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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Is it safe to completely change the substrate of a quarantine tank every day? Or is the daily moving procedure too much stress for the frogs?

My African reed frogs (hyperolius concolor) finally came in and I'm looking to quarantine them. They were wild caught so I'm assuming they're going to have parasites.

I saw a study where they used daily enclosure cleaning to reduce parasites in frogs (https://meridian.allenpress.com/jhm...1/A-Comparison-of-Two-Treatments-for-Nematode). They did it for a whole month and found that parasites can be managed with that daily cleaning.

They changed the substrate and cleaned the enclosure with mild soap every day.

I'm concerned though that it may do more harm than good to move them around so much.

What are your thoughts?
 

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What are you trying to accomplish with the quarantine?

Is it to prevent disease / parasite transmission to your other animals?

Personally, the idea of continually removing frogs from a tank to change the substrate sounds overly stressful especially on frogs that were wild caught (one more reason to buy captive bred frogs :) ).
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
What are you trying to accomplish with the quarantine?

Is it to prevent disease / parasite transmission to your other animals?

Personally, the idea of continually removing frogs from a tank to change the substrate sounds overly stressful especially on frogs that were wild caught (one more reason to buy captive bred frogs :) ).
Unfortunately there aren't any captive bred reed frogs available where I am. I fully agree that captive bred is superior.

The goal is to reduce or eliminate parasites to stop them from infesting the paludarim they're going in. I read that once the parasites get in the substrate and such, they become impossible to remove without tearing down the tank. I want to prevent this as much as I can.

I'm also hoping to provide any offspring to my local reptile store (though breeding isn't the goal), and don't want the offspring to be infected with the parasites their parents brought in.
 

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If you're assuming that the frogs are parasitized or carrying other pathogens (which is a fairly reasonable assumption, not only because they're WC but because they passed through the retail system), and you're concerned about cleaning them up before they enter their permanent housing (also reasonable), it follows that you'd need to attend to all potential pathogens (not just nematodes in one genus).

For that, diagnostics and targeted treatment would be necessary. If it turns out that the frogs have Strongyloides and nothing else, then the hygene treatment with followup testing sounds like one possible treatment plan. The odds of the frogs carrying that genus of parasites and nothing else might be pretty low, so using this treatment as the sole shotgun method doesn't sound very prudent. Whether the hygene treatment has the same results with other intestinal parasites is very likely an open question, and it certainly doesn't address other pathogens.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
If you're assuming that the frogs are parasitized or carrying other pathogens (which is a fairly reasonable assumption, not only because they're WC but because they passed through the retail system), and you're concerned about cleaning them up before they enter their permanent housing (also reasonable), it follows that you'd need to attend to all potential pathogens (not just nematodes in one genus).

For that, diagnostics and targeted treatment would be necessary. If it turns out that the frogs have Strongyloides and nothing else, then the hygene treatment with followup testing sounds like one possible treatment plan. The odds of the frogs carrying that genus of parasites and nothing else might be pretty low, so using this treatment as the sole shotgun method doesn't sound very prudent. Whether the hygene treatment has the same results with other intestinal parasites is very likely an open question, and it certainly doesn't address other pathogens.
Would using a broad spectrum nematode/parasite treatment work as an alternative?

Fecal tests are very expensive where I am. It's about $200 per frog, and an additional $100 for each follow up fecal test. Especially since abdominal cavity nematodes like Foleyellides sp. are common in hyperolius concolor and don't show up on fecal tests.

With four frogs, I can't afford to do $1200 worth of testing and treatment. I'm looking for something I can do that will help, but I also understand if there are residual parasites with an untargeted treatment.

Does that make me a bad potential owner?
 

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Would using a broad spectrum nematode/parasite treatment work as an alternative?
I don't shotgun frogs, and don't and won't keep anything (else*) WC, so I can't offer any recommendations.

Groups of animals can be batch tested, and that might be an acceptable compromise. So, pooling a fecal sample, and taking PCR swabs and a blood test from one representative frog, and bringing all of them to the vet for a visual check to hopefully be billed as one office visit for the group. Your vet could advise on ways to keep costs reasonable.

If diagnostics are prohibitively expensive, presumably treatment for other potential issues in the future will be too. Something to think about, as amphibians do require vet care from time to time. It is, I think, a good reason to restrict one's animals to only CB from reliable sources to minimize issues.

A bit of reading about your parasite of personal concern, Foleyellides, indicates that it has an indirect life cycle and lives in tissues rather than the digestive tract. That means that the hygene method of treatment won't accomplish anything (as the parasite has an intermediate host, and also won't get excreted). This is another reason to consult a vet on this: the amount of knowledge needed to make good treatment decisions is substantial, and unfortunately until one gets through vet school they don't know what they don't know. I also don't know what I don't know, by the way, so be careful getting advice from random people on the internet when there are professionals who can easily be consulted. ;)

* I keep a group of WC North American Box Turtles, from before I knew better (about 25 years). I learned a lot from them about how the time in the retail system (collection, wholesaler, retailer -- none of whom typically know or really seem to care how to keep the animal healthy since they're cheap enough to replace when they die) is a big source of WC specimens' issues.
 

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Use paper towel as a substrate, easy to change. The frogs stress levels are more concerning when they are constantly in a mode of stress, or a fight or flight mode. Just doing a substrate change daily might stress them for a minute, but won't be overly detrimental.
 

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Paper towel is the best "substrate" for a quarantine tank. The best option is to have two tubs set up. Then each day you just move the frog over to the clean tub while you sanitize the one the frog was just in. With this you're only doing one quick move for the frog and limit the stress as much as possible.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
My frogs came in, they're so cute! I got my quarantine tank set up with some fake plants and a little water bowl. I put some mesh over the lid to make sure they don't get their toes stuck against the hard plastic slots in the lid.

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I've decided to observe them for a few weeks. See if they're eating, see their poop is normal, etc. If they seem off or their poop doesn't look good, or they're not eating, I contacted a few vets nearby and found one who will look at them for a fair price. Then I can get a diagnosis and treat if needed.

In the meantime, these guys are so cute. Hopefully they are in good condition and I won't need to take them to the vet. I'm ready for that if needed though.

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