Drinking on his own

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ACollyer
Posts: 2
Joined: 25 Jun 2019, 22:11

Drinking on his own

Post by ACollyer » 03 Jul 2019, 21:54

Hi,
I have a Horsfield about a year old and I’ve had it about a month, it doesn’t go in its water bowl unless I put him in it......any tips on how to get it to drink more and how many times I should encourage the drinking to happen, I’ve been reading the forums and can see his urates are dry, I’m doing it daily at the moment so that he takes some water on.

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Nina
Posts: 740
Joined: 16 Mar 2017, 11:22

Re: Drinking on his own

Post by Nina » 03 Jul 2019, 22:12

Hi, and thanks for contacting us. Some Horsfields don't seem to drink from their bowl and some do (I have one that does and one that doesn't). The standard procedure for all tortoises is to bathe them every other day in warm water up to where their top shell meets their bottom shell (almost up to their chin), and in a container that they can't see out of (like an old washing up bowl) for 15 - 20 minutes. They will often drink in there (lol, especially if you aren't looking), and there is one school of thought that says they can actually take on some water through their cloaca. They will also usually pee and poo in the bath, so less to clean up in their enclosure.

It is really important to keep tortoises well hydrated, as dehydration can affect their kidneys, so another way of getting a bit of water into him is to thoroughly wet the food you give him (leaves, flowers, etc.). Wetting the food will also mean that any calcium supplement you are giving him will stick to the food and he is more likely to take it on.

It is good that you are concerned about him and doing your research, and you probably already have a care sheet for Horsfields, but in case you don't, here is one: https://www.tortoise-protection-group.o ... 014New.pdf
I hope that helps, but please don't hesitate to get back to us with any questions or problems you have. It would be great to see a photo of him and his set-up if you have one (lol, we never get tired of looking at photos of tortoises!).

Cheers,
Nina

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lin
Posts: 501
Joined: 16 Mar 2017, 11:27

Re: Drinking on his own

Post by lin » 04 Jul 2019, 00:21

Hiya.
Bathing the youngsters daily is a good thing and there is also nothing wrong in upping it to twice a day until you can see that he is hydrated (indicated by the urates being a toothpasty consistency) and leaving him for up to 20 mins each time. As the saying goes...you can take a horse to water but you cant make him drink :lol: If you use an opaque container so that he cant see through it he will be fine but keep checking the water to make sure its nice and warm. They do prefer to be bathed (put into the water) but give it time and a bigger dish that is shallow he will eventually surprise you and start taking his own daily baths and start to drink.

Lin

ACollyer
Posts: 2
Joined: 25 Jun 2019, 22:11

Re: Drinking on his own

Post by ACollyer » 04 Jul 2019, 21:52

Thanks both, I bathed him again tonight and the urates were more toothpaste consistency as far as I can tell in the water, I will change his bath bowl as it was see through and the cheeky one was peeking at me over the top, great advice though thanks I appreciate it. I’ll let you know how we get on. Thanks so much again.

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lin
Posts: 501
Joined: 16 Mar 2017, 11:27

Re: Drinking on his own

Post by lin » 04 Jul 2019, 23:04

Oh your more than welcome, and if there is anything else we can do then give a shout.

Lin

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