Originally Answered: MY HERMIT CRAB! PLEASE HELP!?
Okay, after reading this question several times, I think I got your question.
Did your crab lose his Big Pincher (BP)? The BP is the large claw (Hermit crabs have a small and large claw), and unless you have a rarer species, it should be purplish in color.
If this is the case, there is a high possibility that he will die. HOWEVER, there are ways you can help him. The function of the BP is to protect him from predators (which don't exist in a hermit crab tank), other hermit crabs (which [and I can't believe I'm saying this] you thankfully don't have), and to crush food into itty bitty bites for him to eat. So with your hermit crab's BP gone, it's up to you to make sure he has easy to eat food. My best suggestion to you is to go and buy organic baby food. It's mushy and easy for him to grab with his smaller pincher and eat. Try to vary what baby foods he gets, because just like humans hermit crabs need a varied diet of fruits, veggies, and meat/seafood (commercial pellets don't cut it). And I say organic because the closer to all-natural you can get food for your hermies, the better.
Especially because he lost his BP, he's INCREDIBLY stressed right now. Avoid handling him (unless it's an absolute emergency; they do arise every so often) and make sure that his conditions are as close to ideal as humanly possible (meaning deep sand or coconut fiber substrate, 75-80 degrees temperature, 75-80% humidity, dechlorinated water, salt water, etc.). Make sure that his tank is in a darker area (you don't need to put him into TOTAL darkness, but find a shady spot), and away from lots of noise and such (some noise is fine, but make sure it isn't like say the family room). Then all you can do is hope he molts soon.
Once he molts, unless something goes horribly wrong, he should regrow his BP.
If he didn't lose his BP, but only one of his legs, then it's not as serious as losing his BP, but still serious. All that changes is his chances of survival go up, and you can offer him more solid foods (like apple chunks or crab meat).
Finally, in regards to your "he barely eats" comment...Are you absolutely positive the food isn't being eaten? They could just be eating when you aren't looking. You can watch them all the time, and they're more active at night. If you're worried, why not try drizzling honey on top of a some fresh fruit like an apple (you're doing the absolute right thing by giving them fresh foods, by the way--kudos to that, most askers give pellets), the carefully smooth out the surrounding substrate to see if they come when you're not there (they should leave tracks).
Also, sometimes it helps to change food every 48 hours. This is because sometimes they don't always like food fresh, they prefer it to be a bit more "ripe." However, if you decide to do this, you need to closely monitor the food after 48 hours for any mold/bacteria growth because hermit crab conditions are so hot and humid, it quickly grows anytime after 24 hours. The second this happens, you need to change.
And try to offer your hermies a variety of foods. They might not be eating because they don't like what your offering. Hermit crabs are a lot like children--they can be very picky with their foods, and what they like today they might not like tomorrow, and what the LOVE today they'll hate next week.
Here's a list of hermit crab favorites, to give you some ideas:
Hermit crabs enjoy certain foods that are high in nutrients and can also satisfy them with a certain taste. Some of the hermit crab favorite foods I have collected came from the forum. I have decided to post the most popular foods.
Chicken bone marrow
Krill (frozen & thawed or freeze-dried)
Peanut butter (organic)
Popcorn (no butter or salt)
- The list was from Kilimanjaro's post on the HCA -
However, until the BP re-grows (if it is the BP), stick with mushy food. Baby food works best (just make sure he gets some protein!! I don't know if baby food offers meat-ish substances).
P.S. Once he gets better, he really should get a friend (or two). It will help him in the long run. But wait until he regrows that BP!