Eliminating Fish Disease

Occasionally we hear people comment, with some pride, that their incidences  of fish diseases are usually low. Although their intent is commendable, their true goal should be NO diseases at all! Is this be realistic? You bet it is. Accomplished fish keepers do it all the time. But before looking at how to maintain healthy fish itís important to point out that all fish are infected by at least one and often several species of parasites. These parasites are, in fact, a natural part of their environment. If the fish are in good condition generally, their immune system (the bodyís natural means of countering disease) will be active and capable of controlling the infection, ensuring that parasites are present only in very small numbers.

If a fish becomes unhealthy for any reason - for example, due to poor water quality, poor nutrition or stress - the immune system will be suppressed, allowing the parasites to multiply and cause problems.

To help you attain a 0% of illness in your fish weíve listed a few basic guidelines:

  • BUY HEALTHY STOCK! We canít stress this enough. Know your fish dealer and their stocking methods before you buy.
  • Take care to introduce all fish to their new environments in the least stressful manner possible. Next to poor water quality, stress kills more fish than any other factor.
  • Invest in and use a test kit. Many problems can be avoided altogether just by checking your water quality first. Never, never, assume just because your existing fish are fine, that your H20 is O.K. Everyday we check customersí water that is, well letís just say, not good, but their fish are fine. Thatís only because the water value decreased gradually over a period of time and the fish adapted to it. They donít like it, and usually are on the way to a disease breakout. Any new fish introduced at this time wonít have the opportunity to gradually adapt, and most likely will be the first ones to get sick or die.
  • If a disease does appear in one of your fish get it into your quarantine tank immediately! Donít wait until the infection spreads. Doing a water change in your community tank at this time is essential. If itís a parasite, then you must treat the entire aquarium because all the fish are exposed directly.

Make every attempt to accurately diagnose an illness before medicating. Itís also advisable to use only one medication at a time. Changing the water is probably the most beneficial action you can take. Youíd be surprised at how often recovery takes place just by doing that!

It goes without saying that you should try to understand the needs of all your fish and keep together in one tank only those whose water quality requirements and personalities are compatible. We welcome your questions and will help you get the answers you need to be a successful fish keeper.ēēē