Although African dwarf frogs generally require less maintenance, these living creatures can still suffer from various diseases. One of the ailments that frequently affects the frog are edema or flatulence.
So, why is my African dwarf frog bloated? Through this article, we will guide you through the most common causes of frog floating heads as well as possible solutions.
This includes checking the water characteristics, dealing with flatulence, and feeding your frog appropriately.
Why Is My African Dwarf Frog Bloated?
Severe flatulence is a symptom of bloating, also called edema, hydronephrosis, ascites, and Dropsy in your pet. Your dwarf frog might resemble a balloon, but it doesn’t inflate with air.
The frog is swollen because too much fluid has accumulated inside its tiny body. This state can even appear in the middle of the night, which will be very uncomfortable for your frog.
Foods that normal frogs cannot eat, such as shrimps and bloodworms, are the favorite foods of African dwarf frogs. However, they also carry parasites that can be fatal to frogs.
Also, bloodworms don’t break down efficiently in the digestive systems of most aquatic creatures, so they are not the best fit for your pet.
Due to a weak digestive system and prone to bloating, African dwarf frogs should not eat any shrimp or frozen foods. They can eat defrosted brine shrimps and pellets, though.
Ingesting A Foreign Object
Ingesting a foreign item is another reason for your bloated African dwarf frog. These amphibians could have taken in anything strange, like nearby sand or rocks.
They also lack arms, so they consume food with the hind legs. Your frog can then use its legs to forage while simultaneously consuming the improper object.
These “strangers” can build up in the frog’s digestive tract and make it difficult to digest, leading to bloating.
Some foreign objects can be distracted out of their body after being digested, at which point the body will return to normal.
Conversely, some sharp or indigestible foreign things can damage the frog’s digestive system.
The Ascites are the last common culprits behind bloating. The edema causes the dwarf frog’s belly to swell and thicken overnight due to severe bloating.
When lymph fluid deposits in the lymph nodes of a frog’s circulatory system without proper drainage, ascites thrive.
Small oval structures called lymph nodes are seen everywhere along the lymphatic channels.
These are composed of connective tissues packed with macrophages and lymphocytes, acting as filters. These nodes remove germs, viruses, and other materials from the lymph fluid.
Lymphatic fluid transports macrophages and lymphocytes, which fight bacteria, to the lymph nodes. The cardiovascular system adequately drains lymphatic fluid from the lymph nodes.
However, lymph fluid builds up in the nodes and gradually invades them when this mechanism is disrupted or not working properly.
Then, the nodes expand as fluid accumulates outside of healthy tissue. The abdomen bulges while it is still inside and occupies the frog’s abdominal cavity.
Too much fluid inside the frog’s tiny body makes other parts pinched, making it uncomfortable.
The eventual organ failure may be because of swelling pressing on the frog’s organs, including the heart, limbs, and liver, rendering it unable to swim or eat.
Similar to how glaucoma-associated fluid buildup puts high pressure on the eyeballs in humans, the lymphatic fluid associated with edema exerts extreme pressure on nearly all of the frog’s internal organs.
A sudden large amount of pressure on internal organs such as the spleen, liver, kidneys, and others can cause them to fail to perform their intended function and even rupture, leading to death to the frog.
Also, due to the discomfort and pain of the disease, your frog may become lethargic and refuse to eat, and the pet can’t live without eating for too long.
How Can You Treat Bloating In Your African Dwarf Frog?
You should pay special attention to the water environment of your dwarf frog.
Water temperature should always be checked, along with ammonia and nitrate levels. Any small change in water quality can harm your frog.
The tank water needs to be changed three times a week. Whatever the situation, keep the water as pure as possible, remove chlorine, and check the pH level to keep it between 7.0 and 7.2.
In addition, quickly change the water when the frog is bloated and let the frog fast for 2 to 3 days. It is a useful and necessary first-aid technique.
It is important to remember that treating frog edema on your own at home is not safe.
If you try to drain the liquid out of the African dwarf frog yourself by sucking it with a needle or putting salt in the tank, you can kill it.
Even if salt does help draw more liquid out of your frog’s body, it still puts your little frog in danger. These pets don’t belong to the saltwater amphibian family, so they often die when salt is added.
You should find an unusual veterinarian to help remove excessive fluid from the frog’s belly. Your frog will feel better immediately as it will relieve the strain on the organs.
Bloating treatment requires certain specialized knowledge. Unfortunately, once your vet doesn’t think there’s much of a chance for your pet, euthanasia may be an option that would be preferred.
Why is my African dwarf frog bloated? Bloating in African dwarf frogs is complicated because beginners don’t know if they should take the condition seriously and what the appropriate treatment is.
Moreover, many causes can make the disease persist for a long time.
For the best treatment results if your frog has this problem, we recommend that you monitor your water parameters and talk to your veterinarian as quickly as possible.
We hope that this post will be useful to you and your African dwarf frogs. Thanks for reading.