 small kids, a cat, two chickens and 9 tanks. I do water changes when I can. If they go over a few days it's not the end of the world.
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Old 03-15-2012, 01:04 PM   #6
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Lol, on the suck it up. BTDT. I raised two kids. I have sucked it up. Seems I'm getting older and my suction is not as good as it used to be.

Thanks for the reassurance on letting it go a little longer. I'm understocked and don't overfeed so I'm sure that's part of why nothing went wrong. I'm doing much better. Still sneezing but have resumed full activities.
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Old 03-15-2012, 01:21 PM   #7
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I'm going threw the snots right now. It sucks. Still do maintenance though.
I figure if I'm not dropping fish I'm OK.
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Old 03-15-2012, 01:54 PM   #8
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Get your husband, boyfriend, male neighbor or anybody from the male gender to do it for you. Guys will do whatever gals want if asked.

I find the suck it up thing works for most. However, as you age you will find it harder to suck it up. Not to mention that different people get sick in different ways. A common cold to some is no big deal. A common cold to others may result in much harsher symptoms.
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:21 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GailLA View Post
Seems I'm getting older and my suction is not as good as it used to be.
This made me lol for real

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zaedon View Post
Get your husband, boyfriend, male neighbor or anybody from the male gender to do it for you. Guys will do whatever gals want if asked.
Hmmm.... methinks you might not be married? (just kidding, by the way)

I would only trust my tank to my husband if I were on my deathbed. He recently looked at a plant in the tank and said "that one's really green, it's doing really well!" It's plastic. But oh how I love him

Really I guess the main issue is nitrate buildup. If you take great care of the tank before leaving (i.e. manage enough water changes to reach 5ppm nitrate or under), then I'd assume you'd be fine for at least 2 weeks as long as there's no overfeeding. Just my guess. Life comes first
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Old 03-15-2012, 06:04 PM   #10
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Yes, my husband loves to watch the fish, but the care and upkeep falls to me.

I was able to check nitrates and they remained 5 ppm. (and yes, even sick I shook the heck out of solution #2) I know you are supposed to read it at the higher color; but in truth, most of the time my nitrate test is darker than the pure yellow of 0, but not as dark as 5 ppm. This time it was the 5 ppm color. So there was no nitrate danger. As usual, the nitrites and ammonia were 0.

P.S. I was too sick to overfeed. I use an automatic feeder (Eheim) set to a small portion. That way I can give treats by hand. All they got for a few days when I was sick was the automatic feeder.

2nd P.S. Water -- get well soon!
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