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Is my tortoise blind?

Discussion in 'Russian tortoises' started by erinlyndon, Jul 11, 2019.

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  1. erinlyndon

    erinlyndon Active Member

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    Hello, been a while... How are you all!

    I last posted when Pebble was not eating properly so i took her to the vets. I asked if she was going blind because she always missed her food and all the vet said is that she was constipated.

    She then went into hibernation in the enclosure around November last year(i didnt want her to) i kept bathing her but she did not eat or wake up till recently. I know this is bad and can cause health issues. Went to the vets again but they couldnt say anything useful.

    She now is eating like she used to except she is missing her food badly. Her eyes are cloudy after hibernation and not a bright black like they used to be.

    Im having to resort to asking on here as the only specialist vet anywhere near me is useless, and costs a fortune.

    Any help will be much appreciated. IMG_20190629_132739_654.jpeg
    lizznet15 likes this.
  2. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member 5 Year Member Platinum Tortoise Club Tortoise Club

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    How are you housing the animal? Substrate. Lighting, etc.
    .....In the meantime, find a better vet.
  3. Bee62

    Bee62 Well-Known Member Platinum Tortoise Club Tortoise Club

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    How often do you soak your tortoise ? She looks dry and her eyes sunken.
  4. Maro2Bear

    Maro2Bear Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    How often do you soak your tortoise. That one eye there sure doesn’t look nice and bright and clear like it should.

    How are your lights, temps, soaking, substrate, etc.

    Upload a pix of it all.
  5. katieandiggy

    katieandiggy Well-Known Member

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    I would start carrot soaks straight away.
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  6. erinlyndon

    erinlyndon Active Member

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    This is her enclosure, i use an arcadia d3 100w bulb. It is around 30-32c under the light and the rest of the enclosure is room temp. I soak her every day for 20 minutes, she has a varied diet, every day is something different, i grow all her food. I spray the enclosure, humidity is always around 70.

    Im really disappointed with the vet i researched him before i got her. The vets has good reviews but you can tell he doesnt have a clue. I think id have to travel a bit to find a good one. Screenshot_20190701-181938.jpeg
  7. erinlyndon

    erinlyndon Active Member

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    Ohh havent heard of that before, ill give it a go thank you.
  8. Bee62

    Bee62 Well-Known Member Platinum Tortoise Club Tortoise Club

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    Your enclosure is beautiful, temps and food seem to be right, humidity too. I think it is another problem that your tortoise tries instinctivily to do the astivation:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aestivation

    Only an idea for the strange behavior of your tort. Where do you live ? It is summer there ?
    lizznet15 likes this.
  9. erinlyndon

    erinlyndon Active Member

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    Thank you[emoji4] i live in the uk, it is summer and the temperature here has just drastically changed, its got quite hot. I did think that maybe had something do do with the long 'hibernation' because its been pretty cold up until till now.
  10. JLMDVM

    JLMDVM Member

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    I’m not a reptile vet...... but with dogs and cats, a couple ways to try to tell if they can see are the menace test and to put them in a less familiar area or rearrange the objects in the enclosure to see if the animal can navigate without running into things. The menace test probably would not work well with a tortoise. We can also use a quiet object like a cotton ball and throw it in the air to see if they watch it fall- also don’t know if a normally visual tortoise would follow it or not. Hopefully you can find someone else local to look at your critter. Best wishes.
    lizznet15 likes this.
  11. Ray--Opo

    Ray--Opo Well-Known Member Platinum Tortoise Club

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    Are you on a soaking routine?
  12. method89

    method89 Active Member Platinum Tortoise Club Tortoise Club

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    What is the story with carrot soaks? i'v seen people speak about them and recommend but why "carrot soaks" as opposed to "regular soaks"?
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  13. katieandiggy

    katieandiggy Well-Known Member

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    It’s to do with the tortoise absorbing some of the vitamins from the carrots which are high in Vitamin A I believe, which can be a cause of eye problems in tortoises.
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  14. method89

    method89 Active Member Platinum Tortoise Club Tortoise Club

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    Interesting
  15. Yvonne G

    Yvonne G Old Timer TFO Admin 10 Year Member! Platinum Tortoise Club

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    There is definitely something wrong with the eye shown in the picture. It's not fully open and it's sunken as in dehydrated.
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  16. Ray--Opo

    Ray--Opo Well-Known Member Platinum Tortoise Club

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    Oh ok I read you soak for 20 minutes. Up your soak time to at least a 1/2 hr or longer.
    Many members have used the baby food carrots for soaking to get the vitamins.
    Try it for sure it won't hurt.
    lizznet15 likes this.
  17. ZEROPILOT

    ZEROPILOT Well-Known Member 5 Year Member Platinum Tortoise Club Tortoise Club

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    There are lots of perfectly good vets that only know mammals.
    But through pride or greed or whatever, they decide that a turtle or a tortoise is just a dog wearing a shell....and claim that they "do" tortoises.
    An actual exotic pet vet is difficult to find.
    But very much worth the drive when you need him or her. (In my case)
    You might do better by just learning on this forum while you locate a real tort vet for later on.
  18. Lime pickle

    Lime pickle New Member

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    Hello I am in the UK in London . You really should have woken up your tortoise yourself between February and March at the latest and bathe her a lot . She probably has Eye damage now because she’s been hibernating for too long and very dehydrated. I suggest you get yourself some pet insurance ASAP . I use Exotics Direct. It costs very little to insure a tortoise in the uk. And then look online and try and get an exotics specialist. If you’re in London then please contact the Royal College of veterinary surgeons in Camden . Their exotic specialist is Jo Hedley. She has helped My tortoises .so much.but you need insurance. Please don’t delay as your poor tortoise obviously needs help. Good luck and please reply if you can .
  19. katieandiggy

    katieandiggy Well-Known Member

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    I also use a fantastic exotic vet in Suffolk. I’m not sure where you are based.
    Her name is Catherine Thomas and she is excellent.
    Her website is Suffolk Exotic Vets.
    She has a significant amount of experience with tortoises and has operated on many.
    Check her out.
    Bee62 likes this.
  20. Southerncharm52

    Southerncharm52 New Member

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