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Thread: Ammonia poisoned betta - when to euth?

  1. #1
    ECAS member

    Lyndzi's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004

    Ammonia poisoned betta - when to euth?

    Hi, I'm having a morality crisis with a betta I adopted this summer.

    Background :

    Two months after I moved the tank (7gal) into my home, I had a planaria bloom. I vacuumed the worms thoroughly over a couple of water changes throughout the day. I thought I got them all but within a week had major ammonia levels (reading was 8ppm with ammo lock). Immediately added Purigen and Colony (don't waste your money), did a 100% water change. Next morning ammonia was STILL 8ppm. Did a 100% change and rinsed the gravel. Tank was still 6ppm ammonia. Took the gravel out. 0.25ppm.

    Current :

    Assuming the worms I missed were in the gravel decaying. I feel awful about this. The resident betta has been laying on the bottom of the tank for three weeks now. Initially he had small red spots on his head, which I guess were ammonia burns, but they've cleared. He's been eating the entire time, his body and breathing looks okay now but still can't seem to swim. He's on his third course of antibiotics, I did erythromycin in the water for the first week, then metroplex in food the second week and this week went to metroplex in food and also in water. I've taken the water level down to about 3-4 gallons so he can easily reach the top. Daily water changes of two gallons to keep him from laying in crud. Ammonia and nitrite have been zero since the first couple of days of this catastrophe.

    Question :

    I was hoping that whatever damage was done could be reversed but I'm feeling like it's cruel to keep him around. All papers and anecdotal info on ammonia poisoning mention organ damage but give no specific symptoms, timeline, or point of no return. Pretty much everything is concerned with gill function which isn't so applicable in this case... If any of you have experienced this, can you please tell me your story? At what point do I make the decision to euthanize?
    I do not know the signs of organ damage in bettas and whether or not the damage is reversible.

    Thank you for taking the time to read and respond.

  2. #2
    ECAS member

    Guppies_pond's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Halifax ns
    It seems like he just needs time and will come around keep doing what ur doing I’ve heard of this happening before and they do what ur doing and just one day they came too and was back to normail



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