Sick Sulcata Can't Walk

TortoiseWoman

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Hello ya'll,

We have a 2 yr old sulcata who came to us in poor condition. She is quite small for her age, only about 178 grams right now. We've had her for about 2 months. She's seen the vet and was given a liquid calcium for me to force feed to her as well as Critical Care (high fiber powder) to mix in. She was improving and started to eat grass and was gaining weight. She is now down to twice a week on the liquid calcium so I stopped force feeding her every day because she was eating grass so well. She was gaining weight but has lost some now so I've started force feeding her more often. I guess I over estimated how well she was doing.

One of the big problems she has is she can't walk. She drags herself with her front legs and only uses her back legs when she's turning a different direction. Otherwise she pulls them in or just lets me drag behind her. She has a hard time moving around in her tort box. It has a mixture of coconut coir and cypress mulch. She can really boogie when dragging herself on a towel and she does ok outside in the grass. So I'm thinking of maybe putting some flat stones in her box so she can move easier? I guess I'd like any suggestions you have. I'm not sure what to do to make it easier for her to get around. I have to put everything close together and even then it's hard for her to do much.

I'm wondering how long it might take her to be able to walk again. Has anyone had this experience before?

Thanks
 

Maro2Bear

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Greetings. Sorry to hear about the current condition of your Sully, kind of sad, but lets hope you can pull things about face. 178 grams for a two year old is rather light. It might be good if you upload some pix of sully, along with the enclosure, and details on heating, food, soaking, etc. Have you tried feeding mazuri?
 

TortoiseWoman

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She is in a ZooMed tortoise house that we've modified a little. Took the divider out. She has a log hide but rarely goes in it. The temp is never below 85 at night. During the day her basking area is between 95-100. She has water available to her at all times and I soak her most every day. The vet suggested I do this. The humidity is lower than it should be as she does have some pyramiding so I may get a humidifier as I just can't get it to 80% and keep it there no matter how hard I try. She has grass to eat at all times. Sometimes she will eat some spring mix but I don't give it to her often. Will eat some cactus. I put timothy hay and soaked mazuri in her enclosure on a regular basis but I can't tell if she eats it or not. When I force feed her I use squash or sweet potato baby food (again as directed by the vet). She does have UVB as well as her heat and when the weather is nice we put her in the yard in a wire pen so she can get the real thing. She usually grazes some while out there but will always head to the hide and out of the sunlight.

I don't have any pictures of her current enclose so I'll try to get some. The pictures I put here aren't super recent. The one with her on the towel was in her old enclosure, probably taken a month or so ago. The one of her facing the camera is right after we got her. When we got her we were told she was healthy. They had no idea that they had a llack of knowledge on proper sulcata care and that it had put her in very poor health. They bought her as a hatchling. She had low heat, no UVB, never been outside, no humidity, and had a diet of spinach, apples, and a little of a commercial diet. Oh, her shell is quite soft as well. She's like a squeekie toy.
Her name is Tinkerbell, btw.
Tinkerbell Doing Great 2-25-17.jpg Tinkerbell the Sulcata Tortoise 2-17-17.jpg
 
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samsmom

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I don't have any help to offer other than to say she is one lucky girl to have found you! Keep up the good work!
 

BrianWI

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MBD. Keep doing what your doing, add Mazuri. Get a small plastic greenhouse and put it over the enclosure, should help get humidity up.
 

wellington

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She needs a larger enclosure for when she does start walking. Those zoo med things are way too small. I rehabbed a leopard that couldn't walk because of too small of living conditions among other things.
I did hydrotherapy. Put him in deep water where he can't touch and make him swim. If he sinks, place a couple fingers between his front legs to just hold his head up out of the water and let him paddle with his back legs. Use warm water to keep him warm and do this every day for about 10 minutes or longer. Twice a day won't hurt. Continue until you see really good improvement in his walking and then have a nice big enclosure or better yet an area outside to walk around.
 

Bee62

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Hello,

sorry to hear that your rescued tortoise is in such a bad health.
How you thought, you could make things easier for your sick tort.
I would use for the indoor enclosure flat grasbuckles when the tort can better move on gras.
No coconut coir and cypress mulch for that tort.
Like @wellington said she needs a big enclosure to be able to walk around.
She needs UVB light the whole day long and calcium, warmth and high humidity against the MBD.
Good luck for your poor little tort and it is very good that you rescued her.
 
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