Chose to stay out at night

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Chello is a 49 pound Male Sulcata who is 6 years old. He has a nice insulated enclosure with a doggie door. It usually stays 70 to 90 degrees inside, the closer to the door being cooler at night here in VA.

last night he chose to stay outside to sleep. It was a low of 51 and he was dug down into the mud a tiny bit ( but not stuck).

I carried him into his house to warm up slowly and could soak him later if needed.
He is moving slow but awake and ok.

Has anyone had their guy choose to do this? Should I allow it? Why would he want to put himself in a cold place?
He did this one time last year and I panicked and soaked him ( thinking he was stuck ).
Thoughts welcomed.
 

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Maro2Bear

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As you know, 50 is way too cold for your Sully to sleep outside and not in his nightbox. Doublecheck your temps inside the nightbox & make sure it’s not TOO warm.

At dusk, just get out and make sure he’s inside. Do you have a way to seal/shut the door at night. Maybe try blocking him in at night fir a few days.....warm nights are just around the corner.

good luck
 

wellington

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Wet mud and cold temps are killers. Like Maro2Bear said, check the enclosure temps. 90 is high for not being a basking spot. I would make it 80 all over. Also make sure it's not too small for him.
But don't let him stay out in those low temps.
 

Yvonne G

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Not a good idea to allow him to stay outside at night. Every night I go around to all my tortoise yards and make sure all of the animals are inside their sheds. Then I close the doors so they can't come back out until I open the doors in the morning.
 
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Thanks all. I will not allow him to do this again. Still curious why he would- but who knows. His home has a doggie door so the warmest spot is 87 to 90. The closer he is to the flaps of the door, the cooler it is. I can close him in if needed. Pictured is his hut ( which is buried and insulated- with the whole door open. Not a great shot but you can see half of the inside. The snow was just for fun.. filling his buckets.)
Thanks again for the response. He’s doing well 😊. I appreciate the responses.
 

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ZenHerper

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... Still curious why he would- ...
They evolved in a place that has always been Hot. Their DNA does not know any different, so he's not consciously choosing to walk around in the cold, he's just walking around his territory. They need to be closed in during cool/cold weather because they cannot choose Staying Inside for themselves.
 
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Tom

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Thanks all. I will not allow him to do this again. Still curious why he would- but who knows. His home has a doggie door so the warmest spot is 87 to 90. The closer he is to the flaps of the door, the cooler it is. I can close him in if needed. Pictured is his hut ( which is buried and insulated- with the whole door open. Not a great shot but you can see half of the inside. The snow was just for fun.. filling his buckets.)
Thanks again for the response. He’s doing well 😊. I appreciate the responses.
This species comes from a hot area of the world. They live underground and ground temps in that area fluctuate from 80-85 all year. There is no area in their natural range that is too cold. They can go sleep anywhere, and its warm enough. 70 is too cold. 50 is way too cold.

The high ceiling in your night box area is going to make it exceedingly difficult and expensive to maintain the correct temps. Also, what is the temperature of the ground inside that area?

Better door flaps would help hold in the heat better.

The black tub is a flipping hazard. I would remove that.

Using snow for the drinking water is not a good idea for two reasons: 1. Its cold. 2. It has no minerals.

Your tortoise needs to be locked inside the heated box every night, and you need to open the door every morning, unless its too cold outside, and then I don't know what you do with a giant tropical reptile that needs lots of exercise and warm temps.
 

Turtulas-Len

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Thanks all. I will not allow him to do this again. Still curious why he would- but who knows. His home has a doggie door so the warmest spot is 87 to 90. The closer he is to the flaps of the door, the cooler it is. I can close him in if needed. Pictured is his hut ( which is buried and insulated- with the whole door open. Not a great shot but you can see half of the inside. The snow was just for fun.. filling his buckets.)
Thanks again for the response. He’s doing well 😊. I appreciate the responses.
Is the floor insulated ?
 
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