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Tiger salamander cataracts?

This is a discussion on Tiger salamander cataracts? within the Newt and Salamander Help forums, part of the Beginner Newt, Salamander, Axolotl & Help Topics category; I got two tiger salamanders about a month ago. No idea how old they are, both 10-14 inches. One is ...

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Old 26th January 2016   #1 (permalink)
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Default Tiger salamander cataracts?

I got two tiger salamanders about a month ago. No idea how old they are, both 10-14 inches. One is pretty speedy & bright eyed (when she's not hiding) & responds well to food/stimuli in general. The other is currently missing his front right foot (was when I acquired him) and has always been more on the sluggish side. He takes food but is a lot more difficult to feed, I'm assuming now because he can't see well. Noticed today while feeding that his eyes seem kind of cloudy, but I it seems only to cover his pupils, not his whole eyes... From what I can find, this seems like a bacterial infection of some sort, but I can't find much info on treatment. Both in a 20L with topsoil/coco mix, humidity is about 60% and temp is 70F. They're eating nightcrawlers and small dubias. I have a water dish on one side that I replace daily to every other day with water dechlorinated withe Prime... Anyone have experience dealing with this? Should I take him to the vet? I just don't want to pay $150 for someone to tell me that he's old.
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Old 27th January 2016   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tiger salamander cataracts?

That is strange! Just FYI in case you haven't noticed it, there is a Tiger specific section. Posting there might give you more readers. The posts there take a while to show up so apologies if you have already looked there. Are his eyes bulged out in a conical shape? His left looks a bit like that to me but its hard to tell with the water behind it in the back ground.



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Old 27th January 2016   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tiger salamander cataracts?

Here is the thread that recounts my experience with an eye issue in a caudate: Cynops Orientalis with Eye Affliction

My animal was much smaller but luckily a very knowledgeable member assisted me who had experienced a similar problem with her salamander. I highly recommend a trip to the vet.

Best of luck,

HJ



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Old 3rd February 2016   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tiger salamander cataracts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlotl View Post
That is strange! Just FYI in case you haven't noticed it, there is a Tiger specific section. Posting there might give you more readers. The posts there take a while to show up so apologies if you have already looked there. Are his eyes bulged out in a conical shape? His left looks a bit like that to me but its hard to tell with the water behind it in the back ground.
Thanks! I'm still getting used to navigating the forum.
I never noticed that in the picture until you pointed it out, but you may be right... Looking at him now, it doesn't look terribly bulged, but I honestly can't tell. That might be something to consider.



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Old 3rd February 2016   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tiger salamander cataracts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jewett View Post
Here is the thread that recounts my experience with an eye issue in a caudate: Cynops Orientalis with Eye Affliction

My animal was much smaller but luckily a very knowledgeable member assisted me who had experienced a similar problem with her salamander. I highly recommend a trip to the vet.

Best of luck,

HJ
Thank you. After reading your thread, I'm almost swayed more towards cataracts but I guess there's no way to be certain. Thankfully I work in/get a discount at one of the top rated vet school in the country (Gig 'em Aggies!) so I'll likely be making him an appointment within the week.
PS... I usually sign off with HJ as well, I was very confused for a few seconds!



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Old 22nd February 2016   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tiger salamander cataracts?

Thought I'd post an update for whoever is interested! Took him to the vet, and they were able to determine that it's not a local injury/cataracts (pretty cool how they figured it out... like I mentioned, I took him to our vet school and ended up getting a FULL ophthalmology consult for free. They were pretty excited, apparently they'd never gotten to look at salamander eyes) but systemic, likely some sort of bacterial infection. Thankfully, the rest of his physical was perfectly normal. He's been receiving chicken flavored antibiotic filled worms (0.01 mL... LOL), eyedrops, and an anti-inflammatory for about a week and will for a week more. His eyes don't look much different but he's definitely much more enthusiastic and I get the feeling that he has a lot better idea of what's going on, although it may just be that the arm he was missing has grown to the point of being functional again. Very interesting experience! Anyone else have experience medicating amphibians?
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Old 1st August 2016   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tiger salamander cataracts?

Update for anyone interested... Norbert was in quarantine and on all the medications listed above at various doses for several months. Sometimes he'll come out and see what's up when I'm in the room so I think he can see a bit from one eye, but the other is definitely useless. It sounds kind of awful, but he gets around fine, sheds regularly, and eats voraciously so I eventually kind of gave up trying to treat him... He seems to be enjoying his life as a three-legged blind wonder (though most of the missing leg has grown back).



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