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New Tortoise Won't Eat!


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#1 Gonzalez

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Posted 06 September 2015 - 08:57 AM

Hi,

 

I got little Gonzalez (15 months old) about 2 weeks ago now and he hasn't eaten anything I've given him. I've dried dandelion, clover, grass, different lettuce types, cress, parsley, basil, rose flowers as well as trying to tempt him with a tiny piece of strawberry which he also refused to touch...

 

My mum had a Hermann when I was younger so I have a rough idea of expected behaviours, however Gonzalez is the first tort of my own.

 

 

He has an indoor tortoise table with a 50:50 sand/soil mix, a MVB bulb at one end (32 degrees at shell height) and the cold end is 18-20 degrees, as well as an outdoor enclosure.

 

He is getting daily baths but only drinks a 2-3 mouthfuls. He has a large pond style water dish on the tortoise table but I've never seen him drink from it, only walk though it and get muddy. He has passed one lot of urates last week which seemed to be a good creamy consistency.

 

He is still pretty active and loves to climb over everything but seems to bury himself and sleep a lot (4pm-9am lsat night).

 

Is this normal behaviour? I know that moving to a new home will be stressful for him, but surely by now he should be eating something?? I'm going to get some accurate scales today to monitor his weight but I'm concerned that at this rate he will start to lose too much weight to be able to hibernate safely this winter.

 

If anyone has any advice/tips please let me know!

 

Laura & Gonz

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#2 mildredsmam

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Posted 06 September 2015 - 10:58 AM

Hi Laura, welcome to the forum. :)

It can be quite stressful for them moving to a new enclosure, and they can take some time to start eating, just keep offering him/her some food, I wouldn't offer strawberry, just keep trying with weeds and flowers, are you taking him/ her outside at the minute as this would add to the stress, it would be better to let him/ her settle into the tortoise table enclosure now. :)

Do you have an idea of his/her weight at all. :)



#3 wizzasmum

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Posted 06 September 2015 - 11:48 AM

Is that Gonzalez is in your pics? If so he's a lot older than 18 months. Can I ask where you got him from, as this can be important when assessing what is going on with his behaviour etc. how was he kept before? I'd avoid sand as it can cause impaction if it gets eaten at all, as substrate often is. I agree with Karen that taking him in and out will lead to stress. If that's him in the tortoise table pic then the enclosure is far too small for him, which could also be stressing him, I'd look for something much bigger to give him lots of roaming room and then next year get him setup outdoors with added heat for bad days. Hope this helps ;)

#4 Gonzalez

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Posted 06 September 2015 - 03:31 PM

Thanks for the responses guys! His shell is 8cm long and he weighs 88 grams. Its the cites paperwork that says he hatched in December 2013. Any idea how to tell the age more accurately? The tortoise table is double the length shown in that pic so its just under 2 metres long but only 40cm wide. Got him from a reptile shop (bad I know) who had been fostering him for 2 months after the previous owner couldn't care for him anymore. Thanks for the tips about avoiding sand (swear I'd read that on here) and not moving him in and out - will give that a try and see if he gets any happier/hungrier. 

 

Laura



#5 wizzasmum

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Posted 06 September 2015 - 04:34 PM

Is he a rehomer Laura, in that they gave him to you free of charge? He does have some health issues looking at his shell, most likely dehydration. This is not your fault obviously, but a fair bit of damage has been done to his shell because of this. He needs regular bathing and his substrate needs to be watered too, to prevent it from getting any worse. Normally an 18 month old would be around 30 grams weight, he does look much bigger than 88 grams on the pics though tbh.

#6 Beermat89

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Posted 07 September 2015 - 09:03 PM

I agree he looks to be around the size of a 4-5 yr old in these pics!im guessing he was kept in a viv with high temps and low humidity?this time of year inside or out they will naturally slow down,due to shortening day light hours!keep the baths up and suppliments on his food when he does decide to eat that is.
Regards matt




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