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#1 stevemel

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 10:05 PM

hi everyone me and my wife recently took on a 5 yr old hermann which has been badly mistreat and unfortunately she still wont eat, she is only about 3 inches long and her shell and tummy are still soft, ive been told she is malnourished and her front legs are deformed and she cant walk properally but have been told by a specialist that she can be saved and have a reasonable standard of life, she hardly ever drinks and i don't think she has eaten for about 5 days, i have a viv set up with uv and a heat lamp set a 84f the specialist told me to do so, but already we have grown very attached and dont want to lose her so any advice is greatly appreciated,

#2 mildredsmam

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 04:21 AM

hi welcome to the forum :) first of all i would make sure shes kept hydrated, give her a 15 min soak every day by sitting her in a bowl of luke warm water, this might help improve her appetite aswell, what substrate are you using for her as some thing like topsoil will help strengthen her leg muscles, if the weathers fine she could go outside and get some natural uv which will help do you use any calcium supplement for her limestone flour is good, it could take some time to get her back to good health, see what others have to add, do you have any pics of her. best of luck :)

#3 stevemel

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 07:50 AM

i use calcium to help to strengthen her shell but topsoil not sure what that is, i bathe her everyday in water for around ten mins, this is done atleast 3 time a day, also is the not eating thing a problem?
thanks for ur help any more advice is welcomes

#4 Freddy

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 02:35 PM

Hi There,
Not eating only becomes a problem after a month or so and if your tort is not drinking water. The baths will help.
Sometimes it can take a new tortoise a while to settle in to its new home. I'm afraid most tortoises don't do change very well.
I would persevere with the food and hopefully she will come round. Take care.
Kind Regards
Freddy

#5 stevemel

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 04:28 PM

hi thanks for the help, i am bathing her 3 times a day some times she drinks some times she doesn't, it also seems to take a long time to get her to open her eyes like she is sleeping a lot, i want to know is there anything i can do, we leave food out everyday, ie dandelions and leaves but never seems to get touched her tank is warm with a uv on from 7am to 7pm with heat on constant @84, is this ok?
please please help thankyou steve and mel, ps will post pics when shes ready!!

#6 Freddy

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 04:45 PM

Hi Steve and Mel,
Vivs are not normally recommended for torts as they have poor air circulation and can get quite hot especially when heat and lights are added. Best to use an open top enclosure. You will get an idea of what others are doing by checking out the indoor enclosure section of this forum.
It might also be worth hand feeding her and coaxing her with some treats .This might help get her to eat.
Hopefully, there will be others along shortly to offer you more, helpful advice. Take care.
Kind Regards
Freddy

#7 Guest_Chrissyan_*

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 05:07 PM

Steve & Mel what a fantastic couple are taking on this poor soul. I can only re-iterate what the other said, baths, calcium , Nutrabol and lots of TLC. There is no need to worry about her not eating yet, try tempting her with different weeds.

Can I ask you about this 'specialist' who recommended you put her in a vivarium. Vivariums are really not recommend for Mediterranean, tort as I am sure you will have realised by now from looking about this forum. Are you confident this specialist has good tortoise experience, are you sure they are the best person in your area to consult?

#8 mildredsmam

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 05:13 PM

hi steve and mel freddys right vivs are not very good an open top enclosure will be better for her you could open the door on the viv a little to let some air in untill you get a tort table up and running have a look there will be some pics in the indoor enclosure section to give you some ideas, a few changes will make all the difference,as for your temps it wants to be about 32 keep giving her a soak have your tried taking her outside in the garden yet :)

#9 stevemel

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 07:30 PM

ok thanks everyone, the specialist was at my closest reptile/exotic shop, she is a Hermann, but apparently illegal ie no papers and stuff. i will keep the door slightly open from now on, what type of treats could be a temp for her, like i mentioned she hardly does anything its almost like she has lost all her energy and she is just surviving but i hope to god this isnt the case, how would i go about hand feeding her?
could i use the calcium in the water?
we take her out to the park everyday after work which is literally a 50 second walk from our house
she get 12hrs a day of uv in the tank plus outside time is this all ok?
again thankyou all so much for your time and info, we have kinda gone into this blind but wont be givinbg up on her, she is part of our family now

#10 stevemel

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 08:02 PM

a quick question is it best to leave the heat lamp on 24/7?

#11 jeanette

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 09:20 PM

Hi Steve & Mel and of course you special little Hermann (has she got a name yet?)

I too have a tortoise with special needs, she is blind and has a deformed jaw & shell etc.. She has to be hand fed and although she is giving chopped up weeds covered in nutrabol ( a white calcium powder) she finds these very hard to chew so her life saver as advised by my very experienced reptile vet was to hand feed her pellets. The ones she loves are Komoddo pellets (fruit & flower flavour) and are avilable from most pet shops. Some people frown upon these but they are great for torts with no appetite or poorly and they do have all the nutrients needed and they absolutely love them, I soak mine in boiled water so they go really soft and feed them to her slightly warm, she can smell them and opens her mouth before I even get to her. My other healthy torts rarely get them as they eat plenty of weeds, no problems.

The other suggestion would be to change the Viv to a nice big open topped box, you can see lots of examples on here or other websites by typing in Tortoise Tables.. the bigger the better and I would suggest getting some large rocks, logs and things she can attempt to climb (not under the heat lamp though in case she falls on her back). The climbing would strengthen her legs.
As the others have suggested 1 hour in natural sunlight in the garden is the equivalent to 12 hours under a uv lamp, so this would be great for her health. (remember to give her places to hide as she may feel a bit nervous to begin with)

You sound like you are both smitten with her already and I can see she is a very lucky tort to have you as owners.. please feel free to ask any questions as sometimes there is just so much to learn.

Hope she is thriving soon

Jeanette x

#12 Hettie

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 09:32 PM

Hi there, welcome to the forum :)

The heat and Uv just need to be on for 12 hours.
Do you have seperate heat and UV or a combined bulb? The temperature needs to be 32C under the heat but torty needs to thermoregulate his own temperature and so needs to be able to warm up and then have a cooler end 22C ish to cool down to. That is why the viv isn't a good idea as it is difficult to achieve the heat gradient within the box.
When I was sold my first tort a viv was also recommended, there is money to be made in those glass boxes!! :angry:
I took the doors out and after a short time, and stood it in a boxed area with a ramp to be able to get out into a 'garden' as a quick fix.

Sterilised top soil is an ideal substrate and can be bought from garden centres or Wickes for a few pounds a bag. This will also help with thermoregulating as torty can dig down to cool too.

Paula x

#13 stevemel

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Posted 29 May 2012 - 10:31 PM

thank you all so much you have been amazing :D
we have named her Doris and she really suits it, thanks for advice on vivs, i think when she gets better i will remove the glass or even build her a open top box like on here, again all we can say is thank you all so much :wub: from us all even doris

#14 mildredsmam

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 04:04 AM

morning you could try her with a bit of cucumber to see if it gets her eating :) also you could order some reptoboost its like a pick me up for tortoises, you can order it online or get it from your vets, all you do is add it to the water you soak your tort in and she,ll drink it. then give her a soak in clean water straight after this will wash off any residue, :)

#15 Guest_Chrissyan_*

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 05:00 AM

I know it won't be cheap, but now that we have established that she hasn't seen a vet. I really think it might be worth finding your nearest vet who specialises in chellonia and get some advice from them. :)

#16 stevemel

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 04:52 PM

was worried about taking her too the vet as she does not have any papers or nothing, and appantly was brought of from africa, or somewhere

#17 Guest_Chrissyan_*

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 06:37 PM

See what the others say, but I cannot imagine a tortoise vet interrogating you about papers for a very poorly rescue tort you bring in for help with. Luckily we haven't had ours to the vets yet, so I have no experience of this.

#18 stevemel

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 07:21 PM

Ok thanks i will do that and updatre asap

#19 Hettie

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 08:18 PM

Africa? Hermanns are from the Med, are you positive Doris is a Hermann? If you want to post a picture we can ID her for you. If she isn't a Hermann the advice you receive might be wrong and the care you give her need to be different.

Best to check?

Paula x

#20 stevemel

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 09:53 PM

Sodry miss informed he never said africa, im getting confused




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