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Stress Coat

Discussion in 'Frequently Asked Questions' started by CrabE, Mar 19, 2006.

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  1. CrabE

    CrabE Guest

    Is it okay to use Stress Coat on hermit crabs? I have been to a few other boards, and they said that Stress Coat was bad for hermit crabbies... can somebody tell me the truth??? :color:
     
  2. hermiesrokmysox

    hermiesrokmysox (Large Crab)

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    good question. I guess it depends on your background of learning....
    i had always thought it was okay, although now that i think about it, i haven't done much deep research.
    maybe i will go check it out. :dontknow:
     
  3. I believe they get the idea that it is bad since it is made for fish, and from what I understand, it actually causes a mild irratation so the fish naturally produce more of their "stress coat" (Susan, please correct me if I am wrong!) and since hermies don't have a natural stress coat in the first place...
     
  4. RFcrabs

    RFcrabs Guest

    Hey frenchpea2002, that is actually what the active ingredient does for fish! It isn't quite the same for hermit crabs, although that may be a similar reaction that "puffs" the exo so that it seals against humidity loss (only temporarily) instead of stimulating slime glands!. Aloe vera is the active ingredient, and most concern is over what can occur if they ingest it. Aloe contains a potassium blocker which may be harmful to crabs when ingested. They are more vulnerable to imbalance if they are preparing to molt since they start storing excess nutrients in their blood. It has not been verified that it can be harmful to bathe your crabs in. I think in cases of bathing new crabs who come from really bad drying conditions, it may provide a temporary benefit to seal in moisture. Proper diet takes over after that! I don't think it is necessary to use for every bath though, and I am against it being in dechorinator.
     
  5. hermiesrokmysox

    hermiesrokmysox (Large Crab)

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    so...stress coat just gives crabs needed "vitamins" , if you will, to their exos?
     
  6. RFcrabs

    RFcrabs Guest

    No. slimecoat causes a "skin reaction" that results in the crabs exo sealing to prevent further dehydration, but it only works temporarly.
     
  7. shmama

    shmama Guest

    ??? ...so who thinks it's a good idea to use slimecoat for the NEW crabs at least? (It also gives me a chance to check them out thoroughly when I first get them). I also wonder how safe it is to keep some mixed up ahead for unexpected newbies. I warm the gallon jug in a pool of warm water in the sink just til it has the chill off it, not very warm or anything. Otherwise I think it is a shock to them to be immersed in cooler water & I worry about stressing them any more than absolutely necessary when they are new. I know it's probably not a good idea, but I get mine all at the same store & inspect them really well before hand, but I do not use an ISO tank for newbies unless they are in questionable health. I think it's hard enough for the new ones to adjust to their new environment without switching them around an extra time. I know it's a bit risky, but so far so good. (that method may very well bite me in the butt someday by adding in someone carrying something that I miss. I hope not though!) :think:

    I let them balance their own ph once they are in their tank. They seem to all have their own preferences on bathing so I figure that as long as fresh & Ocean water dishes are available, they would prefer to time their own baths. :eek:ccasion14: My smaller crabs are pretty wild due to not handling them very much, but I really think that they are happier that way so I only pick them up when I have to (I don't mind handling them, but they do it seems). If one of them is on the surface & is still for more than 8 or 10 hours, I just give them a very tiny spritz with the mister to make sure they are still moving, then if not, I may pick them up to gently inspect & replace them to their exact spot if possible once I know if they are alright. I always figure, as long as we simulate their natural environment & feed them healthy foods, nature should do the rest (exceptions being treating any parasites& of course cleaning everything up). I get a natural "high" just by observing their amazing little lifestyles, each with their own distinct personalities. Some of them come up to visit & others prefer to act totally wild & crazy! :troll: :sunny:
     
  8. *Kathy*

    *Kathy* Guest

    I use Stress Coat, but only for new crabs. When I bring home newbies, I am always afraid that they might have bugs, so I first bathe them in 3X saltwater for 5 minutes. Then, I dip them in a fresh water solution, that contains Stress Coat.

    I believe that the Stress Coat helps to ease the harshness of the salt water bath.

    I also use Stress Coat to clean the spare shells in all of my tanks. I soak the shells in stress coat water for about 30 minutes, to loosen any gunk that might be in them.
     
  9. I'm curious where the (holy cow there's a lot of smilies loading!) information about aloe and slimecoat was obtained?

    Aloe is not the active ingredient in stress coat, and aloe does not cause skin irritation. Aloe is used to treat skin irritations and rashes, and can purportedly heal damaged tissues. Aloe has "mystical healing powers", which is where the "Stress" in "stress coat" comes from.

    The slime coat is caused by the natural hydrocolloid. The hydrocolloid is probably formed from seaweed extract or some other gelatin. All a hydrocolloid does is increse the viscosity of water, which thickens it and helps it hold moisture longer and attach to fine surfaces.

    It is true that when fish's skin is irritated, it creates more slime coat. But this doesn't imply the opposite - that something that creates slime coat must irritate the skin. I've searched on several fish forums, and found lots of people passing on the rumor that stress-coat and other slimecoat protectors release irritants into the water to promote the slime coat, but none of them are backed up by facts (and I don't deny they might not be right, just that I haven't been able to locate any facts so far, just rumors).

    On the other hand, I found one post that seems to make a lot more sense here:
    http://www.saltwaterfish.com/vb/showpost.php?p=213998&postcount=1

    Polymers such as what is found in Stress Coatâ„¢ can be added to the water to ease stress and temporarily protect areas on the fish where the mucus barrier has been broken. These polymers temporarily bond to exposed tissue to form a protective layer. The protective layer helps the fish maintain osmotic balance as well as protecting the fish from opportunistic pathogens

    Of the ingredients listed on slimecoat packages, none of irritants that I know of. However, it's always possible there are unlisted ingredients, or my facts are incomplete. I encourage more research and arguments on the subject.
     
  10. I found one reference that claims that most slime-coat products contain PVP, which they claim is an irriant.

    However, I can't verify that it's in stress coat, and I looked up PVP (Polyvinylpyrolidone) in material safety, and most references say that it is not a primary irritant, and does not cause skin reactions in normal studies. Rather, in rare cases someone might have a reaction to it, but more along the lines of how in a rare case, someone might have an allergic reaction to latex or peanuts.

    PVP-I on the otherhand (i = iodine) might be a mild irritant in animals, but I have no reference that PVP-I would be found in these products.
     
  11. sirenequidanse

    sirenequidanse (Micro Crab)

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    wow great info you guys rock! :add:
     
  12. timebandit

    timebandit (Large Crab)

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    Don't add stress coat to their drinking water! It is not ment for consumption.
     
  13. scoobdoo

    scoobdoo "PM Jason For Custom Title"

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    it's hard to find stuff with out it at times, just makes me want to :BangHead:
     
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