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White/Clear Stringy Poop

Discussion in 'Tropical Fish Emergencies' started by Harvoable, Sep 16, 2019.

  1. Harvoable

    Harvoable New Member

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    Hi All,

    A few days ago I purchased a pair of male Dwarf Gourami. I've noticed one of them has been excreting white/clear stringy faeces. I've been feeding flake food, until I saw the poop. I've stopped feeding today. I considered feeding peas, but I was concerned flushing him out could spread more parasitic eggs throughout the water (if that's what it is). I purchased some Fluke Solve from Amazon that's arriving soon: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Vetark-Pro..._1?keywords=fluke+solve&qid=1568669193&sr=8-1

    To be honest, I'm not even sure that medication will help him, but in the UK it's impossible to get any hard anti-parasitic/antibiotic medication for fish. I don't have a quarantine tank, so I'll need to dose the whole tank, but I've read it's safe for inverts and fish. Does white stringy poop always signify parasites or an infection? He appears slightly bloated, but other than that appears active and hungry.

    My tanks stats are as follows:

    • Juwel Rio 125L
    • Ammonia: 0ppm
    • Nitrite: 0ppm
    • Nitrate: between 30 and 40ppm (it comes out of the tap like this)
    • PH: around 8
    • KH: Hard Water, I don't have a test kit for it, but I know this because of the area I'm in.
    • Temp: 25 degrees celsius
    • Water change: 25% weekly

    Tank is stocked with:

    • 1 Angelfish
    • 2 Dwarf Gourami
    • 3 Corys
    • 10 Cardinal Tetras
    • A few amano shrimp
    • A few assassin snails
    • And metric ton of Malaysian trumpet snails...
     
    #1 Harvoable, Sep 16, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2019
  2. Colin_T

    Colin_T Member

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    Hi and welcome to the forum :)

    Fish do a stringy white poop for several reasons.
    1) Internal Bacterial Infections causes the fish to stop eating, swell up like a balloon, breath heavily at surface or near a filter outlet, do stringy white poop, and die within 24-48 hours of showing these symptoms. This cannot normally be cured because massive internal organ failure has already occurred.


    2) Internal Protozoan Infections cause the fish to lose weight rapidly (over a week or two), fish continues to eat and swim around but not as much as normal, does stringy white poop. If not treated the fish dies a week or so after these symptoms appear. Metronidazole normally works well for this.

    There is a medication (API General Cure) that contains Praziquantel and Metronidazole and might be worth trying.

    It's interesting that API and the Californian government have listed Metronidazole as a carcinogen. That's a concern considering it was widely used to treat intestinal infections in people.

    Anyway, handle with care, don't inhale the medication, and wash hands with soapy water after treating the fish or working in the tank.


    3) Intestinal Worms like tapeworm and threadworms cause the fish to lose weight, continue eating and swimming normally, do a stringy white poop. Fish can do this for months and not be too badly affected. In some cases, fish with bad worm infestation will actually gain weight and get fat and look like a pregnant guppy. This is due to the huge number of worms inside the fish.

    If the fish are still eating well, then worms is the most likely cause.

    You can use Praziquantel to treat tapeworm and gill flukes. And Levamisole to treat thread/ round worms. If you can't find these medications, look for Flubendazole.

    Remove carbon from filters before treatment and increase aeration/ surface turbulence to maximise oxygen levels in the water.

    You treat the fish once a week for 4 weeks. The first treatment will kill any worms in the fish. The second, third and forth treatments kill any baby worms that hatch from eggs inside the fish's digestive tract.

    You do a 75% water change and complete gravel clean 24-48 hours after treatment. Clean the filter 24 hours after treatment too.

    Treat every fish tank in the house at the same time.

    Do not use the 2 medications together. If you want to treat both medications in a short space of time, use Praziquantel on day one. Do a 75% water change and gravel clean the substrate on day 2 & 3. Treat the tank with Levamisole on day 4 and do a 75% water change and gravel clean on day 5, 6 & 7 and then start with Praziquantel again on day 8.

    The water changes will remove most of the medication so you don't overdose the fish. The gravel cleaning will suck out any worms and eggs that have been expelled by the fish. Repeating the treatment for 3-4 doses at weekly intervals will kill any worms that hatch from eggs. At the end of the treatment you will have healthier fish. :)

    -------------------------
    The Fluke Solve medication contains Praziquantel, which will treat gill flukes and tapeworm but won't treat anything else.

    If there is a sick fish in the tank, it will have released whatever is making it sick into the water already. So just keep feeding the fish and do a 75% water change and gravel clean the substrate every day for a week or two. The water changes and gravel cleaning will dilute any disease organisms in the water.
    Make sure any new water is free of chlorine/ chloramine before it's added to the tank.

    Don't get anymore Dwarf Gouramis, they are riddled with diseases and the breeders in Asia need to clean up their stock.
     
    #2 Colin_T, Sep 16, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2019
  3. Harvoable

    Harvoable New Member

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    Thank you so much for your well thought out reply! Going by what you said, I'd say worms is the most likely scenario. Hopefully Fluke Solve will do the job, if not I'm not sure what else I could do. It's impossible to get your hands on medication in the UK due to restrictions on antibiotics (I'd assume this is to try to combat antibiotic resistance).

    If my other fish are healthy, could they fight off any infection? Or will everything get sick without treatment? I've since read up on DG, such a shame. Hopefully mine don't carry the virus...
     
  4. Harvoable

    Harvoable New Member

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    Moreover, could the parasites infect me? Yesterday I cleaned my eheim 2217, and to prime it you have to suck on the outlet...

    It's got me concerned.
     
  5. Colin_T

    Colin_T Member

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    It depends on what the problem is as to whether the other fish will get it or if they can fight it off. Intestinal worms eventually spread to every fish in the tank. Most other fish health issues will only affect sick or stressed fish, or fish kept in dirty tanks.

    If you do big water changes and gravel clean the tank regularly, and you clean the filter at least once a month, then the other fish should be fine.

    -------------------------
    About the only fish disease that affects people is Mycobacteria (Tuberculosis or TB). There are numerous species of Mycobacteria that affect birds, fish, reptiles and mammals. The species that affect fish can only affect people if you have open wounds (cuts, scratches) on your skin and those wounds get contaminated by TB contaminated water.

    If you have cuts or scratches on your hands or arms, just avoid working in the tank until they have healed, or wear rubber gloves to stop the aquarium water coming into contact with your skin. You should also wash your hands and arms with warm soapy water after working in an aquarium.
     
  6. Harvoable

    Harvoable New Member

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    Thanks mate! Had a few scratches on my hand from the eco complete in the tank, but I'm sure I'd know if I had TB! Fluke Solve coming shortly, although it's super concentrated and I'm trying to work out the dose. I believe one cap full is 250l, so half a cap full would treat my 125l tank. However, once I've accounted for the decor and substrate, I might decide to go on third of a cap to be on the safe side.

    The only thing is, I have an Eheim classic 600 (which I actually think might be overkill on a 125 litre tank) which brings the water level back up.
     
  7. Colin_T

    Colin_T Member

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    Before you treat the tank, do the following things.

    To work out the volume of water in the tank:
    measure length x width x height in cm.
    divide by 1000.
    = volume in litres.
    When you measure the height, measure from the top of the substrate to the top of the water level.

    There is a calculator/ converter in the "How To Tips" at the top of this page that will let you convert litres to gallons if you need it.

    Remove carbon from the filter before treating or it will adsorb the medication and stop it working.

    Wipe the inside of the glass down with a clean fish sponge. Do a 75% water change and gravel clean the substrate. The water changes and gravel cleaning will reduce the number of disease organisms in the water and provide a cleaner environment for the fish to recover in. Make sure any new water is free of chlorine/ chloramine before it is added to the tank.

    Clean the filter if it hasn't been done in the last 2 weeks. However, if the filter is less than 6 weeks old, do not clean it. Wash filter materials/ media in a bucket of tank water.
    Increase surface turbulence/ aeration when using medications because they reduce the dissolved oxygen in the water.

    ----------------------------
    People can catch fish TB, however people with a healthy immune system are less likely to develop a fish TB infection. People catch fish TB when open wounds in their skin are infected with TB contaminated water. If you wash your hands and arms with warm soapy water after working in a tank, you are less likely to contract the disease. If you have cuts, scratches, sores or any open wounds on your skin, avoid getting fish tank water on them. Wear a pr of rubber gloves or just stay out of the tank until the wounds have healed.

    People with a weakened immune system (heart disease, lung problems, diabetes, cancer, HIV, old people, babies, etc), are more likely to develop localised TB infections.

    If you develop any sores on your hands or arms that don't heal up normally or quickly (within 2 weeks), see your doctor and inform them that you keep aquarium fish. The doctor will probably try to put you on anti-biotics, however this is not a good idea. Ask the doctor to take a swab of the sore and send it off for testing to see what is growing in the wound. The lab should culture the swab and test various treatments on it to find out which medication will work best. The results will be sent to the doctor, along with a list of medications that treat the disease. The doctor will then find a medication that is safe and suitable for you.

    Do not take anti-biotics for a small sore that hasn't healed until it has been swabbed and identified in a lab. Then take the anti-biotic that works best on that specific bacteria.

    People have gone to the doctor with small sores and been put on anti-biotics before a swab was taken. The anti-biotics don't work and the bacterium simply becomes resistant to that sort of anti-biotic. Because the anti-biotics don't work, the doctor prescribes another type of anti-biotic and this continues for months with no improvement. Eventually the doctor will take a swab and send it off for culture, but that can be 6 months later and by then you have big sores on your skin that are gross and can potentially contaminate other people with open wounds.

    So just make sure you tell the doctor you keep fish and want any sores swabbed and sent off for culturing before you take anti-biotics.

    Before you go to the doctors, or while you're waiting for the results, you can try using raw honey. You wash the wound with warm soapy water, dry it with a tissue, then rub raw honey into the wound. Put a bandage over the wound to stop the honey going everywhere. Remove the bandage and wash the wound and re-apply honey 2 times a day. Raw honey has chemicals in it that kill viruses, fungus, and bacteria and might help with fish TB. You normally see results after 3-4 days of applying honey and you continue using it until the wounds have healed over.
     
  8. Harvoable

    Harvoable New Member

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    Thank you. I've dosed the tank - hopefully I'll see some improvements. This isn't a good hobby for those with healthy anxiety haha. I've noticed a small a small bumpy rash on my right forearm, and was cleaning the tank and filter yesterday with a small cut on my left hand I got from a zip earlier in the day. Hopefully I just scratched it, or its because I used a lot of soap to clean my hands and forearms yesterday...
     
  9. essjay

    essjay Moderator
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    Fluke Solve contains praziquantel. If you need to use levamisole, that's in eSHa-ndx. But as you say, we need a vet's prescription to get metronidazole. And API General Cure isn't available, not even on Amazon.

    (for general information, eSHa gdex also contain praziquantel)
     
  10. Harvoable

    Harvoable New Member

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    Thank you. I've does with Fluke Solve and fed him some peas today. Not much change yet, but his stool is a little more opaque and solid.
     
  11. Harvoable

    Harvoable New Member

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    Update on the little guy: 6 hours after dosing and a handful of peas he defecated what looked like eggs, followed by normal looking faeces.

    Then I noticed a tiny white spot on him.. and I'm thinking ich. Never have I encountered such a sickly fish, I'll never purchase DG again.
     
  12. Harvoable

    Harvoable New Member

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    Sorry to keep bothering you guys, but when can I add carbon to remove the medication? On the website it says 24 hrs after the first dose, and to do a follow up dose 21 days later to deal with any eggs expelled from the digestive tract of infected fish (I'm guessing the eggs have a 21 day incubation cycle so this is why they say this?)

    I noticed my Angel gasping at the surface of the water, and cory cats swimming to the top and back down, and panicked. The water parameters are fine...It started happening when the lights went off, so I thought maybe it was the plants releasing CO2 into the water and lack of oxygen despite plenty of surface aeration. I've placed an air pump in for the time being, which seems to have helped a little.
     
  13. Colin_T

    Colin_T Member

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    From post #2
    Do a big water change and then put carbon in if you want to back in. But most tanks don't need carbon in the filter. Make sure you use new carbon and do not keep or re-use carbon after it has been taken out of the filter.

    -------------------------
    If the fish are panicking and nervous then you overdosed the medication.

    From post #7
    -------------------------
    Stress from tank lights coming on when the room is dark can be an issue. Fish don't have eyelids and don't tolerate going from complete dark to bright light (or vice versa) instantly.

    In the morning open the curtains or turn the room light on at least 30 minutes (or more) before turning the tank light on. This will reduce the stress on the fish and they won't go from a dark tank to a bright tank instantly.

    At night turn the room light on and then turn the tank light off. Wait at least 30 minutes (or more) before turning the room light out. This allows the fish to settle down for the night instead of going from a brightly lit tank to complete darkness instantly.
     

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