Really ill black moor - should I euthanise? Please help
Hi there, sorry if some of you have read this on another site,just double posting as I'm really desperate.
I'm devastated to be posting this, especially as my first post on this site, but I really need some advice. My black moor has been really suffering for almost a week now - it turns out the test kit I was using was inaccurate (strips, rookie mistake) and I didn't catch a big nitrate spike until it was too late. I've managed to get all the levels back under control now (after a few days) so the water quality is good but I'm worried it's too late. He's floating near the bottom of the tank one side up, still swims about a little if I put my hand in/water change etc but otherwise is very listless and just seems to be suffering really badly. I've had him for four years and I desperately don't want to lose him but I don't want to leave him suffering unnecessarily if he can't recover from what I would assume is nitrate poisoning. His gill colour and stomach are fine, no signs of redness, and no spiking on the scales or clamping of fins. He is on his own in a 64 litre planted tank with waterfall filter. He moved to this tank two years ago and hasn't had any issues apart from one swim bladder problem six months ago which was resolved by fasting and peas. So basically I'd like some advice on what you guys think I should do now. Is it best to wait and see now the levels have been fixed (over 24 hours good levels) or is he past the point of recovery? The other thing I thought is that he might now be suffering from a swim bladder issue again with the stress and previous water quality, so I could begin to treat this if it's worth it? It would break my heart to lose him, it's been such a terrible few days. But as I say I don't want him to spend any more time suffering if he's not coming back from it. Thank you so much in advance.
Re: Really ill black moor - should I euthanise? Please help
Sorry that I've only just seen this post now. Sorry to read about this.
Having had a goldfish who seemed to be in a "no return" situation a number of years ago, only for him to slowly recuperate after trying all options, and to go on to live another 4+ years, I rarely advocate euthanasia - I tend to feel that where there's life, there's hope.
Although liquid-based test kits tend to have a better reputation than strip-based test kits, I do find the strips very accurate and easier to read for nitrite and nitrate. The other crucial test is for ammonia but this doesn't occur on the 5/6-in-1 test strips and either requires a test strip specifically for it or a liquid-based test. Do you know what your ammonia readings were or was this not a test you undertook?
If he's still alive (and, admittedly, a fish on its side isn't a good sign), then I'd strongly advocate the following: * daily water changes of 50% - this in itself may be enough to resolve the situation [do these even if ammonia and nitrite are at 0 and nitrates no more than 20 ppm] * if, after 48 hours, there's no change, then I'd advise adding a dose of aquarium salt along with a water change (so that it has the chance to work for 24 hours before the next water change dilutes it) * if, after another 48 hours or so, there's still no change, then it might be time to consider a broad-spectrum medication such as eSHa 2000 or Waterlife Myxazin (in my case, Interpet Anti-Bacterial Infection treatment did the trick). It might be worth starting off with a small dosage, just so that the medication doesn't "send him over the edge".
Long-term, and provided he recuperates from this, then I'd strongly encourage a larger tank. A goldfish really needs to be kept in a tank at least double this water volume in order to fulfill their life expectancies of a decade or longer - see http://injaf.org/aquarium-fish/the-go ... t-size-tank-for-goldfish/ as well as the "Caresheets" on here.
Hope this helps, and hopefully you get a chance to act on it before it's too late. All the very best of luck to you, and keep us posted as we'll be happy to offer further advice if needed.