Gray Treefrog #22-0610

April 24, 2022
May 20, 2022
Rescue Location
Henrico County, Virginia
Cause of Admission/Condition
Former Patient
Patient photo

Last Updated Jump to patient updates

On April 24, the Center admitted an adult Gray Treefrog from Henrico County. The frog was found on a table in a private citizen’s backyard and appeared to have an injured leg. On admission, the front-desk staff immediately placed the frog in a specialized holding container to keep the frog’s skin moist until the veterinary team could examine it.

After a brief period in the waiting room, Center veterinary intern Dr. Jenn examined the frog and saw that its left hind leg appeared slightly splayed, with noticeable swelling around its femur. A radiograph revealed that its femur was fractured. The exact cause of the frog’s injury is unknown but likely related to physical trauma. Dr. Jenn started the frog on a course of morphine to alleviate its pain and anti-inflammatories to reduce its swelling, then moved it to the Reptile Room and placed it in a tank specifically set up for amphibians.

Usually, amphibians with this type of injury are not able to recover; their small size makes stabilizing fractures difficult, and amphibians can be very fragile patients that do not do well in rehabilitative care. However, Dr. Jenn is attempting a form of treatment not commonly performed at the Center. On April 25, Dr. Jenn anesthetized the treefrog to surgically adhere its left hind leg to its body. By doing this, the frog will not be able to move its left hind leg, which Dr. Jenn hopes will allow its fracture to heal properly.

So far, the frog’s sutures have remained intact and the frog has appeared active and bright. The frog will remain inside the hospital’s Reptile Room where veterinary staff will continue to closely monitor its incision site for any signs of infection; its prognosis is poor due to its fracture.

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Patient Updates

On May 1, the veterinary team brought Gray Treefrog #22-0610 inside the hospital to take repeat radiographs of its left hind leg. The radiographs showed a callus formation around the site of its femur fracture, a sign that the fracture was healing. The veterinary team placed the frog back in its enclosure for rest and continued to administer pain medication and anti-inflammatories to aid in the healing process.

By May 5, all of the temporary sutures fell out and the frog’s leg was no longer immobilized. During the next two weeks, staff closely observed the frog and found that it was able to use its leg normally and get around its enclosure without any difficulty. On May 19, the veterinary team took another set of radiographs that showed the frog’s fracture had completely healed and the frog was was cleared for release.

The following day, the person who rescued the treefrog picked it up from the Center and released it back into the yard it had been found in, where it hopped off into a small flower bed.