Swim bladder disease is an incurable genetic disease that effects all goldfish breeds but is found more so in the fancy goldfish breeds. A deformed swim bladder can throw off its ability to control buoyancy and lateral stability. A goldfish can lead a happy life if this genetic disease is not an extreme case or exaggerate by other factors like constipation caused by a poor diet. Other buoyancy and stability symptoms can be caused by a parasitic kidney infection. A crash in pH can cause a goldfish to float at the surface with its head pointed upwards. Bacterial infections can cause a goldfish at rest to have its head point downwards and tail point upwards. High levels of nitrates are know to throw off the balance of the swim bladder and cause ‘flip over’ disease. Flip over is just that, the goldfish can’t stay up right and can roll completely over onto its back; an upside down goldfish. Flip over is also know to be caused by a damaged liver due to tuberculosis which can be passed on to humans.
There are two easy and cheap goldfish care treatment for these symptoms. The first is to not feed the goldfish for a few days or add more greens to its diet. Greens help lubricate the goldfish’s digestive tract and by not feeding the goldfish for a few days, will not add to the problem. The other is to test the water for nitrates and pH. If these are off, it’s a good idea to preform a aquarium water change and work on adjusting the pH and work on the tanks biological filtration.
Tim Winter has a strong affection for pets and wildlife. His years of experience caring for various types of pets has led him to share his knowledge with others on the best practices in pet care. Tim holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communications.