Jump to content

- - - - -

Tortoise Nipping

  • Please log in to reply
3 replies to this topic

#1 littlemiss


    Tortoise Member

  • Member
  • PipPip
  • 91 posts
  • Gender:Female

Posted 18 February 2018 - 05:07 PM

Hello all, I've joined a Facebook group for tortoise owners and a lot of people complain that their Hermann torts nip them... Chase them to bite their feet... won't let them bath them etc. Have I just picked out with my tortoises as they come go me and eat from my hand, love having their heads and shells tickled whilst I bath them and are generally pleasant and a pleasure to be around... It hadn't crossed my mind that they could be any other way!! Just curious about everyone else's experiences!!

#2 wizzasmum


    Advanced Tortoise Member

  • Moderator
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,306 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Shropshire/Welsh Borders
  • Interests:Family
    Tortoise keeping and breeding
    Greyhound rescue

Posted 18 February 2018 - 10:16 PM

Tortoises are essentially wild animals and therefore display wild animal behaviour. If we think of their behaviours on a human level, then it’s easy to misinterpret certain behaviours. If a tortoise doesn’t want to be bathed or drink, then it’s probably already well hydrated. On the other hand it could be that the water is cold, too warm etc. Tortoises that attack feet are often attracted to certain colours. My tortoises will try to bite the toes of people wearing nail varnish. It’s not because they are nasty, just because they would like to taste the coloured blobs in case they are food. They will come to be hand fed, simply because you are the bringer of food :)

#3 AglaiaPan


    Tortoise Forum Newby

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 2 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 19 February 2018 - 08:36 AM

My Hermanns are still small but already bite any finger or toe they can get to. 

I believe they only know three categories of living things: animals that are dangerous (might eat them), animals that are harmless (potential source of food) and fellow tortoises. And since they have learned that I'm not dangerous... Well, fingers look a lot like slugs or worms after all. :P


But who knows what's going on in their heads.  :rolleyes:

#4 littlemiss


    Tortoise Member

  • Member
  • PipPip
  • 91 posts
  • Gender:Female

Posted 19 February 2018 - 11:34 AM

Ah ok that's interesting. Thank you! Mine obviously just always want a nice warm bath and lots of food 😂 I can understand that!!

1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users