SKINNY DISEASE

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shari2
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SKINNY DISEASE

Post by shari2 » Sat Dec 09, 2006 8:50 am

Anyone with pics of fish that you think may have/had skinny disease/CWS please post them here. Early signs all the way to serious cachexia.

If you treated the fish, please give a brief outline of what was done and the results. If you noticed any other symptomatology different from normal behaviors please include that as well. (lethargy, not eating, aggression, change in feces, etc.)

I am compiling these for illustration purposes in an article on the subject so if you post here I will assume you don't mind their use in the article that will go on the community site in the (hopefully) not too distant future. All pics and info will be credited to their source. (meaning you! )
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JWhipple
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Post by JWhipple » Mon Dec 11, 2006 12:22 pm

Could you give me a little info on this disease?

I have a Kubatai that looks like it has anorexia. It was bought along with 2 juveniles of the same breed that I look at my LFS, but it's extremely lathargic, rarely ever eats, and rarely even moves when touched by another fish. I've had him for just over a month and don't think he will last much longer.

Externally, other than looking thin as a rail, he looks fine.

If you think he fits into what you're asking about, I will be happy to take a photo tonight.
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chefkeith
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Post by chefkeith » Mon Dec 11, 2006 7:45 pm

Image

I done a thread here-
http://forums.loaches.com/viewtopic.php?t=534
It was much to late to do anything that would help. I tried Prazipro, Marycn I/II. There wasn't much else I could do besides euthenize.

An early warning sign, that I ignored, from these past skinny clowns was that the skeletal bone near the head was becoming visible.

kind of like this-
Image

these clowns pictured are on the road to recovery I think. I've just finished a 3rd treatment with Levamisole. The main problem is that they are fussy eaters. They would only eat snails and worm type foods (that I'm allergic to) before. I have them eating baby clams now, which they like alot. Buying a can of fancy baby clams and freezing them is alot easier than raising a steady supply (hundreds) of feeder snails. I wish somebody would of told me about clams earlier.

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shari2
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Post by shari2 » Mon Dec 11, 2006 10:59 pm

Thank you, thank you, thank you chefkeith! That's exactly what I am looking for 8)

A picture is worth a thousand words and will illustrate much more clearly the warning signs and progress of this imminently treatable but deadly 'disease'.

Anyone else? Please post me more pics, of whatever species you may have that you have seen this issue arise.
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shazam26
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Post by shazam26 » Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:20 am

How common is skinny disease? :? And which loaches is it most prominent in? It seems the clown is one of them, I keep seeing threads asking if their clown has skinny disease in them.
What about fish as well? I have never actually seen a fish with these signs. Mine are quite plump. :lol: And happily so.

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mikev
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Post by mikev » Wed Dec 13, 2006 9:10 am

shazam26 wrote:How common is skinny disease? :? And which loaches is it most prominent in?
In Botia's, very, perhaps 1 out 3. Seems to occur in all Botias (in the old sense of the Botia genus).
What about fish as well?
Generally, parasitic worms are more common in bottom-feeders, but in principle any fish can be infected. There are other causes, for instance refusal to eat.--this probably is #1 cause for "skinny" hillstreams.

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shari2
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Post by shari2 » Wed Dec 13, 2006 9:21 am

'Skinny Disease' is a term that is applied to what amounts to 'Chronic Wasting Syndrome'. Fish are initially eating, and behaving normally, but losing weight, and eventually, left untreated, it leads to death.

Many wild caught botiine species can develop it. There is no one, definitive cause or test for it.

Intestinal parasites are a likely cause in many cases. In fact, it has been suggested that one should assume internal parasites in all wild caught fish since they are endemic all over the world...treating all wild caught fish with 2 rounds of levamisole is a very good idea. Parasites are not like bacterial infections. You don't usually 'see' any signs of them until they have become damaging to the fish. A fish can look fine and be harboring a load of intestinal parasites that will only manifest observably after they have reached critical mass and overcome the fish.

In other fish, it is a combination of intestinal parasites that have opportunistically proliferated in a weakened fish and created a subsequent bacterial infection in damaged tissues.

Other types of wild caught fish have also shown similar symptoms. Intestinal parasites that have overgrown their host will consume what food the fish intakes and the fish will appear to waste away. They can also damage the gut or internal organs to the point where the fish cannot recover, even if treated. By the time a parasitic infection becomes noticable, there has someitmes been too much damage done internally to heal.

Wild caught fish generally live with a wide variety of parasites that remain balanced by their effective immune systems. However, they have gone through serious stress in the catching, shipping, and re-acclimation process by the time they get to our tanks. If their immune system becomes compromised the usual 'bugs' that are normally kept in balance take advantage of the weakened state of the fish.

Levamisole is the best treatment for nematodes, roundworms, nodular worms and thread worms. (Trichostrongylus, Cooperia, Nematodius, Bunostomum, Oesophagostomum and Chabertia - intestinal worms) in fish. Combine that with a good broad spectrum antibiotic (only if necessary) and most fish with early signs of skinny will recover. Because levamisole is also an immunostimulator, it will help the fish fight off secondary infections if they have not progressed too far. So wait on antibiotic treatment unless you see some continuing signs of bacterial illness like redness, cloudy eyes, bloating, spinal abnormalities (fish TB) or obviously abnormal behaviors (lethargy, swirling, inability to remain upright in the water).

You are very fortunate that you haven't run into any wasting fish! It is a good thing. 8)
Last edited by shari2 on Fri Aug 03, 2007 10:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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JWhipple
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Post by JWhipple » Wed Dec 13, 2006 1:09 pm

Is it contagious? Is it ok to treat the fish while in a tank with others?

The pic of the clown that was in the advanced stages - did it recover?

Is there any over-the-counter available things I could purchase to treat? What brand name would it be?

Thanks so much! I would love to save my skinny Kubatai!
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Post by JWhipple » Wed Dec 13, 2006 1:26 pm

I just checked Petco's website, as I frequent the store since it's close. Looks like all the anti-parasite meds they have specifically state to not use on Loaches or other sensitive fish.

Any input on a brand available in the US is appreciated!
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shari2
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Post by shari2 » Wed Dec 13, 2006 2:04 pm

JWhipple,
I'm sorry I didn't respond to your post sooner. :oops:

Please post a pic. Is he still eating?

Meanwhile information on Levamisole can be found HERE including a link to suppliers in the US. I have yet to see it available over the counter at fish stores, but if you have any large farm/feed stores in your area you may be able to find it there. It is an anthelmintic used in a variety of large mammals like horses, cows, and swine. Mine is pig dewormer. 8) Read through the (rather long!) thread. There are alot of links and many questions answered. If you need help, just ask. I'll try to get to your questions a bit sooner this time...

If you can get the injectable formula it is easier to use (dosage calculation wise) although the powdered form (which is what I have) works well, too.

A dosage calculator (thanks chefkeith!) is also available HERE.

If you act quickly he may recover. No, it doesn't seem to be contagious, but levamisole will not harm the other fish and if you want to be sure, you can treat the whole tank just in case. It doesn't affect the biofilter, plants, or invertebrates and has the added benefit of boosting the immune system of all the fish. All in all, its a safe drug used appropriately and works wonders on skinny fish.
Last edited by shari2 on Fri Aug 03, 2007 10:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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mikev
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Post by mikev » Wed Dec 13, 2006 2:35 pm

JWhipple wrote:Is it contagious?
Depends on the causes.

Keep in mind that Skinny Disease is not one disease, it is an assembly of different diseases that result in weight loss. The very term "Skinny Disease" is improper, it is a symptom. Just as we don't say "Fever disease" or "Weight-loss disease" for human diseases we should not be using the term "Skinny disease" for fish.

A Tapeworm infection -- which is the most common cause -- is not generally contagious since tapeworm tend to require an intermediate host to reproduce, and it is not available in your tank.

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Post by JWhipple » Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:40 pm

Shari,

I took a picture yesteday morning, but then I realized when I pulled it over to my PC - I need to be at least 4 feet away in order to get a clear photo! Yes, my camera is 5.0 megapixels, but it has a fixed focus, and no Macro setting on it.

He is still eating, but from what I see, it's very little, and moving around quite well ,but not a lot, and not very fast! It doesn't socialize with the other fish, in fact, just lays there when others are all around him.

I have an Odyssea LED moon light bar in my tank, so I can watch their nighttime activities. He does seem to come out a bit more at night, but I can't see if he's really eating. During the day I have intentionally dropped some Hikari sinking wafers right next to where he was, and not only did he not eat them (the rest of my loaches go NUTS for them), he didn't move when one of them actually landed on him (no, he wasn't hurt)!

He looks absolutely miserable though. The two young Kubatai's are less than 1/2 his length, but are almost twice are big around as he is.

I'll have to see if I can borrom my girlfriend's camera and get a photo of him for you (if hers isn't as bad off as mine is!).


shari2 wrote:JWhipple,
I'm sorry I didn't respond to your post sooner. :oops:

Please post a pic. Is he still eating?

Meanwhile information on Levamisole can be found HERE including a link to suppliers in the US. I have yet to see it available over the counter at fish stores, but if you have any large farm/feed stores in your area you may be able to find it there. It is an anthelmintic used in a variety of large mammals like horses, cows, and swine. Mine is pig dewormer. 8) Read through the (rather long!) thread. There are alot of links and many questions answered. If you need help, just ask. I'll try to get to your questions a bit sooner this time...

If you can get the injectable formula it is easier to use (dosage calculation wise) although the powdered form (which is what I have) works well, too.

A dosage calculator (thanks chefkeith!) is also available HERE.

If you act quickly he may recover. No, it doesn't seem to be contagious, but levamisole will not harm the other fish and if you want to be sure, you can treat the whole tank just in case. It doesn't affect the biofilter, plants, or invertebrates and has the added benefit of boosting the immune system of all the fish. All in all, its a safe drug used appropriately and works wonders on skinny fish.

As for the clown in Emma's pic. I don't know. We'll have to ask her. :wink:
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shari2
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Post by shari2 » Wed Dec 13, 2006 5:34 pm

Is his respiration any faster than the other fish? If so, increase the oxygenation in the tank either with an airstone or by dropping the water level to allow the surface to splash while we try to sort this out.

He does sound sick. Very lethargic and anti-social. Are the other fish picking on him? Frequently very stressed out fish will refuse to compete for food but the fact that you dropped one right on him and he still wasn't interested isn't a good sign. Does he resemble Emma's clown? Is it that bad?

Test your water if you have a test kit and post the parameters, if you would.
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shari2
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Post by shari2 » Wed Dec 13, 2006 5:44 pm

For mikev:
The very term "Skinny Disease" is improper, it is a symptom.
The term "Skinny Disease" has been around in the hobby for a long time. Used to describe an illness that presents with fish who become progressively skinny. :lol:
In more academic circles the term "Chronic Wasting Syndrome" is employed. It does better address the fact that it is a concatenation of issues that leads fish to look skinny.

From American Heritage Dictionary:

syn·drome (sĭn'drōm') Pronunciation Key
n.

1. A group of symptoms that collectively indicate or characterize a disease, psychological disorder, or other abnormal condition.
2.
1. A complex of symptoms indicating the existence of an undesirable condition or quality.
2. A distinctive or characteristic pattern of behavior: the syndrome of conspicuous consumption in wealthy suburbs.

hth
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JWhipple
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Post by JWhipple » Wed Dec 13, 2006 5:50 pm

His breathing seems pretty normal actually. I have extra oxygenation by way of a bubble bar already (as silly as it sounds, I love having a bubble curtain in the back of all my tanks!) on it's own pump.

ph is at 7.0
Temp is at 78f.
Ammonia is 0.0 .
Nitrites and Nitrates - was tested maybe 3 weeks ago with my girlfriend's kit - I honestly don't remember the numbers, but it was well within acceptable parameters.
Chlorine - same - well within parameters.

The other fish don't pick on him.

I can see the indent from his skull from the outside, but doesn't look AS bad as her clown, but getting there!
shari2 wrote:Is his respiration any faster than the other fish? If so, increase the oxygenation in the tank either with an airstone or by dropping the water level to allow the surface to splash while we try to sort this out.

He does sound sick. Very lethargic and anti-social. Are the other fish picking on him? Frequently very stressed out fish will refuse to compete for food but the fact that you dropped one right on him and he still wasn't interested isn't a good sign. Does he resemble Emma's clown? Is it that bad?

Test your water if you have a test kit and post the parameters, if you would.
-- Light is faster than sound... Perhaps that explains why some people appear to be intelligent - until we hear them speak!

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