How Do You Treat a Sick Green Spotted Puffer Fish

The green spotted puffer (GSP) is a fish with unique needs and requires care.

They are a little bit different and are separate from most other fish due to their fascinating behavior.

In this article, you will understand more about green spotted puffer fish and how they can be treated when sick.

How Do You Treat a Sick Green Spotted Puffer Fish

Green spotted puffers possess yellow-green spotted backs, which make them an attractive choice for home aquariums. They can be sick due to several problems, so the possible treatment varies tremendously.

Parasitic infections, such as Ichthyophonus, and Nanophyetus salmincola, require treatment with specialized medicines, such as malachite green or ich formulas. Immaculate water conditions are essential for treating sick green spotted puffers.

Aquarists should not allow the nitrite level to rise more than 20,  and you should eliminate any detectable ammonia in the water.

Consider raising the salinity and alkalinity of the aquarium, either temporarily or permanently, to prevent and eliminate illness.

Sick green spotted puffers should never be kept in a freshwater habitat because they are obligate brackish-white water fish.

Signs To Look Out For in a Sick Green Spotted Puffer Fish

Fishes have their way of life, which makes us feel they are okay. But when they exhibit certain abnormal behaviors, they may then be sick.

One of the signs of sickness in puffers is when they gasp at the surface. Gasping at the surface is a sign brought on by poor water conditions, usually due to a lack of oxygen.

A puffer should never act sulky or lazy. These feisty critters thrive on constant movement and activity. Sick green spotted puffers may lie on the bottom of the tank and appear lifeless.

Like cats and dogs, green spotted puffers sometimes curl their tails against their bodies as a defensive measure when they are asleep or not feeling well.

A deep “U” curve may indicate the puffer is afraid or ill. A healthy green spotted puffer should make eye contact, eagerly accept food, and swim briskly around the tank. Inactive puffers may be sick, frightened, injured, or overcrowded.

A healthy green spotted puffer fish has a neon-hued yellowish-green body with deep black spots and a white underbelly. When they are sick, they tend to lose such characteristics.

If you see consistently dark brownish-grey discoloration or a grey belly, there’s a good chance that your green spotted puffer is sick.

How Do They Become Ill

It is not surprising to see Green Spotted Puffer Fish ill after being infected. They get weak, lose appetite, and lack the will to carry on basic living.

Quick treatment helps avoid worsened illness. You will find your Green Spotted Puffer Fish back on track when you look out for the signs above and take every measure to keep the tank healthy.

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Why Is My Puffer Fish Laying on the Bottom Of the Aquarium

The primary reason why fish lay on the bottom of aquariums is because they are sick. When they are ill, they tend to be inactive and dull.

Another reason they lie on the bottom of the aquarium is when the water in the aquarium is of low quality. And maybe because of the amount of feed you give to your fish.

The puffer fish lies at the bottom of the tank because it has nothing to do. A fish caged in a glass might sometimes not have anything to do in some periods, unlike the fish in the river or sea.

Why Is Green Spotted Puffer Fish Turning Black

Like chameleons, green spotted puffers change their colors to indicate their mood and health. They tend to turn off their spots and dull themselves when they feel sick or asleep.

Whenever fin rot and black spotting can be found on the body of the green spotted puffer fish, it often indicates toxic water conditions, notably ammonia and nitrite poisoning.

Another reason for the color change on the puffer fish’s skin is when it turns black. This indicates that the fish has gone through a lot of stress or has been stressed out. While the stress may or may not be warranted, it is felt by the fish all the same.

If your puffer always has a grey or black belly, it may be a sign that something is wrong in the fish tank, and you might need to review the tank management practices.

Why Is Green Spotted Puffer Fish Not Eating

When your puffer is not eating, it may be due to unclean water. When the water in the fish tank is dirty, the puffer might not eat as you want it to. If you try to change the water in the tank, it might aid the rate at which the puffer eats.

A puffer fish requires a rich source of protein, micronutrients, and essential fatty acids. Whenever these are not present in the food you give to them, they will not have the appetite to eat any other kind of food you provide.

Also, if the green spotted puffer fish (GPS) has excessive internal parasites or worms, it might not show much interest in the food you give to the puffer fish.


We hope this article helps you to take better treatment of your puffer fish. Having unhealthy fish in the tank puts others at risk of falling sick. You can have an expert check your tank, but you will find these tips helpful in understanding the fish better.


John Brandon

John has kept fish all his life (since he was about 5). He started with keeping guppies and fell in love with fish keeping almost straight away. That was 40 odd years ago. These days John still keeps fish and currently has two large tanks where he keeps many different types of fish such as Angelfish, Neon Tetras, Goldfish, Guppies and many more.

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