In need of a mentor!

Bernadette'sMom

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Van Buren, AR
I am the new Mom of a Testudo Tortoise. I do not know how old she is as I got her at PetSmart. I tried to get her tank here as much like what she had in the store but she seems unhappy with it. I saw a kids swimming pool on Pinterest and got one for more room but had to put on the back porch as we had a jealous English Bulldog issue (another story). I have plans to build a table with two levels for her in the next 2 to 3 weeks as well as an outdoor enclosure in a back raised flowerbed (thought about this last night haven't told the hubby yet). This will be 3 enclosures for her as I want her to be happy. She was eating ZooMeds Grassland at the store but will not touch it here so I have been chopping up carrots, radishes, mixed baby greens salad (recently bought with kale), cucumbers as well as strawberry tops and grapes. I know fruits should be moderate so I plan to freeze the fresh ones from this summer for the winter. I have calcium that I sprinkle on her food and would like to know what else she may need.

The Bulldog issue.... he got mad at my hubby and took Bernadette out and bite into her shell. I read on the internet to get Providone (iodine) and keep it clean. I have been cleaning her regularly with clean water (she likes the water falling on her head, thinking of a way to get her a small waterfall for outside) as well as administering the Providone to the holes and making sure it goes in well, covering with clean non stick bandages and wrapping it with self adhesive bandages to insure it stays clean for the day. For the first 3 days she was in a laundry basket wither her cave only so I could keel her really good and clean. She is doing really well and the bites are healing. Any advise?
 

Bernadette'sMom

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Van Buren, AR
Here is my baby all bandaged up. I feel like a bad Mom... I should have been more protective but I don't have issues with Nick (the Bulldog) until my hubby gets home.

IMG_1406.JPG
 

Tom

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Lots of mentors here. You don't have to pick just one.

Russians need a lot of room to move around. That tank is wayyyyy too small. The Petsmart employee that sold it to you should be smacked upside the head and the management team that taught the employee what to sell should like wise get a smack.

Start by reading these:
http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/russian-tortoise-care-sheet.80698/
http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/beginner-mistakes.45180/

Next cut out the fruit. Its not good for them. They need broadleaf weeds of the right type, not grocery store foods.

Here are some ideas for outdoor enclosures:
http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/cheap-easy-simple-sunning-enclosure.14680/
http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/simple-sunning-enclosure.104351/
http://www.tortoiseforum.org/thread...table-but-safe-outdoor-baby-enclosures.30683/

Last: The dog did not bite your tortoise because "it was mad at your husband". The dog bit the tortoise because that's what dogs do. You will need to prevent your dog from gaining access to your tortoise ever again.
Also: Only use the iodine once to clean the would. Using it repeatedly will continually kill the new tissue that is trying to form and heal the wound. Keep the wound clean and watch for signs of infection.
 

Tidgy's Dad

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Hello and a very warm welcome to Tortoise Forum to you and Bernadette, the poor mite.
Make sure the outdoor and indoor enclosures are secure and dog-proof.
Dogs can be real trouble for tortoises so be very, very careful in the future.
http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/another-dog-story.45850/ tells many more horror stories of what will happen.
It's another of Tom's threads and I think he's covered everything you need.
Don't hesitate to ask if you have any more questions after reading the links.
 

Yvonne G

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Hi, and welcome to the Forum!

The Forum will be your mentor. We have many good tortoise-keepers here who are glad to help you. We may have different opinions on how to do it, but there is no ONE way to tortoise-keeping. You use whatever works in your geographical area and what works for you.

Don't bandage the tortoise. You want it to be open to the air so it can dry out and heal. And like Tom said, you only use the Providone once to kill germs, after that you can use any antibacterial ointment. Just keep it indoors so flies don't lay eggs on the wounds.
 

Bernadette'sMom

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One of the areas is open, how long do I need to keep her indoors? There is one small hole that is deeper. Will it close up eventually? Maybe I am just being a worry wort but I want her to be happy and healthy.
 

Yvonne G

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Yes, the shell will have a hole for a very long time, however, granulated tissue will close off the open area under the shell. And it's good to worry. That's how we keep them healthy and happy.

When you notice that it looks scabbed over and not moist any longer, you can put her back outside.
 

Carol S

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Welcome to the Forum. I am sorry your tortoise got injured by your dog. I hope she has a speedy recovery.
 

leigti

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I think you're raised garden bed is a good idea, maybe connect to together to make it even bigger. I made an outdoor enclosure with pressure-treated 2 x 12's. Pet store employees almost always give the wrong information to tortoise owners. So don't feel bad. You have come to the right place for the right information. Read the threads posted above. It's a lot to take in at first but you will get it. Welcome to the forum.
 

Alaskamike

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I think you will discover that the difficult part it getting the set up right for your tort. The good part is once you have it figured out and right for him - it's just routine maintenance.

Outside enclosures must be protected from predators - dogs especially. I used a frame covered in chicken wire over mine till I put a fence around it - and my dog have never paid much attention to the torts. I just know not to trust him. Besides we have raccoons here and they are just as bad.

As far as the injuries , torts are tough little creatures. I hope he heals well
 

Bernadette'sMom

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Van Buren, AR
Thank you everyone! Bernadette and I are enjoying your messages. I just put some ointment on her larges hole and she is sitting on my computer table watching me.
 
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