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Turning Off Filter for Old Betta

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May 15, 2019
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Hi guys! I am very sad because my 4 year old betta is starting to slow down and spends all his time resting at the bottom of the tank.(water parameters are good, he’s been slowing down for a while now) In order to breathe, he has to rush to the top and then goes immediately back down. I feel bad for him having to travel so far, so I want to lower the water level so he is more comfortable. However I cannot lower the water level with my filter that hangs off the back. Would it be ok if I turn off the filter during his last days so he is more comfortable? I could do more frequent water changes if necessary. (It is a 10 gallon planted tank no tank mates)
Is there any way you can move something to block the filters flow slightly? I feel like turning off the filter and doing constant water changes would stress the poor fella out.
The flow is fine, I was just wondering about having to lower the water level. My filter isn’t long enough to do that, it is already at the minimum water level.
You could run an air operated box filter and put the HOB filter media into the box filter so you still have filtration.

If you do turn off the filter, then the water won't be as clean as it could, and you will have to do more water changes to compensate for the lack of filtration.

Another option is to put him in a breeding net so he's closer to the surface. However, breeding nets aren't that big.
Does he have some plants or something to rest on near the surface? If not, get a tall Anubis plant form your LFS or petsmart. If not, get a betta hammock so he doesn’t have to work as hard to get a breath. :)
I agree with PhoenixKing2. I have a betta that is older than dirt. I placed a floating fake lotus in the tank for him to rest in. He only has to go up a few inches to get a breath. My old man has been aging for the last 7 months. Even has tumors now but still enjoys his food. He looks like he went through a blender on his fins/tail but he still enjoys my company and eats when I put it in front of him. He’s almost blind now. Don’t count on your betta being dead in a few weeks. They are tough little fish! I would leave the filter in. Good luck!
Thank you so much for all the replies. He does have tall plants and a betta leaf but he has never laid in it and I’m not sure how to train him to. He just likes to lay on the bottom for some reason. I know getting a different filter is the best option, I guess I am just selfish in that I’m afraid I will buy it but he will die before I even use it. But I’m going to do it because he’s my bud :) thanks
However if there is a way to train him to rest on top I would be all ears! :)
Mine is stretched out on the bottom as we speak. Lol

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