This guy has mouth stuck open and swollen, Breathing heavily. Any clue as to what can be done? :(

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dudley

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Feb 9, 2005
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Welcome to the forum!!

Sorry for your fish problem. I can't see a good enough pic of the fish, any chance you can post a couple larger pics and include a side view?

Also what fish is it, almost looks like a tetra? How long have you had the fish and is this a new problem?
 

dudley

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Feb 9, 2005
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Thanks for more photos!

Maybe something is stuck in his mouth? I'm not sure. You could try and net him out into a small container of tank water big enough to fit him and your hand and use something soft like a plastic coffee swizzle stick or a Q-tip without the cotton on the end to look into and gently probe in his mouth to see if something is stuck. Will probably also need a bright light and maybe the help of another person.

The gill area also doesn't look quite right.

How long has this tank been set up? Do you have a test kit so you can test for ammonia, nitrite and nitrate? If you do, please post the test results and also the brand test kit used.
 

Wyomingite

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Oct 16, 2008
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I've had this happen with cichlids a few times, usually the loser after two males have been sparring over a female. In most of those cases it was a dislocated jaw and I was able to gently work it back into place. It held every time that I can remember except once, with a Cyprichromis sp. I tried a couple times and decided I wasn't gonna keep trying after the third time it popped out and so euthanized the fish. In that case I suspect the jaw might actually have been broken. But these were all medium to large cichlids at least 4" long.

I had this happen to a danio or tetra once years ago, it may have been a white cloud. Anyways, the problem corrected itself after a few days so you may want to wait before doing anything too drastic.

If you can see something caught in the jaw, throat or gills, I suppose you could try to extract it with small tweezers. With such a small fish it would be a delicate procedure. Personally if I saw something stuck in the mouth or gills of something that small I would euthanize it after a few days if it didn't correct itself.

These days I'm not sure I'd even try to restore a dislocated jaw on something so small, as my hands are too shaky and my fine motor skills never quite returned completely after my stroke. I'm not sure I would have even tried before that. I'd still do it on a larger cichlid or catfish, though.

In the end be careful of the fish. Trying to fix the problem could potentially be worse than the cure, or could cause damage that won't be noticeable right away but could cause the little guy to be in more pain than if you did nothing.

WYite
 
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Jamie Dubberly

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Jan 8, 2021
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Thanks y'all. Poor guy can't eat, and it's not getting any better, I think to spare him suffering maybe time to Euthanize him. What's the preffered method y'all use?
 

Pearlgirl

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Apr 28, 2020
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Have you tried treating it with General Cure? I have a Mollie that had something around her mouth that I treated with a Fungus Cure & then a General Cure. She’s in good shape now. I treated her with her tank mates as a precaution not knowing it they were infected.
 

Sprinkle

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Have you tried treating it with General Cure? I have a Mollie that had something around her mouth that I treated with a Fungus Cure & then a General Cure. She’s in good shape now. I treated her with her tank mates as a precaution not knowing it they were infected.
This would keep the fish in suffering, best to euthanise it.
 
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