Cannot Remove Gas Bubble

Zach Vs Ponies

New member
I began to notice that my male seahorse was swimming upside down at times on Saturday. Yesterday, he was lethargic (but did eat), and whenever he removed his tail from the hitch he bobbed right up to the surface. It is obvious he has a gas bubble, and I am getting extremely frustrated because I can't seem to flush it out.

I started trying with a syringe to try to get his pouch open, no luck. Then I tried an object I got from a frag kit (not sure its name). It's like a needle device, still no luck. I tried once by simply pulling the pouch opening apart--no luck. I stick the object at the pouch opening and squeeze the pouch, but it does not deflate. What am I doing wrong?
 

ska d

New member
I think you have to massage it out. I've never done it so maybe someone came chime in. But I would start by gently rubbing its abdominal area, sort of rolling it between your fingers.
 

rayjay

New member
DO NOT MASSAGE IT OUT WITHOUT SOMETHING HOLDING THE POUCH OPEN!!!!
I use rubber tipped bobby pins and with some males I have a lot more trouble than with others.
The more difficult ones I find I have to probe slightly upwards before being able to go downwards. Even at that it isn't always that easy.
Worst case scenario I've had to sedate the seahorse using clove oil. The sedated seahorse has muscles relaxed and it makes things a bit easier to find the opening, but still some you have to go upwards first, sometimes off to one side or the other, and then down into the pouch.
Once I release the gas and am sure it is all out, I leave the bobby pin in and use it to allow a syringe with cannula to pass down to the bottom of the pouch to flush it out with new salt water matching temp, pH and s.g..
If it still repeats, I use diamox for the flush.
If it still occurs after that I use a drop of bio bandage in about 5ml of salt water to flush.
 

Zach Vs Ponies

New member
Well, I have tried most of the methods here to no luck. I read somewhere a suggestion where you can go in and insert a syringe into the pouch opening and flush it with fresh saltwater. I did that, and flushed out an orange object or two. Are they eggs?

Even if he is pregnant, he is still is floating to the surface. He did eat yesterday, haven't fed yet today.
 

kudagirl

New member
Yes they sound like they were eggs,how is he now be very gentle when you are doing things with the pouch,because you could do him some harm.
 

TamiW

Seahorse Wrangler
Have you tried a catheter? If you haven't, that would be my first suggestion. Sometimes the bubble are weirdly positioned and you need to insert the teflon catheter to get to the bubble.

Otherwise, it could be a sub cutaneous bubble in the wall of the pouch. In which case, you'll need to treat with diamox/acetazolamide. It's a prescription drug, so you need either a vet, or to order it from overseas. The later is a legal grey area, so precede at your risk.
 

Zach Vs Ponies

New member
Sorry for the lack of update on the dude. This pouch issue has been a recurring problem for the him, but I have been able to use a bobby pin and remove them each time. He hasn't had any problems in a few weeks. I saw him flirting with the female in the tank the other day, and I have noticed his pouch is getting puffy--I think he really is pregnant this time.
 

vlangel

Premium Member
Sorry for the lack of update on the dude. This pouch issue has been a recurring problem for the him, but I have been able to use a bobby pin and remove them each time. He hasn't had any problems in a few weeks. I saw him flirting with the female in the tank the other day, and I have noticed his pouch is getting puffy--I think he really is pregnant this time.

I love a happy ending!
 

Heathcoot

New member
ok i have a freind with an erectus seahorse that has a gas bubble she is going to try the bobby pin, but i need info on the dose of clove oil and how to admit it wether in a bucket with his own water?, and where do you get the small syringe and catheters? hes been this way since friday 8/1/14
 

Heathcoot

New member
she tried the bobby pin and got some out but she is going to let him eat again and give him a second to recover and try again but need to find a smaller syringe? any ideas where to get one
 

Heathcoot

New member
ok thanks she went to the vet and they were not going to try and help with the antibiotics? they said they do not deal with exotics becuase of unknowing dosage i understand but its one of those things lol hope they will let her get the syringe
 

kudagirl

New member
If she is registered with a vet he should be able to help her,she's not asking him to do it for her.

She can offer to buy the syring from him,most vet will help.
 

rayjay

New member
Once you have the pouch opened, you have to really work to be sure all the air is out. I'm VERY often having more air come out when I was absolutely sure there was no more to come.
Next stage is to use a syringe and cannula to inject fresh salt water into the opening of the pouch held open by the bobby pin or whatever you are using.
It's best to use new water matched for temperature and pH and s.g. to the tank water.
If after repeated flushing with the salt water don't end the problem you can try flushing with an antibiotic, or you may need to find Diamox to make a solution to flush with.
Also, you would most likely have to find the cause of the poor water condition most likely causing the problem.
 

DgenR8

I'm an American, and I remember
Staff member
RC Mod
Anyone have a picture they could post? I'm not sure where the opening is, or which direction to push a bobby pin in.
 

rayjay

New member
I don't have a picture, but, you don't just push a bobby pin in or you could severely damage the seahorse.
See This Video
Personally, I've NEVER had a seahorse so calm when doing this, and for erectus I've seldom if ever been able to go in and down like in the video.
I prefer rubber tipped bobby pin to the catheter/cannula. If I'm going to flush with a syringe and cannula, I leave the bobby pin in and insert the cannula alongside the bobby pin.
In my H. barbouri years ago it seemed to be that simple, in and downward, but in the years after with H. reidi and H. erectus especially, I've had to probe inwards and upwards before going downwards, sometimes feeling the opening quickly but in the case of erectus, usually spending a lot of frustrating time probing before I could locate the opening.

Anyone have a picture they could post? I'm not sure where the opening is, or which direction to push a bobby pin in.
 

DgenR8

I'm an American, and I remember
Staff member
RC Mod
My eyes are not what they used to be, but my 13 Y/O daughter can see. She managed to use the rubber booted bobby pin to express most of the air. The Seahorse is now low in the water column and hitched to a rock, sitting upright.
He is not able to swim upright though. When he lets go of the rock, he turns horizontal and floats up to the top. That's why I say she expressed most of the air. I guess we will be taking another shot at it tonight. He's managing to eat now, so the situation is less dire now than it was.
Thank you for that video, I don't know if we could have done it without that.
 
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