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Tiger Salamander with an injured back.

This is a discussion on Tiger Salamander with an injured back. within the Newt and Salamander Help forums, part of the Beginner Newt, Salamander, Axolotl & Help Topics category; I have an injured Tiger Salamander, and I'm not quite sure what to do. You see, he is normally kept ...

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Old 17th May 2008   #1 (permalink)
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Default Tiger Salamander with an injured back.

I have an injured Tiger Salamander, and I'm not quite sure what to do.

You see, he is normally kept in a clear plastic container, and he crawls up in the corners. It seems that by getting in this awkward position, he has injured his back. He has, what can best be described, as a twist in his back. As if his vertebrate isn't completely straight. It's now escalated ot the point, where he has a great deal of difficulty in walking, as he seems to have a lot of trouble moving his back legs effectively. And a great difficulty in keeping balance.

I have had this happen with salamanders before, and have almost always chosen to put them down. But it seems like I had one, that was able to recover (though his was a less severe case). I'm now wondering if there is a chance he could pull through.

I also wanted to point out, that while his appetite has gone down, he hasn't completely stopped eating. Although, today he wouldn't eat anything.

Anyways, is there anything I could possibly do to help him? Or should I put him down, so that he won't have to suffer?



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Old 17th May 2008   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tiger Salamander with an injured back.

I was rather tired when I first made this topic, so I phrased somethings poorly.

It looks like he has a broken spine. It's in kind of an S shape.



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Old 17th May 2008   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tiger Salamander with an injured back.

Did this happen suddenly or gradually? As this has happened before to other sals, I am wondering if the spinal problem (or the propensity to fracture) is due to dietary deficiency. Also, perhaps a soft substrate might reduce problems with climbing.

I don't think there is much you can do to treat this. Salamanders can have surprising healing powers, so if he's not obviously suffering I'd say keep him comfortable and fed and hope for at least a partial recovery. If this isn't possible, then euthanasia may be warranted.
http://www.caudata.org/cc/articles/euthanasia.shtml



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Old 17th May 2008   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tiger Salamander with an injured back.

It did seem somewhat sudden. Though he has gradually declined.

I was wondering if diet may be a problem. You see I haven't given them that much of a variety in diet, and haven't used any kind of vitamin. But no matter what happens with this one, I plan on feeding my healthy salamander better.



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Old 17th May 2008   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tiger Salamander with an injured back.

Hi,

With the history you describe (it having happened before), I would agree that nutritional deficiency may well be an issue here - you should get him to a vet for evaluation and probable radiography, to assess both the spine and general skeletal calcification.

Recovery from such lesions (albeit often with a residual deformity) is more likely in amphibians than mammals, so I wouldn't give up on him as long as he's not obviously suffering, as Jennewt says.

Hope you can get him sorted out.

best wishes,

Bruce.



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