Treating and Preventing Disease in Saltwater Fish

This article is designed to help you take measures to stop your fish becoming sick. In the event of your fish becoming diseased, we will look at different types of treatments available.

Treatment

Listed below are treatment methods and techniques to aid the recovery of sick and ill fish.

Hospital Tank

A hospital tank is a separate tank that you use to isolate any diseased fish. By removing the fish from the main tank and placing it in a hospital tank you are reducing the chance of a spread of infection, but you are also making it easier to treat the infected fish.

As you expand your collection, a hospital tank will be a must have item as many of the fish you acquire may be very expensive indeed!

The Dip Treatment

The dip treatment, or dip method, is the process of removing the infected fish and treating it by dipping it briefly in freshwater. The freshwater bath needs to be carefully prepared and we advise that you consult a saltwater expert before doing this.

The dip works because the difference in salt concentration works rapidly to kill the pathogens. If the fish is left in this bath for too long, it can go into shock and die.

Direct Tank Treatment

Direct aquarium treatment is simply put the process of adding the medicine to the tank. The disadvantage of this method is that you have to treat all the fish in the tank (unless you have a hospital tank.) Treatment by this method also runs the risk that the filter system in the tank will absorb the treatment.

Internal Treatment

As in humans it is possible to treat some diseases internally. This however is very difficult to do and the method of treatment is not always successful. Internal treatment is usually administered by injection, or medicated fish food.

Preventative Measures

It is not always possible to stop your fish becoming ill however you can reduce the chances by regularly cleaning the tank and keeping g the water well balanced.

The Quarantine Tank

The quarantine tank is designed to stop new, possibly infected fish making your existing fish ill. Your quarantine tank can double as your hospital tank (but not at the same time!) This method involves you keeping new fish in a separate tank for an extended period of time before introducing them to the established tank. Whilst in the quarantine tank you should observe and follow your new fish. If you are in any doubt as to the health of your new fish, do not introduce it to your existing fish - that could be a costly mistake!