BettaFix is considered safe for bettas when used as directed. While overdosing is a concern, careful application of the natural treatment is a safe way to treat a variety of bacterial and fungal concerns.
The key to using BettaFix safely is understanding what the product is intended to treat and using it as directed. You should also take the time to learn which tank mates can handle treatment and when you need to separate your betta fish.
What is BettaFix?
BettaFix is considered an antibacterial and antifungal treatment, and it is specially designed for the treatment of betta fish.
API has a similar, more potent product called Melafix that is used to treat more severe cases of the same conditions.
BettaFix Active Ingredient
The active ingredient in BettaFix is Melaleuca, an essential oil that comes from steaming Australian tea trees.
This gives BettaFix strong antibiotic properties, but it is not so potent that you need a prescription to treat your fish.
Melaleuca is effective at inhibiting the growth of and destroying harmful microorganisms like bacteria and fungi. This gives the betta’s immune system the best chance of fighting off infections, regrowing torn fins, and achieving a full recovery.
What Does BettaFix Treat?
BettaFix is specifically used to treat common issues such as:
- Wounds from battle or collisions
It can also be used on a three-day period as a preventative when adding new fish to a tank, but the more common uses revolve around treating infections.
Symptoms of infection
The most popular use for BettaFix involves treating a variety of symptoms of bacterial infection, including:
- Fin rot
- Tail rot
- Torn or damaged fins
- Red ulcers
- Slimy patches on the skin
- Fish fungus
The antibacterial properties of BettaFix combat the growth of microorganisms that thrive on these problems, allowing the immune system to catch up and handle recovery and repair.
BettaFix is often the first step at dealing with these issues, and quick application prevents the issue from worsening.
Columnaris is a symptom of disease in fish that comes from an infection caused by Flavobacterium columnare. Symptoms often include:
- Brown or yellow-brown lesions on skin, gills, and fins
- Flat, off-color patches
- A round patch behind the dorsal fin
Because of the last symptom, columnaris is also known as Saddleback disease.
Dropsy involves an accumulation of water and other fluids leading to swelling in your Betta’s soft tissues, commonly caused by environmental factors. Early treatment has the best chance of being successful, and you can look for symptoms such as:
- Pale gills
- Skin lesions
- Curved spine
- Clamped fins
Behavioral differences such as lethargy, a lack of appetite, or surface swimming can also indicate dropsy.
The term “popeye” refers to any case in which the eyes begin to protrude. While prevention is key, BettaFix is helpful in addressing the root causes of this issue.
Popeye is commonly accompanied by:
- Cloudy, milky, or bloodstained eyes
- White rings around the eyes
- Lack of energy
- Loss of appetite
BettaFix can help ward off bacteria and fungus that cause popeye or prevent an infection in the case of trauma.
BettaFix is a great general solution for dealing with combat or collision wounds, including:
- Torn or damaged fins
- Torn or damaged tails
- Scrapes or cuts
This is similar to using antibiotic ointment to prevent infection on a cut so it can heal quickly and without issue.
How to Use BettaFix
BettaFix works both topically and orally. It is designed to dissolve as soon as you introduce it to water, and your Betta will ingest the medication through its mouth. The BettaFix also enters the fish through its gills, skin, and any open wounds.
As with any medication, it is important to use the proper dose of BettaFix for the recommended time. Underdosing or not treating for the entire period can cause the treatment to fail, while overdosing can agitate your fish or prove lethal (in extreme cases).
The recommended dosage is:
- 9 drops per pint
- 18 drops per quart
- 0.5 teaspoons (2.5 ml) per U.S. gallon
Repeat this dosage daily for 7 days.
If your betta recovers by the 8th day, you can make a water change. If symptoms persist, the treatment can be repeated for another 7 day period.
BettaFix Safety for Tank Mates
While BettaFix is undoubtedly safe for betta fish, they often are not the only ones in the tank. Understanding the potential effects of BettaFix on tank mates such as live plants, invertebrates, or other fish is essential to using the medication safely for everyone.
BettaFix is not known to affect plants in your betta’s tank, and there is no need to remove the plants while treating your fish.
You may want to remove live plants in your tank for other reasons, including limiting what your fish is exposed to, but there is no known interference between live plants and the effects of BettaFix in treating bacterial or fungal infections.
BettaFix specifically states that it is designed for tropical fish use only, but it is not universal for all fish, invertebrates, reptiles, or amphibians.
Because invertebrates like snails and shrimp are common tank mates for betta fish, it is important to recognize that they should not be exposed to BettaFix. These creatures may be more sensitive to fish medication, and BettaFix may cause agitation or other issues.
If you keep snails, shrimp, or other invertebrates in your betta’s tank you should separate them while your Betta undergoes treatment. This will also allow your betta to relax more and focus on recovery.
Again, BettaFix is designed for use with betta fish, and the directions explicitly state that it is only to be used with tropical fish. Other fish may suffer adverse reactions to the active ingredient.
It is recommended that otherwise healthy tank mates are separate from the fish being treated, including tropical fish. Setting up a quarantine tank allows you to treat the affected fish without disturbing tank mates.