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Old 11-28-2019, 04:12 PM   #1
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Rescued fish advice

Yesterday I rescued a goldfish from a house that belonged to a hoarder. They left the fish behind and the water was so dark and there was so much build up you couldn't even tell there was something living in there. I didn't use any of it's old water in the new tank because it was just so disgusting. I only put water conditioner/stress releif in the new tank, but I did buy some antibiotics and parasite medication just in case. My first question is should I use either of the medicines as a precaution, or only if the fish is showing signs of illness? The fish seems to be doing good, other than a tear in it's tail fin and it hasn't shown any interest in food. It hasn't been hiding, swimming strangely, or rubbing against anything as far as i can tell. Every time i go near the tank it swims up to whatever side I'm on and looks pretty happy. I guess my other question is when should I be concerned about the lack of appetite? I know the environment change is probably quite stressful but the possibility of illness is still in the back of my mind. Also, I had a pair of goldfish that lived to be about 12 years old so I have experience taking care of healthy fish, but that was a very long time ago and they didn't come from the situation this one has so any other advice or tips would be greatly appreciated!

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Old 11-28-2019, 08:39 PM   #2
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Hi I had a rescue betta. It took him a few days to show a real interest in food, turns out he was picky. Maybe try different foods to see if anything else works.
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Old 11-28-2019, 09:19 PM   #3
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That's a good idea, I never really thought of fish being picky eaters. The two I had just loved food in general and would eat anything lol
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Old 11-29-2019, 05:06 AM   #4
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My first tetras were picky too. I ran out of food and they didn't have the same stuff so I bought them something new and they just didn't touch it. I actually had to return the stuff and tell them my fish were too picky and asked if I could try something else. The cashier had never heard of fish not liking food but they ate the next stuff I picked out.
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Old 11-29-2019, 08:42 AM   #5
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Hello Bri...

It will be interesting to see how the fish reacts to cleaner water. The real issue with this type of rescue is the fish is used to dirty water and suddenly putting it into much cleaner water would be a shock. As we know, stress opens the fish to all sorts of health issues.

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Old 11-29-2019, 02:43 PM   #6
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Yeeeaaahhh speaking of which, somehow overnight her eyes are now very cloudy and she can't see. The water got really cloudy too...help?
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Old 11-29-2019, 02:55 PM   #7
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Is your tank still cycling? I would do water changes and test it regularly.
You can treat it with melafix, just take out any carbon from the filter or it won't work.
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Old 11-29-2019, 03:51 PM   #8
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Unfortunately amongst my rushing around the night before Thanksgiving trying to get her out of there as quick as possible i forgot test strips. I won't be able to get any until tomorrow. But I did get melafix! Also was it a bad call not using her old water? I know it doesn't matter now, but I feel bad if I put extra stress on her for no reason. Thank you so much for your help!
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Old 11-29-2019, 07:16 PM   #9
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Hubby got off work early today so i was able to get some test strips. The ph is a little low but everything else looks good. How long do you think it will take for her eyes to clear up? And any idea what could have caused it to appear so suddenly?
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Old 11-29-2019, 08:18 PM   #10
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I just noticed the tear in her tail fin turned into her entire fin being badly frayed...i assume it's fin rot? I can't believe how quickly everything is escalating. I feel so bad! She finally pooped too and it looks like a white/clear string of hair...should I use the parasite medication just in case? Sorry for all the questions, I just feel so bad and I don't have any experience caring for sick fish.
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Old 12-01-2019, 04:51 PM   #11
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Changing parameters can be very stressful for fish. Probably the two most dangerous times for a fish is new tank set up and when someone gets the cleaning bug after things have gotten really bad. That usually results in both parameter change shock as well as them going through a cycle which is always rough.

But you had good intentions; and I can imagine Iíd be tempted to do the same thing when faced with the choice of adding back nasty tank water. For future reference a slow drip acclimation into new clean water can minimize the stress.

If the poop is white/stringy thatís a pretty classic sign of parasites so the meds would probably be a good idea. Melafix I probably wouldnít use. It can help with mild bacterial issues but probably not worth messing with in this case.

Test strips are almost useless and donít usually even test for ammonia. If this tank isnít cycled you really need to pick up ammonia and nitrIte liquid test kits at a minimum. Donít mess with the ph. Stable is more important than a particular number.

Water changes with prime will protect the fish from toxic ammonia / nitrite if you are still cycling. Once you know if/ how much ammonia and nitrite is around you can dose extra prime if needed to keep the fish safe while parameters stabilize.
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Old 12-01-2019, 06:44 PM   #12
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Good to know! Hopefully I won't come across this again, but you never know. I did end up using the parasite meds and I think you might be right about the melafix...yesterday it was so bad chunks of her tail fin were falling off and it spread to her other fins. She was so miserable she sat in the same corner of her tank all day. I ended up doing a 50% water change, and this morning it looks like it slowed way down, her eyes looked better, and she was actually able to see me walk up to the tank. I did another 50% today and now she's actually moving around again instead of just looking lifeless in the corner.

You are right, the test strips don't test for ammonia. I will have to get a liquid test kit tomorrow. It does say the nitrite is 0, and everything has stayed the same the past couple days. Also do you think daily 50% water changes are too much or should I stick with it since she's starting to show progress? I don't know how frequent is too frequent, especially in this situation. Thank you for the help!
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Old 12-01-2019, 08:36 PM   #13
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The improvement when you do water changes suggests you are still cycling and the water changes provide some relief. I would keep doing the 50% daily until you are certain the tank is cycled. You can cut back to every other day (no more than 48 hours) if you are using prime and are testing too be sure you are using enough prime.

Just try to match temperature so they are not too stressful. Do your strips show any nitrAtes in the tank?
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