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Thread: My African Clawed Frog Stopped Eating, Help!

  1. #1
    alyssalaine
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    Unhappy My African Clawed Frog Stopped Eating, Help!

    I've had Nellie for about 5 months. She's always been a little fatty and scarfed down her cubes of bloodworms within seconds of them hitting the water surface. Her tank-mate, a goldfish that she's been raised with the whole 5 months, just died. She has completely quit eating her food. I've tried to tap the water so she feels the vibrations of food dropping but she just swims away when it always worked in the past. I've tried putting it in front of her face but she just ignores it. She hasn't eaten for 3-4 days now. I don't know if it's something related to the fish dying or it's just a coincidence that she won't eat at the same time the fish passes. Any suggestions? I need help! I don't want her to starve or die!!

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  3. #2
    Moderator Mentat's Avatar
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    Default Re: My African Clawed Frog Stopped Eating, Help!

    Hello and welcome to FF! Need to ask some questions to check and see what are tanks conditions. Please answer the ones below and we will try to figure out the issue. Goldfish death might be related to water quality or a pathogen, impossible to guess at the moment. Good luck !

    “Trouble in the Frog Enclosure”

    The following information will be very helpful if provided when requesting assistance with either your frog or enclosure. To help with your questions, please utilize the below list and post the information in the proper forum area to get advice from FF members that keep the same frog. This will allow for little confusion and a faster more informed response.

    1. Tank Size and volume of water in it (full, 1/2 filled, etc.)?

    2. Number of inhabitants including all frogs and any fish?

    3. Water source and any conditioner treatments?

    4. Water Temperature and how is it heated (if so)?

    5. Water chemistry levels: pH; Ammonia (NH3); Nitrites (NO2); Nitrates (NO3)? Note that if you do not have test kits, most aquariums/pet shops will do complimentary tests if you take a clean water sample.

    6. Describe any filter system including model and media?[/COLOR]

    7. Substrate type?

    8. Tank set-up (plants (live or artificial), driftwood, hide outs and other decor? - How were things prepared prior to being put into the tank?

    9. Main frog staple food and any treats? How often you feed?

    10. CA, vitamins, and any other additives used (how often)?

    11. Lighting set-up and hours it's used?

    12. When is the last time frog ate?

    13. Have you found poop lately?

    14. A picture would be helpful including frog and tank (any including cell phone pics are fine).

    15. Describe frog's symptoms and/or recent physical changes; to include it's ventral/belly area.

    16. How old is the frog?

    17. How long have you owned him/her?

    18. Is the frog wild caught or captive bred?

    19. Any medications in the water (treatment doses and for how long)?

    20. Any salt in water (how much)?

    21. Is the tank kept in a high or low traffic area?

    22. Describe tank maintenance to include water changes, cleaning, media changes, etc.).

    By Lynn(flybyferns), GrifTheGreat, and aquatic questions added by Carlos(Mentat)
    Remember to take care of the enclosure and it will take care of your frog !​

  4. #3
    100+ Post Member Louis Charles Bruckner's Avatar
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    Default Re: My African Clawed Frog Stopped Eating, Help!

    I will agree with Carlos that there might be a water quality issue.
    If you don't have a way of testing he water your self you can take a new plastic zip lock sandwich bag and fill it with about a cup or so of tank water
    and take it to your local fish store.
    Call them first an see if they will test the water for you most will do it for free.

    Good luck.
    also couple of good pictures of the tank and frog will help too.



  5. #4
    alyssalaine
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    Default Re: My African Clawed Frog Stopped Eating, Help!

    1. Tank Size and volume of water in it (full, 1/2 filled, etc.)?
    *It is a 10 gallon tank, half full

    2. Number of inhabitants including all frogs and any fish?
    *Just the frog now that the fish is dead

    3. Water source and any conditioner treatments?
    *Tap water with the dechlorinization drops

    4. Water Temperature and how is it heated (if so)?
    *Room temp

    5. Water chemistry levels: pH; Ammonia (NH3); Nitrites (NO2); Nitrates (NO3)? Note that if you do not have test kits, most aquariums/pet shops will do complimentary tests if you take a clean water sample.
    *Not sure, I don't have a test kit

    6. Describe any filter system including model and media?[/COLOR]
    *I don't have one because I don't know what one I need

    7. Substrate type?

    8. Tank set-up (plants (live or artificial), driftwood, hide outs and other decor? - How were things prepared prior to being put into the tank?
    *There is a live water onion, big peace lily and some other live underwater plant

    9. Main frog staple food and any treats? How often you feed?
    *Bloodworm cubes

    10. CA, vitamins, and any other additives used (how often)?
    *None

    11. Lighting set-up and hours it's used?
    Day light through the window every day from about 8 or 9 until dark which is maybe 10 hours?

    12. When is the last time frog ate?
    He ate one small piece of bloodworms today but the last time before that was 4 days ago

    13. Have you found poop lately?
    *Its hard to tell because of all the uneaten bloodworms on the bottom of the tank

    14. A picture would be helpful including frog and tank (any including cell phone pics are fine).

    15. Describe frog's symptoms and/or recent physical changes; to include it's ventral/belly area.
    The frog still looks the same size and color but she has started keeping her head out of water all the time. I was told they are 100% water and that they sit in the bottom son I didn't think I needed a land area for her

    16. How old is the frog?
    I Dont know. She was very little when I first got her but I wasn't told how old she was and I've now had her about 5 months. She was the size of a pink chunky eraser and she is now the size of a playing card if you cut it in half

    17. How long have you owned him/her?
    5 months

    18. Is the frog wild caught or captive bred?
    captive bred I believe

    19. Any medications in the water (treatment doses and for how long)?
    None

    20. Any salt in water (how much)?
    None

    21. Is the tank kept in a high or low traffic area?
    Low

    22. Describe tank maintenance to include water changes, cleaning, media changes, etc.).
    I clean it maybe once every 2 weeks since there's only 1 or 2 small creatures in it

    By Lynn(flybyferns), GrifTheGreat, and aquatic questions added by Carlos(Mentat)[/QUOTE]

  6. #5
    100+ Post Member Louis Charles Bruckner's Avatar
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    Default Re: My African Clawed Frog Stopped Eating, Help!

    You need to clean that thank out and fast.
    you can't let uneaten food stay in the tank it will rot and poison the water.

    Think about leaving a egg salad sandwich in your room for two days. PEW!!

    That is what happing in your frogs tank.

    If you act quickly you can save your frog.

    I would get a clean plastic container and put clean treated water into the container and let that container float in the tank for 10 min to let the
    water temp equalize. Then put the frog into the container and rinse out the tank with treated water until all the old food is gone.
    Do not use plain water to clean it or you will kill the helpful bacteria that is in the tank.
    if you have gravel that is small enough for the frog to get into its mouth this is the time to get rid of it and just go bare bottom.
    this way it is easy to keep clean with a siphon.

    Good luck.



  7. #6
    Moderator Mentat's Avatar
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    Default Re: My African Clawed Frog Stopped Eating, Help!

    Recommend search "aquarium ammonia water cycle" in internet and read about it. Ammonia (from fish waste and uneaten food) is very toxic to water creatures. It's first by product (nitrites) is toxic too; and the final product (nitrates) can be toxic in high concentrations. Added some recommendations below; hope it helps !

    Quote Originally Posted by alyssalaine View Post
    4. Water Temperature and how is it heated (if so)?
    *Room temp

    What is it? Get an aquarium thermometer.

    5. Water chemistry levels: pH; Ammonia (NH3); Nitrites (NO2); Nitrates (NO3)? Note that if you do not have test kits, most aquariums/pet shops will do complimentary tests if you take a clean water sample.
    *Not sure, I don't have a test kit

    Take water sample to pet shop.

    6. Describe any filter system including model and media?
    *I don't have one because I don't know what one I need[/COLOR]
    A foam filter powered by small air pump will do. If not a small internal filter like this one: Supreme-Danner-Ovation Internal-Aquarium/Filter/.

    7. Substrate type?
    Bare glass?

    9. Main frog staple food and any treats? How often you feed?
    *Bloodworm cubes

    Frozen or freeze dried? The last will cause issues with frog's digestive system. Need to add variety to diet: live black worms, other frozen foods, chopped night crawlers, etc.

    13. Have you found poop lately?
    *Its hard to tell because of all the uneaten bloodworms on the bottom of the tank

    Uneaten food should be removed in 10-15 minutes.

    22. Describe tank maintenance to include water changes, cleaning, media changes, etc.).
    I clean it maybe once every 2 weeks since there's only 1 or 2 small creatures in it

    Until you get a filter in there cycled with beneficial bacteria need to do 25% water change daily. Remove all uneaten foods and do not add more animals until it happens. Normally takes 30 days; but can cut in half by using Seachem Stability. Once cycled can change 25% water weekly. Clean the filter media in tank water you remove during water change; not tap water that will kill the good bacteria.
    Remember to take care of the enclosure and it will take care of your frog !​

  8. #7
    alyssalaine
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    Default Re: My African Clawed Frog Stopped Eating, Help!

    Wow!!! Thanks you guys for all your help and advice! I had absolutely no idea about any of this! Someone just commented on my picture of Nellie when I first got her and told me what to do but I guess they weren't the best informed. I'm going to the pet shop tomorrow to get a filter, variety of foods, and stuff for the water! Thanks!!!

  9. #8
    100+ Post Member rodsboys's Avatar
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    Default Re: My African Clawed Frog Stopped Eating, Help!

    To add to the already great recommendations and advice I would fill your tank up more than half way. Give your frog as much water volume as you can. Fill your tank to 3-4 inches from the top to prevent him from escaping, but still getting the most out of your aquarium. Make sure you have some type of good fitting lid no matter what. Even if you just get one of those screen tops and place a weight of some sort on it.
    I will also add on he food discussion that bloodworms(frozen/thawed first) are only good as an occasional treat. The nutritional value is about as good as you eating only candy.Never feed anything while it is still frozen.

  10. #9
    alyssalaine
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    Default Re: My African Clawed Frog Stopped Eating, Help!

    Okay I have a few questions and concerns.
    First off, I read up on filters to use for her tank and everywhere says that it's bad to use one for African Clawed Frogs because of the vibrations it makes and how sensitive they are to it. Is anyone using one that's safe for them or not using one at all?
    Second, I heard that since they stay at the bottom of the tank that I don't need to fill up the tank very high. If I do fill it up higher will it make it harder for her to stay above water to get air? (dumb question, I know)
    Third, I have been buying blocks of frozen bloodworms, cutting them up into small bite sized cubes and then I drop one in and let it soak a few seconds before poking the water to make her notice it and eat it. How will she eat bloodworms or food if they aren't frozen? Won't it all just fall to the bottom? She doesn't eat food when its on the bottom.
    Fourth, what foods should I feed her? Where do I buy it, how do I store it and prep it so its ready for her to eat when I feed her? How many times am I supposed to feed her a day?
    Lastly, she has live plants in her tank with big leaves to hide under. I don't have and rocks, gravel or marbles on the floor of the tank because I know that's not the best for them. Should I do/put anything else in her tank other than the filter?

  11. #10
    100+ Post Member rodsboys's Avatar
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    Default Re: My African Clawed Frog Stopped Eating, Help!



    Okay I have a few questions and concerns.

    First off, I read up on filters to use for her tank and everywhere says that it's bad to use one for African Clawed Frogs because of the vibrations it makes and how sensitive they are to it. Is anyone using one that's safe for them or not using one at all?
    The vibration thing is not relevant with ACF.
    Second, I heard that since they stay at the bottom of the tank that I don't need to fill up the tank very high. If I do fill it up higher will it make it harder for her to stay above water to get air? (dumb question, I know)
    They are super strong swimmers. This is not an issue in any tank 24" and under.
    Third, I have been buying blocks of frozen bloodworms, cutting them up into small bite sized cubes and then I drop one in and let it soak a few seconds before poking the water to make her notice it and eat it. How will she eat bloodworms or food if they aren't frozen? Won't it all just fall to the bottom? She doesn't eat food when its on the bottom. If she s hungry she will eat.
    These frogs are chow hounds. I personally avoid "little" foods like blood worms. too much mess.
    Fourth, what foods should I feed her? Where do I buy it, how do I store it and prep it so its ready for her to eat when I feed her? How many times am I supposed to feed her a day?
    3 times per week, young frogs need to eat daily though. I feed cut up talipia and salmon as well as Reptomin pellets. Earth worms are another really good food you can offer her.
    Lastly, she has live plants in her tank with big leaves to hide under. I don't have and rocks, gravel or marbles on the floor of the tank because I know that's not the best for them. Should I do/put anything else in her tank other than the filter
    A bare bottom tank is just fine as long as you like the look of it.

  12. #11
    100+ Post Member Louis Charles Bruckner's Avatar
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    Default Re: My African Clawed Frog Stopped Eating, Help!

    The only reason I don't recommend filling the tank all the way is that if you have 4 inches of air space from the water to the top of the tank
    escapes are less likely.
    Also having a good cover that has very little gaps is key also.



  13. #12
    100+ Post Member mpmistr's Avatar
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    Default Re: My African Clawed Frog Stopped Eating, Help!

    I keep a small male ACF in a 10 gallon. I keep it full except 2 inches from the top but I use a screen mesh over it. Works great. I'd suggest you give your frog the extra water volume and just pick up a simple black mesh top. This makes a huge difference with a small tank like that.

    With the mesh top you just need to give him enough room to surface/bask to breathe. Escape should be virtually impossible.

  14. #13
    alyssalaine
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    Default Re: My African Clawed Frog Stopped Eating, Help!

    o today I changed the water, got a heater and switched Nellie to nightcrawlers. Both my local big chain pet stores do not carry sponge filters powered by small air pumps so I have to go to the place where I got Nellie and hopefully they have one. Also, I found out today Nellie is actually a boy so I need to change her... his name.
    Andddd Nellie is croaking!!! Like nonstop and I've never ever heard her make noises before so she must be really happy!!! She scarfed her nightcrawler so fast today so I think she's doing a lot better now! Thanks for all your help!!
    If anyone want to give name suggestions for a boy ACF, go ahead

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