How To Treat This Goldfish Wound?

About two months ago my mom brought home four goldfish from the hotel she works at. Long story short, they decided to have goldfish as a banquet centerpiece but provided no proper water treatment and were handled very wrongly.
Three died that night even after they were carefully tended to, from what, after some studying, I learned were infected wounds. The survivor looked healthy enough, apart from a very tiny wound by the base of his tail, (where the dorsal fin ends).
I knew very little about fish then, and thought it would just get better itself since it was so small. The day after I went to a pet store and got a half gallon fish bowl. I later learned that this won’t be good for long, but at present it’s better than a vase and we can’t afford anything bigger.
By a month later the wound was very much larger and red, with a bit of puffy white around it. I was recommended to an enzyme fortified aquarium salt. I at first changed half of the water every day, adding the right amount of salt each day.
Now you can barely see any red at all, but there’s a pea sized clump of white fluff on the skin. It doesn’t affect the fish’s movement or behavior, but it worries me. I now clean the whole bowl and gravel once a week more or less, and still add the salt. Of course I have water treatment as well.
Now to the real question: how can I treat the wound? I’ve heard that tea tree oil can help. I want to spend as little money as possible, and have these things at home:

100% Alcohol
70% Isopropyl Alcohol
Tea Tree Essential Oil
Aquarium Salt

I was wondering if there’s anything out of that that I could use to treat it, and how I would do so. If the above is not useable, what could I use? Is there anything else I can do to help my fish?

Don’t say she’s going to die. She’s not, and that’s just plain rude. I’ve already got almost enough for a larger fish bowl. Leading me to another question: what size of fish bowl should I get?

Please remember that this is a half inch long feeder goldfish, nothing fancy.

Thanks guys!
Thanks for your replies so far! I’m definitely saving up for a filter, and may try a very quick salt dip. I’ll also put the alcohol and oil away. xD I didn’t think it could be useful, but just wanted to put it out there incase.

I had a question about the swabbing thing. I’m not sure how I would swab the little guy, exactly. He’s so tiny and I don’t want to stress him out too much.

I also realized that I have a tank buried in my closet from when I had walking sticks. The bugs. I’m not sure if it’s 10gallon or 20 gallon, but I think I’ll clean it out and set it up. Any tips on that? I’m not sure what cleaning stuff is okay to use on it.

Feel free to post more answers, I’d love to hear more. Thanks for any links you provide. :]
I’ve set up the 10 gallon tank, put gravel at the bottom, installed a cheap-ish in-tank filter, and put the fish in after letting the filter run for a few days.

I was already using water treatment, I’m not that dumb when it comes to fish.

I’ve given the fish two salt dips, which cleans off the fungus, and have been doing what the Melafix bottle tells me to. She seems to be doing better. Is there anything else I should do?

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5 Responses to “How To Treat This Goldfish Wound?”

  1. kouneli says:

    I personally think that you should get a cheap medication from the fish store. Almost sounds like a type of fungus if it’s white and fuzzy. You can also try Melafix, which is a great medication for healing. The 100% alcohol and 70% isopropyl alcohol should NEVER be added to the fish water. Tea Tree Essential Oil is questionable since there might be other additives that can kill the goldfish. Either stick with the aquarium salt or get a proper fish medication.

    As far as the bowl issue goes, I would recommend getting an actual tank. Goldfish do get big (8-16″). For a half-inch long goldfish, I’d recommend at least starting out with a 5 gallon tank, keeping in mind that it will outgrow it if it doesn’t die from illness/poor water quality. Whichever size tank you choose, make sure it has a proper filter (not just a crummy undergravel filter)

  2. Kristina says:

    The white “puffy” thing you’re describing sounds like a fungal infection, different medications treat different situations so look for the appropriate one. But honestly, I can tell you that a tank with a filter is your best bet for keeping a fish healthy. When they’re in a bowl there’s no water movement, and allows for better breeding for bacteria and such. Also, remember that goldfish are cold water fish; bowl water gets warm fast and heightens the productivity of bacteria.

    On the tank in your closet, you can clean it with regular Lime Away, but make sure you rinse it out VERY good. Later, if you want, you can buy a hood with a light. When putting them in the tank though, you need to buy water conditioner (which eliminates chlorine and other things in the water), and nitrite/nitrate/alkalinity remover. AquaSafe water conditioner and AquaSafe easy balance are very good products and are made by Tetra. Also, if you can, buy a Tetra brand filter, as they work the best.

    If you have a pet store nearby go there. Most pet stores are intelligent enough to know what they sell and can help you with any further information you might need.

  3. dj_daft01 says:

    Seems to be some sort of fungal infection or parasite which won’t get any better with Melafix since it’s not a highly concentrated medicine.

    I’d recommend Esha Exit as it treats a wide range of illness and the fish are more likely to respond

  4. arylide43 says:

    It sounds to me like she had an ulcer, and contracted a secondary infection of some kind of fungus. Do not use anything that you have listed except the salt. Keep adding some salt to the water, and look into doing a salt bath. If you have some iodine in the med cabinet that may help. If it is a true fungus swabbing the area with iodine my be enough.You must keep the water very clean, step up your water changes to every 3 days for as long as she stays in a bowl.

    As for tank size, I would get a 20 gallon long, no other fish, and be aware that you will need to upgrade to a 55 or a pond eventually. Start saving for a filter, only when you have a filter and proper sized tank can you step back to changing 25% of the water once per week.

    Please read these.

    Edit: About the iodine swab, I really don’t know what would be best, I’ve never tried it. I would recommend posting your question on how to do this on Koko’s goldfish forum. You will have to become a member, but that didn’t take longer than a day for me.

    When cleaning that tank only use vinegar, and maybe baking soda too to scrub it out w/ paper towels. Rinse as well as you can and never use any reg. household cleansers like windex or anything. For water changes, you want a new, fish only bucket.
    10 gallon = 20 by 10 by 12
    20 gallon = 30 by 12 by 12 or 24 by 12 by 16

  5. mimi says:

    well set up that tank that you found with gravel, dechlorinated water (you can buy dechlorinator at the pet store or walmart) and stress zyme or biozyme (i know petmsart and petco has these products) a filter and a lid of course. the zyme will help cycle the tank, let it be for a week and then put the goldfish in. until then clean the bowl daily, use dechlorinated water of the same temp when you replace the water, add the salt, and add melafix and primafix, it will kill the fungus and heal the skin. the tank should really cycle for longer than a week but these are desperate times.