Re:preventive medicine

Pete Giwojna

Dear Don:

You’re very welcome, sir.

Needless to say, your fish-room medicine cabinet does not need to include all of the items I mentioned. But it should include all of the basics listed below:

Methylene Blue
Pouch Kit
Small Syringe with a fine needle and cannula or catheter

Together with freshwater dips, these items comprise the basic first aid measures you will need to deal with heavy breathing and many of the most common problems hobbyists encounter, such as bloated pouch and hunger strikes. They are the fish-room Band-Aids, disinfectants, and tools you’ll need for scrapes and abrasions and other minor problems.

Start out with those and then add a good antiparasitics agent (praziquantel or metronidazole), a broad-spectrum antibiotic (neomycin sulfate or kanamycin sulfate), and line up some Diamox, and you’ll have all the bases covered.

Methylene blue, formalin, and metronidazole should be available from any well-stocked fish store.

Pouch Kits and beta-glucan (a primary ingredient in Vibrance) can be obtained directly from Ocean Rider (

Betadine or something equivalent should be available from any drug store or pharmacy.

You can obtain the right kind of Panacur (i.e., fenbendazole) online from the following web site:

Click here: KV Vet Supply / KV HealthLinks – Pet, equine & livestock supplies / Quality nutrition for you!

(Get the 22.2% granules of Panacur/fenbendazole rather than the paste.)

Neo3, a concentrated formulation of neomycin combined with sulfa compounds, is available online from AquaBiotics at the following web site:

You can get a wide range of antiparasitics, anti-fungals, and antibiotics, including pretty much all the medications on my list from National Fish Pharmaceuticals (aka the Fishy Farmacy) at the following URL:

Click here: Fish Medications

However, many of the meds from National Fish Pharmaceuticals are only available in relatively large quantities — sometimes more than the average seahorse keeper needs for his fish room Medicine Chest or First Aid Kit. So assembling First Aid Kits for seahorses might make a good project for aquarium clubs or aquarium societies to work on. Members could pool their resources, by the medications in bulk, and then divvy them up for their individual kits…

Many of the medications we have discussed are also available from the following vendor in small quantities:

Diamox (the tablet form of acetazolamide) will be the toughest of the most-have medications to obtain, since it’s a prescription drug. Most hobbyists will need to obtain it via their family physician or local veterinarian.

Having the items above in your medicine chest, ready to use, will enable you to respond to almost any emergency or disease problem that may arise quickly and efficiently.

Best wishes with all your fishes, Don!

Happy Trails!
Pete Giwojna

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