Last night my betta looked worse -- was just hanging out at the bottom of the tank. Took some water into petsmart and the amonia levels were fine but the nitrate (I think it was nitrate not nitrite) levels were high. They told me to put a little aquarium salts in and change some water every two days. I took out 2cups from his bowl and put in 1/8tsp salt (the amount they said on the pckg) and conditioner. he acted much better but today again he is lying at the bottom bent over.
do I change his water some more today? were the salts a bad idea? I am scared I will lose him. He swim a bit but does not respond much.
Should I take him out and put him in new water? change more than the 25%
Change 25% every day for about a week. Do not add any more salt. The water changes should get rid of the salt. I never use more than a quarter the amount recommended on the package in a betta tank since bettas are sensitive to salt.
Don't ever remove the betta from it's aquarium unless you buy him a new bigger aquarium. The shift in pH or other water parameters will only make the situation worse.
Make sure you are using water conditioner when you change the water in the betta tank. The chlorine, chlorimine and metals found in most water isn't good for fish.
Also temperature is important to bettas most small tanks aren't heated. Bettas need to be in at least 76 degree water preferably 78 degree water to keep their immune system up.
It being nitrite or nitrate is very important and the number is very important. Nitrate isn't really anything to worry about, nitrite on the other hand can kill your fish quickly. And on a side note I have yet to get a tank to take care of nitrites without a filter. A 5 or 10 gallon tank with heater and filter will probably suit your fish better once it is cycled.
Hope this helps.