Is my tortoise getting enough of his meds.

No1much

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TLDR at the end.
Hey guys . Bit of background I'll keep it brief.
Both my russians got lethargic about a month ago.
Went to exotic vets. Poop check of one says worms (they're kept separate). Given wormer to give to both every 2 weeks. Had to remove all substrate (organic top soil) replace with newspaper to change frequently while treatment is ongoing.

My tortoise Cadwell is shy as hell. Will NOT come out of his shell at vets at all. Vet said he had to get a bit rough to inspect him. Next day he's got a bit of a limp on back right leg. I'm thinking it's down to vet roughness and it'll ease up. Few days later no better. I thought it may be that he's walking on a flat surface it may not be doing him any favors so I bit in a base of coco coir covered in orchid bark. His walking still deteriorated. Right front leg starts to weaken so back off to the vet this is a week ago.
Vet says he thinks it's an infection and that it's deposited fluid on his legs because they're a little puffy. Prescribes 0.6ml loxicom and 0.1 baytril once a day for 3 weeks in drop form.

The issue.
Trying to get him to eat this stuff is rediculous. It's an intense battle of wills daily. I put it on his addiction food (Komodo holistic pellets) but he won't touch them. I try mixing with other ones but he sniff each one. I try a little nutribal I figure it has a strong smell and may cover it. I get mixed results but I can only use this trick once or twice a week cos I don't want to od him and I'm trying to minimize supplements because I know baytril is hard on the organs and I don't want to overwhelm them. Today I tried a tiny bit of tomato but again that's a one time thing because he shouldnt even have it.

So back to the question. Most days I manage to get him to eat between I'd say 70-95% of it. Some of it gets squashed or wasted. Is this going to be enough to have an effect ? Sorry for length. Wanted to get the whole story in.

Tldr: russian infection. 0.1 ml baytril 0.6ml loxicom. Not eating full dose. Is 70-95% enough to work?
 

Lyn W

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Hi
Did you use Sophie of Origin Vets at Dr Doolittles or Vets4Pets?
The one time my tort had to have meds orally I used very thin slices of cucumber to soak it up and fed that. It worked well as my tort loves cucumber and it's strong smelling (not the peel or seeds)
I wonder if they hurt him. Did they take blood?
Even when they sedated my tort he was too strong for them to get his legs out for a scan

Do your torts share an enclosure?
 
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No1much

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Hi
Did you use Sophie of Origin Vets at Dr Doolittles or Vets4Pets?
The one time my tort had to have meds orally I used very thin slices of cucumber to soak it up and fed that. It worked well as my tort loves cucumber and it's strong smelling (not the peel or seeds)
I wonder if they hurt him.
Even when they sedated my tort he was too strong for them to get his legs out for a scan

Do your torts share an enclosure?

Hey! I was with Sophie. She's amazing! But they don't have a Cardiff surgery anymore so now I go to the valley vets hospital. Cadwell will not go anywhere near cucumber. His brother loves it. It's so annoying haha.

No they are in separate tables. I did tell the vet this but he prescribed them both with wormers regardless. I'm wondering now if he was lethargic because this infection was building in his system. His brother though definitely did have worms and is now back to his old destructive self.

Also I don't think they did take blood. It's hard to know exactly what goes on anymore because we're stuck in the car outside.
 

Lyn W

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Valley Vets used to be the main vets for exotics, then they stopped - maybe they lost their herp vet.
I saw Sophie at V4P on Newport Road and then at Dr D's on Whitchurch Rd.
Good to know where to find them if needed again.
Did they take bloods? I've read here that sometimes that can cause nerve damage depending on where it's taken from. I think Sophie took my tort's bloods from the neck.
 

Lyn W

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Valley Vets used to be the main vets for exotics, then they stopped - maybe they lost their herp vet.
I saw Sophie at V4P on Newport Road and then at Dr D's on Whitchurch Rd.
Good to know where to find them if needed again.
Did they take bloods? I've read here that sometimes that can cause nerve damage depending on where it's taken from. I think Sophie took my tort's bloods from the neck.
Ignore the blood bit - I just found your answer.
You'd know if they did from the cost!!
 

Yossarian

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Based on the timing of the lethargy with our coldest period of the year along with the short day lengths, there is a high liklihood that the lethargy was temperature related.

Can we see some pictures of your torts and of their enclosures. And what are your temps like, is it a table or an enclosure?

Did the vet inject your tort with anything?

While not appropriate as a regular part of their diet, I wouldnt feel bad about putting meds in a tomato or strawberry, or some blueberries, a spoonfull of sugar so to speak. Just do your best to use as little fruit as possible each day. Make sure that you are offering food after the tort has had a nice warm soak, drop it near its lamp and put what want it to eat in front of it.
 

No1much

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Ignore the blood bit - I just found your answer.
You'd know if they did from the cost!!
Haha sorry I edited it after. Yeah I tried origin but they said they don't do Cardiff anymore and the only appointment they could give me was neath in a week and a halves time. Valley vets are seem well equiped now. With a load of reptile vets and a whole ward for them. I had no idea that dolittles had a hero vet. I always saw sophie there and assumed that they didn't have one of their own.
 

No1much

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Based on the timing of the lethargy with our coldest period of the year along with the short day lengths, there is a high liklihood that the lethargy was temperature related.

Can we see some pictures of your torts and of their enclosures. And what are your temps like, is it a table or an enclosure?

Did the vet inject your tort with anything?

While not appropriate as a regular part of their diet, I wouldnt feel bad about putting meds in a tomato or strawberry, or some blueberries, a spoonfull of sugar so to speak. Just do your best to use as little fruit as possible each day. Make sure that you are offering food after the tort has had a nice warm soak, drop it near its lamp and put what want it to eat in front of it.

I'm impeccable with temps and do everything by the book with husbandry. Day temps reach 100 under mercury vapor and go down to 22-25 in the coldest part of their tables which is the hide which they sleep. Temps at night don't go below 22. I've got central heating on a timer all night (it's costing a fortune) and a heat mat in the ceiling of the hide which had a thermostat. Temps are monitored through various means standard thermometer, digital, and a temp gun. I can't give you a pic of the tables as they were because I stripped it and binned most of it since the worms diagnosis. He did state that they gave them both their first dose of wormer by mouth. He did say "I had to use a special tool to get his head out to give it to him" I feel like they were rough with him. I can't overstate how shy he is. He'll come out of his shell for me but he will literally wet himself if strangers try to even pick him up so they would have had a struggle to check anything other than his shell.

I've attached a pic of him and a small part of his table as it was.

By the way there is also a 10% uvb t8 running down the table all on 12 hours a day.
 

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Lyn W

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Haha sorry I edited it after. Yeah I tried origin but they said they don't do Cardiff anymore and the only appointment they could give me was neath in a week and a halves time. Valley vets are seem well equiped now. With a load of reptile vets and a whole ward for them. I had no idea that dolittles had a hero vet. I always saw sophie there and assumed that they didn't have one of their own.
It was Sophie from Origin I saw at Dr D's.
It's a shame they don't do the Cardiff area any more or have their own surgery staffed full time. Looking at their newest website I think they go to Pontypool now.
I checked the Valley website too - Tariq the vet who heads up the team for exotics there was the first vet I ever saw in Newport in 2014. He told me my leopard was female and about 10 years old.
However, the following spring Lola very proudly showed me that she was in fact a he and when I saw a 7 year old leopard which was more than twice the size of him, I think Lola was actually only 3 or 4 years at the time.
I think he was in his first year of working and hopefully he's learnt a lot more about torts since!!
 

No1much

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It was Sophie from Origin I saw at Dr D's.
It's a shame they don't do the Cardiff area any more or have their own surgery staffed full time. Looking at their newest website I think they go to Pontypool now.
I checked the Valley website too - Tariq the vet who heads up the team for exotics there was the first vet I ever saw in Newport in 2014. He told me my leopard was female and about 10 years old.
However, the following spring Lola very proudly showed me that she was in fact a he and when I saw a 7 year old leopard which was more than twice the size of him, I think Lola was actually only 3 or 4 years at the time.
I think he was in his first year of working and hopefully he's learnt a lot more about torts since!!
Haha if you check my oldder posts I refer to cadwells brother as a "she". We thought he was female until he started whipping his equipment out at every opportunity. Oh really ? It was tariq we saw the first time but I hope that with 6 more years experience under his belt that he's a safe pair of hands .. I hope 😂😂
 

Lyn W

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Haha if you check my oldder posts I refer to cadwells brother as a "she". We thought he was female until he started whipping his equipment out at every opportunity. Oh really ? It was tariq we saw the first time but I hope that with 6 more years experience under his belt that he's a safe pair of hands .. I hope 😂😂
I hope he/they are able to get Cadwell well.
Keep us posted!
 
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ZenHerper

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...
My tortoise Cadwell is shy as hell. Will NOT come out of his shell at vets at all. Vet said he had to get a bit rough to inspect him. Next day he's got a bit of a limp on back right leg. I'm thinking it's down to vet roughness and it'll ease up. Few days later no better. I thought it may be that he's walking on a flat surface it may not be doing him any favors so I bit in a base of coco coir covered in orchid bark. His walking still deteriorated. Right front leg starts to weaken so back off to the vet this is a week ago.
Vet says he thinks it's an infection and that it's deposited fluid on his legs because they're a little puffy. Prescribes 0.6ml loxicom and 0.1 baytril once a day for 3 weeks in drop form.

The issue.
Trying to get him to eat this stuff is rediculous. It's an intense battle of wills daily. I put it on his addiction food (Komodo holistic pellets) but he won't touch them. I try mixing with other ones but he sniff each one. I try a little nutribal I figure it has a strong smell and may cover it. I get mixed results but I can only use this trick once or twice a week cos I don't want to od him and I'm trying to minimize supplements because I know baytril is hard on the organs and I don't want to overwhelm them. Today I tried a tiny bit of tomato but again that's a one time thing because he shouldnt even have it.

So back to the question. Most days I manage to get him to eat between I'd say 70-95% of it. Some of it gets squashed or wasted. Is this going to be enough to have an effect ? Sorry for length. Wanted to get the whole story in.

Tldr: russian infection. 0.1 ml baytril 0.6ml loxicom. Not eating full dose. Is 70-95% enough to work?

Well.

I'll see your tl/dr and raise you. In short, you do your best. There are some ways to optimize your efforts and his physiology's ability to respond.

[Parenthetical ramble: Unfortunately we have no idea what "a bit rough" means...either in this instance or in the practitioner's habit in general. There are a couple of ways to passively get a tort to stick its head out (slowly turn it almost over, tickle the plastron or tail, etc.). Scared animals are also very tense, so pulling the head out has to be done with extreme care. Something textured, like the handle of a dental probe, can be used to hook the beak very effectively, but the pulling still has to be done uber-carefully. Restraint done away from the owner's observation is a bit of black box. You have to go with your trust in a practitioner's skill and experience, and your gut sense of how that all was handled.]

Veterinary meloxicam solutions are often what I call "feret" flavored -- a bit musky and sweet, so usually accepted by most species that eat meat or carrion or...poop. It's an NSAID.

Baytril is a very strong antibiotic. So that single drop is your priority. All reptiles react badly to it; my guess it is a sharp, strong chemical flavor. Consider asking if they can cut some tablets for you...that at least confines the bad taste to a wee pellet instead of the liquid doing what liquids do (get everywhere).

If you have a compounding pharmacy in the area, both drugs can be put into a fruit-flavored solution. This can be expensive, and the doses will no doubt be larger in volume. But something to consider.

**With both of these drugs, it is vital that your temps are Optimal and that his hydration is maintained. The kidneys are doing the work of clearing them from the blood. I would choose an overnight temp closer to 27* (80*F) to make sure the metabolic systems are not having to recharge every morning, and to make sure the immune system is fully functional. The circulatory system is what you need to both move the medicines around inside him and to cope with the edema...again, keep the enclosure from falling below 27* to keep things Optimized. If he is not drinking, do a twice-daily warm water soak.**

Yossarian gave a dependable list of fruits to try. Do the meds at separate times of the day so you have a better sense of what is bothering him. I would try, for instance, a piece of strawberry with the baytril drop in the morning when he is apt to be hungry. If the vet's office can prescribe you some insulin syringes with the needles, you could at least inject the baytril deep inside a snack item. Take several hours break before going on to the loxicam.

NSAIDs and antibiotics cause digestive upset, and so will fruit. The appetite and digestive disruption makes the job worse.

Short answer: you do your best.
 

ZenHerper

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One other thing to consider: using a hard plastic urinary catheter threaded gently into the side of the jaw. Some torts have enough of a space between the upper and lower mandibles to make this work.

You'd ask your vet for the catheter at the top of this photo (A):

Trim the large end so it fits your dosing syringe. Trim off the long leading end so you have a better chance of giving the whole dosage.
 

No1much

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Well.

I'll see your tl/dr and raise you. In short, you do your best. There are some ways to optimize your efforts and his physiology's ability to respond.

[Parenthetical ramble: Unfortunately we have no idea what "a bit rough" means...either in this instance or in the practitioner's habit in general. There are a couple of ways to passively get a tort to stick its head out (slowly turn it almost over, tickle the plastron or tail, etc.). Scared animals are also very tense, so pulling the head out has to be done with extreme care. Something textured, like the handle of a dental probe, can be used to hook the beak very effectively, but the pulling still has to be done uber-carefully. Restraint done away from the owner's observation is a bit of black box. You have to go with your trust in a practitioner's skill and experience, and your gut sense of how that all was handled.]

Veterinary meloxicam solutions are often what I call "feret" flavored -- a bit musky and sweet, so usually accepted by most species that eat meat or carrion or...poop. It's an NSAID.

Baytril is a very strong antibiotic. So that single drop is your priority. All reptiles react badly to it; my guess it is a sharp, strong chemical flavor. Consider asking if they can cut some tablets for you...that at least confines the bad taste to a wee pellet instead of the liquid doing what liquids do (get everywhere).

If you have a compounding pharmacy in the area, both drugs can be put into a fruit-flavored solution. This can be expensive, and the doses will no doubt be larger in volume. But something to consider.

**With both of these drugs, it is vital that your temps are Optimal and that his hydration is maintained. The kidneys are doing the work of clearing them from the blood. I would choose an overnight temp closer to 27* (80*F) to make sure the metabolic systems are not having to recharge every morning, and to make sure the immune system is fully functional. The circulatory system is what you need to both move the medicines around inside him and to cope with the edema...again, keep the enclosure from falling below 27* to keep things Optimized. If he is not drinking, do a twice-daily warm water soak.**

Yossarian gave a dependable list of fruits to try. Do the meds at separate times of the day so you have a better sense of what is bothering him. I would try, for instance, a piece of strawberry with the baytril drop in the morning when he is apt to be hungry. If the vet's office can prescribe you some insulin syringes with the needles, you could at least inject the baytril deep inside a snack item. Take several hours break before going on to the loxicam.

NSAIDs and antibiotics cause digestive upset, and so will fruit. The appetite and digestive disruption makes the job worse.

Short answer: you do your best.

Wow. Thank you for the comprehensive answer.

I was aware that his temps needed to be raised. I probably should have mentioned that the details I gave earlier were for pre illness. Currently I don't let it drop below 25. I'll increase that to 27 though.
I've been giving him long soaks every single day. I'm also quite fortunate that he's very trusting of me so if I get a dish of water and hold it by his face he will drink from it. It's very cute haha, so yeah I've been doing that every day too.

I did consider giving him the baytril am but didn't want to move the dose to earlier in the day. I didn't want to overwhelm his organs with traces of the day befores dose still in him if that makes sense. I thought that because I gave him his first dose after the vets about 4pm that I was confined to that time.

The vet did give me a needle that he blunted for that purpose but I didn't want to force feed him liquid like that unless absolutely necessary incase he aspirated it and got pneumonia. I'm probably being a little neurotic.

Thank you for the reassurance. I needed it.
 

ZenHerper

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People caring too much - that's a problem most tortoises need. =))

I just wanted to suggest splitting the task into two since the meds don't have to be given together. Gives you both a bit of a rest. Your discretion. You can always let a dose slide to early the following day, or back up an hour a day, etc.. If you are able to figure out how to get the whole baytril drop into him, you ultimately win.


I like the hard plastic catheters because they are not going to jab or scratch as you wheedle into the side of the mouth. You still have to take your time giving anything this way...drip, drip, drip...and watch for swallowing. Sit as comfortably as you can and take your time. Keep the tip of the catheter/needle just inside the jaw and aim across the tongue (not back into the throat).

Reptiles have outstanding sense of taste, so any chemical weirdness freaks them out, but the loxicam may go down this way since it is sweetened.
 

TaylorTortoise

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I'm impeccable with temps and do everything by the book with husbandry. Day temps reach 100 under mercury vapor and go down to 22-25 in the coldest part of their tables which is the hide which they sleep. Temps at night don't go below 22. I've got central heating on a timer all night (it's costing a fortune) and a heat mat in the ceiling of the hide which had a thermostat. Temps are monitored through various means standard thermometer, digital, and a temp gun. I can't give you a pic of the tables as they were because I stripped it and binned most of it since the worms diagnosis. He did state that they gave them both their first dose of wormer by mouth. He did say "I had to use a special tool to get his head out to give it to him" I feel like they were rough with him. I can't overstate how shy he is. He'll come out of his shell for me but he will literally wet himself if strangers try to even pick him up so they would have had a struggle to check anything other than his shell.

I've attached a pic of him and a small part of his table as it was.

By the way there is also a 10% uvb t8 running down the table all on 12 hours a day.
Beautiful tort! What are you feeding him?
 

No1much

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Beautiful tort! What are you feeding him?
Aww thank you. The picture above is a naughty meal because it was his birthday. Usually it's alot healthier! Pretty much anything I can get my hands on that thetortoisetable.org says is okay and is good enough quality. It varies wildly from one week to the next. At this time of year though I'm getting alot of stuff from shelled warriors.
 

No1much

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People caring too much - that's a problem most tortoises need. =))

I just wanted to suggest splitting the task into two since the meds don't have to be given together. Gives you both a bit of a rest. Your discretion. You can always let a dose slide to early the following day, or back up an hour a day, etc.. If you are able to figure out how to get the whole baytril drop into him, you ultimately win.


I like the hard plastic catheters because they are not going to jab or scratch as you wheedle into the side of the mouth. You still have to take your time giving anything this way...drip, drip, drip...and watch for swallowing. Sit as comfortably as you can and take your time. Keep the tip of the catheter/needle just inside the jaw and aim across the tongue (not back into the throat).

Reptiles have outstanding sense of taste, so any chemical weirdness freaks them out, but the loxicam may go down this way since it is sweetened.

Sorry only just saw this reply. I'm definitely going to try splitting the doses today. I'm already feeling less dread about it.
I'm going to asses the situation tonight. See if there is a way through his jaw while his head is withdrawn (since I can guarantee he definitely will withdraw lol) I think it might be preferable to the hour long battle we're going through now. Less stressful for both of us haha
 
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