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How To Keep Your Aquarium Healthy

When most people hear about a pet fish, they tend to think about a tiny goldfish swimming in a bowl. While a fish can make an excellent first pet for a child, the beauty and charm of the ocean has so much more to offer. Pets don't just come in the furry and four-legged variety, so let's take a moment to think about the care and health of a less common option: fish.

A large aquarium filled with colorful and exotic fish can make for a great centerpiece and a low-maintenance pet. However, any living being runs the risk of getting sick, and an illness in the aquarium can be quite dangerous. Aquarium fish spend their entire lives in a box, breathing the same filtered air and swimming in the same waters as their neighbors. Without the right care and preventative measures, bacteria or fungus could enter the system and risk the health of all your fish. The tight, confined space also means that if one fish gets sick with worms or an infection, it can quickly spread to the others in the tank. In this article, we will take a look at three issues that can jeopardize your aquarium: bacteria, fungus, and worms, and how to prevent and cure them.

Antibiotics for Fish
Fish owners know that regular tank maintenance is key to their pets' health. Cleaning the tank, ensuring the right PH balance, and feedings are important daily tasks; however, you should also be prepared for the occasional illness. Stock up on fish antibiotics before problems arise, so you can help your pets get back to 100% as quickly as possible.

One of the best broad spectrum antibiotics for fish is Thomas Labs Fish Mox. This fish amoxicillin is capable of eliminating the pathogenic bacteria that leads to infected eyes, pop-eye, tail and fin rot, ulcerations and gill disease. It is effective on both gram-positive and gram-negative infections, and just one capsule can treat as much as 20 gallons per treatment.

Thomas Labs also makes Fish Flex, a Cephalexin capsule for removing bacteria from the aquarium. Treat the entire tank for sinus infections and other illnesses by simply dropping in a capsule daily or as per instructed. They also produce Fish Cin, a clindamycin capsule for common bacterial infections in fish. Clindamycin inhibits bacterial protein synthesis and works primarily against gram-positive bacteria and anaerobes. If you are uncertain if your fish are suffering from bacteria or another kind of infection, feel free to call our knowledgeable veterinary staff at 1-800-668-9698 for advice.

Fast Acting Fungus
Without proper cleaning, the fungus can spread fast and create a harmful environment for your finned friends. When it comes to such a time-sensitive and potentially dangerous situation for your fish, anti-fungal treatments are not something you want to settle on. Thankfully, most fungus is easy to remove. Just add a few tablets of ketoconazole or another tank fungal solution as instructed. Ketoconazole is effective for some fungal and bacterial infections and has uses against both gram-positive and negative bacteria

Fungus can leave your fish extremely vulnerable to more serious infections, such as rotting scales and bacteria if left untreated. If your fish is engaging in abnormal behavior, and has open sores, bulging eyes, or bruising, act immediately. Anti-fungal treatments can also be used as preventative care to disinfect a tank and ensure that all your fish are safe from harm. After all, a pinch of prevention can be worth a pound of cure.

Worms That Fish Don't Like
Normally fish love worms; however, parasitic worms are one of the worst types of pests that can infect a tank. If addressed early, the problem can be cleared up before any serious damage is done to the fish. Worms and other pesky little organisms can inflict a lot of pain and discomfort on your fish, so be sure to be on the lookout for the symptoms of parasites in the tank. Fatigue, diarrhea and weight loss are just some of the symptoms your fish may experience if the problem is not treated properly with a fish antiparasitic wormer. That's why we suggest any fish owner should have at least one fish dewormer on hand, just in case.

Praziquantel for fish can be used in both freshwater and marine aquariums as well as decorative fish ponds. It works as a fish dewormer specifically designed to remove tapeworms and lasts 5-7 days per treatment.

Tips for a Healthy Aquarium
Now that we’ve taken a look at how to fix these issues, let's discuss how to prevent your fish from getting sick in the first place. One of the most important parts of aquarium maintenance is cleaning and conditioning the water. The properties of your tank’s water are critical to the long-term health of your fish. Improper salinity, PH, mineral balance, and even the wrong plants can all affect your tank’s water. Be sure to do thorough research on each new species you introduce to the tank and ensure they work well in the existing environment.

Fish can be sensitive to a lot of factors that you might not be able to see. Changes in temperature can greatly affect their systems. Be sure to take into account that fish are cold-blooded, so unlike us, they have a harder time regulating their internal temperature and staying warm in the winter. It can also be important to change the water regularly. Even the best filter doesn’t always clean 100%, and over time grime and other pollutants can build up.