health check frequency

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alan
Posts: 3
Joined: 13 Mar 2018, 19:47

health check frequency

Post by alan » 15 Mar 2018, 12:13

how often should our spur thigh have a check by a vet if he seems healthy? he is 1 year old.
thanks

alan
Posts: 3
Joined: 13 Mar 2018, 19:47

Re: health check frequency

Post by alan » 15 Mar 2018, 12:14

by the way, we don't plan to hibrnate him

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Nina
Posts: 841
Joined: 16 Mar 2017, 11:22

Re: health check frequency

Post by Nina » 15 Mar 2018, 12:53

Hi Alan,

Welcome to The Tortoise Table.
There is no set rule, and some people would say that you only need to see a vet if you suspect that your tortoise is unwell. Personally, I take mine for a check-up ever year or two (unless they are unwell), just to be on the safe side, and I always take a fresh sample of poo so that it can be checked for parasites (various species of worms are common, and do no harm if in small numbers but if there is a heavy infestation then the tortoise will need to be wormed -- which is quite easy).

It is important that you see a vet who has been trained to treat 'reptiles, or 'exotics' (which included reptiles), as normal vets don't have much training in reptiles and can get it very wrong on occasion. We have a list of vets in the UK, recommended by tortoise keepers and organised by area on our webite here: http://www.thetortoisetable.org.uk/tort ... s-by-area/

And just out of curiosity, when you say you do not plan to hibernate your spur thigh, do you mean this year or ever?

Hope that helps and please don't hesitate to contact us again if you have any more questions or problems.

Nina

alan
Posts: 3
Joined: 13 Mar 2018, 19:47

Re: health check frequency

Post by alan » 15 Mar 2018, 17:22

thanks Nina,
to answer your question, I meant ever.
cheers

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Nina
Posts: 841
Joined: 16 Mar 2017, 11:22

Re: health check frequency

Post by Nina » 15 Mar 2018, 17:33

Thanks for clarifying, Alan -- just wondered.

Nina

Kathleen
Posts: 1
Joined: 13 Aug 2019, 22:40

Re: health check frequency

Post by Kathleen » 14 Aug 2019, 09:07

Do tortoises get unwell if they not soaked .and how often thank you

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Nina
Posts: 841
Joined: 16 Mar 2017, 11:22

Re: health check frequency

Post by Nina » 14 Aug 2019, 09:32

Hi Kathleen,
The reason for soaking is that it is important for tortoises to keep well hydrated (they can go for a long time without food but they can get dehydrated easily if they are indoors under lights). Dehyddration can lead to many problems (including kidney problems), so we encourage them to drink. Many tortoises don't drink a lot or very often from their water bowls, so soaking can help to keep them hydrated (and it also encourages them to wee and poo, which means there is lessfor you to clean up in their enclosure).

It's best to soak in a container that they can't see out of (like an old washing up bowl), in warm water for about 15 - 20 minutes, several times a week, but at least every other day for small tortoises, as they dehydrate more easily. The water should go up to where the top shell meets the bottom shell (or just under their chin).

The other thing you can do is to really wet the leaves, flowers, etc. that you give them, as that helps keep them hydrated too, and it also means that any calcium powder or supplement you sprinkle on the food sticks to it and doesn't fall off.

An easy way to tell if a tortoise is dehydrated (and therefore needs more soaking) is if the urates (the white stuff that comes out in their wee) is sand, gritty or hard then they are dehydrated. If it is very soft (like toothpaste), they are fine, and if it is very watery (like eggwhites) then they are really well hydrated, which is good.

Hope that helps (lol, it's probably more than you ever wanted to know about hydration!).

Nina

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