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

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Old 18th December 2007   #1
KevFox2169
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Default Axolotl Throat problems

So I've had my Axie for about 9 months. I had experimented with housing him with other fish and found it worked just fine. Either the fish were small and got eaten just fine or were too big and lived happily staying away from each other.

But I'm an idiot and was given these two albino cory's (catfish lookalikes) and Themistocles (My axie) got greedy and ate one. Turned out it was more than he can chew and now I have a big problem. It's been stuck in his mouth for 3 days now and I'm very worried.

I've heard the spines could be dangerous and the tail bit of the catish is still sticking out. I'm wondering if theres any advice on making the fish come out his mouth or to get him to finally swallow it.

I've decided to take all the other fish out, and hopefully I'll get advice as to what to do?



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Old 18th December 2007   #2
Sarah
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Hmm sorry to be the bearer of bad news but it sounds like the cory is trapped in your axie's throat because of their spiky fins and spine. I have done some reading over the last little while and it doesn't sound great for your axolotl The cories tend to damage axolotl's throats quite badly if eaten due to spiny fins they use as a defensive thing and I would recommend taking your axie to a vet that specialises in amphibians so the vet can check it out, remove the cory and also provide any antibiotics for cuts and lacerations. I personally think it would be dangerous to remove the cory yourself as you might do more damage to your axie's throat.

Anyway I hope your axie will be ok~~~




Last edited by Saspotato; 18th December 2007 at 09:07. Reason: extra stuff
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Old 18th December 2007   #3
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Check out the following threads, might give you an idea on how to get it out. http://www.caudata.org/forum/message...tml?1136128475

http://www.caudata.org/cc/articles/M...ers.shtml#id46



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Old 18th December 2007   #4
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Default Thank you

So I've decided that in the morning I will attempt to remove the fish from Themistocles' mouth. I'm shooting for 2-3 minutes of an attempt. and will try to either push it out with a smooth metal rod, or use tiny scissors to break the fish into pieces and remove it that way.

Now I've heard about this refridgerator technique when axie's are sick. Can someone instruct me what the best Post Op procedures are? and if any of you have any other opinions I'd be happy to hear it.

Thanks all. I'll keep you informed.



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Old 18th December 2007   #5
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Best of luck and hope you succeed!

When fridging an axolotl = test the fridge temperature if not known first by placing a thermometer in a glass of water and placing in the back of the fridge. Leave for 15-20minutes then check it. Minimum temperature should be 41F/5C.

Use a plastic container with lid that will fit your axolotl lengthwise.
Fill with dechlorinated water.
Place axolotl in then cover with lid (no need for holes - there's enough oxygen in the cold water).
Wrap with a dishcloth and place in the fridge.

As well you need to place a bottle or two of dechlorinated water in the fridge, as you'll need to change the water completely in his/her container daily. Water has to be the same temperature as fridge container.

If all goes well and you manage to remove the fish/bones then keep an eye on your axolotl while it's recuperating in the fridge.



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Old 18th December 2007   #6
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Default Anything to add to the water?

I've been told a pinch of salt can help stave off infection. (old wives and their tales)

And also a little aspirin also supposedly helps off infection? (It helps plants and most animals)

Or just fresh bottled water in the fridge?

Thanks again for all the support guys. (should i be feeding him while hes fridging?)



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Old 18th December 2007   #7
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Just dechlorinated water in the fridge.

And salt added to water are great for infections/wounds (not just an old wives tale)! But avoid using salt unless you have to.

I wouldn't use the aspirin either.

You can try to feed him though he may be traumatised (I certainly would) after the fish event. Don't be surprised if he doesn't eat, some axies won't eat at that low a temperature (their metabolism slows down, hence during winter axies tend to eat less or every few days).



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Old 18th December 2007   #8
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Default 1:51 hours after the operation

Themistocles is effectively de-fished. We had to cut the spines off the dead catfish and pull it out that way. He's now fridging comfortably. Theres some blood in his mouth. But hopefully all will turn out well.

Fingers crossed everyone! thanks again for all the help. It was very much appreciated and helped make what I thought to be the best course of action. Time for some of that axie regeneration.

Thanks again everyone, I'll keep you all posted.



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Old 18th December 2007   #9
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Hey great news! I am glad you managed to get the fish out :) Yea it is a good idea to keep in the fridge for a bit til he gets better, it will help the healing process.



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Old 19th December 2007   #10
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Default Secondary issues.

Now, I'm aware that he's alive and well. But now the secondary problems is that I'm not entirely sure I got all the spines out. I'm hesitant to go in and check, and am wondering if he would pass those or spit them out normally? I'm sure I got two whole ones. but the third looks shorter than the others, So im wondering if I should go back and make sure to pull it out, or leave it as such.

Themistocles is very much alive still, but his skin has become far more orangy than he typically is (he stays at a nice golden color) Is this due to the fridge process? and if so, is it healthy-ish?




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Old 19th December 2007   #11
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If you can root around for the other spine without causing too much stress, you should check.

The fridge will cause them to change colors, as there is more blood at the surface. That's fairly normal. I'd keep an eye on him for infection. It's a real risk with this type of injury.



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Old 21st December 2007   #12
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Default Still with us

This forum has been such a ton of help I can't thank any of you enough. Themistocles is alive though he looks bruised up from the "operation" But thats clearing up. In post op, I've finally started to take him out of fridging and tried feeding him unsuccessfully. (A bit traumatized from the cory incident no doubt.) Anyway, He has the white fungus infection on his gills, and has spread a little to his body, so I'm doing saltbaths right now in room temperature water to get rid of it.

Any suggestions on when I should add him back into the aquarium?

(In other news, I suppose my friends and family thought Themistocles had no chance, and as such gave me 2 new natural colored axolotl's I've affectionately named Selenium and Klaurie. They're in Isolation right now, and hopefully they will either make great friends for Themistocles or great presents.)

Thanks again everyone.



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Old 21st December 2007   #13
Julia
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I think keeping him in his 'hospital' tank and cool will make doing the salt baths easier and give him a good chance to heal. It'll also be far easier to keep an eye on him too. Love your axolotl names!



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Old 22nd December 2007   #14
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Default Dying?

Themistocles is not looking so hot. I've removed all the fish and put him back in his tank. He hasn't been eating anything. It's been about 7 days since the cory catfish was first seen in his mouth, and so its been around 10 days since he's eaten. Theres a bit of the cleary white fungus on his gills and a bit on his shoulder. He has irritation on his throat. and as if all that weren't enough, he doesn't close his mouth completely, his throat just sort of swallows but his mouth remains stuck half open.

From my experience, the salt baths may have done more harm than good, He didn't seem too pleased by the experience at all and I think the changing back and forth from the water to the bath was a bit much. He's still moving around; but I fear he may simply be on borrowed time.


Selenium and Klaurie are still in Iso, doing fine and eating regularly. They're both about 4 inches long and quite tiny.

And thats pretty much the current situation.

I do still appreciate all the feedback this community gave me, Themistocles might be suffering far worse from Cory's spines piercing and stretching his mouth out.

I'll keep you posted.
Kevin



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Old 23rd December 2007   #15
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Sorry to hear it. Being unable to close the mouth is a symptom of "mouth rot", which is an infection of the mouth/throat. As a last ditch attempt, you could try a strong antibiotic treatment with a broad spectrum antibiotic. See:
http://www.caudata.org/cc/articles/illness.shtml



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Old 23rd December 2007   #16
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Default Dolce Decorum

Themistocles has passed. Time of death: 10:37 Saturday, December 22, probable cause of death: "Mouth rot" with secondary stressor of gill fungus. He will be getting a Viking funeral tomorrow night at sunset. (Yes. By viking it IS what you're thinking.) Taking his estate and earthly possessions are Selenium And Klaurie.

I think this brings this thread near to a close. If theres anything anyone else would like to know, Feel free to ask. He was quite the pet. I'm sure he'd like to be thought of whenever an axie is seen standing on his hind legs while leaning on the glass looking at thier owner. His favorite band was Radiohead. (I found this out in that he got hungriest whenever radiohead played.)

You've all helped make this much easier, I felt knowledgable and that much helped feeling bad about my axie's death. It wasnt an unknown terror, it was something that had a name and that themistocles faught against bravely.

To his honor: Cheers.

-Kevin



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Old 23rd December 2007   #17
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Aw What a pity about your axie, I am sorry to hear he passed away KevFox.



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Old 23rd December 2007   #18
Julia
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Sorry to hear about your little little warrior.



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Old 8th January 2008   #19
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Default R.I.P. Themistocles

hey there,
v.sorry to hear about Themistocles - we have experienced the same recently with one of our axies, buttercup [died 03.01.08] so it's very sad... she also experienced similar problems to yours, so i'm sondering if it was some sort of mouth rot that got her in the end - that coupled with the heat we've had recently. my other axie, mojo meataxe looks as though he too has a problem with his mouth. Did Themistocles have trouble eating, like he'd take food then spit it out and kind of 'gulp' a bit afterwards? if you could tell me, then i can try to treat mojo the way that you did. I have put him in the fridge last night, hoping that will help. any other advice'd be much appreciated though!!



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