One question that came up recently for a friend of mine (and newsletter subscriber) was what to do about two fish that had cloudy eyes. The person was already using one popular product and wasn’t seeing any improvement, and they wanted to know what fish antibiotics they should get to clear up the symptoms.

Unfortunately, this friend’s dilemma (which will hopefully turn around for them soon), was the inspiration for this blog post.

I wanted to refer them to a trusted source to help him troubleshoot his problem and find the perfect therapy, but I didn’t know where to send him. So I did some homework, the same way I would if I was having the problem myself.

What I found was a staggering list of available fish antibiotic products and thought to myself…how in the world are we supposed to figure this out?

Physicians and veterinarians go to school for years to learn how to properly diagnose and treat diseases. I am not a fish doctor, and I don’t play one on TV, but I do try to be helpful when I can. Some of this I knew and wrote without research, some of it I knew but it wasn’t top of mind and some of it I learned for the first time.

There are a few types of medications available for the marine aquarium including the fish antibiotics:

  • Alternative medicines or “natural” remedies
  • Slime coat enhancers
  • Fish Antibiotics
  • Antifungals

Fish Antibiotics

Fish Antibiotics are a group of powerful drugs that fight bacteria and the infections they cause. They typically work by killing the bacteria or at least keeping them from growing (which helps achieve the same outcome, since they eventually die).

When I think about antibiotics, my mind drifts to all the trips to the doctor’s office, over the years. Today, the doctor’s office tends to send the prescription electronically to the pharmacy, where it is ready for pick up by the time I get there, ideally. A pretty big improvement in terms of convenience.

Well, if your fish is sick, it’s even more convenient, because fish antibiotics are not restricted and regulated by the United States Food and Drug Administration, or FDA for short, in the same way, that the prescriptions are for humans. You can get your fish meds at any pet store with a reasonable selection of aquarium dry goods the same way you can get food and filter materials. Pretty cool, and convenient.

16 Best fish antibiotics and alternatives for saltwater fish:

  1. Ampicillin
  2. Amoxicillin
  3. Cephalexin
  4. Clindamycin
  5. Ciprofloxacin
  6. Erythromycin (Maracyn)
  7. Neomycin
  8. Kanamycin
  9. Penicillin
  10. Tetracycline
  11. Minocycline (Maracyn-2)
  12. Trimethoprin and Sulfonamide (Maracyn Plus)
  13. Sulfamethoxazole/Trimethoprim
  14. Nitrofurazone
  15. Furazolidone
  16. Sodium sulfathiazole, sodium sulfamethazine, and sodium sulfacetamide are three antibiotics that are sold together under the name Triple Sulfa for combatting bacterial infections

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