Dex the Pacman Frog Remembrance Gallery
In scouring the web for information on Dex's eye, I discovered information about housing. Apparently, the way you see these frogs housed at the pet store is not the way they should be housed permanently. This species comes from the rainforests in South America and they normally stay buried at the bottom of the forest. They come to the surface to eat. They basically wait for food to walk by and then lunge out and grab it. They may look cumbersome, but they're very fast when they want to catch food! Because they eat in such a varocious manner (not unlike the Cookie Monster), they can ingest substrait and develop impactions. It is important to make sure that regardless of the set up, be it water bowl based or land based, the gravel or other substrait be large enough for the frog not to be able to ingest any of it while feeding. Taking frogs out of their tank to feed in a safe "feeding tank" is one way around the problem, but many individual animals find that too stressful.
     Now, in their natural habitat, they are keeping moist under the dirt and leaf litter. If they are in danger of dehydrating, they can literally produce a clear layer over themselves that looks like plastic, which holds in the moisture. So you see that it is important for this animal to stay hydrated. In the tank, they must be misted and the dirt remain moist. We use a simple spray bottle filled with purified water for misting.
     In a pet store, if they tell you that the gravel bowl is the preferred habitat for these guys, they're wrong. Rainforest bottoms are moist dirt and moss and leaves, not fish tank gravel. We use a privately owned pet shop run by knowledgeable people who told us the truth, which is that these gravel bowl set ups are only ideal for pet shop environments because the water takes care of any threat of dehydration and the large gravel takes care of the threat of the frog ingesting substrait while feeding. Meanwhile, the frog is always in view. Its hard to sell a frog that nobody can see, after all. If these guys are allowed to burrow into dirt, you won't see them for a few days sometimes and even then they only tend to come out at night when nobody is around. The gravel bowl set up is not good for feeding insects, obviously, so only fish can be fed in it, and sad but true, some of these frogs, (partly because they are so young), develop a strong preference for fish and refuse anything else. In all fairness, seeing the little guys sitting there every time we went in for toad food was enough to make them eventually grow on us and we broke down and said, "We gotta have one".
     In this picture, you see how I tried to give Dex hiding areas, but in the end, he still went straight for the dirt (just like many toads would). Lucky for us, he didn't get far and since he was bright yellow, he's easy to spot in this picture.

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