Hermann's tort straining, prolapse?

KirstenK

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Dec 16, 2019
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Hi all. I have some questions about something going on with my tort. Some background - he is male hermann's tort, probably around 5yo, seems full grown (about 6-7 length. I've had him since last November. He lives in an almost 6ft long tort table, substrate is mix of coco coir and cypress mulch. I took him for a well visit to a specialist here in Philly in Jan and he got a clean bill of health - the doc said he seemed perfectly healthy, no dehydration, eyes clear, alert. He is a picky eater - gets fresh veggies including some type of leafy green, occasional cucumber, sometimes a bit of melon, and eats a tort meal that I dust with a supplement (vit c and d i think is what is in it). this is my first tort or reptile of any kind.

So, sometimes last week his activity level dropped. He is normally very active, will ask to get out of his enclosure to have some floor time and go for long walks around my apartment (I keep the floors well vacuumed at all times and supervise). So, he started spending most time in his favorite corner under the lamps, just sitting, sleeping. he continues to eat what I'd say is a normal amount for him, and continues to poop what seem like normal poops (they are not sold, but not alarming soft, somewhere in the middle, and have always been this way. So, after a few days of very little activity he seemed to start perking up. this was yesterday. So he asked to go for a walk and when he was in my hallway which is hardwood he urated what seemed like a lot. Some of it was watery, and also continued the white urates which appeared normal - not gritty or anything. I did seem like a lot but honestly I can't say because he has always just gone in his enclosure where it soaks in so...
Next he seemed to strain and started walking, getting real high up on his legs like i'd never seen him do, and I realized his penis was out, prolapsed I guess. he seemed uncomfortable and his member did not want to go right back in. I immediately made a warm bath. Of course I put him in his enclose so I could fix at during which he got substrate stuck all over his member! UG I was so pissed off with myself! It did start to go back in while I' trying to pull and rinse it all off - what a disaster. I did the best I could, it went back in and he soaked a bit.

his activity level increased more over the next 24hrs into today, also he pooped this morning with seemingly no issues and he ate. So I was thinking whatever it was had resolved. but an hour ago the same happened. this time in his enclosure. I noticed him urating - all came out successfully - but then straining and again his member came all the way out and AGAIN became covered in substrate before I could get him in a bath!

I had emailed the vet yesterday who said to just watch him, that right now he didn't think I need to bring him in but just watch.

Does anyone have some thoughts about what is going on? I know they can get blockages but he seems to be passing both poop and urine/urates fine. Any advice?

Thanks in advance,
Kirsten
 

KarenSoCal

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I've never kept a Hermanns, but in this I think they are all the same!

I suspect he has just discovered his penis, and is getting it out to play with it. Sometimes they will "flash" the keeper...let it all hang out when picked up. What you see as straining could be the beginning of an attempt to mate.

Next time you see it, just leave him be and observe. You don't need to be concerned about dirt, etc., and trying to wash him. The only time to worry is if it doesn't go back in within a reasonable time after he's done fooling with it.

If that happens, put him in a warm soak for a while. If that doesn't work, make a thick paste with water and sugar and rub it on him. I don't know why that works, but it usually does. Next he would need a vet. At that point, just do not let it dry!! Keep it wet!

You might want to give him a rock to use as his "friend with benefits". It's hilarious to watch!
 

KirstenK

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Joined
Dec 16, 2019
Messages
15
Location (City and/or State)
Philadelphia
I suspect he has just discovered his penis, and is getting it out to play with it. Sometimes they will "flash" the keeper...let it all hang out when picked up. What you see as straining could be the beginning of an attempt to mate.

Next time you see it, just leave him be and observe. You don't need to be concerned about dirt, etc., and trying to wash him. The only time to worry is if it doesn't go back in within a reasonable time after he's done fooling with it.

If that happens, put him in a warm soak for a while. If that doesn't work, make a thick paste with water and sugar and rub it on him. I don't know why that works, but it usually does. Next he would need a vet. At that point, just do not let it dry!! Keep it wet!

Thanks for the relpy and ideas. I will keep this in mind if it happens again. the thing is it seems to only happend after he has done the the bathroom, specifically made urine/urate so, IDK makes it seems it is related to that in some way.
 

KarenSoCal

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Low desert 50 mi SE of Palm Springs CA
Thanks for the relpy and ideas. I will keep this in mind if it happens again. the thing is it seems to only happend after he has done the the bathroom, specifically made urine/urate so, IDK makes it seems it is related to that in some way.
OK, I don't know what else to suggest. I'll tag someone who has lots of experience with everything tortoise.
@Yvonne G Any ideas here?
 
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