Bloat In Tree Frogs: Causes, Symptoms, And Treatment

You must be surprised to discover your tree frog with a bloated body one day. Such unusual bloating may come up with unease, lethargy, and pain. That’s why people often ask around in frog forums to know details about the causes, symptoms, and treatment of bloating in tree frogs.

Bloating can happen due to dropsy, infection, water retention, presence of foreign bodies, etc. If you do not take any immediate action, the lives of your bloated tree frog may be at life risk.

In this article, I’ve briefly penned down 8 the potential causes of bloating in your tree frogs. Also, you can get to know about the symptoms of bloating in tree frogs and the possible treatments. So, you should not miss this article if your tree frog is bloated.

8 Causes Of Bloating In Tree Frogs

If your tree frog is swollen, there may remain several causes. Sometimes, there may not be anything to worry about. It can happen due to poor digestion, carrying eggs, or obesity.

But, there can be several underlying reasons behind bloating in tree frogs. Before treating your bloated frog, you have to find out the root problem.

Let’s check out the following reasons which may cause bloating in your tree frogs.

1. Dropsy Or Edema

Dropsy is a serious condition where fluids build up in the abdominal cavity due to poor drainage. If your tree frog suffers from dropsy, the trapped fluid will make your frog bloated.

There are debates regarding the actual causes behind dropsy. Dropsy can happen because of poor diet, renal failure, fungal and viral infection, etc.

Because of the fluid build-up, it causes pressure on other organs. As a result, edema or dropsy can cause organ failures in your affected tree frogs.

In addition, poor water quality and an unhygienic environment can cause dropsy in tree frogs. Moreover, husbandry deficiencies are responsible to bloat in your pet frog. Sometimes, toxicity from medications or other chemicals can cause lymph fluid build-up. This results in tree frog bloating.

2. Impaction

Another potential reason for bloating in tree frogs is impaction. You can call it a form of constipation too.

Although tree frogs are arboreal, you may keep substrate at the bottom of the tank. Some particles of the substrate aren’t digestible for tree frogs. Such as clay, sand, larger gravel, etc.

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Sometimes, your tree frog may mistakenly eat these substrate particles while picking foods. As a result, these particles block the intestines of your frog.

Besides, you should not provide larger insects to your tree frogs. When your tree frog can not digest the hard exoskeleton of larger insects, it’ll cause impaction. As a result, your tree frog will be bloated.

3. Water Retention

If your tree frogs retain water in their body, your frogs will be bloated. Water retention can be caused due to calcium deficiency, infection, and other health issues.

Because of low calcium levels, food movement becomes slow in the intestinal tract of tree frogs. In addition, the affected frog tend to absorb water in their tissues. As a result, your tree frogs become bloated. If your tree frog retains water, you should recheck its diet.

If you want a complete guide to your tree frog diet, you can go through this article: Best Foods For Tree Frogs.

4. Renal Failure

Like all animals, the kidneys of tree frogs are responsible for osmoregulation. Sometimes, tree frogs become bloated due to their kidney or renal failure. Due to imbalances in liquid exchanges, the lymph liquid will build up in the abdomen tissues of tree frogs.

5. Skin Disease

You might know that tree frogs absorb water through their skin. Frogs can’t drink water like humans.

If your tree frogs are bloated, these bloated frogs may retain water due to their skin disease. Sometimes, tree frogs can suffer from a skin disease that causes an imbalance in electrolytes. It results in water retention that causes bloating in tree frogs.

You should take a look at this article if your pet tree frog is sick.

6. Your Tree Frogs Are Gravid

If your tree frogs are gravid, they’ll appear swollen or bloated. For this, you should check the gender of your tree frog.

It’s a natural process for your female tree frogs to produce eggs until the mating season. Since your gravid tree frogs carry a bunch of eggs, their bellies look full and bloated. After laying eggs, their bloating goes off.

If your tree frogs are gravid, you should know about their breeding procedures. So, you can take a look at this write-up: how to breed tree frogs? [Beginner Friendly Way]

How To Treat A Sick Tree Frog

7. Toxicity From Water

Bloating can be a direct result of stress for your tree frogs. When the water quality degrades, it affects badly on the health of your frogs.

In addition, ammonia and nitrite spike in water lead to stress in your tree frogs. As a result, your frogs tend to become bloated due to toxic water.

Besides, exposure to harmful chemicals can also cause bloating in tree frogs. That’s why the experts always suggest providing safe water for pet frogs.

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Many beginners keep untreated tap water in the tank of their tree frogs. This kind of water may have pollutants, heavy metals, harmful chemicals, and additives. When your tree frogs come exposed to these harmful components, your frogs may become bloated.

8. Your Tree Frog Has Become Fat

Otherwise, there might not be any grave reason at all. It can happen that your frog has become fat. The obesity of your tree frogs can look bloating to you.

But, obesity doesn’t happen overnight. When your tree frog becomes bloated overnight, it must be a matter of worry.

5 Symptoms Of Bloating In Tree Frogs

Bloating can be divided into two ways. One of them is major bloating, and another one is minor bloating. In minor bloating, your tree frog will get bloated without feeling any pain. It is the primary stage of bloating.

On the other hand, your tree frogs will feel intense pain and discomfort in major bloating. However, there are some additional symptoms of bloating in tree frogs. Such as-

  1. The abdomen of your tree frogs will become severely bloated. Besides, the bloating can spread to their legs.
  2. Besides, the eyes of the bloated tree frogs may seem to bulge out.
  3. Because of the excess lymph fluid pressure, your tree frogs may remain in pain and discomfort.
  4. Due to the discomfort, your bloated tree frogs will show lethargy.
  5. In addition, the bloated tree frogs may stop eating because of physical discomfort. Your bloated tree frog will have trouble catching prey.

5 Treatment Of Bloating In Tree Frogs

To treat bloating of your tree frogs, you can follow a few methods. Let’s check out the following ways to treat your bloated tree frogs.

1. Determine The Reason

Firstly, you need to find out the actual reason for bloating in your tree frogs. Without knowing the reason, you can not proceed with treatment.

Sometimes, people often become confused between dropsy and constipation. If your tree frog is constipated, its limbs will look normal. A constipated frog may have slight bloating in the abdomen, whereas a bloated frog can have a severely swollen abdomen.

You should look for the signs to determine the reason. Several symptoms of bloating can tell about any underlying disease in your tree frogs.

2. Use A Salt Bath

A salt bath is a popular remedy to treat bloating in tree frogs. You will require water and Epsom salt to prepare this salt bath.

Make sure not to overdose salt in the water. Depending on the size of your tree frog, you should take water in a container. Afterward, you need to add Epsom salt.

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Then, you should place your bloated tree frog in the salt bath for 30-45 minutes a day. Continue this process for a few days. You should check whether a salt bath reduces the bloating in your tree frogs. Otherwise, you should seek the help of a vet.

3. Seek Out A Veterinarian

Nothing compares with the expertise of a veterinarian to treat a bloated tree frog. You may research for a while to find out possible causes and treatments for your bloated frog. If your home remedies do not decrease the bloating, you must seek out a veterinarian.

The vet can identify the underlying disease or problem causing bloating. According to the suggestions of your vet, you can start treatment of your bloated tree frog with proper medications. Besides, you should know the detailed method of giving medications, amount of doses, etc.

In addition, the vet can drain out the excess fluid with a needle. You must not try to drain the liquid from your bloated frog at home.

There remains a risk of puncturing any organ of your frog with the needle. That’s why only a professional should try this procedure to relieve the pain of your bloated tree frog.

4. Treat With Medications

If a salt bath doesn’t work out, you should treat your bloated tree frog with medications. For this, you need to identify whether the reason for bloating is an infection or organ failure. If any disease is responsible for the bloating of your tree frog, you should provide specific antibiotics prescribed to treat the disease.

For example- the professionals suggest medicines like Maracyn Plus, Maracyn 2, or Enrofloxacin for bacterial infection. You must maintain the doses of these medications by following the prescriptions of a vet.

5. Euthanasia Can Be The Last Way

Who doesn’t want to cure their pet tree frogs? Despite persistent trying, the bloating of your tree frogs may not get cured. Your bloated frog may be too sick if it doesn’t heal within 7-15 days.

In such a case, euthanasia can be the last option to reduce the pain of your bloated tree frog. I’m sure it’s pretty painful to even imagine this process. But, this can help your bloated tree frog get rid of pain by having a quick death. Otherwise, you can leave your bloated tree frog alone.

Final Words

I hope this article helped you get a crystal clear idea about the potential causes, signs, and treatments for bloating in tree frogs. But, the reasons and treatment procedures can be a bit different for a bloated Albino African Clawed frog. If your Albino African Clawed frog is bloated, you should check out the following article.

Here’s How To Treat A Bloated Albino African Clawed Frog!

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Muntaseer Rahman

About Author

Hello, I’m Muntaseer Rahman, the owner of I’m passionate about aquarium pets like shrimps, snails, crabs, and crayfish. I’ve created this website to share my expertise and help you provide better care for these amazing pets.


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