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Old 06-28-2012, 05:58 AM   #1
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Goldfish's eyes are bulging out more (Popeye?)

First off, I'm not an expert in fish. I know very little about them. I didn't go out and get a fish for the sake of having one, (I only would've done that if I had knowledge about taking care of them first), but my Dad passed away, and he owned this goldfish (Lincoln). So, I kind of had no choice but to take care of the fish.

Onto Lincoln's problem. His eyes are bulging out more than they used to. When I first got him, his eyes bulged out a little (like all fish), but they were more flat and even with each other. Now, they're bulging out quite a bit more than they used to, and more at the top than the bottom.
I've read that eye-bulging is an underlying symptom of something else, so I'd like help determining what.
He's still actively swimming around and eating. His poop is sometimes white and kind of stringy, though. And he's missing a few scales, but I don't know if he lost them in my care or not.

I don't have any kind of water quality tester, so I can't test if the quality is "poor" or not. (I wouldn't even know how to fix the quality.)

If you know what the problem with him is, please tell me what it is and how I can medicate him.
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:26 AM   #2
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Very sorry for your loss.
First off, you should get a test kit. The water quality is very important to a fishes health. If you don't already have water conditioner you should go to your local fish store and get some Prime is one of the best it takes care of more quality issues than most others on the market.
If you can't get a test kit of your own most fish stores will test the water for you for free (tho it is better to test your own water)
What size tank do you have?
How long has it been sense the water was partially changed?
Taking care of fish is not any harder that taking care of any other pet, just a little different, and can be very relaxing you just have to learn what you're little guy needs and you have made a good start by coming here. The local pet store advice can be sketchy at best in most cases so when you have questions or problems post um here someone will be able to help with correct advice and good information.
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:40 AM   #3
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I have a 10 gallon tank with an air stone, heater, and filter. I changed some of the water about a week ago while vacuuming the gravel, then filled it back up with tap water I de-chlorinated.

Since I don't have a water quality tester (I plan to get one eventually), would it be okay just to use Prime in the tank, even if the quality might already be good? (I doubt it, but it doesn't hurt to ask.)
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Old 06-28-2012, 07:21 AM   #4
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Well your little guy really needs a bigger tank, for now you should probly be doing daily 20% water changes, gold fish are really messy. The ammonia levels will go up over night in a tank that small even with only one gold fish.
Yes you can add prime to the water but what really should be done is 20-30% water change with the prime.
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Old 06-28-2012, 07:33 AM   #5
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I just looked up tank size recommended for one gold fish is 20 gallons. And weekly water changes are a must even with a 20 gal. because of the waste that a gold fish puts off.
You can keep it in the 10 gal with daily water changes to keep water quality good but should put it in at least a 20 gallon as soon as you possibly can.
You already have the 10 gallon established it will be easy to establish a 20 gallon using some of the things you already have.
For instance to set up the 20 gallon you can take the gravel you already have mix in some new with the old so that they're is enough gravel in the 20 gallon (recommended 2 lbs pr gallon) put in fresh declorinated water and for filtration get a new filter that is rated for the 20 gallon tank or larger, and then put the filter from your 10 gallon on the tank along with the new filter. This will retain the good bacteria that is needed for the nitrogen cycle. Your little fish will have the size home it needs and you will not have to go thru the new tank cycle because of using the already established gravel and filter.
With gold fish the more filtration the better the water quality, so running 2 filters on the tank will only help.
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Old 06-28-2012, 07:41 AM   #6
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Would the constant water changing stress him out?
The way I've changed the water somewhat before is because I kept having trouble starting up my gravel vacuum, so it sucked up a lot of the water...
And I only have one pitcher to fill with water for him, and I'm worried that if I keep adding de-chlorinator to every pitcher of water, it'd be bad for him. 'Cause that'd be a lot of de-chlorinator. D:
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Old 06-28-2012, 07:52 AM   #7
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Your little guy will thank you for the fresh water and you can add the recommended amount of declorinator directly to the tank before adding the water if you need to. That way you don't have to add it to every pitcher of water. You can pick up a 5 gallon bucket real cheep at walmart or most hard ware stores for the future just make sure you rinse it really well before using it to put water in your fish tank
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Old 06-28-2012, 08:01 AM   #8
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Oh, okay. I didn't know you could just put dechlorinator in the tank THEN add tap water. That's great to know!
Will the water changing help fix his eyes, you think? I'm so scared of them popping out of his poor little head.
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Old 06-28-2012, 08:07 AM   #9
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If it is a water quality issue causing it. Water changes might not fix the eyes but will help stop any farther damages and his eyes might correct them selves over time in continued good water conditions.
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:22 PM   #10
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Is there any medication you know of that will correct his eyes?
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:45 PM   #11
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Water changes for him are vital right now. If the water is unhealthy, then there isnt a med that will help him. Popeye is complicated to treat in any fish. Its the result of internal pressure from fluid buildup either in the eye itself or behind the eye/in the body. It can be the result of a internal bacterial infection, poor water quality, viruses and/or nutritional deficiencies. Which exactly you may be dealing with (or any combo of), its difficult to know without knowing your water parameters (ammonia, nitrite, nitrate). Does he any red streaking/hemorrhages in his fins/tail? Is he bloated/scales sticking out (like a pinecone)? Does he have an appetite & is swimming normally? What has he been eating? Some more info will to try to narrow things down a bit more.
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Old 06-28-2012, 07:23 PM   #12
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He doesn't have any red one him whatsoever, and his fins look normal. No fraying, rot, or discoloration. He's not bloated, and his scales are all flat.
He always goes nuts for food when it's feeding time, so he's still got quite an appetite, and he's still swimming around a lot.
I feed him Wardley Goldfish Floating Pellets and TetraFin Goldfish Flakes.
I just did a partial water change, and I plan to do that daily from now on.
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Old 06-28-2012, 07:44 PM   #13
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Thanks! Thats good news atleast! It helps to rule out (though not completely) a possible internal bacterial infection. If you see any sings of bloating, red streaking, changes in appetite/behavior then I would definitely do a course of medicated food. I would consider ordering some now just in case symtpoms start to turn up (go to The Goldfish Connection- they carry a med food called Medi-Gold). Lets see how he does with lots of healthy water over the next few days. If anything takes a turn for the worse/changes, let us know asap.

I would also start offering him some plain, cooked veggies on a regular basis. Broccoli florets, deshelled peas, aspargus heads, zucchini, etc. Occasional fruits are fine, too (orange, tangerine, bananas, berries, soft apple/pear). just removed anything uneaten within 24hrs & replace.
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Old 06-28-2012, 08:05 PM   #14
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Oh, that's great! I'll try to get some of that medicated food for him. Does it go bad after a while?

I didn't know fish could eat fruits and vegetables... That's so cute! Would I just leave the vegetables/fruits in the tank for him to nibble on until the next day?
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Old 06-28-2012, 08:48 PM   #15
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One odd thing he does that I noticed is that he swims up to the top of the water, and it looks like he keeps trying to eat something that isn't there... O_o Don't know if that's a symptom of something or just him being strange.
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Old 06-28-2012, 08:52 PM   #16
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Get a small bag of the med food & keep it in cool, dark place (not damp) & it will last quite awhile. Yes, goldies love their fruits & veggies! They go a long way to keeping them healthy & their digestive tract functioning properly. Dont throw everything in at once- just try something new each day (either small bits or soft enough to nibble) & see what he likes. It may take a few trys before he realizes its something good to eat. Feel free to experiment- just avoid spicy stuff & heavy starches (corn, potatoes) plus salt/canned or sugared (fruit in heavy syrup). A garlic press works well to crush harder stuff into bits (cooked carrots, peppers, etc). My guys love tangerine segments & watermelon in addition to their veggies!
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Old 06-28-2012, 08:55 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blood-Pop View Post
One odd thing he does that I noticed is that he swims up to the top of the water, and it looks like he keeps trying to eat something that isn't there... O_o Don't know if that's a symptom of something or just him being strange.
Do you have any extra aeration in the tank? It sounds like he may need a bit more if there isnt anything beyond the filter. The other thing may be your toxin levels- high ammonia and/or nitrite will limit a fish's ability to assimilate oxygen causing them to gulp at the surface for additional air. A test kit would really help you alot.
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Old 06-28-2012, 11:33 PM   #18
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I'll have to get him some fruit and veggies for him then. I'm afraid if I give him fruit, he won't eat the veggies. lol
I have an air stone in there with him.
I plan to get a water tester the next time I go to Petsmart (which should be fairly soon). Are any testers better than others, and do they test for all the bad things a tank shouldn't have?
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Old 06-28-2012, 11:40 PM   #19
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The API freshwater master test kit is the most recommended. It is pricey at the chain stores ($35?) but you can find it on amazon for $20-24 (or less). It has tests for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate & ph which are your primary concerns for a fw tank.
Please ask if you have any questions!
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Old 06-28-2012, 11:43 PM   #20
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And stay on top of your water changes for now until you can test your water yourself. If you notice him acting acting strange or gulping air, do a water change as soon as you can manage even if it's more than once a day.
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