New Member Intro! (Have some questions)

rehpotsirhc

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Sep 23, 2021
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Arizona
Hello, new member who recently found a sulcata walking around the neighborhood (posted all over lost sites and put up flyers, nobody has claimed the little guy.) I've been lurking and reading a ton, looking at other sites, educating myself, etc. I do have family members with some knowledge of the breed and a history of animal rescue work/careers, so I think I've got most the care essentials down, along with my endless reading over the last few weeks.

I was just wondering, is there a specific area I'm missing where I could post some pics for possible age estimation and he has a tiny chip on his shell and some small punctures or holes around the edges. He or she seems happy, healthy, and in good shape, but I was just curious as to anyone else's opinions on the little holes. I'm assuming a dog, coyote, or possibly a hawk tried picking on him at some point, seeing as I'm in a pretty rural area, but idk. Might be just wear and tear of being out in the wild. Is there just an intro and see if he's in good shape kinda thread or anything?

Could I post pics here? Please let me know the best course of action. Dont wanna post in the wrong place.

Love this forum and the wealth of information it provides!! Thanks!!
 

rehpotsirhc

New Member
Joined
Sep 23, 2021
Messages
12
Location (City and/or State)
Arizona
Go ahead and post a pic here on this thread. Don't ever worry about posting in the wrong area, the mods can always move it to the right area.
Awesome, thank you! I don't see a way to edit my post, so I'll just drop them here. Hope this works out, been ages since I've used a forum and never from a phone. 😅

20210923_111530.jpg 20210923_113007.jpg 20210923_113830.jpg 20210923_113854.jpg 20210922_154259.jpg 20210922_154308.jpg 20210922_154314.jpg

Well, that didn't quite format how I wanted, but that would be him/her, size, underside, and the 4 or 5 chips/holes. Not the best pics cause I feel bad lifting him for too long and taking pics myself while doing so terrifies me. He doesn't care a bit. Hope those work!
 

Ink

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Thank you for helping the tortoise!
 

wellington

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Hard to say what caused the holes. Likely a dog would have done more chewing damage, not just a hole puncture.
Hard to say age as they can all grow differently. Usually that size would be between 1 and 3 years. Depending on the care he had.
He looks dry so be sure to give daily warm soaks. Otherwise not bad looking. So far a small tail so could be female.
 

Yvonne G

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Backward Christopher: Some people think drilling a hole in the shell in order to tether the tortoise is better than building it an escape proof yard.

Your new sulcata looks very dry and looks to be female.
 

rehpotsirhc

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Sep 23, 2021
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Location (City and/or State)
Arizona
Hard to say what caused the holes. Likely a dog would have done more chewing damage, not just a hole puncture.
Hard to say age as they can all grow differently. Usually that size would be between 1 and 3 years. Depending on the care he had.
He looks dry so be sure to give daily warm soaks. Otherwise not bad looking. So far a small tail so could be female.
Awesome. Thanks so much! Yeah, I have been. He also has a super thick ancient Pyrex pie dish full of water 24/7. He wanders around in it a bit every day.

What does good hydration look like? His poos look healthy and.. urates? Are like toothpaste consistency but a bit grainy. Took him a week to produce any but now seems regular.
 

rehpotsirhc

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Sep 23, 2021
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Arizona
Some people think drilling a hole in the shell in order to tether the tortoise is better than building it an escape proof yard.

Your new sulcata looks very dry and looks to be female.
Omg thats terrible. Hope that didn't happen. They don't seem to pass through anywhere

I've been letting him soak fairly often and was reading cactus pads could help in hydration and not terrible to feed often. I give him a half a small pad a day. He has a water dish he tromps around in everyday for a bit also.

Suggestion? Increase soakings? What do I look at to tell hydration? Shell (carapace?), skin, eyes, mouth? All tortoises look dry to me. His shell looks a bit more dusty and dry than others to me, but he digs up grass and tosses dirt about a fair bit.

Thanks!
 

wellington

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Sounds like you are doing a good job. The tooth paste consistancy sounds good. Keep up the soaks and the gritty should disappear. It takes time specially if she wasn't taken care of properly before you got her.
Yes cactus is good for them and hydration.
 

rehpotsirhc

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Sep 23, 2021
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Arizona
Sounds like you are doing a good job. The tooth paste consistancy sounds good. Keep up the soaks and the gritty should disappear. It takes time specially if she wasn't taken care of properly before you got her.
Yes cactus is good for them and hydration.
Fantastic, thanks!
 

Mrs.Jennifer

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Hello, new member who recently found a sulcata walking around the neighborhood (posted all over lost sites and put up flyers, nobody has claimed the little guy.) I've been lurking and reading a ton, looking at other sites, educating myself, etc. I do have family members with some knowledge of the breed and a history of animal rescue work/careers, so I think I've got most the care essentials down, along with my endless reading over the last few weeks.

I was just wondering, is there a specific area I'm missing where I could post some pics for possible age estimation and he has a tiny chip on his shell and some small punctures or holes around the edges. He or she seems happy, healthy, and in good shape, but I was just curious as to anyone else's opinions on the little holes. I'm assuming a dog, coyote, or possibly a hawk tried picking on him at some point, seeing as I'm in a pretty rural area, but idk. Might be just wear and tear of being out in the wild. Is there just an intro and see if he's in good shape kinda thread or anything?

Could I post pics here? Please let me know the best course of action. Dont wanna post in the wrong place.

Love this forum and the wealth of information it provides!! Thanks!!
Welcome! I am not knowledgeable about sulcatas (I have a tiny Russian), but I DO know how to attach care sheets! Here is the BEST information you will find. Please forgive me if you have already read it.

 

rehpotsirhc

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Sep 23, 2021
Messages
12
Location (City and/or State)
Arizona
Welcome! I am not knowledgeable about sulcatas (I have a tiny Russian), but I DO know how to attach care sheets! Here is the BEST information you will find. Please forgive me if you have already read it.

Much appreciated, thank you!
 

Ray--Opo

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Welcome! I am not knowledgeable about sulcatas (I have a tiny Russian), but I DO know how to attach care sheets! Here is the BEST information you will find. Please forgive me if you have already read it.

I am a sulcata owner and I don't know how to attach caresheets. 😖😖😖🤣🤣🤣
 

rehpotsirhc

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Joined
Sep 23, 2021
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Arizona
Thanks so much for rescuing her. Do you have a name yet for your new friend?
Haha, well as a joke I was calling her Andy Dufresne, like the Shawshank Redemption character, cause she obviously escaped from somewhere, and is always testing her enclosure walls.

Might have to rethink that one now if he is a she. Lol.
 

Emmawilly

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Haha, well as a joke I was calling her Andy Dufresne, like the Shawshank Redemption character, cause she obviously escaped from somewhere, and is always testing her enclosure walls.

Might have to rethink that one now if he is a she. Lol.
I think that's a great name for your tortoise, male or female.
She looks lovely and it's great that you have her. Sully's have great personalities. If yours is free ranging in the garden, start planning now how you'll keep her safe. I say this having experienced broken fence panels, destroyed bushes, 2 escape attempts.... They are quite stubborn and determined if they want to do something.

I kept looking at your username trying to work out what on earth that could possibly mean. Thanks Yvonne for putting me out of my misery (Christopher backwards!)
 

rehpotsirhc

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Joined
Sep 23, 2021
Messages
12
Location (City and/or State)
Arizona
Yeah, I think Andy will stick just fine.

Yes, thank you VERY much! I can't imagine the challenge when she gets larger like yours.

Fortunately I had heard a tiny bit about this before. First week she was in a large wire dog kennel thing, on the grass under a tree, but I had some fencing panels with small gaps, so I made a little 15 × 15 enclosure for now, with fence on three sides and a wall on the fourth that provides nice shade. Dug little trenches in the grass and laid the panels on their sides, burying them about 16 inches down. That leaves about 2 or 3 feet above ground. As soon as the sun rises she eats grass, then proceeds to stand on and shake every inch of the fencing, or ram it, take a nap in a little hide area, awaken, rinse and repeat, all day, haha.

I try to let her roam the whole garden while I'm feeding and watering other animals for an hour a day at least as well. She gets it in her mind to either go east or west into areas where the fence lines aren't very secure at the bottom and lead to neighbors or horse pasture. Zoom, off she goes. I pick her up and carry her all the way to the other side, she eats a bit, gets her direction, then zoom! Off to the same area of the day, over and over and over, lol. She sure seems to have an eye for the weak points. No digging yet though.

Today she was free roaming and shaking the fence to her secure area. Either side she's on, she just doesn't seem to like those guys. 😂

I'm terrified she will make it out somewhere and if so, she blends into the Arizona desert really really well.. I can't imagine trying to find her. Gonna do my best to prevent that.
 

Lyn W

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Hi and welcome, sounds like Andy has a lovely new home.
There is a lot of old information still circulating on the internet and from pet shops and even some vets but the care sheet linked above will tell you everything you need to know about diet, temps etc. and if you follow that your tort should thrive.
I thought the tail looked female too as males tend to be longer and thinner but I could be wrong.
Depending on your winter climate and temps s/he may need a heated night box but members nearer to you will be able to advise on that. Tom has posted some good designs that he uses so it may be worth looking at those to be ready for colder days and nights.
 
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