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I have a goldfish in a bowl emergency

(21 Posts)
PersisFord Thu 06-Oct-16 12:01:37

So, I came home from work yesterday to find a goldfish in a bowl in my kitchen and 2 excited toddlers. The culprit (a relative) has been told off, and I have just been and bought a tank and a filter. I have also read about tank cycling.....but I think I don't have time. This fish looks miserable and I don't see how he (she??) is getting any oxygen.

What is the best thing to do? Fill the tank from the tap and transfer her straight in? Fill the tank, let it stand for a few hours (shop had no dechlorinator and our water is basically pure bleach) then put her in? Put in the water she is in at the moment and hope the pump will sort it out? Wait for my dechlorinator to arrive on Saturday?

I have to admit that I don't like fish, and would never have bought one.'s here and I can't bear it to suffer. Please help me make this as stress free as possible!

Yesterday she was just dumped into a bowl of cold tap water so she is having a tough time.....

FruitCider Thu 06-Oct-16 12:05:04

Oh dear! What is the temperature of the water now? I would put the fish and the existing water into the tank with a filter until you can get some dechlorinater on Saturday. Saying that, I just use tap water to change my tank water, my gold fish is 11 years old!

Imnotaslimjim Thu 06-Oct-16 12:06:12

Can you leave it where it is for now and put the pump on the bowl while you start sorting the water?

If you can't get dechlorinator, you need to let the water stand for 24 hours to let the chlorine disperse.

I'm sure others will be along soon to sort out what to do about cycling before adding the fish.

PersisFord Thu 06-Oct-16 12:20:50

I'm not sure the pump will fit in the bowl, it's tiny sad. My house is pretty chilly so even if it's at the same temp as the air this will be less than 15 degrees. It's in the shade too (now!!!! angry)

As soon as I get home this evening I will fill the tank and switch it on so it can start dechlorinating itself. I was wondering about taking out a bit of her bowl water and replacing it with fresh water but that will obviously be chloriney though.

It's a race against time to save fishy the goldfish.

PersisFord Thu 06-Oct-16 12:23:14

I feel a bit panicked about it. Keep thinking she is suffocating or being poisoned or something. It's that same feeling when I see a spider in the house - I don't like them but I'm desperate for them not to suffer!

anotherdayanothersquabble Thu 06-Oct-16 12:23:39

Letting the water sit for 24 hours will allow most of the chlorine evaporate. Aerating the water will help this process as the water circulates. You can also use bottled water.

mypropertea Thu 06-Oct-16 12:36:47

If she is a normal gold fish then cool is your friend. There is far more dissolved oxygen in cold water than warm. Is she showing sines of stress (gasping at the surface, lying very still)?

PersisFord Thu 06-Oct-16 12:40:45

She's hiding in her plastic weed near the bottom of the bowl. Not moving much.

Bottled water is a good idea - could I use that then put her in it straight away? I don't think I'll sleep a wink tonight if she is still in that bowl!!!

PersisFord Thu 06-Oct-16 12:43:35

I'm at work now so I'm not actually sure what she's doing at the moment. If I see her gasping at the surface I will vomit with horror. My work friend said her goldfish jumped out of its bowl when she was a kid and she was too scared to pick it up....and it just flapped for 20 minutes until her dad came home.

PersisFord Thu 06-Oct-16 12:44:38

Next door neighbor has a pond so maybe she can move there if she survives into adulthood!

PersisFord Thu 06-Oct-16 16:30:53

Ok, I'm home from work and fishy looks very much the same as the morning. I've filled the tank with warm water and put the pump on. In the morning I will transfer her with her existing water into the new tank.

The kids have pretty much lost interest in her already 😡😡😡 who buys a pet for a toddler?!?!

PlumsGalore Thu 06-Oct-16 16:41:35

if the kids have lost interest give the fish to the neighbour for the pond, it will be happier and no doubt live considerably longer and have some mates for company.

Lunar1 Thu 06-Oct-16 16:44:40

I got my first goldfish in similar circumstances, it took a week or so to get a proper tank set up. They are 23ish this year!

PersisFord Thu 06-Oct-16 19:10:27

I don't know if that makes me feel better or worse lunar!!!

Well, she was floating at the top and looked dreadful so I put in half the water from the bowl and popped her in. She's not doing much but is definitely alive. Keep your fingers crossed for her!!

PersisFord Thu 06-Oct-16 19:12:47

Plums I think she would get eaten, she's tiny. And the other fish are pretty big....

froglou Fri 07-Oct-16 22:07:30

Hiya, I work in aquatics, I haven't read all the comments but here is some info.

Goldfish get to 35cm when fully grown and need a filtered 50l tank to live comfortably, they also live for 30+ years if kept properly.

If the tank is too small there organs get compressed as they're insides continue to grown after there outsides stop (due to lack of room in the tank they're growth gets stunted) which is why people think a goldfish gets a couple of inches in size and only live 2/3 years, this in turn creates the "they only grow to the size of the tank," misconception

I'm sure they had good intentions but it was terribly irresponsible if your relative to get any pet especially without researching how much care and space a goldfish needs!

If the goldfish is 2 inches plus it will survive in a pond with fully grown goldfish without being harmed.

Unless the tank you've got is 50l (even then you can only still have the one fish in there) start looking for a pond to put your goldfish in.

If you still want to keep fish, look at temperate fish like platys, you can have 1 Platy for every 6l of water as a minimum so have a look at how many litres your tank is.

Lunar1 Fri 07-Oct-16 23:20:56

That's interesting frog, my ancient goldfish are probably 15 cm, they are also not so gold anymore and have lost their colour with age! Surprised to read we may have them for a good few extra years.

Lunar1 Fri 07-Oct-16 23:21:20

That's interesting frog, my ancient goldfish are probably 15 cm, they are also not so gold anymore and have lost their colour with age! Surprised to read we may have them for a good few extra years.

froglou Sat 08-Oct-16 12:08:54

My comments assuming it's a comet and not an oranda, orandas get to 18cm and need 30l each .

PersisFord Sat 08-Oct-16 13:22:22

It was irresponsible and she has been spoken to sternly! Fishy is only an inch or so but if she makes it through the winter I will put her in the pond in the spring.

She seems to be doing quite well now - swimming around a bit and eating her little flakes. I feel like she might like somewhere to hide so I will try and get her some kind of tunnel.

Thank you all for the advice. I am happy that we are doing our best for her now!

Bobits Fri 14-Oct-16 22:58:52

Hi, I'm sorry to hear the predicament you in with your goldfish :-(

I wonder if your little ones have lost interest & your not really wanting a fish if she may be happier in the pond? I considered goldfish but decided not to as I just don't have the room :-( Very sadly the industry's standard is grossly underestimated for this beautiful & very intelligent fish & not often with the welfare of the fish in mind. This is a useful article with details on what is a more appropriate set up.

Also another interesting read, as it highlights how goldfish are far more intelligent than originally thought & points out Swiss Legislation now states it is illegal to keep a single goldfish.

With the greatest respect froglou - I appreciate you ordered a recommendation to help the op & clearly care a great deal about fish :-) I personally feel 50l would be too small for either fancys & common and a 50/60 gallon tank would be a better long term home.

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