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Tortoise Problem :(


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#1 Guest_Dale1_*

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 01:31 PM

Hello all,

I am new to this forum, and thought I would ask for some advice.

I have a female Hermanns Tortoise, and she is around seven years old.
I recieved her off of my auntie, as she said she could no longer care for her.
My problem is that whenever I try to interact with her, she always retreats into her shell, and is usually to scared or nervous to come out. I do try and handle her regularly, but it doesn't seem to be making her less nervous sad.gif


Please could you help me resolve this problem. Thank you! happy.gif

#2 Guest_wizzasmum_*

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 02:02 PM

QUOTE (Dale1 @ Jan 4 2010, 01:31 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hello all,

I am new to this forum, and thought I would ask for some advice.

I have a female Hermanns Tortoise, and she is around seven years old.
I recieved her off of my auntie, as she said she could no longer care for her.
My problem is that whenever I try to interact with her, she always retreats into her shell, and is usually to scared or nervous to come out. I do try and handle her regularly, but it doesn't seem to be making her less nervous sad.gif


Please could you help me resolve this problem. Thank you! happy.gif



If your tortoise was originally wild caught and depending on how long she has been in captivity, this can sometimes be a problem Dale. Try not to approach too quickly and make sure she has all her old familiar things around her. They are creatures of habit and don't take well to change. At this age I presume she is quite large now, so nowhere to hide in this cold weather while indoors. Give her lots of hiding places and don't force her to come out if she does not want to. Make sure she is well hydrated by offering lots of drinks or shallow baths and she should come round eventually. When spring comes give her a lot of room outdoors which she can make her own territory and she will get used to you coming to feed her.

#3 Guest_Dale1_*

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 02:11 PM

QUOTE (wizzasmum @ Jan 4 2010, 02:02 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
If your tortoise was originally wild caught and depending on how long she has been in captivity, this can sometimes be a problem Dale. Try not to approach too quickly and make sure she has all her old familiar things around her. They are creatures of habit and don't take well to change. At this age I presume she is quite large now, so nowhere to hide in this cold weather while indoors. Give her lots of hiding places and don't force her to come out if she does not want to. Make sure she is well hydrated by offering lots of drinks or shallow baths and she should come round eventually. When spring comes give her a lot of room outdoors which she can make her own territory and she will get used to you coming to feed her.


Your advice has been taken on board. Thank you very much smile.gif

#4 Guest_cyberangel_*

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 04:18 PM

As Sue says, any new home for a tortoise is scary. So someone they are not sure is a predetor comes along to handle them, its no wonder she is scared:0)
Just give her time, she will come around. Especially if your the one who feeds her. My tortoises only have to see me and they think food:0)
Give her time to get used to the enclosure first, and feeding in a new place. The reward with time and patience will be great:0)

#5 Guest_koopa_*

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 04:42 PM

Hi,

I quite often talk to my tortoise even if i'm not going near her. so in the morning i say 'goodbye koopa' and when i come home a say 'hi koop!'

because she was usually kept in the living room i found i would say her name and talk to her every time i walked by. it sounds crazy but she now responds to my voice and will come walking over to me when i call, but she still gets scared and retreats into her shell with a hissing sound if i get too close to her in her home or put my hand in too quick. I found talking at the same time as touching can help.

also try and hand feed because i find if i have something very tasty she likes (like strawberrys.... only as a treat tho!) she'll come over to you pretty damn quick.

it's a case of being patient and moving slower and talking as much as you can to them! and bribery helps too!!!

#6 Guest_Dale1_*

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 08:46 PM

QUOTE (cyberangel @ Jan 4 2010, 04:18 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
As Sue says, any new home for a tortoise is scary. So someone they are not sure is a predetor comes along to handle them, its no wonder she is scared:0)
Just give her time, she will come around. Especially if your the one who feeds her. My tortoises only have to see me and they think food:0)
Give her time to get used to the enclosure first, and feeding in a new place. The reward with time and patience will be great:0)


I'm sure it will, thanks! smile.gif

#7 Guest_Dale1_*

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 08:48 PM

QUOTE (koopa @ Jan 4 2010, 04:42 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hi,

I quite often talk to my tortoise even if i'm not going near her. so in the morning i say 'goodbye koopa' and when i come home a say 'hi koop!'

because she was usually kept in the living room i found i would say her name and talk to her every time i walked by. it sounds crazy but she now responds to my voice and will come walking over to me when i call, but she still gets scared and retreats into her shell with a hissing sound if i get too close to her in her home or put my hand in too quick. I found talking at the same time as touching can help.

also try and hand feed because i find if i have something very tasty she likes (like strawberrys.... only as a treat tho!) she'll come over to you pretty damn quick.

it's a case of being patient and moving slower and talking as much as you can to them! and bribery helps too!!!


Thanks for the advice, I do sometimes hand feed her, and I also talk to her smile.gif

#8 Guest_Hettie_*

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 08:59 PM



Hi Dale,

Welcome to the forum! smile.gif

I chat to Hettie and the little guys while they are in the bath. Hettie pokes her chin in the air and twists her head round to the side while watching me. It looks like she is having 'a listen' When I run out of gossip the poor ol' things have to put up with my singing!! biggrin.gif

Paula x

#9 Guest_Lin_*

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Posted 05 January 2010 - 09:01 AM

"Hettie pokes her chin in the air and twists her head round to the side" P'raps she's trying to dance to your singing, Paula biggrin.gif

I'd give her a tiny bit of 'naughty' food by hand i.e apple, which they love, but don't normally have, when you talk to her.

#10 Guest_cyberangel_*

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Posted 05 January 2010 - 09:43 AM

Personally I would never hand feed a tortoise, unless there was a real eating problem. I prefer to be more natural with them, and give them scattered food around their enclosure, so they have to work for it.
I certainly wouldnt feed any foods that can cause any problems to them.








#11 Guest_wizzasmum_*

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Posted 05 January 2010 - 01:37 PM

QUOTE (cyberangel @ Jan 5 2010, 09:43 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Personally I would never hand feed a tortoise, unless there was a real eating problem. I prefer to be more natural with them, and give them scattered food around their enclosure, so they have to work for it.
I certainly wouldnt feed any foods that can cause any problems to them.



I would keep well away from hand feeding too, it can cause far more problems than any help it offers. Having rehabbed several hand fed torts, it's a flipping nightmare! When food is scattered, the tort gets vital exercise while looking and eating which in turn helps stop them from being so nervous.

#12 Guest_Ilkeston_*

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Posted 15 February 2010 - 02:13 PM

QUOTE (koopa @ Jan 4 2010, 04:42 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hi,

I quite often talk to my tortoise even if i'm not going near her. so in the morning i say 'goodbye koopa' and when i come home a say 'hi koop!'

because she was usually kept in the living room i found i would say her name and talk to her every time i walked by. it sounds crazy but she now responds to my voice and will come walking over to me when i call, but she still gets scared and retreats into her shell with a hissing sound if i get too close to her in her home or put my hand in too quick. I found talking at the same time as touching can help.

also try and hand feed because i find if i have something very tasty she likes (like strawberrys.... only as a treat tho!) she'll come over to you pretty damn quick.

it's a case of being patient and moving slower and talking as much as you can to them! and bribery helps too!!!



I talk to mine all the time, every morning when they get up they get a 'Good morning Flower, Good morning Baby, did you have a nice sleep? etc' They both turn to look at me when I talk to them and even though I talk to all my animals (proper conversations sometimes blush.gif ... I know you're shaking your head dry.gif ... I can sense it! happy.gif ) I feel that when I talk to my torts as soon as they wake up it's like a 'warning' that you're there and then when it comes to giving them their head rub it's not a shock. Although they both seem to have been well handled before I got them, Baby more so, Flower used to duck her head in her shell when we first went to her. I found if I put my finger (the one I rubbed her head with) towards her whilst talking she would duck in but not quickly and didn't hiss, so I would just keep my finger there in front of her, talking to her all the time telling her how beautiful she was etc( well you never know mellow.gif ...they might understand rolleyes.gif ...maybe! biggrin.gif ) and after a while she would come out of her shell, stretch her head to my finger and have a sniff. I didn't move and just let her do what she wanted, sometimes she stayed, sometimes she walked away. If she stayed I would, slowly, go and give her head a rub. Now when I talk to them in a morning they both turn to me (probably to see if I'm saying 'Hello' or bringing breakfast!) but, not being an expert (at all!) I definitely noticed that as soon as there is a routine they soon settled down. Also, patience is the key. Good luck. x

#13 Guest_cyberangel_*

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Posted 15 February 2010 - 02:15 PM

I talk to mine too, but they are only after the food:0)
And I agree with Sue, hand feeding is a bad habit to get into:0(

#14 Guest_jay_*

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Posted 15 February 2010 - 06:47 PM

Hello and welcome
Enjoy your new tortoise,just give her time to settle in to her new surroundings,this forum is great dont ever hesitate if you need help there's always someone to give advice.
Jayne,H and Becky

#15 Guest_Hermie + Pebble_*

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Posted 16 February 2010 - 11:13 AM



I don't know so much about the 'Don't hand feed'. I hand feed sometimes and we handle them alot too. Although mostly they are left to feed themselves and when outside they are scatter fed for the foraging aspect.

I also agree with the 'in the wild' argument as well, but as these are not in the wild there has to be a happy medium.

By hand feeding sometimes they get used to hands being non threatening, and if you need a close look in their mouths this is the best way. If they are never handled and there is a problem then they will just pop into their shell when touched and you would have to force them out to check anything which would be stressfull and surely not help the problem.

I also talk to them alot, as I do with the fish and the dogs who also all come when called!! lol.

When you have animals it has to be whats best for the animal in a way thats fits with you as well. And although they will never be a pet in the way a dog is, the interaction you do have with them is all part and parcel of keeping them.

#16 Guest_markf_*

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Posted 16 February 2010 - 05:02 PM

ours are a bit different. Onion isnt to fussed about being stroked, but recently i discovered pickle loves having under his chin stroked! Its hilarious! He stretches his neck right out so you can give it a good rub! ha!. Hopefully this will continue. I think he likes to pampered...

#17 Guest_Dawn_*

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Posted 17 February 2010 - 11:51 AM

QUOTE (Hermie + Pebble @ Feb 16 2010, 11:13 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I don't know so much about the 'Don't hand feed'. I hand feed sometimes and we handle them alot too. Although mostly they are left to feed themselves and when outside they are scatter fed for the foraging aspect.

I also agree with the 'in the wild' argument as well, but as these are not in the wild there has to be a happy medium.

By hand feeding sometimes they get used to hands being non threatening, and if you need a close look in their mouths this is the best way. If they are never handled and there is a problem then they will just pop into their shell when touched and you would have to force them out to check anything which would be stressfull and surely not help the problem.

I also talk to them alot, as I do with the fish and the dogs who also all come when called!! lol.

When you have animals it has to be whats best for the animal in a way thats fits with you as well. And although they will never be a pet in the way a dog is, the interaction you do have with them is all part and parcel of keeping them.



WOW! Were did your sensible side come from LOL!!!!! Never knew you had it in you rolleyes.gif tongue.gif I have to say I agree with you 100%. I know there are people out there that do a 'hands off' approach with their torts but as you say, if the tort is used to being handled then it makes things alot easier if (god forbid) they become ill and need treatment. That said, I don't agree with putting bows in their hair and treating them like a dog! rolleyes.gif

As you are well aware I like the (ahem) 'In the wild....' approach BUT I also like to give mine chin tickles and feed them by hand occassionally! There can be a happy medium, and I for one like to use it!!!

#18 Guest_Hermie + Pebble_*

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Posted 17 February 2010 - 02:00 PM

QUOTE (Dawn @ Feb 17 2010, 11:51 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
WOW! Were did your sensible side come from LOL!!!!! Never knew you had it in you rolleyes.gif tongue.gif I have to say I agree with you 100%. I know there are people out there that do a 'hands off' approach with their torts but as you say, if the tort is used to being handled then it makes things alot easier if (god forbid) they become ill and need treatment. That said, I don't agree with putting bows in their hair and treating them like a dog! rolleyes.gif

As you are well aware I like the (ahem) 'In the wild....' approach BUT I also like to give mine chin tickles and feed them by hand occassionally! There can be a happy medium, and I for one like to use it!!!




lol... me sensible!!! it was a one off honest xx

and torts all come with a nice bow on their shells which saves a fortune in ribbon LMAO XX

#19 Guest_Ilkeston_*

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 01:04 PM

QUOTE (Dawn @ Feb 17 2010, 11:51 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
WOW! Were did your sensible side come from LOL!!!!! Never knew you had it in you rolleyes.gif tongue.gif I have to say I agree with you 100%. I know there are people out there that do a 'hands off' approach with their torts but as you say, if the tort is used to being handled then it makes things alot easier if (god forbid) they become ill and need treatment. That said, I don't agree with putting bows in their hair and treating them like a dog! rolleyes.gif

As you are well aware I like the (ahem) 'In the wild....' approach BUT I also like to give mine chin tickles and feed them by hand occassionally! There can be a happy medium, and I for one like to use it!!!


What do you mean you 'don't agree with putting bows in their hair and treating them like a dog'?! mad.gif I thought that's what those sticky bows you get in card shops were for?!! rolleyes.gif My torts look lovely strapped to their rollerskates with a sticky bow on their shell being pulled around by a lead attached to the skate! biggrin.gif God! I'm gonna have to re-think my whole strategy now! tongue.gif pmsl! laugh.gif Take care. x

#20 Guest_Hermie + Pebble_*

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 01:27 PM




I want photos!!! lmao xx




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