Horsefield tortoise 1 year and Half ,Help...

Maria T

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Jun 27, 2021
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Good morning, My name is Maria and I have 2 Horsefiel Tortoises, I have purchased them fron a Pet Shop in Fulham, initially we thought they were siblings and I wwnt foe the two of them because I thought it will be a goid idea, specially if they were male and female, one is 50 cms which we think is male and the other 8 cms and I think is female as been bigger, it shows clearly its female and I belive after my research she is an year and half or little bit more. Yesterday and 1 week ago I saw bigger one(Female)
Had thrown a bite to the small one, very subtle but did... I have bought a bigger enclosure 115 cm length, arrives tomorrow or Tuesday, my questiin is, will this situation in continue? We live in a 2 bedroom flat and we have a big oatio while they have been using these 2 weeka, however we don't have enough space, I am really thinking of giving away eldest one, the female, Tina, I habe been crying all night and non sleep foe two days. Any suggestions, help will be much appreciated, Maria
 

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Maria T

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Apologise one is 5cm and Other 8 cm apologies for the typos
 

Lyn W

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Hi Maria and welcome,
You have made the same mistake as many others thinking torts need company.
They don't - they are solitary creatures and hate sharing their space with other torts even if male and female or siblings. Pet shops either don't know that or they are more interested in profit so are happy to sell 2 together not thinking of the consequences.
What you are seeing is bullying behaviour from the dominant tort.
It starts with intimidation - staring, following nudging, mounting etc - often mistaken for affection. It eventually becomes more aggressive barging and biting. The stress of sharing can cause illness but it could result in serious injury and death. They should never be kept in pairs.
So you need to separate them asap today by putting them in their own enclosures with their own bulbs etc. They will both be much happier on their own.
This is the caresheet you need that will help you with everything else
www.thetortoisetable.org.uk will also help you find tort safe foods.

If you rehome one please tell the new owners about the Forum and the caresheet that wll really help the tort thrive.
 
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Lyn W

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If you post pics of your set up you'll get good feedback on making it as safe as possible.
 

Maria T

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Dear Lynn, indeed a big mistake, and its causing lots of stress, apologies fir not saying Hello everyone and expanding further on my note. I have been 2 years in England, and all these years I wanted ti have a Tortoise, I do still have one in Buenos Aires, my mother has ine, I grew up with pets and Tortoises are veey special to me, for some reason 😉, To be honest Pet shop could have told me or warned me, but too late now, I still want to keep them so fingera crossed I recieve new enclosure tomorrow, as I said nothing terrible happened but I am keeping on eye on them and for eating time I had separated them sad but cannot let one go, for sure are male and female, Tina and Elvis is the little one, these will stay with my only daughter when we are not in this world, hence the best care for them and here writing to all of you, even if you don't me ❤️, really appreciate all the messages and having this forum, trying to convince my husband and trying my best not tobchange my mind and return one to the pet shop, its not the money, I don't want that, I want health for me and my family, however not sure if they will take it back.. Thanks again, Maria
 

Lyn W

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Dear Lynn, indeed a big mistake, and its causing lots of stress, apologies fir not saying Hello everyone and expanding further on my note. I have been 2 years in England, and all these years I wanted ti have a Tortoise, I do still have one in Buenos Aires, my mother has ine, I grew up with pets and Tortoises are veey special to me, for some reason 😉, To be honest Pet shop could have told me or warned me, but too late now, I still want to keep them so fingera crossed I recieve new enclosure tomorrow, as I said nothing terrible happened but I am keeping on eye on them and for eating time I had separated them sad but cannot let one go, for sure are male and female, Tina and Elvis is the little one, these will stay with my only daughter when we are not in this world, hence the best care for them and here writing to all of you, even if you don't me ❤️, really appreciate all the messages and having this forum, trying to convince my husband and trying my best not tobchange my mind and return one to the pet shop, its not the money, I don't want that, I want health for me and my family, however not sure if they will take it back.. Thanks again, Maria
Pet shops, some breeders and even some vets rarely know about tortoise care and shops often sell unsuitable and unsafe equipment - like steep water dishes which are a drowning and tipping hazard (when cheap terracotta plant saucers are safer) or coiled and cfl type bulbs which burn tort eyes and the wrong substrates which is too dry. This forum is great for educating keepers and helping correct mistakes made because of old wrong information. The caresheet is the most up to date information you'll find anywhere.

It will be too early to tell if you have a male and female, they are often a few years older before you'll know for sure.

Your torts will be much safer and healthier in their own enclosures with their own spaces - together they will be pretty miserable.:(
The only trouble with 2 set ups is you need double heating and lighting so higher bills and eventually they are both going to need a minimum enclosure of 4 x 8 feet each. So a lot to consider.
If you do rehome one don't put it on social media like FB etc. because you don't know what sort of home they'll end up with. I hope you find a good solution for you and the torts.
 

Maria T

New Member
Joined
Jun 27, 2021
Messages
14
Location (City and/or State)
London
Pet shops, some breeders and even some vets rarely know about tortoise care and shops often sell unsuitable and unsafe equipment - like steep water dishes which are a drowning and tipping hazard (when cheap terracotta plant saucers are safer) or coiled and cfl type bulbs which burn tort eyes and the wrong substrates which is too dry. This forum is great for educating keepers and helping correct mistakes made because of old wrong information. The caresheet is the most up to date information you'll find anywhere.

It will be too early to tell if you have a male and female, they are often a few years older before you'll know for sure.

Your torts will be much safer and healthier in their own enclosures with their own spaces - together they will be pretty miserable.:(
The only trouble with 2 set ups is you need double heating and lighting so higher bills and eventually they are both going to need a minimum enclosure of 4 x 8 feet each. So a lot to consider.
If you do rehome one don't put it on social media like FB etc. because you don't know what sort of home they'll end up with. I hope you find a good solution for you and the torts.
Thanks so much and no social media to post any tortoise, I am a responsible, caring per owner, I wouldn't be able to post anything, for now it stays with us in a much bigger enclosure, and my husband will make a division, removable one, just want to monitor the situation, I am working from home so I'll keep on eye the next few days or weeks and if that doesn't work or I see any bad behaviour... I will go to the pet shop and ask if it can be returned and they can resell it?
Also do you have any idea how much will it cost for holiday onboarding? I am planning for next year! Not this one,

Thanks! And will send new pics once everything is set up on the new home,

Maria
 
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