Soft shell and REALLY soft belly

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swedeheart

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For my greek setup I got a new UVB light about 6 weeks ago (old one broke...). I was stupid and didn't really read the instructions for it, I kind of figured how hard can it be! It's one of the rectangular box ones with the fluorescent light. So basically I plugged it in and then put it on my setup. Everything seemed fine and then last week I noticed how my hatchling was very slugish, but he was still eating. Well yesterday when I picked him up I realized his shell was Unusally soft and his belly is super soft! I freaked out, because I had no idea what I was doing wrong! He had is uvb light, right temp, supplements, right diet. Well while I was looking up things I realized I messed up on my uvb light... You were supposed to unscrew the ENTIRE thing to take off a plastic cover on the INSIDE of the thing!!!! Am I the only one that finds that ridiculous?!? So basically my poor tortoise hasn't gotten much uvb light for the last couple of weeks, because of my stupidity...

So now the uvb light is all good, but I'm REALLY worried about the greek. Is there anything else I should do? Will he be ok? Will his shell become hard again?!? I just feel like the worst person ever and I'm just really worried about him....
 

gtm

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Are you giving your tortoise plenty of Calcium? How warm is the basking area?
 

wayne.bob

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i too got one of those lights with the cover. Why do they even put that on the light? luckily i read the package later and was able to get the cover off. good luck with your tort.
 

swedeheart

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gtm said:
Are you giving your tortoise plenty of Calcium? How warm is the basking area?

I thought I was... He get's it every day, and the basking area is between 90-95
 

swedeheart

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wayne.bob said:
i too got one of those lights with the cover. Why do they even put that on the light? luckily i read the package later and was able to get the cover off. good luck with your tort.

I'm glad im not the only one who messed it up... Glad you noticed it! Didn't end up in my spot... I don't understand why you would design something in that way
 

Itort

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One suggestion. When setting up for flourescent lighting, buy the fixture at a home improvement store. It's much cheaper.
 

egyptiandan

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Hi,
I'm sorry to hear about your Greek tortoise. :( What are you giving exactly for a supplement? Does it have D3 and how often have you been giving it?
It sounds like your tortoise wasn't getting enough vitamin D3. It's going to be a long road to get him back hard again.
The first thing I would do is get some Vitasol liquid vitamins for birds. Everytime you soak him put 4 or 5 squirts into the water. Make sure your calcium supplement has D3 in it and use it at every feeding. I personally like a supplement with phosphorus in it as a tortoise needs all three things, vitamin D3, calcium and phosphorus to grow bones.
This is going to be a long slow process and there are no guarantees once the shell has become as soft as you say it has.
We will help as much as we can. :D

Danny
 

Crazy1

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Ann, I had DT yearlings that came to me with very soft shells. I did as Danny suggested Vitasol (got it at Petco in the bird section) calcium etc. They took some time, the going was slow, but they did finally begin to harden up. By the way what number uvb are you using? When you can it might not hurt to get him out in the CA sunshine. Good luck with your little one.
 

jenrell23

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Good Luck with your little one, it is definatly a long process to hard shell again.

Danny what brand do you use that has phosphorus in it??
 

swedeheart

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Thank you for everyones help! I'm going to go to the pet store tomorrow and gets some vitasol. The supplement I use does have calcium, vitamin D3, and phosphorus. And I sprinkle it on all his food every day. Is that not enough?!? How much schould he have??

I just feel so bad, that its all my fault!! Hopefully It will get better!
 

swedeheart

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Itort said:
One suggestion. When setting up for flourescent lighting, buy the fixture at a home improvement store. It's much cheaper.

Thanks for the advice, thats what i had with my previous one, that broke... Maybe I just got a bad one...
 

Itort

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Take it back to the store. The ones I buy are for general use; aluminum, no frills, tough enough that a horse bats them around and the fixture still works. I don't suggest the ones for kitchen decor, they have alot of extra stuff you just throw-away.
 

egyptiandan

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Hatchling tortoises are one of the hardest things to raise right and have them thrive. I to was just using the calcium supplement on the food. It took a few getting soft and a few passing away for me to figure out that they weren't getting enough vitamin D3. Thats when I started using the Vitasol at every soaking. I use it for just the first year of life. Since I started using it (over 10 years now) I have never had a hatchling go soft again.

Danny
 

Crazy1

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Danny that is so good to know since you first mentioned it I have not missed a soaking of Comets without the vitasol. And s/he shell is nice and hard. You always give great advice.
 
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