Sick Chaco

Status
Not open for further replies.

Tortoise-Luke

New Member
5 Year Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2011
Messages
62
Ok, a little info first. Please keep in mind that veterinarians and supplies are not so easy to find in Argentina as they are in the US, and the exotics vets i could come across really had no idea about tortoises, so please keep that in mind as I am asking for help since there arent any specialists here.
About a month ago, probly a month and a half, I picked up 3 chaco hatchlings that were kept in a 3x4" glass tank with aquarium pebbles, no water just lettuce once a week. The pet shop owner told me he had gotten them as a "try out" item for the store but wasnt able to sell them in two months so they were bad business and really didnt care for them. So yes naturally i just had to take them home they looked so sad all cramed together. Anyways i took them home and did the basic routine everyone mentions on the forum including baby food soaks (props to yvonne i think is her name.) So there's three of them out of which two are doing really well with a lot of eating and activity. But the largest one is the one with the problem.
Ok here i go...

The Largest one ,just under 2 inches, is extremely lethargic and weak, he is also extremely skinny compared to the other two (his shell is ok, im talking about his limbs.) but the main symptom is that he has puffy eyes which stick together and wont open until his drops or soaks. he does sometimes eat but just a nibble or two and not every day and he drinks lots of water in his soaks.


ill list his routine.
-two daily soaks. one of them in baby food, was considering bird multivitamis for the water.
-eye drops. i read somewhere on here that people eye drops are good for tortoises, so i got a medicine student to reccomend me some mild powered eye drops and use these on him.
-temperatures they have a basking light but not sure the temperatures, but the room temp is 75
-they are all housed togethere not sure if i should separate since they were housed together when i got them.

okay so any help and advice would be greatly appreciated i'll try getting some pics up in the next few days.
Thank you.
 

Kristina

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2008
Messages
5,383
Location (City and/or State)
Cadillac, Michigan
First two things I would do is -

Separate for sure. Stress can make a sick tortoise worse. He needs his own habitat.

Get a thermometer and check the temperatures in the enclosure.

Couple of questions -

Any signs of mucus from the nose or mouth?

Any UV source or outside time?

I have a feeling this is MBD brought on by dehydration in the petstore. Get the bird vitamins in the water, and you need a good calcium course, preferably with Vitamin D3 added, and the baby needs to go outside for at least 20 minutes DAILY. Keep up with the babyfood/vitamin soaks.
 

CJSTorts

New Member
5 Year Member
Joined
May 21, 2011
Messages
225
Location (City and/or State)
Jacksonville,FL
I would separate the sick one from the other two, in case it is something that can be passed on to them. I would also use the bird vitamins in the water like you were thinking. Sorry I can't give more advice but this will bump it back up so others see it.

Good luck!
 

Tortoise-Luke

New Member
5 Year Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2011
Messages
62
thanks, and yes i forgot to mention they do go outside daily but just for a 30 min period, an hour or two max since we are nearing the winter down in the south and the sunlight is direct. he does seem extra active in the sunlight and whenever his temps are up, i would assume basking temp is around 90 farenheit.
Regading the mucus, i dont see any signs of a respiratory infection. His mouth and nose are as dry as they should be. the only simptoms y see are the puffy eyelids, which keep getting stuck together.
 

Kristina

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2008
Messages
5,383
Location (City and/or State)
Cadillac, Michigan
What kind of substrate do you have in the enclosure? Is it damp or dry, and do you do any misting?
 

Tortoise-Luke

New Member
5 Year Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2011
Messages
62
im uploading some pics right now so that you can see what i;m talking about, i hope they come out allright and you can see the detail my camera is not that good and they are in fact really small.
Regarding the substrate its regular soil, which half of the enclosure is moist half is dry, this because i intend this weekend on finishing their enclosure with the proper heating. id still like to get them up a bit more. As to how i;m keeping them just like in tom's sulcata thread.
I almost forgot, on the misting... i only do two soaks a day... college keeps me out of my house a lot.. Do you recommend it? I could try to include a few..

IMG00028-20110518-1123.jpg


DSCN0632.jpg


DSCN0631.jpg
 

Skyler Nell

Member
5 Year Member
Joined
Apr 2, 2010
Messages
449
Location (City and/or State)
Southern CA
Hmm I don't have any experience with this specific type of tortoise, but his shell seems big for his body. How warm is your enclosure? It sounds like you are doing all the right things! Keep it up. When my tortoise was very ill, I held him on my lap within a towel. It seemed to have helped, I think others here have done the same. Kind of like the "kangaroo hold" mothers use on premature babies. Best of Luck!! The little one is lucky to have an owner who cares so much!
 

Tortoise-Luke

New Member
5 Year Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2011
Messages
62
well room temp is 75 and basking area should be around 90, couldnt meassure yet.
If you look in the picture where al three are, he is the one on the left, about a quarter of an inch larger than the other two but he's extremities are far smaller/skinnier...
on holding him on my lap dont you think this would stress him even further? ive tried taken as much of a laissez faire approach as i possibly could except for the soaks and drops, so he could be as relaxed as posible.
 

Skyler Nell

Member
5 Year Member
Joined
Apr 2, 2010
Messages
449
Location (City and/or State)
Southern CA
Hmm, well I know this method worked for me, as well as others.
The idea isn't to be holding the tortoise in your bare hands but lay a towel across your lap and let him sit there. you can even fold it some so the sides block some areas around him? If it appears to be stressing him further, then stop. It's supposed to help them feel your body heat.
 

Tortoise-Luke

New Member
5 Year Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2011
Messages
62
well i finally found some multivitamin with some antibiotic and have been giving him one drop two times a day diluted in his soaks, maybe the dosage is too little but the lady who sold it to me wasnt really sure.
anyways ive upgraded the enclosure into something more humid and got a better heat source, so im hoping i see a some improvement in the next few days.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top