HELP! Sick Tortoise Rehydration

tacotort654218

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Sep 30, 2020
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Tortoise Land
Hi Guys, I need some expert advice on how to handle my sick tortoise
He is a 22cm SCL radiated tortoise, and lately has been eating less and less, until 2 days ago where he completely stopped eating. We brought it to a vet and she said that it has a high chance that he got a respiratory infection & dehydration, so antibiotics is prescribed and she told us to force feed him for a total of 8ml of semi-solid food per day and 4ml hydration + his medication (we also mentioned that he has a loose stool). We tube fed oxbow critical care 2x per day, and enclosure temps are bumped up to +/-35deg C

We also started recording his weight daily and got the following
Sunday: 1820gr (this is our routine weighing day)
Wed: 1800gr (first time we recorded his weight daily)
Thurs: 1750gr

Recently I've done a lot of reading and I recalled Sam Pascucci from Florida iguana & tortoise breeder said in his YT video that we should give 20ml-30ml /kg of hydration to a dehydrated tortoise. So that makes it 45ml of hydration??
Another source also told me that 4%-5% of body weight fluid is necessary, so in our case its 90ml??
So which guideline should I follow? and so far we've force feeding the tortoise orally with food and hydration just like what our vet recommends. is that a problem? or does the hydration needs to be delivered subcutaneously? (I'm not sure if I can deliver subcutaneous fluid, so daily vet trips are necessary if subcutaneous is the way to go)

Let me know if I'm doing anything wrong. I don't mind criticism, I just wanted what's best for my torts ✌

References: https://www.tortoisetrust.org/articles/nursing.html

WhatsApp Image 2020-12-17 at 06.56.05.jpeg WhatsApp Image 2020-12-17 at 06.56.18.jpeg

WhatsApp Image 2020-12-17 at 06.56.05.jpeg WhatsApp Image 2020-12-17 at 06.56.18.jpeg
 

Aloysius Taschse

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Oct 23, 2020
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I am no expert in this matter, but until professionals come along I can tell you this: What is your enclosure? WHat is it's diet? What do you think would have caused this? I can't give much help with the sickness part, but however I can give advice on how to prevent it again (the more experienced members can give you the numbers and things, but I can give you the question that you should ask yourself). Best wishes to you and your radiated tort. Keep us posted and good luck!
 

tacotort654218

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Joined
Sep 30, 2020
Messages
22
Location (City and/or State)
Tortoise Land
I am no expert in this matter, but until professionals come along I can tell you this: What is your enclosure? WHat is it's diet? What do you think would have caused this? I can't give much help with the sickness part, but however I can give advice on how to prevent it again (the more experienced members can give you the numbers and things, but I can give you the question that you should ask yourself). Best wishes to you and your radiated tort. Keep us posted and good luck!
Hi, this tort just arrived 2 wks prior,
He is housed on an outdoor pen and every night we bring him back on a heated close top enclosure (temps are 30-32degrees)
his daily routine are morning warm soak (sometime he also poo'ed, stool is loose), then feeding on his outdoor pen.
Diet is hibiscus flowers, hibiscus leaf, mulberry leaf, lettuce, shredded opuntia cactus, grasses and weeds on the enclosure, and mazuri pellets for supplementation twice a week.
When he arrived he weren't as active and sleeps a lot, but still eats (amount of food eaten varies, sometimes he eats a lot, other times just a little), until 2 days ago where he stops eating completely.
The night enclosure is heated with CHE, and a hide box is provided

WhatsApp Image 2020-12-17 at 09.04.01.jpeg WhatsApp Image 2020-12-17 at 09.00.54.jpeg

thats the old pic of the enclosure before he arrived, he is housed on the left big enclosure
 

Aloysius Taschse

Active Member
Joined
Oct 23, 2020
Messages
185
Location (City and/or State)
Mainly Texas
From the info you've given, there isn't much to improve on (again, I'm not an expert🤣) and I would suggest giving him long warm soaks every day. Until a more experienced member responds, just go about your normal day but check on him a lot. I'm no expert so I could be completely wrong, but make sure to get as much information from as many sources as you can. You can also look up "respiratory infection" on the TFO search bar and helpful things might come up. Good luck!
 

tacotort654218

New Member
Joined
Sep 30, 2020
Messages
22
Location (City and/or State)
Tortoise Land
From the info you've given, there isn't much to improve on (again, I'm not an expert🤣) and I would suggest giving him long warm soaks every day. Until a more experienced member responds, just go about your normal day but check on him a lot. I'm no expert so I could be completely wrong, but make sure to get as much information from as many sources as you can. You can also look up "respiratory infection" on the TFO search bar and helpful things might come up. Good luck!
😁 No worries, thank you for your responds 😁
Yes I've been doing lots and lots of reading, and still learning a lot from this forum.
Thank you to you too, I completely forgot to mention about his enclosure, which is always an important info here in this forum 😁
I'll keep you guys updated ✌
 

KarenSoCal

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Hi, and welcome to the forum!

I'm not sure about some of what you've said, but I'm going to give you some thoughts about your situation here. Be aware: I have no experience with radiated, so I may give wrong temps or other parameters for a particular species. It's up to you to know the correct value and change it, since you've studied radiata and I have not. So, onward we go.

Sam seems to know his stuff, but I think he has aIdabra and Galapagus. I know the recipe says per kg, but what are the frequency of those doses of water? 45 ml how often? 90 ml when? Torts can be overhydrated into heart failure just like people.
I would be inclined to soak the tort frequently, and take note of how much he drinks during the soaks. If he doesn't drink, then give 20 ml water via feeding tube, and keep track of how much was given over the span of a day. I could be completely wrong, but 45 ml and 90 ml sound like a lot of water to give several times a day.

If you are feeding opuntia, that has large amounts of water, so I'm not surprised the bowels are loose.

What antibiotic was given, and by which route of administration? If a shot, where was the dose injected into the tort?

Antibiotics often cause loss of appetite, in addition to which this young tort was only at the facility for two weeks, and most likely still stressed from his move.

I notice that both his indoor and outdoor enclosures are quite barren. He needs bushes and plants planted in them to provide munchies, hiding places, and microclimates for him to be able to thermoregulate, along with a place to scoot under when monsters come calling.
 

tacotort654218

New Member
Joined
Sep 30, 2020
Messages
22
Location (City and/or State)
Tortoise Land
Hi, and welcome to the forum!

I'm not sure about some of what you've said, but I'm going to give you some thoughts about your situation here. Be aware: I have no experience with radiated, so I may give wrong temps or other parameters for a particular species. It's up to you to know the correct value and change it, since you've studied radiata and I have not. So, onward we go.

Sam seems to know his stuff, but I think he has aIdabra and Galapagus. I know the recipe says per kg, but what are the frequency of those doses of water? 45 ml how often? 90 ml when? Torts can be overhydrated into heart failure just like people.
I would be inclined to soak the tort frequently, and take note of how much he drinks during the soaks. If he doesn't drink, then give 20 ml water via feeding tube, and keep track of how much was given over the span of a day. I could be completely wrong, but 45 ml and 90 ml sound like a lot of water to give several times a day.

If you are feeding opuntia, that has large amounts of water, so I'm not surprised the bowels are loose.

What antibiotic was given, and by which route of administration? If a shot, where was the dose injected into the tort?

Antibiotics often cause loss of appetite, in addition to which this young tort was only at the facility for two weeks, and most likely still stressed from his move.

I notice that both his indoor and outdoor enclosures are quite barren. He needs bushes and plants planted in them to provide munchies, hiding places, and microclimates for him to be able to thermoregulate, along with a place to scoot under when monsters come calling.

Hi thank you for your respond,
sorry for the confusion, he meant 45ml of hydration per day;
and yes, for me 45ml and 90ml per day sound like a lot. 20ml makes more sense for me, and will continue soaking him daily

ok, so opuntia may be responsible for the loose stool, noted!

she prescribed baytril, so we have to crush it and administer it orally. On clinic visits, the shot is given on to his front leg

when the tort arrives, he starts eating straight away, and over time he ate less and less until 2 days ago and becoming lethargic.

ok noted on the enclosure improvements, planning to plant some trees and weeds, it takes time to grow em 😆
 
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