I came home one day last week to find our Dragonette lying on the substrate. His eyes were cloudy, and at first I thought he was dead, but then noticed his heavy breathing. He wasn’t moving at all, and would only swim if he felt threatened. I then noticed his fins were torn and guessed what had happened.
I called Preuss Pets, and they told me that there wasn’t much to do except to quarantine the fish, to separate him from the female clown. We could do it ourselves, or have them do it (for $3 per day); the concern being that any torn flesh could become infected. The Dragonette would either heal himself, or die.
A few hours later he died, which wasn’t surprising from the shape he was in. In the future, I will surely be taking any fish back to the LFS that can’t get along. I never realized how much damage could be done, thinking maybe a torn fin to be the worst. That was certainly a lesson learned the hard way!