When your octopus grabs you...

Discussion in 'Octopus Care' started by lockburn, Dec 29, 2005.

  1. lockburn

    lockburn O. bimaculoides Registered

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    So, Squishy has gotten a good amount larger in the past 2 months. He went through a growth spurt right when I started feeding him fiddlers rather than hermits.

    Now that he's larger, hes out about the tank a lot more. Previously he would hide in his den all day. Now he's out and roaming the tank for the majority of the day.

    He's taken to grabbing me when I have my hand in the tank. I hand feed him small clams (though he hunts for any live food). He'll grab me when trying to get the clam. The first few times I yanked my hand out, as it was a very odd sensation. Now I let him grab me a bit, though he tries to pull my hand into the tank. A few times he's grabbed me with 3 arms, which is tough to get free from.

    So, when your octopus grabs you, what do you do? Have you let your octopus grab your whole hand? It's neat to see what he feels like, though I'm not keen on him trying to bite me...
     
  2. Armstrong

    Armstrong Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    Well based on what marine biologists have done...letting an octopus grab you is awesome, lol. In general there's no method of what you "should do" when they grab you because its not harmful one bit and octopuses don't typically bite because their beaks arent a weapon unlike the squid. However, if you talking getting yourself free from the grab...then they say touching their mantle is one way because their most protective of their mantle (body)...people usually mistake this part of their body with being a "head." Otherwise have fun with it and of course having an octopus hold on to you just shows that they have gained ultimate trust in you as the pet owner and want to know you better through curiosity.

    By the way, how big is your octopus at the moment? Its my dream to own one that at least has a 2 foot arm length...O. Vulgarus. For me, I love bigger octopuses.
     
  3. lockburn

    lockburn O. bimaculoides Registered

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    Squishy is probably 10-12 inces armtip to armtip. His mantle is about the size of a golf ball.

    I almost feel sorry for the guy on the forum that previously posted his octo was so boring, and that he wanted to try cuttles because his octo hid all the time. Mine used to hide the majority of the day. But for the past few weeks, he's now decided he is king of his castle, and roams about the tank all day long. Sure, he'll hide in his den if he sees sudden movement, but I poke my head down there and he pops out.

    I also 'taught' him that tapping on the glass means come on out. Yes, I know, they always teach you don't tap on the glass. But, I have 9 nieces and newphews that I knew would be tapping on it, screaming 'come out little octopus!'. So, I would tap on the glass a bit before I fed him. Now, as soon as I tap onthe glass he comes out running looking to see what treat I've brought him.

    I'll see if I can get some pics posted soon.
     
  4. Blitz

    Blitz Cuttlefish Registered

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    Would it be possible for you to make a video of you doing this tapping aswell? :smile:
     
  5. Colin

    Colin Colossal Squid Supporter

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    I almost feel sorry for the guy on the forum that previously posted his octo was so boring, and that he wanted to try cuttles because his octo hid all the time.

    You have done it the right way with patience and in the understanding of what you are doing and have obviously made the octopus feel secure. Even sourcing the fiddlers is a major difference in being able to bring them round.
     
  6. Armstrong

    Armstrong Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    Yea, I totally agree too. I just feel terribly bad about the people who come on this forum who aren't educated one bit about cephalopods...and already wanna own one in like, a week. They get one, and the animal dies because of mis-understanding. I also hate it when members dont feel like learning or compromising and still wanna own a cephalopod. Their's no short cuts to keeping them. You need patience, and a thorough understanding of their biology and captivity keeping. That's the safest road.
     
  7. joefish84

    joefish84 Sepia elegans Registered

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    i have a question.

    kash was kindof agressive towards me and gave the im gonna kill you stance alot so i was kindof hesitant about letting him get a hold of me. the few times he did get me he would try to pull me into his shell and wouldnt let go. now heres the delema... im allergic to shellfish(including octos yeah im crazy huh?). so the next octo im getting is a briarieus. should i worry about him biting me and injecting venom seeing that im highly allergic to the feller i would think that it would be ten times worse to be injected by venom from one
     
  8. cuttlegirl

    cuttlegirl Colossal Squid Supporter Registered

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    Did you have an allergic reaction to Kashmir touching you, or are you just allergic if they bite you?
     
  9. joefish84

    joefish84 Sepia elegans Registered

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    no not to touching me but for example if a shrimps horn sticks me in the tip of my finger it will first itch then swell slightly and then kindof burn and go numb... so im just curiuos as to what would happen if bitten and injected by venom from a shellfish
     
  10. joefish84

    joefish84 Sepia elegans Registered

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    basically the juices from the animal have to go into my bloodstream for the most part. i cant eat them or inhale steam from cooking shellfish either
     
  11. Nancy

    Nancy Titanites Staff Member Moderator

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    I don't think any briareus keeper on Tonmo has been bitten - yet. So we don't know what their bite is like.

    I don't even know whether your allergy to shellfish would translate into an allergic reaction from an octo bite. Does anyone have any insite here?

    Nancy
     
  12. Armstrong

    Armstrong Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    Oh Im not sure either...well, I guess it depends. Is the octopuses beaks really made out of shell or just calcium like our fingernails? I mean I would just not let it try and bite me at all if your in doubt. Thank god octopuses dont "typically" bite...like through instinct.
     
  13. Jean

    Jean Colossal Squid Supporter

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    Joe,

    I'd be really careful handling them! I'm like you only with peanuts........open a bag of them and I can't breathe!!!!

    Anyway, back to octopus! I know of a seafood allergic person who was bitten by our species of midget octopus..........baaaaaad, it required an emergency speed boat trip to port (they were at sea of course!) then helicopter to hospital, injections of adrenalin on the way, tracheotomy and oxygen......very nasty! So do take care!!!!!

    Jean
     
  14. monty

    monty Colossal Squid Staff Member Supporter

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    allergies

    I'd say it's always better to err on the side of caution when it comes to avoiding death. You might be able to talk to an allergist and find out exactly what component of shellfish causes the problem (like a skin test, where they put different allergins on parts of your arm and see which ones cause irritation). I think most allergies are to a specific protein or family of similar proteins, but it's hard to know what all you'd be exposed to from an octo bite-- certainly whatever's in its saliva, I'd imagine cephalotoxin and some digestive enzymes, and probably a stew of other mollusc proteins... from Jean's story, it sounds like it could be bad news.

    On a more general note, there are some emergency first aid items I always recommend people have around if they have life-threatening allergies-- I think "epi-pen" is the brand of one that lets you easily give an injection of epinephrine-- that can really extend your life expectancy if you're having a severe enough allergic reaction that your breathing is restricted, and I think they help with anaphalactic shock issues as well. I believe you need a doctor's prescription to buy them. A quick google finds: http://www.epipen.com/ When I took an EMT certification back in the 80s, they were not on the list of drugs regular EMTs could use, but I think paramedics could use them (or real epinephrine shots) but at least at that point, it was useful for the patient to have them because even if you called an ambulance, if you got EMTs they wouldn't have them. My point being that you might want to have one on hand right by your tank in case of a bite (and I pretty much recommend anyone with life-threatening allergies carry one around with them).
     
  15. joefish84

    joefish84 Sepia elegans Registered

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    well im also allergic to nuts so i know how you feel. as to the caution... trust me ive been allergic to shellfish my whole life... and i love to fish... bad combination... much practice in the area of caution.

    as for the medical emergencies ive found that when a reaction to something occurs the better solution to the eppipen is actually to get two of the bynnadryl powder capsules chew them up before swallowing then down a swig of pepto bismal. this makes the powder go straight into your system and the pepto mixed with it flushes out your entire system if youve eaten anything your allergic to. the chewed up capsules actually work better than the eppi pen and you dont have to be rushed to the ER after either. another thing that ive found that works is if im cut by oysters etc and i begin to have a reaction where ive been cut that i can pour liquid bennydryl on the wound and it will stop the reaction.

    just thought id throw those things out there to all the other people who have horrible allergies to shellfish, Nuts, pollen, and furry animals like i do!

    funny though...
    i have 2 dogs...lots of shellfish...octopus... go hunting in the woods and climb trees that im allergic to, and love fried food that is usually fried in peanut oil!
     
  16. Jean

    Jean Colossal Squid Supporter

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    Can't go the pepto bismal route, my throat swells shut!

    J
     
  17. joefish84

    joefish84 Sepia elegans Registered

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    ah thats where the chewed up powder capsules take affect cause mine does too! the powder goes straight into your mouth and throat stopping the swelling within minutes! its great stuff! ive had many times where i was about to call 911 and i popped a couple of the pills in my mouth and got in the hot shower. within minutes you start to clear up and can breath again
     

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