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Axolotl Floating Upside Down!

This is a discussion on Axolotl Floating Upside Down! within the Sick Axolotl? forums, part of the Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) category; Hello, I'm new to this site and I joined so that I could hopefully get some advice for my axolotl, ...

Sick Axolotl? Axolotl looking down in the gills? The doctors are in.

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Old 16th July 2013   #1 (permalink)
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Unhappy Axolotl Floating Upside Down!

Hello,
I'm new to this site and I joined so that I could hopefully get some advice for my axolotl, Pochancho. He has been floating upside down for several weeks. My friend gave him back to me after I returned from a trip, and she said that he's been upside down for a while. His tank doesn't have any substrate so he didn't swallow any gravel, the water temperature is around 70 F, and I lowered his water levels so that he could hopefully stand, but he can't. I feed him some amphibian pellets that sink, and nothing else. He eats perfectly fine, but I know that he doesn't like being upside down. I've googled and read up on what I should do, but there wasn't much information. Please help! I really want him to be more comfortable.



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Old 16th July 2013   #2 (permalink)
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Maybe ask your friend what triggered it? Also, any lumps or air bubbles visible in his tummy? He might have swam up and gulped air.... this may seem like a silly question, but if you very gently turn him over, does he turn back upside down? How low do you have the water? Pictures? Also. . Maybe try cooling the tank just a bit to avoid stressing him?

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Old 16th July 2013   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Axolotl Floating Upside Down!

Hey,
I already asked her and she wasn't sure. There seem to be some air bubbles in his body, but not so sure if they're only in his tummy. That's what I thought too, but he's been upside down for weeks I don't want to risk touching him because of his skin, but he does struggle to turn over. The most he can turn is on his side, but then he flips back over on his tummy. And if he manages to struggle right side up (he did this once) he just flips back over... I have the water low enough so that his gills don't drag on the tank floor too much. I'll try to load some pictures soon, but how should I cool the tank? I don't have a fancy cooler or anything, should I put him in the fridge? But thanks for the reply!



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Old 16th July 2013   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Axolotl Floating Upside Down!

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Old 17th July 2013   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Axolotl Floating Upside Down!

The pictures don't come up very large, but why is his tummy that colour? It looks very rashy/inflamed or something like there is something seriously wrong or is that his natural colour?? I always though axys had very pale bellies regardless of colour and yours looks very irritated red colour. Maybe my eye's are deceiving me...

Anyway you could try fridging him. People using the fridging method when their axies float. It helps them to pass gas/faeces. Have a look at the fridging sticky to ensure you do it right.

Ways to cool the tank:
1. Move the tank to a lower/cooler room. The floor in a basement that kind of thing.
2. Aim a fan at the surface of the water
3. Drape icey cold wet towels over the tank (be sure to leave room for evaporation)
4. Add ice bottles to the tank (can be a tricky and time consuming method to keep the temp constant.)



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Old 17th July 2013   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Axolotl Floating Upside Down!

Also, what are your water parameters (nitrate, nitrite, ammonia, pH)?



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Old 17th July 2013   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Axolotl Floating Upside Down!

Floating upside down is almost always a sign it's not getting enough to eat. Try feeding more often.



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Old 17th July 2013   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Axolotl Floating Upside Down!

Feeding it live blackworms also help... When my little guys had that same issue i fed them blackworms and they seemed to get better from it flyer a few feelings... I think the worms moving in their bellies for a while helped them I guess burp it out.. I could be wrong but that's what I got out of it from feeding them the blackworms.



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Old 17th July 2013   #9 (permalink)
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I use ice bottles, or a fan. What's wrong with his slime coat? Hm... tea bath maybe? Definitely try feeding him more.

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Old 17th July 2013   #10 (permalink)
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Though his tummy might be that color..... If it isn't a rash for sure, don't medicate.

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Old 22nd July 2013   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Axolotl Floating Upside Down!

Thank you everyone for all of your support and advice! I think the problem was underfeeding him, so after I fed him a lot (but not too much) he is back to normal! He is now at the bottom chilling as usual! I'm going to put him on a diet with the pellets and frozen blood worms, so I hope that will be okay. I think he has diarrhea though, so maybe it was a digesting problem? But other than that, he is all good now. Thank you for your support and advice! :)



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Old 22nd July 2013   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Axolotl Floating Upside Down!

Great to hear he's doing a lot better. Always a releif when our little water babies get better



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Old 24th July 2013   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Axolotl Floating Upside Down!

haha yeah! yeahhh, love axolotls so much!



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