Is she premolt, dehydrated, or something worse?

Baeshra

Arachnopeon
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Hey guys, I'm kinda new to tarantulas, and have what I believe to be a Rosie. I adopted her from a friend, who had no time for her. I know she had her for a few years, so she's no baby anymore. I'm very accustomed to Herps, so exotic isn't new to me. But these adorable critters are another matter entirely, and I know vets don't always tend to be reliable. So I figured I'd ask you guys first what could potentially be wrong.

So background. I moved to my location about 8 months ago. The new substrate I set for her when I moved was dry, but I left water in there for her, which she made very clear for the next month that she was VERY unhappy about (crawled up walls as far as she could from the dish, or just stood on her tippy toes far away from it) so I left the dish but removed the water. This new room is all window, as compared to my lay place which was fairly dark. I can't really move her to a different room(other than maybe the basement) since my roommate doesn't want her out and I don't trust his friends being in the same room as her. She didn't eat for the first month, which also wasn't surprising. But what was odd was she now refused to use her hidie. After that first month she got an appetite again, and she ate her crickets about every other week. Everything seemed normal other than her lack of hiding. But over the months, I noticed that she started losing weight. And about a month ago she stopped eating and getting I think some very small spots where she's losing hair. And now for the past two weeks she rotates from sitting scrunched up in a stress ball or slowly walking around her enclosure. Today she seems very unresponsive, barely responding to stimuli. So now I'm notably worried.

My thoughts are dehydration(how get around if she hates water in her enclosure), too much sunlight with too low of a hidie(that before the move was her favorite), or that she's sick??? What say the forum pros? How concerned should I be, and what do I need to change?

To show the change I took photos of her and her set up currently, with a picture of her before my move and her last molt, which was almost a year ago now.
 

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Thekla

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Did I understand that correctly... you did remove the water from the water dish because she seemed to not like it? So, she didn't have any water this past 7 or 8 months???

Put water in that water dish ASAP!!! She can't eat when she's dehydrated, let alone survive without water. And while you're at it, add more, way more substrate. The height in there is a serious fall risk.
 

Baeshra

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I read on the forums that they get most of their water from their food, and that some really don't like any humidity. Based on her behavior I assumed she was one of them. But, I added a thin amount of water to her water dish.

I read elsewhere on the forums of other peoples Rosies who seemed more stressed by the water than happy, and just to make sure they were fed properly, but possible with forums is that misinformation can be abound. I was worried after she stopped eating and losing weight that I may have misinformed.

As for the fall damage, I thought Rosies were okay with less than a foot? Would adding more at this moment cause her more stress? If it's dehydration and she's unwell for it, should I maybe wait a week or two for her to recover?

Welp she just plopped her entire body in the water and took a long drink, so that must be part of it. Poor girl, I feel like such a bad parent. Well that certainly must be part of the problem, consider me a little more educated.
 
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jezzy607

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Never again withhold water from any Tarantula. Tarantulas often pace around their new enclosures, sometimes for weeks until they settle down, whether conditions are perfect or not. I have three G. rosea (one of them since 2001) and I completely moisten the substrate and let it mostly dry out before I do it again, I have never observed them being "restless wanderers" except on the occasions of rehousing them. There seems to be a plethora of misinformation out nowadays convincing people that certain, or even all, tarantulas REQUIRE dry substrate. I think this derived from people discovering that some species do perfectly fine on dry substrate with a water dish...this somehow evolved into "requires dry substrate".
 

Baeshra

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Ugh I wish there was as much reliable information on exotic critters as there is more common place ones (though I suppose that means they wouldn't be considered exotic).

I'll be sure to keep that in mind for her future (hoping she pulls out of it).

She's been in the water dish now for a few minutes. Is there a point when I should I worry if she's still in there? She moves every few minutes, but I worry she's not strong enough to pull herself out. I know people can drink themselves sick if they get dehydrated and over drink and I don't want her to overdo it or get trapped in there from exhaustion.
 

Rigor Mortis

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Ugh I wish there was as much reliable information on exotic critters as there is more common place ones (though I suppose that means they wouldn't be considered exotic).

I'll be sure to keep that in mind for her future (hoping she pulls out of it).

She's been in the water dish now for a few minutes. Is there a point when I should I worry if she's still in there? She moves every few minutes, but I worry she's not strong enough to pull herself out. I know people can drink themselves sick if they get dehydrated and over drink and I don't want her to overdo it or get trapped in there from exhaustion.
Arachnoboards is the reliable information on arachnids! ;) you're in the right place. As for how long she's been in the water, don't worry much. My A. chalcodes spends upwards of an hour or two face-down in her dish.
 

jezzy607

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Ugh I wish there was as much reliable information on exotic critters as there is more common place ones (though I suppose that means they wouldn't be considered exotic).

I'll be sure to keep that in mind for her future (hoping she pulls out of it).

She's been in the water dish now for a few minutes. Is there a point when I should I worry if she's still in there? She moves every few minutes, but I worry she's not strong enough to pull herself out. I know people can drink themselves sick if they get dehydrated and over drink and I don't want her to overdo it or get trapped in there from exhaustion.
Leave her there as long as she wants to be there, she won't drown.
 

Thekla

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I read on the forums that they get most of their water from their food, and that some really don't like any humidity. Based on her behavior I assumed she was one of them.
It's true that some Ts despise moist substrate and start climbing, but this never applies to water in a water dish.
But, I added a thin amount of water to her water dish.
Don't add just a thin layer of water... fill it up to the rim! You've seen how thirsty she was.

I read elsewhere on the forums of other peoples Rosies who seemed more stressed by the water than happy, and just to make sure they were fed properly, but possible with forums is that misinformation can be abound. I was worried after she stopped eating and losing weight that I may have misinformed.
They are physically incapable of eating if they're dehydrated. Yes, they get most of the moisture from their prey, but if this isn't enough they do need water to survive.

As for the fall damage, I thought Rosies were okay with less than a foot? Would adding more at this moment cause her more stress? If it's dehydration and she's unwell for it, should I maybe wait a week or two for her to recover?
Less than a foot??? There shouldn't be more than 1,5xDLS of the T between substrate and the top, otherwise, a fall from too much height could mean certain death if the abdomen gets ruptured. Don't wait a week, maybe wait until she had a good, long drink and then carefully get her out and fill up the substrate.
 

Baeshra

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Alright I'll get on that asap. She's already looking better. Standing upright and twitching whenever I open her cage. Thanks guys, I'll keep updating!

Seems uncertain of her new kingdom, but is definitely looking a million times better. She just urinated and most of it was fluid, can I assume that's normal for the amount of fluids she just consumed the last 24 hours?
 

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cold blood

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fwiw, its a Grammostola porteri (one of several species known as a rose hair)
 

Thekla

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She looks way better. Keep the water dish full and in a few days, I'd try to feed her... a nice juicy superworm maybe? ;)

Just one more thing: What kind of lid do you have? Is it a mesh lid? If so, you should replace that with an acrylic sheet with drilled holes in it. Just in case she starts climbing, so, she won't get her tarsal claws stuck in there.
 
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Baeshra

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I mean I think the girl deserves something tasty (not that she ever doesn't).

As for the lid, I noted that when I was checking out some other posts here. It's a mesh but after reading about broken feet and how she might now be inclined to climb more.... Yeaaaah the next agenda is to change the lid. I know a couple of people who could teach me how to construct one, so I'm hoping to tackle that within the week.

Initially I talked to my local exotic store about the lid, but the lady was mostly giving me "my guests usually do..." which I don't really take as gospel. She was suggesting plastic wrap or a t-shirt over the top. But I really don't see that as being effective considering how she's got those tiny hooks at the end. So I'll follow arachnoboards suggestion and go with acrylic.
 

Thekla

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Good call! :) Never trust what pet shop people tell you. This forum really is the best place to get proper advice and reliable information. :happy:
 
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