Goldfish are lovely creatures, and as a goldfish keeper, you must take care of your fish. If you discover anything unusual in your goldfish, you must take action immediately. Goldfish can go through several issues, making it difficult for them to swim. So why can’t my goldfish swim? Let us discuss this below:
Goldfish cannot swim due to swim bladder disorder, mainly due to low-grade food or physical abnormalities. Goldfish shows symptoms by floating upside down or swimming on one side. You should maintain adequate water temperature and avoid excessive feeding to prevent swim bladder disorder.
Let us dive into the article to know more about swim bladder disorder in your goldfish. In addition to this, we will also discuss how to fix swim bladder disease in your goldfish.
What is swim bladder disorder?
A swim bladder disorder is a condition in which the swim bladder of your fish stops functioning, commonly due to physical abnormalities, sickness, and environmental or mechanical factors.
Symptoms of swim bladder disease
Here are some symptoms of swim bladder disease in your goldfish:
- Your goldfish will not be able to maintain a normal position.
- You will discover your goldfish floating upside down in the tank.
- Your goldfish is sinking at the bottom of the tank.
- Your goldfish is swimming on one side.
- Your goldfish is staying still at the bottom of the tank.
- Your goldfish is swimming with either head up or head down.
These were some of the symptoms of swim bladder disease in goldfish.
Causes of swim bladder disease
Here are some causes of swim bladder disease in your goldfish.
Poor quality food can lead to gas in your goldfish’s gut, making your fish lose its balance.
We want you to know that some of this gas will find its way to your fish’s swim bladder, making your fish too buoyant. Your goldfish will not be able to pass gas once it is constipated.
Also read: What Do Goldfish Eat?
Change in temperature
Your goldfish can also lead to swim bladder disorder due to incorrect temperatures in the tank.
Infections can also lead to swim bladder disorder in your goldfish. Any bacterial infection or any physical injuries caused by a fight with the other tankmates or by getting a hard blow by striking on some object in the tank can lead to swim bladder disease in your goldfish.
Genetics can also be a reason for the swim bladder disorder in your goldfish. But we want you to know that it is not very common for your goldfish to be born with swim bladder disorder.
Improper water conditions like high levels of nitrates can also lead to swim bladder disease in your goldfish.
Also read: Can Goldfish Live In Dirty Water?
6 ways to fix swim bladder disease
If you avoid swimbladder disorder after your goldfish is seen distressed, then it can lead to significant health issues in your goldfish. The six ways to fix swim bladder disease in your goldfish are as follows:
- If swim bladder disease in your goldfish is due to some infection, antibiotic treatment will be the best cure in such a case. However, it would be advisable to consult the veterinarian for the treatment of your fish.
- Maintaining an adequate water temperature that is between 70-74° F will be advisable. You should also keep the water very clean as contaminated water will worsen the situation for your fish.
- Reducing water levels will help your goldfish to move in the aquarium.
- You can also add some aquarium salt to your goldfish tank.
- It would be best to let your goldfish fast for three days as swim bladder disease is commonly caused by eating problems. Excessive eating can result in the enlargement of internal organs making the swim bladder compromised.
- It would be advisable to feed cooked peas to your goldfish as peas are a rich source of fiber that helps in the constipation issues of your fish. It will be advisable not to overcook the peas as they turn mushy, making it a task for your goldfish to eat them. Cooked peas can be a solution for the swim bladder disorder in your goldfish.
If any of these solutions does not cure the swim bladder disorder in your goldfish, then the only option left will be euthanasia. To know more about how to euthanize your goldfish humanely, you can read my article on How to humanely euthanize goldfish
Ways to prevent swim bladder disorder
- The best way to prevent swim bladder disorder in your goldfish is to keep your tank clean by ensuring regular water changes. Contaminated water can lead to various infections in your goldfish. So, always maintain the tank’s water quality to avoid any damage to your goldfish.
- Always maintain the water temperature between 70-74° as it avoids the chances of constipation in your goldfish.
- It would be best if you never overfed your goldfish as excessive eating can lead to various health issues in your goldfish. You should always provide food in small quantities that your goldfish can consume in under 2 minutes.
- You should always soak your fish food before serving as flaky fish food floats in the water, making your goldfish gulp air. Gulping too much air leads to organ enlargement, further leading to swim bladder disorder in your goldfish.
- You should always add aquarium salt in the tank as it helps boost the immune system of your goldfish and also help them to fight diseases.
- Various reasons can lead to swim bladder disorder in your goldfish, like physical abnormalities, sickness, and mechanical or environmental factors.
- Your goldfish shows many symptoms while suffering from swim bladder disorder, like staying still at the bottom of the tank.
- There are many ways to treat swim bladder disease in your goldfish, like maintaining adequate water temperature, adding aquarium salt, and making your goldfish fast for three days.
- Overfeeding your fish can also lead to significant health issues like swim bladder disorder. Therefore, it will be advisable to provide food in small quantities that your goldfish can consume in under 2 minutes.
- Adding aquarium salt in the tank helps to boost the immune system of your goldfish.
- If any medical treatment does not cure your goldfish, the last option left is to euthanize your goldfish.