Sick Betta Disease Guide

Sick betta? Here is a matrix of the most common betta fish symptoms and their corresponding illnesses and diseases to help you identify a diagnosis. This is not a complete list of all betta illnesses and not every betta disease is cut-and-dry. Our betta fish symptom checker is a tool to get you started.

Symptom Checker

Sick Betta Fish Symptom & Disease Identifier

AFFECTED AREA SYMPTOM POSSIBLE ILLNESS/DISEASE PRIMARY TREATMENT
EYE Cloudiness Physical Injury (Wounds)
•Infection
Clean Water
Antibiotic
Swelling or Protrusion of one or both eyes. Popeye Antibiotic
GILLS Partially open operculum Gill Hyperplasia
•Parasite Irritation
•Clean Water
•Aquarium Salt
•Anti-parasitic
Rapid or Labored Breathing Gill Hyperplasia
•Infection
•Clean Water
•Antibiotic
Redness or Discoloration Physical Injury (Wounds)
Gill Hyperplasia
•Clean Water
•Aquarium Salt
Stringy Discharge, Growths Flexibacter Columnaris
•Overactive Slime Coat
•Clean Water
•Antibiotic
•Lower Water Temperature
FINS Blackened or Bloody Fin Tips Fin Rot Clean Water
Clamped Fins General Symptom of Stress & Illness Varies
Loss of Fin Tissue Fin Rot
•Fin Biting
•Clean Water
•Antibiotic
•Reduce Stress
Ragged Fins Fin Rot
•Fin Biting
•Clean Water
•Antibiotic
•Reduce Stress
HEAD Change in Color Aging
•General Symptom of Stress & Illness
•None
•Varies if caused by illness
Rapid or Labored Breathing Gill Hyperplasia
•Infection
•Clean Water
•Antibiotic
BODY Blackened Tissue •True Fungus
Septicemia
•Anti-fungal
•Antibiotic
•Clean Water
Bloated Abdomen Constipation
Dropsy
•Dietary Adjustment
•Clean Water
•Antibiotic
•Epsom Salt
Color Loss •General Symptom of Stress & Illness Varies
Cut, Open Sore Physical Injury (Wounds) •Clean Water
•Antiseptic
Fuzzy or Stringy Growths Flexibacter Columnaris
•Overactive Slime Coat
•Clean Water
•Antibiotic
•Lower Water Temperature
Gold or Bronze “dusting” Sheen Velvet Parasites Anti-parasitic
Horizontal Stripes Stress •Reduce Loud Noises
•Reduce Jostling
•Reduce Movement
Lump or Bump Physical Injury (Wounds)
•Tumor
Clean Water
Missing Scales Physical Injury (Wounds) •Clean Water
•Antiseptic
Multiple White Dots (size of salt granules) Ich Parasites Anti-parasitic
Raised Scales “Pineconing” Dropsy •Clean Water
•Antibiotic
•Epsom Salt
Redness or Red Streaks Septicemia Antibiotic
Single White Dot “Pimple” Clean Water
Vertical Stripes Breeding Stripes None, (indicates betta is in breeding condition)
BEHAVIOR Appetite Loss General Symptom of Stress & Illness Varies
Inability to swim upright Swim Bladder Disorder
Constipation
•Clean Water
•Antibiotic
•Epsom Salt
•Dietary Adjustment
Lack of Defecation (Poop) Constipation Dietary Adjustment
Lethargy, Sluggishness General Symptom of Stress & Illness Varies
Spastic, Jerky Swimming •Parasite Irritation
•Exposure to Toxins
•Anti-parasitic
•Clean Water
Stringy White Waste (Poop) Internal Parasites Anti-parasitic


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