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#1 gregorious77

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Posted 21 November 2015 - 07:53 PM

I Noticed out latest tortoise was sat in the corner for a couple of days so I took her out to check her over. she wouldnt open her eyes despite walking about so I gave her a good clean in some warm water with a soft paintbrush. One eye opened but the other was still a bit closed. I gave her a second bath later in the day and both eyes were open but one has not opened fully and looks like the 3rd eyelid has not fully retracted.

 

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I must admit the substrate has dried out due to not being watered for a while so I guess they were living in a dry enviroment. we have a hybrid table/vivarium setup with a ceramic heatlamp in the viv and a spotlight outside for basking She sits inside most of the time.

Could the dryness have caused this? I have just ordered 50Kg of new substrate as its due a change. I will keep cleaning her in warm water and see how she gets on. any advice welcomed.

 

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Meet Fred (biggest), Betty (medium) and Wilma (smallest).

 

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#2 wizzasmum

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Posted 21 November 2015 - 11:16 PM

Your problem Is almost certainly the habitat. It needs to be watered and kept damp below the surface where the tortoise buries down. I'm wondering why you have a Viv at one end and hope they are not shut into this area, especially with dry substrate. Hope you don't mind me saying but there are several things I would change here. Firstly the humidity and the substrate, if this dry sandy looking stuff gets under the third eyelid, it's very likely that infection will strike. Try a drop of cod liver oil or olive oil into the eye but put the tortoise onto damp towels under heat while waiting to see if the oil and humidity change things, otherwise contact a vet ASAP. Your heat lamp needs to be vertical and not on an angle. Is your uvb source inside the Viv, as it needs to be in the same position as the heat to simulate the sun. Ceramic lamps serve no purpose for tortoises as all light needs to bright. If you are heating them with this overnight, this is contributing to the dehydration problem. Your setup needs more interesting areas so the tortoises can explore and not get stressed, which also contributes to illness. I would remove the ball too as tortoises don't 'do' toys and will try to mount or dominate a ball, so not a good idea really. Try constructing a rocky or slate area for feeding, which is much better than a dish. Even better is to scatter the four and make them work to find it, which all helps to stimulate them to exercise. Hope this helps ;)

#3 gregorious77

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Posted 22 November 2015 - 02:12 PM

The reason for the viv at one end is that is what we started with when we got tortoise number 1. as we got more we made a bigger area for them. the viv is never shut and I will take the doors out I think. The ceramic heat lamp came with the viv. I have put the other heat lamp at an angle as it is too close so too hot. I will put it on a pole to get the right temperature under. The UVB strip light is inside as again this came with the viv I will move this nearer the heat lamp and get rid of the ceramic one. I wil remove the ball and add a rocky area as you suggest and get some more hidey holes etc.

 

Wilma is doing better with having baths and cleaning her eyes gently. She has been all over today and not just in one spot. i have not seen her eat yet but only watched her for a while as I have been busy. I will give her another bath this evening.

Soil has been well watered and turned over. it is tortoise substrate so thought it would be fine although it was dried out.



#4 wizzasmum

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Posted 22 November 2015 - 05:27 PM

The reason for the viv at one end is that is what we started with when we got tortoise number 1. as we got more we made a bigger area for them. the viv is never shut and I will take the doors out I think. The ceramic heat lamp came with the viv. I have put the other heat lamp at an angle as it is too close so too hot. I will put it on a pole to get the right temperature under. The UVB strip light is inside as again this came with the viv I will move this nearer the heat lamp and get rid of the ceramic one. I wil remove the ball and add a rocky area as you suggest and get some more hidey holes etc.
 
Wilma is doing better with having baths and cleaning her eyes gently. She has been all over today and not just in one spot. i have not seen her eat yet but only watched her for a while as I have been busy. I will give her another bath this evening.
Soil has been well watered and turned over. it is tortoise substrate so thought it would be fine although it was dried out.


He/ she may well recover without vet help, but do keep a close eye for changes. Don't turn the soil over as it needs to be damp underneath but dry on top, as in nature. Substrate is only ever as good as we keep it. Remember there is very little humidity indoors whereas outdoors it's very high, especially overnight. Fingers crossed.

#5 gregorious77

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Posted 22 November 2015 - 07:59 PM

Made a start on their environment. Moved the spot light up on a pole after checking the right height for 32 Deg. got some rocks and made a feature in the middle and also got a new hide for the corner.

We plan to get some more hides and rocks for the viv end and I will move the UVB light out to the front edge of the viv so its near the spot lamp. I have turned off the ceramic heat bulb completely.

The reason I turned the substrate over was because it was very dry all the way through. We have new coming on thurs and I have purchased a pump up spray bottle to keep it moist. I have been using a trigger gun which is hard work and obviously not good enough.

 

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#6 wizzasmum

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Posted 23 November 2015 - 09:04 AM

That looks much better for them. Don't get more hides though, it's better if they dig into the soil rather than hide above it, this helps with hydration and good shell growth. Your soil needs to be damp below the surface, not on top, so you really need to water it, as any spraying is just lost immediately to the air and the bottom will remain dry. Outdoors spraying is fine, but not indoors due to the naturally lower humidity of a house. Careful of the corner hide, they might use it to escape ;)

#7 gregorious77

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Posted 23 November 2015 - 01:28 PM

Watering can it is then.

Just booked Wilma a vet visit as she is still rubbing her eye although it is open now.



#8 wizzasmum

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Posted 23 November 2015 - 02:44 PM

Watering can it is then.
Just booked Wilma a vet visit as she is still rubbing her eye although it is open now.

Be careful they don't prescribe antibiotics without testing what they are treating for and do be aware that oral meds rarely work with torts, just so you are prepared and don't get ripped off. If it's not an exotics vet they are unlikely to be sure ;) Irritation can take a while to clear, once it's healing, so don't jump the gun.

#9 gregorious77

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Posted 23 November 2015 - 10:14 PM

I told them that it looked like it was healing and she checked for foreign bodies which was clear. I got given some eye drops for cats/dogs (Isathal) which she said put in both eyes twice daily and wipe away excess after a few mins.

I have not put ay in yet as she had the dye in her eyes still and went exploring around when we got in then burrowed in for the night.






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