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ang3la ang3la
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  • Posted on: 3/8/2015 14:23
Urgent! Home needed for lonely and poorly goldfish #1
Hello, I have just adopted a goldfish from someone who was giving him away on Gumtree. He was in a tiny barren tank on his own and I felt sorry for him. I was going to try to adopt him some friends (there are always ads on Gumtree posted by people who don't want their fish anymore) and thought I was going to be helping him but quite the reverse has happened as I have in fact made him unwell by transferring him into a much bigger tank that doesn't have a filter, and over-feeding him, so he's got fin-rot. Unfortunately I now realise I don't have the expertise to take care of him properly long-term and would love him to go to a good home with other fishes for company.

I realise palming off an unwell goldfish is not very cool - I have bought a water testing kit, chlorine crystals, and fin-rot treatment, and did my first partial water change yesterday and shall do so again to get the nitrite level down, so am doing my best to cure him. But is there anyone in London who would adopt him? I will pay for any medicine he might need, I also have 3 tanks left in my garden shed by the previous home owner that I would gladly donate to anyone who can make use of them. I just want him to be alright.

I hope to hear back from someone. Thank you.
fcmf fcmf
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  • Posted on: 4/8/2015 12:49
Re: Urgent! Home needed for lonely and poorly goldfish #2
If you were looking at goldfish on Gumtree, and have gone to the extent of rescuing one, then you must have some level of desire to look after them. However, as with any pet, and for the sake of its welfare, it?s absolutely vital to do the research beforehand so that you can make an informed decision about what is involved and whether you can offer it or not, rather than find out only after an impulse-type acquisition. Having said that, I do think from what you?ve written that you have the qualities of a fishkeeper, the desire to help, and are better equipped than many of those who find themselves home from a local fair with a goldfish in a bag.

For now, and/or until and if someone is able to take him on, I think the best course of action would be for you to try to give him the best opportunity by nursing him back to health. If he?s to survive the stress of another move, he?d need to be in good health, otherwise it?s unlikely he?ll ?make it?. Even if he did, the new owner would need to quarantine him in a separate tank until he?s better which is probably another reason why it?s unlikely that anyone would be willing to take him on unless he?s in better health.

In order to nurse him back to health, you?ll need to buy a filter for the tank as a matter of urgency ? look at http://www.fishkeeping.co.uk/articles ... ilter-beginners-guide.htm (Fluval or Eheim are a couple of brands with good reputations) ? and follow the advice on this website for ?fish-in cycles?. However, if you can get some used filter media (eg aquarium sponge) from somewhere (did the tank he was in come with a filter?), that would help enormously.

Until you can get a filter (I wouldn?t leave it more than a day or two), then you?ll need to do a partial water changes daily ? probably 20-50% of the water changed and replaced with tap water which has been conditioned to remove chlorine. Seachem Prime is a good dechlorinator and helps to remove the toxifying effects of ammonia, etc.

It may well be that, if you manage to help him ?pull through? from the finrot, having gone to the effort and expense to do so, that you might actually enjoy fishkeeping, even if after a few years, your circumstances change and you may have to find a new home for him.

Let us know if we can be of any further help.
ang3la ang3la
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  • Posted on: 4/8/2015 13:02
Re: Urgent! Home needed for lonely and poorly goldfish #3
Hello,

Thank you very much for replying. He was indeed an "impulse adoption" - I was looking for people wanting to rehome pond goldfish (as I have just had a pond put in) and came across this little chap (or chapette - not sure what he/she is) and felt so sorry for him/her that I decided to adopt him because coincidentally the person lived just around the corner from me so I went that evening.

I appreciate I should have done a lot more research but with goldfish being given away as prizes (which is horrendous) and people keeping them in glass bowls, I didn't realise there was so much chemistry involved and thought by putting him a new, bigger tank with some real plants, he'd instantly be happier and healthier. So obviously I'm gutted that the reverse has happened and I've done him some damage.

I did a partial water change the day I first posted, and then did another one yesterday (10%) and retested the water and it was still showing the nitrite level as way too high. I'll try to find a filter that has already been in use asap.

I've also added him fin-rot medicine to the water (silver something or other).

The ongoing problem is that I don't want to keep a solitary fish, I believe all living beings should have company of their own kind, but with 4 rescued cats of my own plus 3 strays who I feed in my garden, I won't have the time to maintain a big, full tank properly.

I hope that someone will see my intentions were good but it's gone wrong because of my lack of experience, and will be willing to help. In the meantime, of course I am doing all that I can to cure him....
ang3la ang3la
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  • Posted on: 4/8/2015 13:10
Re: Urgent! Home needed for lonely and poorly goldfish #4
ps the tank he came in was shoe-box sized with nothing in it apart from a few glass pebbles and a plastic plant.
james15 james15
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  • Posted on: 4/8/2015 13:55
Re: Urgent! Home needed for lonely and poorly goldfish #5
I wouldn't worry too much about your lack of expertise - we all started out that way. There are people here who can offer all the expertise you need. I agree with fmcf above that the best thing to do is try to nurse him back to health. If the tiny tank he came in didn't have a filter either, he's definitely better off now, you haven't made things worse by moving him. Even if it did come with a filter he's still probably better off as he's got more space, and more water, and my advice would be to use that filter in the larger tank until you can get one that's suitably rated, it will be better than nothing.
ang3la ang3la
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  • Posted on: 4/8/2015 14:05
Re: Urgent! Home needed for lonely and poorly goldfish #6
I'm so glad people are replying - thank you - I have been sitting at work sneakily trying to read up on what to do, worrying I'm about to kill a living creature who I was only trying to help.

The tiny tank he came in didn't have a filter.

Last night I took the fish out, used the net to stir up all the waste at the bottom of the tank and scooped out as much as I could - most of it, I would say. Then I did a 10% water change but when I retested the water the nitrite had not gone down from the day before.

There is an aquarium supplies shop not too far from where I live, I will go there tomorrow - perhaps they could even provide some filter that's already started it's cycle... maybe...

Anyway, thank you both for your advice, I'm really grateful just to be talking to people who can help.
fcmf fcmf
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  • Posted on: 4/8/2015 18:20
Re: Urgent! Home needed for lonely and poorly goldfish #7
I would increase the amount of water you're changing from 10% to 20-50% - that should help reduce the nitrite levels. Also, a fish should be left in the tank when changing water/cleaning the tank, to prevent any unnecessary stress or injury when being caught (eg in a net) and moved. With the thorough netting-out of waste yesterday, and with continued daily water changes, there oughtn't to be so much waste at the bottom if it gets stirred about that it will affect him ie best to leave him in, net out what waste you can see (rather than stirring it up from the substrate, if any), and do the partial water change with the conditioned water; this should be all you need to do rather than moving him. The waste that you see isn't the only waste - much of it is the ammonia produced and is invisible in the water, which is one of the main reasons why water changes are crucial even if the water looks clean. Hope this helps.

I have absolutely no idea how much work is involved in pond-kept fish - but is your original plan of keeping him, plus some others, in your garden pond still an option for you, once he's nursed back to health?
ang3la ang3la
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  • Posted on: 4/8/2015 20:14
Re: Urgent! Home needed for lonely and poorly goldfish #8
Thank you very much, I will do exactly as you say this evening.

I have been feeding him peas as apparently that is good for them - is that correct? He sucks them in and then spits them out but then afterwards they have disappeared from the bottom of the tank so he must be eating them. He is also nibbling the plants. Does he need fish flakes on top of this as well? When I drop them in the tank he doesn't seem to notice them floating on top, which is why so many were dropping to the bottom and so I was dropping more in - obviously too much - as I was worried he wasn't eating enough.

He is one of the goldfish with the long flowing tails, apparently he would not survive in an outside pond unless it were heated, so that's why ideally I would like someone with other fish in a lovely big tank to adopt him.
Miss Dorsal Miss Dorsal
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  • Posted on: 4/8/2015 20:19
Re: Urgent! Home needed for lonely and poorly goldfish #9
What part of London are you in?
fcmf fcmf
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  • Posted on: 4/8/2015 20:55
Re: Urgent! Home needed for lonely and poorly goldfish #10
Great.

Peas are good - but as a supplement to flakes. Flakes or pellets contain all the nutrients a fish will need whereas peas alone won't. Therefore, you'll need to continue feeding flakes but maybe giving peas as a treat once or twice a week.

To feed peas, you're best to pour boiling water over the pea which means that the shell easily slides off. Then discard the shell and chop the two halves of the pea into tiny morsels - even one half might be enough at a time. The fish will love foraging for the pieces.

As for the flakes, you could put your fingers in under the surface of the water and release them then. However, even if they sink to the bottom, he should forage for them and manage to retrieve them over the course of the day. Any food you put in will eventually be found by him, so no need to feed more to compensate for those that have fallen to the base of the tank.