3 Common Goldfish Diseases

There are only a few goldfish diseases that owners have to be aware of, but an infected fish can quickly go from bad to worse. If a person or other land animal has a problem moving, we can lie down and let our body heal itself: A fish of any kind has to constantly move around to get oxygen into their gills — In other words, if they stop moving they die and time is of the essence if you want a sick fish to stay alive.

Look below for goldfish diseases with their typical causes and cures:

Ichtyopthirius (Ich)

Cause: This is a freshwater fish disease that is caused by flesh-eating parasites that will consume the fish until it dies (normally due to infection from open wounds).

Cure: You’ll need to treat the tank with Ich medicine and quarantine the most badly affected fish. The process can take up to three days to complete and Ich is the most deadly of all goldfish diseases, while being the hardest to cure as well.

Tail Rot

Cause: There are many causes and tail rot is somewhat hard to diagnose. It may be caused by bacterial or parasitic infection, poor water quality, oxygen starvation, or as a result of overcrowding in the tank. In many cases fish will bite each other and their fins will become infected.

Cure: Antibiotics, sodium, or other treatments for tail/fin rot should be used. Medication will only stave off the problem temporarily though, since you have to find the source of the initial problem I.e., overcrowding, stress, low oxygen levels, etc.


Cause: This is one of the most deadly goldfish diseases and while there is medications for it, often times the fish will normally die once symptoms are visible. This problem is also cause by a bacterial or parasitic infection, but starts from the inside of the fish and causes their belly to severely bloat outward.

Cure: You can buy medications to try and cure dropsy, but whatever you do, separate them from the rest of your fish if you have any. The best cure is to keep your aquarium clean and bacteria free.

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