Fish experts: What would be the kindest thing for my poor fish?

I never thought I’d be this upset about a small inexpensive fish, but I am. The fish in question, a nine-month-old neon tetra, has no tail fins, since they’ve fallen off within the past couple of days :eek: I’m not sure what’s wrong with it, but it looks like a fungus, but it didn’t respond to fungal or ick treatments. Three months ago, or so, it developed a white sore at the base of the tail, and now, as I said, his tail fins have fallen off: the sore didn’t spread until a few days ago but then it did so quickly(I lost his tank member, who did not have any sores, this week as well). He still swims, surprisingly, with what’s left of his tail and his other fins but it looks like it takes a lot of effort. He’s also eating still.

Will the fins grow back if I can find something to get rid of his problem? Is he likely to be in a lot of pain(relatively speaking)? Would the kindest thing, as my mother suggested, be to turn off his heater and let him die? Hypothermia isn’t supposed to be too painful, and it’s not as though a vet could put him down. Suggestions please, I don’t want the poor thing to be miserable.

The suggested way to euthanize a fish is to place the fish into a container of icewater, and place that in the freezer. This is supposed to be very quick and “painless” according to several aquarium books I’ve read. Surely it would be much quicker than simply turning the heater off.

I would think that the best thing for you to do would be to put this fish away humanely, and start over with some new ones.

Sorry you had bad luck.

Sounds like your fish has fin rot and he probably wont survive…Though if he still has some fin tissue left there is a chance that it may re-grow…If you see that he is languishing and stops eating put him in a baggie with a little bit of water and stick him in the freezer…I know it sounds gruesome but it will be quick and painless…turning off his heater will just make him cold for a few days and weak till he dies,you dont want to do that. Or bring him to a hard floor surface (tiled floor,concrete etc) and whip him to the floor as hard as you possibly can.The whack to the head/body will kill him instantly…or you can chop his head off quickly with a butcher knife…its not a pretty thing to kill a little fishy but its better than suffering.:frowning:

I hear cats are pretty good at killing fish quickly.

Our Tinfoil Barbs usually take care of the weak fish. Sorry you’ve got this problem.

Flush him!

There’s been continuing debate over the years as to whether fish feel pain. This recent one:
says they don’t. My gut feel is this is correct.

If this is true, then you should probably just let it live. I doubt it is suffering.

I agree it sounds like finrot, and I probably would euthanize it. Although I don’t believe fish feel pain, it’s agonizing for the owner of the fish to have to look at it all torn up and falling into peices.

I’ve always put my fish down by putting them in ice water. I’ve done it about a zillion times now.

-Sic, fish freak.

Sorry to hear that. With the presence of sores, it’s possible the poor thing is afflicted with Neon Tetra Disease, a rather common and almost always fatal disease. This article talks about the symptoms:

If you decide you want to try euthanasia, here are some articles that deal with the issue of euthanasia (albeit from a saltwater perspective, but it should still apply to freshwater too)…

Just at note, how many other fish are in the tank? Are there other neons? You’ll want to make sure you treat the tank to ensure the other fish aren’t affected.

None. I had intended to get him and his buddy some more roomies since they school (it’s a five gallon tank so there could be a couple of more) but he developed that sore before I got around to it. Now that the other fish died last weekend, he’s all alone.