Dying fish won't die? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 03:15 AM Thread Starter
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Dying fish won't die?

Quick question. 4 or 5 days ago we had a gourami laying at the bottom of the tank. Figured it was his time and I would leave him be until he's dead. Next day he's face down in a plant not moving, I go to scoop him out and he flops away. I figure he's barely hanging on can't be much longer. Fast forward to right now, I go to scoop him out and he's still attempting to swim. I don't know what to do with him. It's obvious something is very wrong because his color is gone and he's just layed on the substrate for 4 days straight, but I don't have the guts to flush something that still has a bit of life. Is this one of those freezer situations?

tl;dr fish has been "dying" for a few days, what do I do with it?
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 03:30 AM
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Everything deserves to live. And everything wants to live, too. What are his tankmates? Diet? Tank size? W/C regime?

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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 03:31 AM
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garbage disposal.. put him out of misery..
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 03:42 AM Thread Starter
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Everything deserves to live. And everything wants to live, too. What are his tankmates? Diet? Tank size? W/C regime?
Tankmates are another gourami and 9 neon tetras. 29 gal. 50% water change once a week. I agree that everything deserves to live, but at this point I wouldn't call it living. I would just leave him, but I'm afraid when he does die he might get missed and foul the water.
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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 03:57 AM
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When an animal is suffering it is best to speed up the inevitable.

I have had to put fish down over the years. It's never a good time I hate it and always feel bad doing it. But the one time I just let a fish have a slow and painful death was way worse. I only put a fish down if it is suffering and can not be saved.

One way I have put fish down is chop the head off just like how fisher men do it. This might be the best way but I hate doing it that way. Research other ways and find what you feel is best. I have found vodka right on the gills or in the mouth to be instant. Most sites say to use clove oil but I think vodka does a good job.

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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 03:59 AM
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Neon tetras love to eat dead fish, so you need to be fast to take the dead fish out of the water
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 04:18 AM Thread Starter
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Well, I've netted him and have him laying in the net at the top of the tank. This way he stays in the tank and is safe from any pecking. I'll decide what to do with him tomorrow. Good night everyone.
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 04:28 AM
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Well, I've netted him and have him laying in the net at the top of the tank. This way he stays in the tank and is safe from any pecking. I'll decide what to do with him tomorrow. Good night everyone.
No that's just causing more stress. Get ice cold water drop him in. This will shock his system causing him to be sedated and almost dead. Then add some vodka right in the gills and it's over. They hardly twitch or move at all this way.

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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 05:02 AM
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One time at work I had to hit one against a tank. Bosses orders. Huge difference in those that regard fish as a job and fish as a hobby. That was really difficult for me to do.
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 09:15 AM
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Sever his head with a reallllllyyyy sharp knife.
that's a painless humane way to kill it as i read somewhere.


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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 12:17 PM
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One time at work I had to hit one against a tank. Bosses orders. Huge difference in those that regard fish as a job and fish as a hobby. That was really difficult for me to do.

Thats how they do it at every LFS Ive been in. Once the workers get to know you they wont hesitate to do things like that in front of you. The ones around here actually bang em against the table then toss em. Seems cruel, but it boils down to business. No way are they going to go to lengths to save a 25 cent fish.
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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 01:51 PM
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Thats how they do it at every LFS Ive been in. Once the workers get to know you they wont hesitate to do things like that in front of you. The ones around here actually bang em against the table then toss em. Seems cruel, but it boils down to business. No way are they going to go to lengths to save a 25 cent fish.
More importantly, it's effective. It's certainly more effective than wringing your hands and wondering what to do. As animal owners, we have the obligation to treat our animals humanely. We also have the obligation to protect the animals that are still alive. Dead and dying animals can carry pathogens that can kill everything. It is not fair or profitable to our animals to allow one doomed one destroy them all. I don't think very many people like putting down an animal, whether it's a cow or a dog or a fish, but sometimes it's necessary.
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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 04:58 PM
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Chopping off the head doesn't instantly stop brain activity in the fish, unfortunately. If you need a humane way to kill fish, buy a bottle of Finquel (http://www.drsfostersmith.com/produc...m?pcatid=12271) and some baking soda. The Finquel is an anesthetic. It can be used to sedate fish, but if you give them an overdose, they go to sleep and never wake up. It makes water very acidic, though, so it needs to be buffered with baking soda.
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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 05:07 PM
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I agree with Snowflake311, Ice cold water and take the head off with a VERY sharp knife. Either use a butches blade (where the weight of the blade does the work) or a thinner blade where you use the tip of the blade to press down into the spin and then remove the head. Also do not look away when you do this as you can miss the cut, being cruel to the fish and also injure yourself. This sucks, I know, but its part of the responsibility of housing other living creatures.

are you a sink or source?
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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 06:25 PM
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I usually use the garbage disposal as well - it's pretty instant.
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