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Author Topic: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem  (Read 3022 times)
totaqui
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Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« on: March 18, 2010, 12:03:44 PM »

I recently bought a blue oranda and I realize that he has been having trouble swimming around the tank. Most of the time he finds himself sinking to the bottom of the tank and sitting with his caudal fin sprawled out. I took him out of the tank yesterday and placed him in a fish bowl (hospital tank) to see if I can treat him. I heard that peas with the skin removed is a good remedy and I have been feeding him the minced peas; to which he has been eating. I have been seeing some inprovement in his mobility. However, what I want to find out is, am I correct with the diagnosis or is it something else? Should I continue to feed him the minced peas over the next few days to see if the condition will improve? And is there any other treatment method that can be used?

Here are pics of Blue below in the hospital bowl. The water is a little cloudy because of the peas.
« Last Edit: March 18, 2010, 12:05:50 PM by totaqui » Logged
Nossie
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2010, 01:29:59 PM »

Oj, what a beautiful tail! :O

Anyway, I wonder, does he seem to have any other problems while swimming? Is he tilting to the sides while stopping in the water?
Because just sitting on the bottom of the tank can be caused by so many other things! So I think you should just put him back in his tank (Is he there alone?) and try looking more at his behavior. Is he eating normally?
Sitting on the bottom of the tank might also have something to do with the water quality, so maybe buy a test kit with tests for pH, nitrite, nitrates and ammonia. Especially if your tank is newly set up, the water itself might just be the issue (:

Another thing, about your hospital tank. It's rather important that there's good filtration and aeration in a hospital tank since most medicines decrease the amount of dissolved oxygen. Therefore, this bowl might not be very suitable Wink Not to mention the fact that there is absolutely NO filtration present, your fish might just poison himself with his own waste.

I'm sure your fish will be alright though! (: It looks rather healthy (:
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Mindemae
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2010, 02:26:03 PM »

I agree with Nossie in that your water quality may be off kilter.  If you can't afford to buy a test kit right now then you could always take a water sample in to the pet store where you purchased him from, and ask them to test your water.
In a hospital tank you need to provide aeration but not necessarily filtration since most filters contain carbon and would filter out medication and so it would not be effective for treating your fish.
I would do this, put your fish back in the tank, have the water tested, add salt to your tank...1 TBS per 5 gallons of water.   Make sure your filter is running correctly and add extra aeration if you do not have it already.
If your water parameters come back outside the normal range, then you will have to do at least a 10% water change and watch your parameters and do water changes accordingly every day or every other day until your tank  water gets back to normal.
Good luck!  Smiley
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totaqui
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2010, 06:07:14 PM »

Ok, I know this is kinda st*pid, but I did it out of love. I bought him from the pet shop like that. When I saw him, he was siting at the bottom of the tank with his tail sprawled out like in the picture. The guy told me that he might have a swim bladder problem and he is not too sure about him. But, I took pitty and although he is not well, I still bought him. Plus, he is too cute Smiley!! I decided, even if he didn't live too long, to try and take care of him and continue to search for information as for how to treat his condition; if it is treatable.
Also, I was impressed with the advice that I had gotten from you guys with a previous problem that I had with my pearlscale goldfish; so I am asking for your continued support so that I can help Blue this time. Thank You...

And to Nossie and Mindemae, yes he is tilting to the side from time to time when he swims and stop. But right now, he is positioned vertically, trying to get some air. I had a really strange experience with him this morning. I was monitoring him and he was pretty much the same but all of a sudden he began lying at the bottom of the bowl with his belly side up. I minced up some peas, held him in the water and tried to feed him. He looked like he was at the brink of dying. Then a few minutes later, he regained himself and started swimming around the bowl again. He has been like that ever since. Oh, I almost forgot, I have a bit of Melafix in the water also.
« Last Edit: March 18, 2010, 06:29:51 PM by totaqui » Logged
Nossie
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #4 on: March 19, 2010, 09:28:27 AM »

Did you at least move him back to the tank? Because he's for sure not going to get better in the bowl... it's probably very dirty already by now :/
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Mindemae
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #5 on: March 19, 2010, 09:36:17 AM »

I agree with Nossie...he's not going to get better in a small bowl with no aeration AND forget the Melafix..it isn't going to help with a swim bladder problem!!!!!

I posted earlier about swim bladders so I am going to re-type what I posted in a different post here, but I'm afraid your little Blue probably has permant damage to his swim bladder...it may have been a defect from birth.
Any way here is some info and ways to treat swim bladder:

Swim bladder problems are the most common among the short bodied, egg shaped fish and that the most common cause of swim bladder disease is from constipation.  That is why it is so important to feed a varied diet when it comes to goldfish.  The swimming bladder of the goldfish actually vent throught the intestines and when the passage becomes blocked, the fish either float on the surface or sink when they try to swim.  The earlier swim bladder is treated the better the prognosis is because once afflicted with it the fish is always more prone to having it happen again.  So changing the diet to a more digestable one (live, frozen, and fresh vegetable foods) is really important.
Goldfish that are more likey to get swim bladder can also become afflicted from something as simple as a drastic water temperature change, injury to the swimbladder itself, and gas bubbles forming in the intestines.  Usually gas bubbles are from a bacterial infection and must be treated with an ORAL antibiotic fish food such as Furanace.  Jungle makes a great medicated fish food.  To kill a bacterial infection affecting the swim bladder an antibiotic must be ingested by the goldfish to be effective.  Just treating the water won't work as well or fast enough.
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Nossie; Mindemae
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #6 on: March 19, 2010, 12:23:39 PM »

Thanks for the info guys. To Nossie, I did place him back in the tank. Also, when I had him in the bowl, I was changing a percentage of his water daily (I had water stored over the past few weeks just for the fish).
I have freeze dried bloodworms. Can it be fed to him? What kind of vegetables can also be given?
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Kim
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #7 on: March 19, 2010, 01:47:09 PM »

Hello totaqui,

I have a Black Moor Goldfish and a Fantail Goldfish and when they seem to experience swim bladder issues, I treat with Melafix.  I got this info from an aquarium maintenance store.  Althought the bottle doesn't say for swim bladder, it seems to do the trick.  Just last week my Black Moor was experiencing issues and I started to use the Melafix and he seems to be doing okay now.  I agree that he should be put back in the tank with the other fish, that bowl will get dirty way too quickly and will likely stress him and kill him.  I totally understand why you bought the fish, I did the same thing with the Black Moor (his eye was infected and cloudy)...that was over two years ago Smiley  Good luck. 
 Grin
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Mindemae
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #8 on: March 19, 2010, 02:34:21 PM »

Freeze dried worms are great to feed, along with freeze dried shrimp.
Red leaf lettuce chopped fne is great to feed along with frozen or fresh chopped spinach and peas.
Mine also love oranges.  I take off all the inner skin and feed the pulpy part to them.  they get so excited they eat it out of my fingers!
Also, check with your pet store and see if they have frozen live foods or frozen meals for omnivores.  My fish go crazy for these.  I just drop a cube in frozen and as it melts it releases all kinds of fish yummy food.  For 1 small fish a half a cube is probably more than enough.
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totaqui
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #9 on: March 20, 2010, 01:16:01 AM »

Cool, I'll try it out. I'm going to the pet store tomorrow to see if I can get anything else to treat the problem; I'll also ask about the one you used as an example Mindemae.

For now, Blue still continues to rest at the botton of the tank from time to time, until one of the hooligans that I call fish, passes by (they behave so badly, especially when its feeding time and they are all goldfish!!). He then gets up and swims around with them; it makes me feel so good to see him do it. In the meantime I'll keep you posted on his progress... THANKS!!
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Nossie
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #10 on: March 20, 2010, 03:33:43 AM »

Aww! How many do you have? (:

I hope your fish is going to be alright!
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Katarine
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #11 on: March 20, 2010, 10:19:09 PM »

Yes, please keep us informed on Blue! It's good to see he wants to be back in with the other guys. Smiley
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Kim
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #12 on: March 22, 2010, 11:13:02 AM »

With the Melafix, you can treat the whole tank with the other fish too, just don't forget to take out the filter.  Then after 7 days of treatment take 25% of the water out and replace with new water and put in a new filter.  Good Luck...I hope your fishy gets better!! Funny how we get attached to these little guys!! Smiley
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totaqui
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #13 on: March 23, 2010, 06:04:48 AM »

Hey guys, thanks for your comments... With Blue included, I have five goldfish; two orandas, a fantail, a pearlscale and a black moor (he is the ring leader). I also have a female beta and two neon tetras in the tank also. The beta just do her own thing. Sometimes she sinks to the bottom with Blue and keeps him company. The two tetras also do their own thing, especially chase each other around the tank. I agree, it is amazing how attached we get to these little guys.
And oh, I almost forgot my update. Blue is doing really great!! He is swimming with the gang even more now. He still sinks to the bottom from time to time, but not as often. I am treating the tank with Melafix just until I get the other meds for him. I checked up on the meds though, but the guy at the store where I usually buy my products from recommended Melafix too. 'Sigh', I'm gonna have to look around some more; but the Melafix seems to be working (thanks Kim). I'm really seeing an improvement in his swimming. But just in case, I'm still gonna look around after the 7 days is up (I'm still riding on your suggestion too Mindemae and I'm getting the testing kit for the water too Nossie).
I am in search though, for a lionhead goldfish. I just love to see those little guys, especially the ones from the pics in the photo gallery. That will complete my little gang.
In the meantime, as I promised, I will keep you posted.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2010, 06:14:03 AM by totaqui » Logged
Nossie
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #14 on: March 23, 2010, 06:18:34 AM »

Very nice to hear! (: I'm sure he will be just fine!
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Katarine
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #15 on: March 23, 2010, 10:19:55 PM »

That is so good to hear! you are such a dedicated owner to Blue.. I'm sure he's grateful you helped him.. Smiley
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Mindemae
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #16 on: March 24, 2010, 10:16:47 AM »

I would suspect that if he is responding some to the melafix treatment that he may have a bacterial infection.
It may not be enough though and I would still look for an oral antibiotic/medicated food to feed him.  Bacterial infections associated with swim bladder problems need to be treated orally or permant damage to the swim bladder could occur or the bacterial infection may come back full force.  Jungle makes a good oral medicated fish pellet food that contains Furanace.  It's important to just feed the medicated food only and nothing else.  I wish we lived closer I would send you some, since I keep it on hand just in case. Smiley
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Kim
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #17 on: March 25, 2010, 03:05:13 PM »

I am so happy to hear that Blue is doing better!  I hope he continues to show signs of improvement!! Smiley
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totaqui
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #18 on: April 21, 2010, 08:39:01 PM »

Hey guys, I promised an update on Blue, so here I am...
I'm sorry to announce that Blue passed away on April 15th. I tried my best to take good care of him, but knowing the condition he was in, he was going to go at some point in time, but I didn't brace myself for it so soon.
I went out during the afternoon to get some stuff for him and the others from the pet shop. But before I left home, I remembered seeing him sitting at the bottom as usual, but as crazy as it sounds, it looked like if he was talking to my other oranda while the others were gathered behind her. I didn't pay it no mind and I just went about my business. Just as I reached home and got inside, I checked on them and I saw him lying on his side, motionless. I fished him out and checked him to find out, he was gone. He received a good burial.
I want to thank you guys though, for all your support and advice; it helped alot. However, although some people would look at him as just a pet fish, he was like family because I was attached to him from the time I brought him home. I really miss him...
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Nossie
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #19 on: April 22, 2010, 02:25:13 AM »

I'm sorry for your loss Sad It was such a pretty fish  Cry
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Hanna
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #20 on: April 22, 2010, 07:13:03 AM »

 Sad It is so sad ... so sorry for your loss

and isn't it remarcable, as if he knew.... and let the other fishes know..... Sad
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kfore
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #21 on: May 04, 2010, 10:35:48 PM »

I have an Oranda, Baby, I have had him for over a year now. I got him very small and now he is bigger.  He lives in a 120 tank with a pleco, 20 danios, 4 fan tailed gold fish.  Everything was great, and he suddenly started to swim upside down. I have had Orandas before that died from swim bladder issues, so I am aware of it. In fact I feed him food that sinks so he doesn't gulp any extra air in- I removed him and put him in my 10 gallon hosp. tank.  It has filteration on it.  I have fed him peas for 5 days (shelled) Removed filter and added melafix, pimafix, and salt.  PH and nitrate are at good levels.  I plan to get medicated food and give to him.  He sits on bottom of tank and when he does swim it is more like he does summersaults.  On his right side he is swollen about twice the side of his left side.  It has gone down alitte but still swelled up on one side.  Any suggestions? Huh
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Jerry
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #22 on: September 15, 2010, 11:42:59 AM »

Hi,

Any Blue Oranda owners out there that can help me?

I've just done a really daft thing and bought two Blue Orandas, one of which was displaying unusual behaviour. I've been keeping fish for about a year now and this is the first time I have come across this condition however these are my first two of this type.  I'm pretty certain from what I've read that the fish has Swim Bladder but also it has brown discolouration on its scales. I have had the fish for about 4 weeks. When I purchased him he was swimming upside down and looking as if he was trying to rub himself against the gravel floor. I asked the assistant if the fish was ok and he assured me it was. I pointed out again that the two fish were definitely acting differently from one another and he said it was fine. Against by better judgement I ignored my instinct and bought the pair of Blues. Since then this fish has developed a brownish discoloration which seems to be spreading. I revisited the shop and another person said to try salt. I have now done that and I can't say I see much change. After feeling completely in the dark as to how to help this fish recover I did some looking around on the net and came across this site. I was disappointed to hear that probably my fish isnít going to pull through but have now started feeding peas as a last ditch attempt. I find it difficult to understand how the bladder condition causes the skin irritation. Is that a symptom of Swim Bladder or has my fish got two different problems? Is there anyone out there who can explain and instruct as to what to do? 
 
 

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Nossie
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #23 on: September 15, 2010, 12:04:22 PM »

All these problems your fish is having is probably connected to the water quality. By the way, before feeding the peas it would be better leaving the fish without food for 2-3 days and then feeding peas.
First of all, skin irritation is almost always caused by bad water quality. In other words, the skin problems have nothing whatsoever to do with the swim bladder problem. So buy a test kit, and test pH, ammonia, nitrite and nitrate. If you can't afford a test kit at this time (you still have to buy it asap, no matter what you say.) you could bring a cup of tank water to the pet shop and have it tested there.
That's good to do even if I highly doubt there's anything wrong with the fishes' skin, there ARE after all, blue/chocolate orandas. As in, blue orandas with brown spots. And it's nothing uncommon that a goldfish changes color as it grows older.
Like in the pic below:
[image]


Furthermore, giving the correct amount of space to each goldfish is incredibly important, not to mention filtration. So be CERTAIN that you have AT LEAST a 20 gallon tank for these two fish + a filter rated for a 40 gallon. It has to pump 5 times the tank volume or more, so if you don't have a filter strong enough, buy one that pumps 100gal/h. At the minimum.
If your setup isn't similar to this (or larger, with better filter) your fish is probably suffering because of the high nitrates and this is why they can't recover.
Now, their diet is very important too. ESPECIALLY WHEN KEEPING ORANDAS. These have rounder body than most other fancy goldfish and are therefore more susceptible to swim bladder issues connected to their digestive tract. So feeding flakes all the time isn't going to do it. You need to buy one or two different packs of good quality staple pellet, preferably with lots of vegetable matter, and supplement this diet with vegetables and live foods, such as peas, lettuce, cucumber, zucchini or boiled carrots. To live foods count frozen, freeze-dried or packed in gel, blood worms, brine shrimp, clam, tubifex worms, plankton... you can choose any of these and try having at least two kinds of staple foods and live foods. Freeze-dried is easiest to prepare and feed.
Make sure that none of the things you're feeding the fish are spiced in any way.

That's about it. Now test the water, and tell me how big your tank is, how big your filter is (pump strength) and how many fish you're keeping in the same tank.
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Jerry
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #24 on: September 15, 2010, 03:14:54 PM »

Hi,

Thanks for your quick response. I'll address your points one by one.

I've tested the water with my own kit. This was done to prove to the guy in the shop it wasnít anything to do with MY water. A friend also dropped some water into the shop today from my tank for them to test as well. It proved to be fine.

All of my other fish in the tank are well. I do a half water change every 2 -3 weeks and my filters are changed as and when the manufacturers of the tank specify.  When doing the change I never change or clean any of the filters sponges and always add the correct amount of water conditioner i.e. Aqua Safe or any product that the fish shop has recommended I use.  Also I keep coming back to the fact that both fish were bought together and the other one is fine. Surely if it were the water he would be showing signs as well?

Didnít know about the Blue/Choc so that hopefully explains the coloration change. That was what I was most worried about as I thought it was where he had been rubbing himself along the gravel on the bottom of the tank.

My tank is a 125 L tank which converts to 33 and a bit gallons. I have 5 other fish in the tank,  4 x @ approximately 2ins and 1 x @ approximately 2.5 ins.  I had 6 objects in the tank before the bigger fish were put in but have removed 3 of those to be sympathetic to the larger fish.  Iíve always under stocked as I canít stand the thought of anything live not having enough room to live in.  My tank is a Jewel with the filtration system built into the tank. 

I donít feed flakes to the cold water fish as I tend to feed flaked food plus live worms etc. to the trops.  I feed the cold water fish pellets. Live shrimp, live blood worms, and frozen worm cubes.  I did try planting plants for a short trial period (before getting the BOís) but found that the fish ate them and the bits made the water a bit smelly.  I am delighted  to find out I can feed Lettuce, corn, cucumber etc. and Iíll start introducing those new food types straight away. Will it be ok for all of my cold water fish?

Hope Iíve done ok, please let me know if Iím doing anything wrong or can improve upon things.  The well being of my fish is really important to me and Iím happy to learn as much as I can to keep my fish happy and well. 
Oh, sorry messed up on the pea thing. Was so keen to start trying to help the fish I just put them straight in. All of the fish seemed to like them including the one Iím worried about.  The SB fish is looking fairly happy. Heís swimming to the surface now and again and eating so I hoping thatís a good sign.
Thanks for taking the time to reply and hope to hear back from youÖ

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Nossie
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #25 on: September 15, 2010, 05:50:28 PM »

I would like to see numerical results of your water testing. It's fine if you test with your own kit Cheesy
Because I am suspecting issues with the nitrates, since your tank is heavily over crowded, and you're not keeping any live plants with the fish.

About the maintenance, you're doing it perfectly right! If you could change even 75% of the water every week it'd be even better Smiley
And remember to keep a bucket of the water you take out of the tank to clean the filter media in. Otherwise the debris will be caught in the filter, contributing to the biological load in the system => Higher nitrates again. And never change all the media at once, change half at a time whenever it's necessary. (Or even better, whenever the manufacturer tells you to)

Fish are very different, just like humans, some fish are more sensitive to changes in, or some levels of water parameters. In other words, one fish doesn't have to notice it or show symptoms, while another one could get sick as soon as the nitrates get the slightest over recommended levels.

So, about the tank, your tank is a 125L, which would be sufficient for at most 3 fish, you say you have 5 other fish, aside from the orandas, meaning 5-6 fish. And this won't work. Especially if you're not having any live plants to absorb the nitrates! Buy some Java Fern or Anubias for the tank, these plants taste bad and have too hard leaves for the goldfish to want to eat them. Not only will they absorb nitrates, but they'll also give oxygen to the water, and contribute to a more natural environment for your fish Smiley
So first of all, give away a few fish so that you'll have only 3 left. You know that goldfish can reach around 20cm size if they feel like it Wink  Not to mention that they're excreting a huge amount of ammonia and nitrogen. They need much, much more space and better filtration than an average tropical fish does. In other words, think that each goldfish needs 10 gallons each, or 40L. You could also buy another tank of the same size and keep the other three/four fishes in there Smiley

You could even feed the vegetables to your tropicals without problems! Smiley But in that case, it'd be better with smaller, softer food, like the boiled carrot, or small pieces of peas... be creative! Cheesy

It's fine with the peas Wink But usually, it's good (if the fish is constipated) to let it go without food for a few days for the digestive tract to clear up a bit. Not to mention that it's really good for the nitrate levels! Cheesy

So, I hope this fish of yours will get better soon! Good luck Smiley
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Jerry
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #26 on: September 22, 2010, 01:00:32 PM »

Hi,

Sorry I've taken so long to get back to you!

Thanks for the advice. I was disappointed to find out that I have too many fish in my tank. Unfortunately getting another tank isnít really an option.  Iíll do as you advise and take 75 percent out each week and get the plants you suggest.  The Nitrate levels were normal when I last measured them. Iíll do them again tomorrow and let you know what level itís at.

I know from what you say that I will have to look at reducing my stock although itís going to be hard. Silly arenít I!  I feel responsible for the lives Iíve taken on and donít like to think of them going anywhere else maybe to a bad home. (You never know with people do you) Iím annoyed with the shop as well. I always ask their advice and feel they have put sales before welfare.

Will get back tomorrow with my levels.

Thanks again for your help

Oh before I go, the poorly one is still ok ish. Eating and looking reasonably lively fingers crossed he might be ok. Also the brownish scales have gone back to grey again. You can only just see the difference in the shading. Maybe thatís a good sign  Smiley.

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Nossie
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Re: Blue Oranda with possible swim bladder problem
« Reply #27 on: September 23, 2010, 03:42:59 AM »

Remember that for future reference! A big water change might correct most problems Smiley (But it's of course important to test the water prior to water changes)

I know what you mean! I was about to give away my pom pom this last week, I had bought him from a really crappy shop d: I had him pretty much separated from the other fish all summer, due to the fact that I had only two smaller tanks and it was enough for me having to change 70% of the water twice a week in one tank already! Either way, I was going to give him away because once I introduced him to the rest of my fish in the new, big tank, he was bullying them, biting their fins and heads and anything he could reach! I put him into a floating basket, and by the time I came home (and he had escaped) he was all nice again, so I've kept him.
But I had the same dilemma! Really, what if some id*ot would buy him and they would place him in a little bowl or something? Of course, the pet shop I was going to give him to is a great pet shop! But still |: I felt really responsible for him.
Don't you have any friends that might take one of your goldfish maybe?

Glad to hear your fish is doing well! Smiley
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