Am I taking proper care of my tortoise?

bigapplejohnny

New Member
Joined
Dec 5, 2016
Messages
2
I recently inherited a Hermann's tortoise that has been passed between my brother and sisters for almost 8 years now. My 1st sister did an alright job of taking care, but my other sister did a terrible job. Before I start I want to let you know that I have plenty of past experience with reptiles and currently own 2 snakes and a turtle. I plan on giving this tortoise a very long term home and take the best care of him that I possibly can.

The person that had him the most recently took terrible care of him keeping him in a zoo med tortoise box (36x12x24) with no substrate,uvb light, no cuttlefish bone or supplements, and fed him only lettuce. Since i got him one week ago I have added coco coir to his enclosure and aspen to his hide, and I have replaced his water and food dish with terracotta saucers. I have bought Mazuri tortoise food as well as introduced a cuttlefish bone to his enclosure and 4oz each of dandelion and strawberry leaves, blessed thistle, red clover, and hibiscus flower from mountainroseherbs.

I currently have plans to build him a better table hopefully a little after Christmas, but I feel that going into too much detail with that would be better suited for a different sub-forum. But to keep it short I plan on making an indoor enclosure that is 8x4 giving him 32 sq feet to roam. In the summer I plan to make him an outdoor enclosure that would be 10x10 and have cinder block walls.

What may be controversial/ frowned upon that I'm doing is letting him walk around my room. I provide a heat lamp and food and water at all times. I Keep a close eye on him to make sure he isn't eating anything and acting normally and not lethargic or distressed. When he is in his enclosure he will climb at the walls for hours and though I know not to anthropomorphize my pets I do feel bad for him and put myself in his shoes. When he is in my room he walks around for hours literally nonstop. When I build the indoor enclosure I plan to cut back on this a lot as he will have room to roam, and in the outdoor enclosure I will stop completely.

The last thing that I want to mention is that I think his beak and claws are overgrown. I attempted to sand them both down with an emery board, but I am scared of hitting his quick. I know he is male and male turtles almost always have longer nails, so I assume the same applies for tortoises. I have provided some pictures so that you can give me advice to sand down or not.

Any constructive criticism is welcome, I will try to find my temp gun and digital humidity reader and give you actual numbers.

Thank You

20161209_174608.jpg 20161209_174649.jpg 20161209_174709.jpg
 

wellington

Well-Known Member
Moderator
Tortoise Club
5 Year Member
Joined
Sep 6, 2011
Messages
39,876
Location (City and/or State)
Chicago, Illinois, USA
Sounds like this guy finally has a good home. The floor thing isn't good as you know, but I understand. However, don't forget it's a lot colder on the floor besides the other dangers.
His beak and nails do look a little too long, however, give it some time with the proper care, enclosure and the clay saucers to see if they will file down naturally. Good luck and thank you for caring so much for a tortoise to do right by him.
 

bigapplejohnny

New Member
Joined
Dec 5, 2016
Messages
2
I forgot to mention that in addition to the mazuri I am feeding him spring mix which consist of several types of lettuce, and broad-leaf plants such as: mizuna, arugula,tatsoi, mache,red and green chard,baby spinach, kale, radicchio, and endive. Along with this I also add 2 organic baby carrots to his meal daily.
 

Yvonne G

Old Timer
TFO Admin
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
88,564
Location (City and/or State)
Clovis, CA
Hi, and welcome to the Forum!

It will be fairly easy to clip those nails, as the blood is quite visible inside them. Using a human toenail clipper, as it's more heavy duty. If you're uncomfortable doing it, just take off small bits at a time. And get some of this to have onhand:

41OPJjO6D8L._AC_UL320_SR238,320_.jpg
 

JENNY04

New Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2016
Messages
28
I recently inherited a Hermann's tortoise that has been passed between my brother and sisters for almost 8 years now. My 1st sister did an alright job of taking care, but my other sister did a terrible job. Before I start I want to let you know that I have plenty of past experience with reptiles and currently own 2 snakes and a turtle. I plan on giving this tortoise a very long term home and take the best care of him that I possibly can.

The person that had him the most recently took terrible care of him keeping him in a zoo med tortoise box (36x12x24) with no substrate,uvb light, no cuttlefish bone or supplements, and fed him only lettuce. Since i got him one week ago I have added coco coir to his enclosure and aspen to his hide, and I have replaced his water and food dish with terracotta saucers. I have bought Mazuri tortoise food as well as introduced a cuttlefish bone to his enclosure and 4oz each of dandelion and strawberry leaves, blessed thistle, red clover, and hibiscus flower from mountainroseherbs.

I currently have plans to build him a better table hopefully a little after Christmas, but I feel that going into too much detail with that would be better suited for a different sub-forum. But to keep it short I plan on making an indoor enclosure that is 8x4 giving him 32 sq feet to roam. In the summer I plan to make him an outdoor enclosure that would be 10x10 and have cinder block walls.

What may be controversial/ frowned upon that I'm doing is letting him walk around my room. I provide a heat lamp and food and water at all times. I Keep a close eye on him to make sure he isn't eating anything and acting normally and not lethargic or distressed. When he is in his enclosure he will climb at the walls for hours and though I know not to anthropomorphize my pets I do feel bad for him and put myself in his shoes. When he is in my room he walks around for hours literally nonstop. When I build the indoor enclosure I plan to cut back on this a lot as he will have room to roam, and in the outdoor enclosure I will stop completely.

The last thing that I want to mention is that I think his beak and claws are overgrown. I attempted to sand them both down with an emery board, but I am scared of hitting his quick. I know he is male and male turtles almost always have longer nails, so I assume the same applies for tortoises. I have provided some pictures so that you can give me advice to sand down or not.

Any constructive criticism is welcome, I will try to find my temp gun and digital humidity reader and give you actual numbers.

Thank You

View attachment 194229 View attachment 194230 View attachment 194231
Make sure
 

JENNY04

New Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2016
Messages
28
Sex isn't determined by claws in most tortoises. For Herman tortoises you go by the length of the tail mails have a longer tail than females and males have a curve in their plastron. Looks like it's going to do good under your care plan
 
Top