I just spoke to customer services who apparently asked an aquarist for his opinion after looking at the poor quality photos I sent them in email and he has said it’s just poop?! Seriously. My fish after eating just peas have expelled 25 reddish brown worms which are still alive and what I’ve witnessed moving in the bucket of water after 10 mins. Poop doesn’t wriggle but customer services says it does due to current in the water?
I didn’t touch the bucket or the water these worms were in and they were moving so I poured boiling water and bleach onto them and it still took a while for them to die. I don’t know if it’s the pets store being in denial and refusing to deal with the problem or not. Because they are adamant they are not worms despite all the symptoms and behaviour of my fish I realise I will never get the veterinary help these fish desperately need. As I’ve now exhausted every option open to me and I can’t do anything else I’ve told them I’m returning the fish for them to treat them in a quarantine tank for the worm infestation and when and if they have been cleared I will come and collect them with the fish looking healthy. I don’t have any faith in them treating my fish with a veterinary medication especially if they use store staff to be the ones monitoring them as they probably won’t have any knowledge or experience of identifying round worm infestation. Then the fish without treatment will die. To be told that all of this is just the fish having a long poop has left me feeling so angry. I’ve told them I will be claiming all my expenses back from them as they have caused me and the fish nothing but stress. I want to take a sample of the worms to be examined by an expert or some scientist that deals with fish diseases because if the fish die and I can’t prove what was wrong with them then the pet store will hold no responsibility. So I was hoping someone on here might know of somewhere that does this type of sample tests of the fishes worms that are diagnosed to be poop. I will get the money together to have it done I just need to know where I can find someone to help with this? I really appreciate any help or advice with this. Also what would you do if it was yourself in this situation? I’m at a loss with this. Thank you.
I think that, rather than getting the professional advice it sounded like you were going to get, you've been "palmed off" to a standard member of staff - an aquarist is someone who keeps an aquarium, so they could have any level of experience and may only be basing their response on their own experience, but I think you've summed up the likely situation very well. Anyway, it's clear from everything you've said that we know what we're dealing with, so I would ignore that side of things and work out a way forward between us.
Just to check - presumably you didn't have any carbon in the filter when you dosed the medication? (If so, that prevents it working properly.) What is the standard course of medication, how many days did you dose for, and does it mention extending the treatment course?
Are you able to take a video of the fish and the worms, and upload the videos onto YouTube? That would be worth having as evidence for anyone you seek advice from. If you're really keen for a veterinary opinion, then you could use a service I used in the past before I was aware of these forums' existence - I sought advice from vet professionals with aquatic expertise via www.justanswers.com in the USA; from recollection, it was about £25 for basic-level advice and there were 3 tiers of advice but even the basic level was well worth it for peace of mind. Alternatively, one of the aquatic vets via the link I gave you the other day may be able to help, or local unis' veterinary depts (if there's one near you) may have folk who specialise in fish and be very willing to help.
Hi thanks for your reply. I have tried the two medications I’ve mentioned before and followed the instructions and even did esha ndx treatment again after two days even though I was supposed to wait a week I couldn’t. The fish didn’t pass any worms during the second dose and I kept checking. Tonight they passed two more worms but I can see they have still loads inside them. The vets listed on the link you provided are miles away from where I live and I’m not sure they can prescribe anything from speaking to me on the phone? The pet store have now took the decision to ignore me and I’ve contacted them via email, and over social media platforms. I was even put through to head office and the woman on the phone sounded like it was a massive inconvenience to her and yawned several times while I spoke. I will try the other link for USA vets but can they prescribe medication?
I read somewhere that these worms bury into the muscle of fish and don’t budge which might explain why I’m struggling to get rid of them. I don’t know if it’s too late for my fish or not I’ve never felt so helpless. One of the fish looks like it’s bleeding under the skin I just can’t beleive how distressed they are and I can’t do anything. If and when they die I won’t ever get fish again, I never knew half the stuff I’ve learned and how difficult it is when fish need veterinary help. I’ve attached a photo of a worm the fish passed earlier, with a bit of a pea in the pot and something else. But apparently it’s only poop said the aquarist for the pet shop.
If you still think it's worms, rather than poo, than you'll absolutely have to get video footage of these worms when moving about *with any filter current switched off* and also of everything you're describing on the fish themselves and the fish behaviour generally - without that, it's likely that any vet (in the UK or the USA via justanswer.com) will reach the same diagnosis as Fishlady (who is extremely experienced). No, the USA vets on justanswer.com will not prescribe medication but may or may not suggest contacting an aquatic vet here in the UK if they think the situation requires it.