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How to fix swimbladder disease in Goldfish caused mainly by constipation in DT.

Discussion in 'Fish Keeping Chat' started by sleepyhollow, Apr 24, 2011.


  1. sleepyhollow

    sleepyhollow Banned

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    How to Fix Swimbladder Disease in Goldfish - wikiHow

    Your goldfish is swimming sideways or upside-down, it may have swimbladder disorder. This can often be easily fixed.


    1 Buy a package of frozen peas, or search in your freezer for the bag you bought two years ago. They are rock hard by now, so defrost them.
    2 Take one or two peas and make sure they are nice and defrosted. Take the skin off.
    3 Put the pea(s) in the goldfish's tank.
    4 Keep trying. If the fish doesn't eat the pea immediately, remove it and try again later. The fish will eat the pea eventually, as all goldfish are perpetually hungry, and require a certain amount of greens in their diet for optimum nutrition. Until the fish eats the pea, withhold all other foods.
    5 Alternatively, try feeding live, frozen, or freeze-dried daphnia to the goldfish.
    6 The fish should be swimming upright in no time.

    Tips Many goldfish diseases and illnesses are exacerbated by poor water conditions.
    A fresh, clean environment is conducive to happy healthy fish.
    Only one or two peas are needed.
    If you are feeding out flakes or pellets on a regular basis, soak them for 5-15 minutes in a cup of tank water. Often there are numerous air pockets created in the food during production. This excess air can become trapped in the digestive system.
    Peas work great but they may need cooked a bit not to mush but enough to soften them so the fish can get them down.
    A goldfish with theses symptoms could also be reacting to being picked on by other goldfish in the same tank. You can also try putting the sick fish in a "hospital" tank to see if they recover.

    Warnings The methods here are effective when there is waste matter trapped in the fish's digestive tract, causing a constipation that presses against the swim bladder, making it unable to inflate and deflate as normal.
    Swimbladder disorder can be a side effect of bacterial infection, and the methods above will not resolve the problem if this is the case.
    If your fish does not respond in 3 - 5 days, try medicating your fish with an appropriate medication obtained from a knowledgeable aquarium shop.

    Another reason fish develop "swimbladder disease" is due to internal bacterial infections that prevent the fish's air bladder from filling or emptying properly. While peas are great for curing gas build-up in their digestive system, they are not able to cure this problem. Generally, the best medications for this are gram negative antibiotics such as Minocycline. Be careful when using these medications as the beneficial nitrifying bacteria in your filter are also gram negative, thus causing problems with elevated levels of ammonia or nitrite in the water.

    Gotta love fish science.

    I have found that nearly every time someone I know has a fish with swim bladder disease it is due to the use of floating food. When they make the switch to sinking food it clears the swim bladder disease up every time.
     
    #1 sleepyhollow, Apr 24, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2011
    canuckjill likes this.
  2. sleepyhollow

    sleepyhollow Banned

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  3. Eroswoof

    Eroswoof Guest

    :eek: aww, dan will be ever so grateful xxxx
     
  4. noushka05

    noushka05 Unicorn denier. Snowflake. Activist ;)

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    thanks for this, i'd never heard of the pea thing before:)
     
  5. sleepyhollow

    sleepyhollow Banned

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    Because the pea is so big (but not too big) it pushes the gas out as it travels through the DT. Pretty clever, and simple! The highly renowed fish expert guy in America (forgotten his name) uses this to a 70% success rate. :D The other 30% is probably in need of anitbiotics, due to the swim bladder being bacterial related and NOT gas/food blockage.
     
    #5 sleepyhollow, Apr 24, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2011
  6. Chillinator

    Chillinator Guest

    It's not actually related to the physical size of the pea, it's simply the fact that peas are softer, more easily digestable and thus easier to egest than the bulk of dry foods.

    It's also worth mentioning that swimbladder problems can arise as a result of tumors, either malignant or benign. As the tumor grows, it can press against the swimbladder and upset the equilibriiium (or in plain english, the balance of gas) inside the organ.
     
  7. sleepyhollow

    sleepyhollow Banned

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    It IS the physical size AND the fact it is easily digestable.

    And yes, there are other factors as you point out that can cause swim bladder, the ones I posted are just the more common ones. Hence why I posted the link, with more info and discussions about other causes! ;)
     
    #7 sleepyhollow, Apr 24, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 28, 2011
  8. Chillinator

    Chillinator Guest

    With respect, I have to disagree with your claim about the size of the peas having an effect. There isn't currently any scientific evidence to back it up. A small fish certainly wouldn't be able to swallow a whole pea, it would have to be cut into much smaller pieces and each piece fed individually; thus casting reasonable doubt over the theory.

    I am also aware that the thread in question was relating to swimbladder conditions brought about by constipation, however it would be better if the article also encompassed causes including tumors and damage to organs. Assuming a bacterial infection has been ruled out, it can't be said whether or not the condition is due to either constipation or tumors/organ damage unless the affected fish is cut open and examined. It could cause more suffering for the fish if its life is prolonged if the problem was in fact being caused by something more sinister than simple constipation or bloat.
     
    #8 Chillinator, Apr 24, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 28, 2011
  9. Chillinator

    Chillinator Guest

    Constipation is usually caused by a rectal blockage. Digestion is the process by which food is broken down mechanically and chemically from large, insoluble molecules into smaller, soluble molecules which can be absorbed into the bloodstream. Feeding a fish large food items will take longer to digest, potentially exacerbating the problem by causing further blockage. The texture of the foodstuffs offered is what plays the physical role in clearing the digestive tract. Epsom salts (Magnesium sulfate) are often used on fish to clear constipation, yet the salt crystals are hardly large.
     
    #9 Chillinator, Apr 24, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 28, 2011
  10. Chillinator

    Chillinator Guest

    A fishkeeper would be rather disappointed if they tried to feed a small goldfish whole peas and discovered that the fish wasn't physically capable of swallowing them, don't you think? Why do you think soft, high-fibre foods and plenty of water are recommended for treating constipation in humans? The size of the food has nothing to do with it.
     
    #10 Chillinator, Apr 24, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 28, 2011
  11. Chillinator

    Chillinator Guest

    The info you posted was absolutely fine, it was your claim about the size of the peas involved that provoked the contradiction. I clearly stated that the texture of the food offered is what clears constipation, which suggests either mashing or chopping the peas into smaller, more easily digestible pieces. Fish can and do choke on food!
     
    #11 Chillinator, Apr 24, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 28, 2011
  12. sleepyhollow

    sleepyhollow Banned

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    "Swim bladder disorder that improper diet causes is treated by reducing feedings or by putting the goldfish on a fast for one to two days. Soaking pellets in water before feeding makes then easier for the goldfish to digest. Introducing food with high fiber, such as romaine lettuce, zucchini, spinach, squash and grated carrots, may cure constipation and relieve the swim bladder disorder. Dr. Greg Lewbart, professor of fish medicine at North Carolina State's College of Veterinary Medicine, says that offering one cooked pea daily will help break down impaction in the goldfish's stomach."

    Read more: Goldfish Swim Bladder Disorder | eHow.com Goldfish Swim Bladder Disorder | eHow.com
     
    #12 sleepyhollow, Apr 25, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 28, 2011
  13. Chillinator

    Chillinator Guest

    I am well aware of Dr. Lewbart's research, he suggests cooking the pea to soften it and thus make it more easily digestible, nowhere does he suggest feeding the pea whole. A large fish would have no trouble swallowing whole peas, however smaller fish would find it much harder to swallow such a large food item, potentially causing the fish to choke (often to death) and creating more blockage in the intestine. It would need to be chopped up or mashed.
     
    #13 Chillinator, Apr 25, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 28, 2011
  14. sleepyhollow

    sleepyhollow Banned

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    Of course there are lots of other reasons for swim bladder and one of these is, and treated differently:


    Treating Bacterial Infections
    An aquarium that is overstocked or has inadequate filtration may cause a goldfish to contract a bacterial infection. You should quarantine fish suffering from a bacterial infection and treat them with fish-safe antibiotics (for example, minocycline, tetracyclilne or erythromycin). You also must resolve water quality issues in the goldfish aquarium to prevent further illness.


    Read more: Goldfish Swim Bladder Disorder | eHow.com Goldfish Swim Bladder Disorder | eHow.com
     
  15. Chillinator

    Chillinator Guest

    In most cases it would be that the peas would have to be cooked, de-shelled and either chopped into small chunks or mashed for very small fish. The diameter of the intestine in a goldfish is barely a few millimetres; most goldfish can't even swallow whole peas.

    I'm contradicting your advice to make sure that either a) fishkeepers don't stand there scratching their heads wondering why their goldfish can't seem to swallow whole peas, or b) fish choking to death or the constipation exacerbating itself because of food items that are too large.

    It's all for the greater good. Fish are delicate animals and all too often have I seen people come onto this forum and heard of their fish dying because of the smallest of things. We have to take a rather stringent approach.
     
    #15 Chillinator, Apr 25, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 28, 2011
  16. canuckjill

    canuckjill PetForums VIP

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    I think that bringing the simple fix and the links on how to do it correctly are a good thing. i can understand that you want to make sure it is all correct but that is why the link is there at least thats what I thought. I hope you two realize that at the end of the day you are both after the same thing...saving a fish with swimmersbladder....something I had never heard of until recently. Found it very interesting...
     
  17. Fishyfins

    Fishyfins PetForums Member

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    ....wow, this sort of thing seems to be happening a lot more frequently here than it used to.

    Sleepy, your help and info is indeed welcomed here with open arms, and the bulk of what you posted is good solid advice. peas are a fantastic way to cure constipation and swim bladder in fish (i wont get into the other causes and solutions here, surfice to say the "pea" remedy is one of many solutions, and it depends wat has caused the infection, as to how effective it will be, but certainly the most common causes will be cured by it).

    But we d need to be very careful in wat advice we give out. people like me, and Chilly, who have been part of online aquarium forums for a long time, know the danger of posting even small amounts of "bad" advice. take one example here for instance: about 4 years ago, there was a post on a marine forum about placing of corals, with the opening post mentioning that he "glued" his corals to rocks using regular superglue. no one nit-picked this, and soon, there were many complaints from people who had tried the same thing, and the superglue had proved toxic, and killed their fish. in the end, it turned out he had a tank so big, the effect was minute, but people with smaller tanks had been effected muh more drastically. thats just one example where one simple sweeping statement caused widespread damage in the hobby.

    im not saying your advice was that "dangerous" or even "bad". im sure the feeding of wrong sized peas wont lead to mass fish death, but its an old habbit that dies hard, and we really need to be sure of any advice we post in places like this.

    as it stands, Chilly is correct that in most cases, a full size frozen pea will not surfice, simply cos the fish wont eat it, or it could cause more issues. when i do this, i "mush" the pea up between my fingers. a mushed up pea works just a well as a whole one. also, id advise to defrost the pea first. feeding fish frozen food without defrosting it is very dangerous, as it could freeze the fishes insides, which is never nice.

    so please, post aything you feel will benefit the boards here, and advise people in trouble, its what we need! but be aware that people like Chilly and myself will correct any advice we see as flawed. its not an attack against you personally, its just for the benefit of the fish!

    now play nice!
     
  18. sleepyhollow

    sleepyhollow Banned

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    Not once did I say that a frozen pea without first being defrosted and cooked. I was referring to the TYPE of pea that could be used, nit that it was to be given frozen.

    God, my head is in a spin!

    But thank you for the welcome fishy fins. And I take onboard what you have said! :)
     
  19. sleepyhollow

    sleepyhollow Banned

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    Its a TYPE of pea, not that you give the fish it still frozen! :rolleyes:

    I guess you did not read my full post or the links that say YOU DEFROST/COOK THE PEA FIRST BEFORE GIVING IT TO THE FISH!!!! :rolleyes: I am sure I mentioned this within the first couple of lines of my post! :p
     
    #19 sleepyhollow, Apr 25, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2011
  20. Chillinator

    Chillinator Guest

    And I also suppose, that in the process of 'flicking' the swimbladder, they cause irreversible organ damage? To be honest, I can't find one good, honest source of information anywhere on the internet that recommends doing this.

    Just so you know, goldfish (like all cyprinids) have a pharyngeal tooth at the back of the throat which is used to grind-up food. Assuming a goldfish actually managed to swallow a whole pea and avoided choking, it wouldn't be very 'whole' by the time it's passed by this tooth and into the intestine. This effectively blows your claim to tiny little pieces.

    Does this YouTube link look familiar? Read the second comment, parts of it bear a resemblance to something...

    YouTube - Goldfish with Swim Bladder Disease

    Check mate, I think.
     
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