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Thread: Opinions needed on medical issue

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    Default Opinions needed on medical issue

    So, something weird happened with one of my little american toadlets. A few days ago I was cleaning out my toad enclosure and I noticed my largest toadlet had seemingly lost complete mobility in its back legs/entire lower half. This was completely sudden as I had just fed all of them dubia nymphs that morning and all was fine. I immediately put him in a hospital tub, at this point I was convinced some sort of spinal injury occurred and with no vet near me able to see amphibians I thought I may have to euthanize. To me, it seemed like paralysis. He was pulling himself and gave no reaction when I lightly pinched and prodded his toes. It was hard to watch

    Anyway, later that night he seemed to be gaining back some control and the next morning he was about 70% there, though he was 'limping' or kind of dragging one leg around, but he had feeling in it. Fast forward to about 2 days later, he is now more or less fine. I have been keeping an extremely close eye on him and all I can notice is some possible bruising near his pelvis area. He still has his voracious little appetite too.

    So, what happened? I just can't figure it out. My best bet is a pelvis break/fracture? The highest thing in their tank is a 4-5'' tall cork round. Parasites? Possible but I raised them from tadpoles and have only fed captive food so seems unlikely. I even thought maybe impaction, but he pooped this morning and it looked completely normal. I'm at a loss! I'm planning on keeping him in the hospital tub for another week or two for observation. Anyone have thoughts?

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    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    Could be early-stage MBD. Are you dusting your feeders with calcium and vitamins?

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    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    Quote Originally Posted by Axqu View Post
    Could be early-stage MBD. Are you dusting your feeders with calcium and vitamins?
    Yes, I dust with Repcal with D3, herptivite and repashy's vitamin a. I dust calcium with every feeding except one day a week where I use the multivitamin.

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    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    Quote Originally Posted by butchblues View Post
    Yes, I dust with Repcal with D3, herptivite and repashy's vitamin a. I dust calcium with every feeding except one day a week where I use the multivitamin.
    Probably not MBD then assuming your toads eat the feeders right away. I'm assuming you're using dechlorinator for the water you use when you mist the enclosure? Letting it sit out lets chlorine gas off but chloramines won't gas off and they can kill just as easily as chlorine can. You might check your water company's website; sometimes there're extra chemicals that get into the water that they don't announce on the news because it doesn't impact human consumption but it might impact your frogs. Stuff like that is known to impact reef fishtanks all the time. Also, do you have copper pipes in your house? What time of day do you normally change their water? If you have fresh copper pipes that haven't had time to oxidize yet, and you change their water in the morning when the water has been sitting in the pipes all night with no movement, you could have higher copper content in your water. A lot of frogs and toads are sensitive to copper.

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    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    I change their water around 11-1pm usually with dechlorinated tap water that I have prepared in a jug (I use reptisafe), I refill the jug maybe once or twice a week. I do believe we have copper pipes and the bathroom was renovated a few years ago. I can switch to reverse osmosis just to be safe, but I will have to order something to add minerals back.

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    100+ Post Member Larry Wardog's Avatar
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    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    This is the problem everybody seems to think the calcium and supplement dusting is the best choice but really that doesn't help. It probably is MBD in an early stage. I would recommend getting Missouri better bug got load it was tested and proven to work in Native Toad species. What this means is you feed this formula to your crickets or roaches or whatever you use what them digested for a day or two and then feed the roaches or your feeders to the toads. I had the same problem last year when I was using the same stuff but since then I have had no problems with anything of nutrition. I don't use any calcium or supplements other than what I feed my crickets. I don't recommend using supplements. You can also use a low-level UVB bulb to put over the toads habitat. That will help it to get vitamin D3 the best way possible. It's important to keep the temperature in the 70s if the animal is sick and try to keep humidity 50% To 70%. It should only hit 70% at night whenever you missed and allow it to gradually drop back down to 50.

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    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    That Mazuri formula seems to have a lot of animal protein. Wouldn't gout be a concern? I'm currently feeding my roaches Dumor classic rabbit food as their staple and vegetable/fruit scraps, but I will invest in a gutloading diet after researching some formulas.

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    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    Quote Originally Posted by butchblues View Post
    I change their water around 11-1pm usually with dechlorinated tap water that I have prepared in a jug (I use reptisafe), I refill the jug maybe once or twice a week. I do believe we have copper pipes and the bathroom was renovated a few years ago. I can switch to reverse osmosis just to be safe, but I will have to order something to add minerals back.
    I've had good success dusting feeders, but there's no harm in gutloading as well, as long as you keep the animal protein down like you said. I feed my dubias a variety of fresh veggies as well as a dusting schedule. Try the RO + added minerals thing and see if it works. If the bathroom was recently renovated I'd bet the copper has something to do with it. I'd also keep a little remineralized RO on hand in case of emergencies. If your toadie seizes again, try soaking in the remineralized RO water (monitored of course to prevent drowning). That'll help all the toxins leach out of its body if it got poisoned.

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    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    Quote Originally Posted by butchblues View Post
    That Mazuri formula seems to have a lot of animal protein. Wouldn't gout be a concern? I'm currently feeding my roaches Dumor classic rabbit food as their staple and vegetable/fruit scraps, but I will invest in a gutloading diet after researching some formulas.
    It actually is preferred for native species. It doesn't have any drawbacks. Should be a good investment

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    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    Do you have a source for this? I've been told by many sources to stay away from animal protein in roaches especially to avoid uric acid buildup. Not doubting, I just like to compare sources.

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    100+ Post Member Larry Wardog's Avatar
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    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    I have two. An actual study and a Herpetologist who agrees with it. I have the Herpetologist opinion first. I'll post the study when I find it again

    http://blogs.thatpetplace.com/thatre.../#.XMsw_mkpA0N

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    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    http://healthdocbox.com/Nutrition/65...bufonidae.html

    Study

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    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    Thanks! I'll take a look when I have a moment

  15. #14

    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    Quote Originally Posted by Larry Wardog View Post
    http://healthdocbox.com/Nutrition/65...bufonidae.html

    Study

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    Good study. Backs up my own anecdotal observations. In keeping Incilius alvarius toads for over ten years I am, however, totally sold on vitamin supplements.

    Currently I rotate between Zoo-Med, Nekton-Rep and Herptivite. The first two have preformed vitamin A and D and the last beta-carotene and no D. I believe this gives them lots of A and a break from A & D (which can build up) when they get the Herptivite. I dust heavily at every feeding mixing the vitamins about half and half with calcium with NO D3. I feed my toads in a separate container so they eat them all quick while there is still lots of dust on them. My toads seem really healthy.

    I kept and bred dozens of snakes for over a decade when I was really into them and they always got Nekton-Rep in their water too. My first toad went it's first 10 years with only Nekton-Rep dustings but I read a zoo-keepers advice to rotate a few different ones to negate the effect of a weak batch etc because the quality control isn't the same as with human supplements.

    My first toad went 10 years on crickets with the occasional nightcrawler and monthly an appropriate sized mouse. I think the mice helped with calcium perhaps and there is some calcium in Nekton-Rep too.

    When I got my newest two toads a year ago they couldn't "target" very well with their tongues. Aggressive dusting regime fixed that pronto and they are super-healthy now. I think it was indeed about the vitamin A.

    For the record, my toads swim around in tap-water that has been through a Brita filter. 10 years of bottom-of-the-pool-toads says they don't mind soaking in it. This was in two different cities. Your mileage may vary but I don't think chlorinated tap-water is always as toxic as people make out or maybe the Brita gets the job done. I like it better than distilled because I think that might leach minerals from animals.

    Leaving the water sit over-night will get it about as chlorine free as Reptisafe (at 24 hours sit there will be NO chlorine). I don't like adding chemicals to anything an amphibian sits in. Brita works for me but a 24 hour sit would mean no chlorine if you want to be safe.

    I hope things get better. Here are some quick pics of sleeping (? I think they sleep. Maybe like whales and dolphins.) and woken-up Rx and Mojo (on left, last pic). Two snuggly toad brothers not currently in their heated swimming pool.

    Name:  01 Rx asleep 01.jpg
Views: 38
Size:  152.3 KBName:  02 Rx asleep 02.jpg
Views: 38
Size:  131.3 KBName:  03 Rx + Mojo awake.jpg
Views: 38
Size:  139.1 KB

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    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    Thanks for the insight! You emphasized that you dont use calcium with D3, why is that? I know it's not advised to use with UVB but I wasn't using UVB before, which is why I was using calcium with D3.
    My toad has since recovered and hasn't shown any other issues since this incident. I've only changed a few things- switched to remineralized RO water (so done away with reptisafe) and began using UVB a few times a week. Still using my dusting schedule, I feed in the enclosure but I do tong feed so I know my toads are getting everything.

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    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    Quote Originally Posted by toadfriend View Post
    Good study. Backs up my own anecdotal observations. In keeping Incilius alvarius toads for over ten years I am, however, totally sold on vitamin supplements.

    Currently I rotate between Zoo-Med, Nekton-Rep and Herptivite. The first two have preformed vitamin A and D and the last beta-carotene and no D. I believe this gives them lots of A and a break from A & D (which can build up) when they get the Herptivite. I dust heavily at every feeding mixing the vitamins about half and half with calcium with NO D3. I feed my toads in a separate container so they eat them all quick while there is still lots of dust on them. My toads seem really healthy.

    I kept and bred dozens of snakes for over a decade when I was really into them and they always got Nekton-Rep in their water too. My first toad went it's first 10 years with only Nekton-Rep dustings but I read a zoo-keepers advice to rotate a few different ones to negate the effect of a weak batch etc because the quality control isn't the same as with human supplements.

    My first toad went 10 years on crickets with the occasional nightcrawler and monthly an appropriate sized mouse. I think the mice helped with calcium perhaps and there is some calcium in Nekton-Rep too.

    When I got my newest two toads a year ago they couldn't "target" very well with their tongues. Aggressive dusting regime fixed that pronto and they are super-healthy now. I think it was indeed about the vitamin A.

    For the record, my toads swim around in tap-water that has been through a Brita filter. 10 years of bottom-of-the-pool-toads says they don't mind soaking in it. This was in two different cities. Your mileage may vary but I don't think chlorinated tap-water is always as toxic as people make out or maybe the Brita gets the job done. I like it better than distilled because I think that might leach minerals from animals.

    Leaving the water sit over-night will get it about as chlorine free as Reptisafe (at 24 hours sit there will be NO chlorine). I don't like adding chemicals to anything an amphibian sits in. Brita works for me but a 24 hour sit would mean no chlorine if you want to be safe.

    I hope things get better. Here are some quick pics of sleeping (? I think they sleep. Maybe like whales and dolphins.) and woken-up Rx and Mojo (on left, last pic). Two snuggly toad brothers not currently in their heated swimming pool.

    Name:  01 Rx asleep 01.jpg
Views: 38
Size:  152.3 KBName:  02 Rx asleep 02.jpg
Views: 38
Size:  131.3 KBName:  03 Rx + Mojo awake.jpg
Views: 38
Size:  139.1 KB
    If you were doing what you said with American Toads you would have run into problems. They need more then just crickets and an occasional earthworm. I actually have gotten away from earthworms because they can contain parasites that can and will show up on fecal testing. Wild amphibians especially need a varied diet with many feeders. If you can feed over five feeders within a 3-6 month period then that's good. Mice for toads is a bad idea. They haven't evolved the capacity to digest the mice and it can cause major problems. They are actually something that I would advise against.

    As for the supplements I used to use dusting and it just doesn't work for the native species. They don't get enough and the repti vite, or rep cal or most of the dusting stuff doesn't give the toads especially what they need to maintain their calcium and etc. I will say adding in Repashy products and some others like bird seed and fish food work very well for additional supplements that the crickets eat and can give to the toads. I lost toads to dustings and haven't lost any from the Mazuri. I'm 100% convinced it saved my toads lives. I bought and experimented with all the top brands but they just didn't work.

    For exotic captive frogs your system may work for you. But for the native species they really benefit from their prey being gutloaded.

    I'm not attacking you I'm just explaining more on the posts intention with providing care for American Toads.

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    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    No worries. My experience is with captive-bred alvarius toads and snakes only. I don't want to get into a pissing contest but my experience counts too. Decade-long member of Ontario Herptological society etc. I used to eat-breath-and-sleep herptiles.

    Sonoran Desert toads are totally a "native species" albeit with a limited range. Isn't Tuscon in the USA anymore? They would definitely eat rodents in the wild whenever they could. They more often eat a lot of darkling beetles though. They are great diggers but they also hop down pre-made rodent holes and if they find "pinkie-gold" they eat them all. They like furry tarantulas too. Whatever moves and fits in their mouths. Herptile curator at Toronto Zoo told me himself that a monthly mouse is all well and good. They are too fatty for a staple.

    I read the thread about "being done with earthworms" previously and all I can say is your argument may be valid depending on the source of your worms. At Toronto Zoo they feed their toads night-crawlers exclusively and they do supplement. I know this for a fact. Their crested toad breeding program is top-notch and they are totally qualified to prescribe a mouse and worm inclusive diet for I. alvarius toads.

    The dusting schedule I now use is as recommended by "Ed" who is a 18-year Amphibian curator at Philadelphia Zoo and was taught to him by Dr. Kevin Wright while he wrote the first edition of "Amphibian Medicine and Captive Husbandry". This is top-tier pro advise. I did not make it up while on acid.

    http://talkto.thefrog.org/index.php?...ad&topic=24195

    https://www.dendroboard.com/forum/fo...pplements.html


    The curators at two zoos approve of my toad-care. I'm good with that and so are my healthy toads. Your mileage may vary.
    Last edited by toadfriend; August 24th, 2019 at 12:32 AM. Reason: added "captive-bred"

  19. #18

    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    "The reason I don't use D and A dust everytime is to give them a chance to process what is already in their system. They get both two out of every three feedings. Herptivite has beta-carotene (which they maybe can use to turn into A) and no D either as that is in their calcium powder. Both A and D can build up to toxic levels so a little break is good.

    Here's the long version as explained by Ed.

    "mixed, the fat soluable vitamins will catalyze a more rapid oxidation of each other (which is why Rep-Cal and Herptevite are seperate with one haveing A and E and the other D3) than if they are kept seperate (however they still will oxidize which is why the recommendation is to replace the supplements every six months or so).

    However in the digestive tract, A, D3 and E compete for uptake by the animal. This is why the ratio of the vitamins in the supplement should be somewhere close to 10 to 1 to 0.1 (A to D3 to E) as large variations outside of this range can cause deficiencies of one or more of the vitamins (this was (may still be) the most common cause of "MBD" (metabolic bone disease which is actually a group of diseases that present the same symptoms by disrupting calcium metabolism) when the diet contained excessive vitamin A). I have a whopping headache so I am not going to check the labels but you need to make sure that if you are mixing the two before dusting that the resulting ratio of A3 and E are correct which may cause you to change the amount you mix. By alternating the dustings with the feedings, there is less issue with uptake of the fat soluable vitamins as the frog can store the excess in the fat, liver and skin (depending on the vitamin)..

    This also allows for alternation of calcium supplementation as excessive calcium can also cause conditional deficiencies and in extreme excess and a high fat diet cause the deposition of calcium salts in the digestive tract. "
    Last edited by toadfriend; August 24th, 2019 at 01:14 AM. Reason: long version quote added

  20. #19
    100+ Post Member Larry Wardog's Avatar
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    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    Quote Originally Posted by toadfriend View Post
    "The reason I don't use D and A dust everytime is to give them a chance to process what is already in their system. They get both two out of every three feedings. Herptivite has beta-carotene (which they maybe can use to turn into A) and no D either as that is in their calcium powder. Both A and D can build up to toxic levels so a little break is good.

    Here's the long version as explained by Ed.

    "mixed, the fat soluable vitamins will catalyze a more rapid oxidation of each other (which is why Rep-Cal and Herptevite are seperate with one haveing A and E and the other D3) than if they are kept seperate (however they still will oxidize which is why the recommendation is to replace the supplements every six months or so).

    However in the digestive tract, A, D3 and E compete for uptake by the animal. This is why the ratio of the vitamins in the supplement should be somewhere close to 10 to 1 to 0.1 (A to D3 to E) as large variations outside of this range can cause deficiencies of one or more of the vitamins (this was (may still be) the most common cause of "MBD" (metabolic bone disease which is actually a group of diseases that present the same symptoms by disrupting calcium metabolism) when the diet contained excessive vitamin A). I have a whopping headache so I am not going to check the labels but you need to make sure that if you are mixing the two before dusting that the resulting ratio of A3 and E are correct which may cause you to change the amount you mix. By alternating the dustings with the feedings, there is less issue with uptake of the fat soluable vitamins as the frog can store the excess in the fat, liver and skin (depending on the vitamin)..

    This also allows for alternation of calcium supplementation as excessive calcium can also cause conditional deficiencies and in extreme excess and a high fat diet cause the deposition of calcium salts in the digestive tract. "
    This was about the American Toad though that's why I was trying to comment on the specific animal.

    Your experience is welcome to share but if it's with another species of toad (not east of Mississippi River) then it's going to be different. Most of the toads except the invasive Cane toad have specific care just like the toad you keep.

    As for the feeding program feeding just one feeder just sounds odd and I've gotten most of my former knowledge about Eastern species from Frank Indiviglio. He kept all these animals and worked in the Bronx zoo. He has a lot of good articles on American Toads and I can edit this when I get done to add some in so you can read them. Captive worms could possibly work but I have yet to get any without a parasite and I am attempting to breed and replenish my local area with American toads so I can't afford anymore parasites for these toads.

    I am pursuing a career as being a researcher of the northeast frogs and toads and have been talking to some very great people myself so there is no need for competition.

    As for mice American toads may eat field mice and I've said they would many times, but that doesn't mean they should if it's not necessary like in captivity. They are trying to survive in the wild and will take chances that sometimes doesn't workout. Mice are a serious gamble especially for this species. Tarantulas have hairs they can shoot and can really harm a toad. I know toads eat spiders but again it's not really necessary in captivity to try this.

    As for the Gutload vs Supplements

    I got my information from a vet who is one of a handful in the country. She works with Ripley's aquarium, a zoo in Tennessee and others. I understand what other herpers may have said but when it's your toads and you tried supplements and your toads are dying and then you switch to gutload and they are still here it wouldn't be a debate if you actually witnessed this. I have and spent over $4k getting my toads healthy from parasites. I actually two years ago wouldn't have recommended gutloads to keepers on here but I had to humble myself and listen to the vet. She saved my toads and they are incredible ever since. Part is the diet. I am using my testimony that this can save toads lives even if it's the northeast toads only and the other frogs species. I'm not telling you how to care for your animals I am just trying to save this toads life and recommend something that saved my toads lives.

    I have been on this forum for years and helped gray tree frog keepers, whites tree frog keepers, leopard frog keepers, and American toad keepers and I have had some aggressive moments and some very humbling ones. I really care and want to help the people on this forum and I am willing to admit when I'm wrong. Every time I tell someone about the Gutload I recommend it's humbling myself because I thought I knew exactly how to keep the northeast frogs and toads with specific supplements and etc. I almost lost my toads and ever since then I've been willing to accept changes and listen more then anything else. I just want to help keepers of this species to have the healthiest and happiest toads.

    Frank Indiviglio

    http://blogs.thatpetplace.com/thatre.../#.W8wcd1MpA0M

    http://blogs.thatpetplace.com/thatre...ecies-part-ii/

    http://blogs.thatpetplace.com/thatre...pecies-part-i/


    http://blogs.thatpetplace.com/thatre...blebee-mimics/

    http://blogs.thatpetplace.com/thatre.../#.W8wfA1MpA0M

  21. #20

    Default Re: Opinions needed on medical issue

    I totally respect your experience and good intentions. Gut-loading feeders is not a bad thing. It's a good thing. I just think supplements are good too. I've had my say. Folks can read the links and make up their own minds.

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