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  #1  
Old 12-31-2005, 07:30 PM
Squee Squee is offline
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Did I just put my fish into shock?

Hi all,

I have a goldfish that I've had for almost 5 years. I have been a really bad owner and haven't cleaned his tank in quite a long time and it was quite dirty with poop. Even the sides of the tank were clouding up so badly that I could barely see him inside. I have many reasons for neglecting him that I won't get into, but before anyone says it, yes, I admit I have been very bad.

Anyhoo... even under those crappy (no pun intended) conditions, he seemed quite happy and vibrant. So I had time today to clean the tank today and replaced it with fresh bottled water. I don't use the tap water here in Santa Cruz, its so full of calcium and iron, it's quite disgusting.

Anyway, I put him in his new clean environment and now he seems to just swim into one corner for the last half hour. I put food in, but he doesn't seem interested... he just swims into that one corner. I also did add about a quart of his festering water, just so at least the good bacteria would hopefully grow back.

Actually, upon posting this, he is now expoloring the rest of the tank (5 gallon, BTW). His behaviour just seemed so odd that I had to come here to ask. Anyway, now that he is snapping out of it, I will watch him to make sure he is doing alright.

But I guess my question is... can you put a fish into shock by changing his environment so drastically?
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  #2  
Old 12-31-2005, 07:43 PM
spingears spingears is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Squee
But I guess my question is... can you put a fish into shock by changing his environment so drastically?
Gold fish are a lot hardier than tropical fish. Replacing the water with that from the faucet will do them in due to the chlorine.
The bottled water should be aerated to remove chlorine and add oxygen so the fin-fin can breathe comfortably. Being a hardy lot he loafed around awhile due to shortness of breath.
Hope he/she is doing better by now.
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  #3  
Old 12-31-2005, 07:56 PM
lissener lissener is offline
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Hard water is fine for goldfish, so feel free to use the tap. But as spingears pointed out, water that's been sealed in a bottle probably doesn't have much oxygen dissolved in it. The other factor is that as the chemistry changes in the tank water--buildup of nitrites (I think; I always forget which comes first, the ites or the ates), etc.--your fish's blood chemistry changes to maintain an osmotic balance. When you put him in water that's drastically different, his body chemistry is no longer in osmotic balance, and it mush adjust itself quickly. This can result in shock.

When you change your water frequently, you can change more at once. The longer you go between changes, the more gradually you must change it.
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Old 12-31-2005, 08:05 PM
Squee Squee is offline
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Thanks for the replies... actually, that was what I was worried about... the nitrates and the pH of the water.

He is swimming freely now, still not getting the food at the bottom though (sinking mini sticks). Normally he is ravenous.... normally explains the amount of poop he puts out.... he is a little shit demon! = )

I know goldfish are hardy... hell, this one is 5, all my others have died off about a year ago, so he is the lone guy. BTW, when I add water to the tank, I properly aerate the water. Or at least I think I do. And as far as I know, this bottled water doesn't have chlorine in it (but I will check). It's a large osmostic process, I think. Either way, better than what comes out of the tap here.. (even showers make you feel like you have a light coat of film on you).

Cheers.
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Old 12-31-2005, 08:08 PM
Squee Squee is offline
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But as spingears pointed out, water that's been sealed in a bottle probably doesn't have much oxygen dissolved in it.
Sorry, I forgot to respond to this. The water came from a 5 gallon water jug that we got from the water place. When we go to the water place, we fill it from huge faucets coming straight from their purifying tanks. I'm not sure if you thought I was was dumping in a boatload of 16oz Evian in there. = )

Does this make a difference?
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  #6  
Old 12-31-2005, 11:27 PM
lissener lissener is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Squee
He is swimming freely now, still not getting the food at the bottom though (sinking mini sticks). Normally he is ravenous.... normally explains the amount of poop he puts out.... he is a little shit demon! = )
Goldfish can go MONTHS without food. DON'T FEED HIM UNTIL HE'S HUNGRY! You'd probably do much better not to feed him evey day anyway, on a long term basis.
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  #7  
Old 12-31-2005, 11:29 PM
lissener lissener is offline
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It sounds like your water is probably decently aerated, but still not as much as it will be after proper aeration in the tank. If the water you're getting is RO--reverse osmosis--then there's a possibilith it doesn't have ENOUGH minerals in it. Seriously, hard water is fine for goldfish. You might want to at least mix it.
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  #8  
Old 12-31-2005, 11:31 PM
lissener lissener is offline
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Originally Posted by lissener
It sounds like your water is probably decently aerated . . .
--that is, if you put it right in the tank after going to get it. If it sits in the bottle for very long it's likely to lose some aeration. I may be wrong about this, but I don't think oxygen is terribly stable when dissolved in water, and it requires ongoing aeration.
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  #9  
Old 12-31-2005, 11:43 PM
Squee Squee is offline
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I don't feed him every day.... maybe every 2 or 3 days. I should do a month... he is a fat little bastard.
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  #10  
Old 12-31-2005, 11:50 PM
lissener lissener is offline
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Cool. If he's ignoring food then let him get hungry for a couple days. Meanwhile scoop up the uneaten food so you don't get too much of the wrong kind of bacteria growing.
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  #11  
Old 12-31-2005, 11:58 PM
levdrakon levdrakon is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lissener
It sounds like your water is probably decently aerated, but still not as much as it will be after proper aeration in the tank. If the water you're getting is RO--reverse osmosis--then there's a possibilith it doesn't have ENOUGH minerals in it. Seriously, hard water is fine for goldfish. You might want to at least mix it.
If it's RO water, it may also have a very low, acidic pH, which could shock the poor fish.
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  #12  
Old 01-01-2006, 07:17 AM
Squee Squee is offline
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If it's RO water, it may also have a very low, acidic pH, which could shock the poor fish.
Hmmm, well I've been giving him this water over 3/4 of his lifetime here. I normally also add a bit of this additive... but I think that is more for chlorine, rather than pH. When the pet store opens, I will get a pH tester and the additives if necessary. What is the proper pH for a goldfish? I checked online, but I have seen different numbers. I'd rather hear it from a Doper with fish.

BTW, Happy New Year everyone! = )
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