Dead Axolotl in a day

XieXie

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Hello,
My axolotl just died and I'm looking for answers as to why.
Yesterday at about 3pm she looked okay, her gills were flared but her tail was straight. Sometimes she flips out after she poops (which she had just done) so I thought the stress sign was from that.
Later at about 9pm her gills had turned white. I didn't see anything else out of the ordinary on her body but I knew that it was a bad sign. I tried to feed her and she wouldn't eat anything. After pulling the food away she seemed to be gagging despite having not eaten for over a day (I feed her every other day). She was pretty inactive and not very responsive.
I couldn't find a solid suggestion to what might be wrong with her. I first thought it was a fungus, but her gills had faded in color and nothing was growing on her anywhere so it didn't completely look like a fungus.
I decided to wait until the next day to see if there were further signs of anything else since a couple websites suggested that she would be better after moving around.
In the morning at 8am she was completely unresponsive and looked 10x worse. She kind of looked like she had already started rotting but I could see her gills moving every once in a while so I knew she was still there. She also looked like she had somehow lost a third of her weight overnight. Her stomach looked sunken in.
I decided to immediately put her in a salt bath for just over 10 minutes. She was completely limp and did not react to anything.
Stuck her in the fridge after this because she looked so bad and checked on her periodically until 2pm when I had to go to work.
Every time I checked on her I would eventually see gill movement but absolutely no improvement.
I've gotten home at about 8:30 pm and found her dead.

Whatever was wrong did not visibly display itself until yesterday and killed her in a days time. She was a lucy with only a few freckles on her face, so with the white everywhere else it is entirely possible that there were symptoms beforehand that I didn't see. However, she was not acting funny until yesterday.
It is also worth noting that the last time I fed her, she seemed to struggle with her food. She still ate everything, but she didn't have a good time doing it. I usually feed her 2 worms and however many pellets she wants. It is also worth noting that she was slightly underweight and in the 2 months I had her, she did not gain any weight.

I doubt I can ever know why exactly she died but if anyone has ever seen similar stuff or sees something that I don't, please let me know! This was my first axolotl and I am heartbroken that she died so fast and lived too short of a life. I would like to understand what I did wrong so that I can do better.
Thanks
 

Otterwoman

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I'm sorry for your loss. If she hadn't gained any weight since you had her, she might have just had something wrong with her. The way we raise larvae allows many more to grow successfully that would not have in 'the wild.' Just think about all the extra time you gave her.
 

XieXie

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Yeah I understand. I had wondered if it could be something like that.
Thank you! Thinking of it like this helps make me at peace with it.
 

Hayleyy

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Sorry for your loss. I lost an axolotl almost a week ago, she deteriorated within a similar time frame as yours did so it was very unexpected.
If you have the results of the water parameters it might shed some light. Did you do a water change in the last couple of days?
 

XieXie

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Oh? did they behave similar as well? I was struggling to find anyone who had a similar case.
water was at ammonia-0 nitrite-0 nitrate-40ppm ph- 7.6, it checked out fine.
and yeah I changed the water regularly including that morning when she got sick. As soon as she started looking bad I cleaned out her filter as well.
Sorry for your loss though, I feel your pain :(
 

Hayleyy

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She wasn't eating anything (worms, pellets, frozen) but was not losing weight. She would take the food into her mouth and then spit it out. The only other noticeable problem was some skin issues which I was treating with tea/leaves. Since I didn't notice any other symptoms I'm inclined to think it was a genetic thing. I could be wrong but I am keeping a close eye on my other axolotl and checking parameters every other day.
An autopsy would possibly show you the cause of death, but it's not a regular thing for people to do with their aquatic pets, and you would need a vet who knows the species.
Do you have any other axolotls?
 
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