Sulcata Squealing!

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Belle

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Hello,
I am a first time Sulcata owner. My baby is about 2 yrs old now, and is a good looking tortoise! Problem is that since yesterday, he has been squealing a lot. He is making odd noises, but he is looking fine and eating as usual. Is this normal? Could something possibly be wrong?
Please help, any feedback is greatly appreciated.
 

Jermosh

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Belle said:
Hello,
I am a first time Sulcata owner. My baby is about 2 yrs old now, and is a good looking tortoise! Problem is that since yesterday, he has been squealing a lot. He is making odd noises, but he is looking fine and eating as usual. Is this normal? Could something possibly be wrong?
Please help, any feedback is greatly appreciated.

Yes they will make grunting noise, if he has any congestion get to a vet if you can.
 

Yvonne G

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Hi Belle:

Welcome to the forum!!

What is the tortoise doing when you notice these sounds?

If that's your tortoise in your avatar, he's a good-looking animal!
 

Hix2008

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I have two salcata's about 5 months old and they are making a squeal noise too. My husband thought we had rats In the room!
 

Snapper

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Hix2008 said:
I have two salcata's about 5 months old and they are making a squeal noise too. My husband thought we had rats In the room!

LOL, that is hilarious
 

Belle

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emysemys said:
Hi Belle:

Welcome to the forum!!

What is the tortoise doing when you notice these sounds?

If that's your tortoise in your avatar, he's a good-looking animal!

He's doing them as he's just lounging around. Last night, I picked him up to soak him and it almost sounded like he was growling at me. I have an appointment w/ the vet today at 5:30 Central. So cross your fingers. Yes he's the one in my pic, his name is Squirtle. He's a pretty little guy, has been since we got him 1 1/2 ago :)
 

ElfDa

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Penny, our Leopard, has been squealing, too.

We would feed her and then walk away. She'd squeal, and we'd come running back to find to source of the noise.
When we couldn't find it, we'd walk away again, which would make her squeal.
She'll make little squeaky noises when she wants out of her tub, too.
I think it's their way of attempting communication; they don't really know how to get our attention, and they get upset.

(...guess what I was going to focus on for my herpetology degree, and later PhD? lol)

Belle said:
He's doing them as he's just lounging around. Last night, I picked him up to soak him and it almost sounded like he was growling at me. I have an appointment w/ the vet today at 5:30 Central. So cross your fingers. Yes he's the one in my pic, his name is Squirtle. He's a pretty little guy, has been since we got him 1 1/2 ago :)

by the way? Cutest. tort. name. EVAR.
 

Tom

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I've never heard this noise, but it sounds like a POSSIBLE respiratory problem. I always worry about temps when it get cold like it has been. Have you checked yours lately?
 
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Maggie Cummings

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I agree Tom, I have had several Sulcata yearlings and Bob and have never heard a squeal from any of them. I talked to the OP in a PM and told her I thought it might be an URTI...I hope she has a good Vet and you and I are wrong...
 

Belle

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Well, we had out doc's visit yesterday and I am more worried than yesterday. The doctor stated it was congestion and he gave me Tobramycin Solution for Squirtle's nose and injected him w/ Baytril. Here's my problem now- Squirtle was up and running around yesterday- even when we were at vets, he was very curious and wanted to get into everything. Once they gave him the Baytril shot, he stopped. I know he was very mad at us, he crammed up in his shell and wldn't come out. When he did, he did his best to stay off the foot they gave him the shot in. Once we got back home, he didn't want to walk around anymore. He stayed in the same spot, and refuses to come out of his shell. This morning, he was sleeping so I didn't want to mess w/ him and I had to come to work. I am hoping he was just really mad at me for allowing the shot-- not anything worse. I have read some really bad things about antibiotic shots affecting Sulcata's. He is scheduled to go back for another shot on Thursday 12/09, Saturday 12/11, and the last one shld be Mon 12/06. He is being given 22.7mgs of Baytril. Please, tell me this is okay and not too much for him. My husband and I discussed not taking him in for the last two if he keeps getting this affected by them... I just need some advice so we can do the right thing for HIM. Thanks
 

moswen

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i had to give tula those shots when i first got her and they made her slow down quite a bit and i was really worried about her. close to the end of her medicine i read somewhere that those injections have killed some tortoises so i flipped out and called the vet and she said "oh that's just not true" so i finished them up. she's still fine and dandy (3 years later) but i found a new vet and they do a little tortoise nebulizer and give her these drops that i put in her eyes and nose twice daily. i feel much better about these.
 

Tom

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This is my problem with "going to the vet". Those injections are very hard on them. Sometimes necessary, but never easy. Once you start a course of anti-biotics you need to finish it.

Here's the thing: Your tortoise got sick for a reason. What good does it do to treat the SYMPTOMS with very harsh chemicals, if you haven't corrected the original PROBLEM? Did the vet address this? In my opinion, this should have been handled and the problem found and discussed before any course of medication or injections.

Most of the time, the symptoms will go away on there own if the original problem is corrected. Often simply raising the temps 10-15 degrees will make every thing all better. Not always, but in most cases it is worth a try first.

I'm not trying to make you feel bad, Belle, I wish you and yours nothing but the best, I just want everyone to learn a little something from your situation.
 

Yvonne G

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In my opinion, Baytril should never be administered unless a test, smear, whatever, was done to determine that, yes, there IS an infection going on. But to just look at a tortoise and to assume that there is an infection then give the Baytril in my opinion, is not good.

Baytril is pretty harsh. Its a good drug and the antibiotic of choice in treating respiratory infections in tortoises, but its very harsh. It stings terribly. It sometimes causes the tissue around the injection site to die. It makes the leg that was injected terribly sore.

No, he's not mad. Tortoises don't have that type of feeling towards humans, but he is very sore, and it hurts to walk or move that leg.

You can ask your vet to administer the drug either orally or as a diluted squirt in the nose. It works just as well that way without the pain. Since the vet determined that the tortoise was congested, then the nasal flush would do fine. You dilute the baytril with 9 parts sterile saline to 1 part Baytril and squirt it in each nostril.
 

Belle

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Tom said:
This is my problem with "going to the vet". Those injections are very hard on them. Sometimes necessary, but never easy. Once you start a course of anti-biotics you need to finish it.

Here's the thing: Your tortoise got sick for a reason. What good does it do to treat the SYMPTOMS with very harsh chemicals, if you haven't corrected the original PROBLEM? Did the vet address this? In my opinion, this should have been handled and the problem found and discussed before any course of medication or injections.

Most of the time, the symptoms will go away on there own if the original problem is corrected. Often simply raising the temps 10-15 degrees will make every thing all better. Not always, but in most cases it is worth a try first.

I'm not trying to make you feel bad, Belle, I wish you and yours nothing but the best, I just want everyone to learn a little something from your situation.

Thanks for your input Tom, and no your words do not make me feel bad.
In fact, I was upset because the doc couldn't tell me what the problem is/was. I asked him for suggestions, he asked what I was doing and said i was doing just fine. But I know every good vet can give even a little criticism. Maggie told me, in a PM, to keep him warmer and get his temp up, and I have done that now. I did tell her that I was not keeping it as warm as I should at night lately due to the temp dropping. I also wish that the vet had given me the opportunity to try and fix the issue at home before introducing him to the shot.

moswen said:
i had to give tula those shots when i first got her and they made her slow down quite a bit and i was really worried about her. close to the end of her medicine i read somewhere that those injections have killed some tortoises so i flipped out and called the vet and she said "oh that's just not true" so i finished them up. she's still fine and dandy (3 years later) but i found a new vet and they do a little tortoise nebulizer and give her these drops that i put in her eyes and nose twice daily. i feel much better about these.

I read the same thing about those injections which is the reason I am so worried. I am leaving work early again to day to check up on him. Thanks for your input.
 

Tom

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Good luck, Belle. I hope everything works out for you.
 

Livingstone

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If the shots don't work, I would strongly urge you to go toward the drops for the nose and eyes as others have suggested.
 

Ruby's Mom

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Baytril is fantastic for reptiles. the 22.7 mg is how much of the antibiotic is in each ml, not neccessarily each injection. it's administered by weight. I once treated a ball python for pneumonia, and at 22.7mg per ml, the dose for the snake was only .2 ml (.2cc) with her only being 2 pounds. and it only took 2 injections over a week's time period to clear her right up as far as that went. other than that the rest is environmental. Consider heat and humidity requirements. BUT also consider cleanliness.

We keep our tortoises inside in a large enclosure, but really? just how clean is it? we scoop out poop, but how often are we really giving the enclosure a good cleaning? Fungus in the bedding is the number one reason for respiratory disorders because it grows everywhere. Remember, your tort is right in it.

My mother's one Sulcata would constantly squeal with every bowel movement. and we soon found out why. Whoever had it before fed it poorly, in fact we got 3 from these people. the biggest, a 24 inch guy passed away due to malnutrition. this little 9 inch one suddenly screamed bloody murder one night and pushed out this slightly flattened golf ball sized ROCK. I had it saved to post a picture of, but it was thrown out while I was in the hospital. I have no idea what this rock was made of, but it reminded me of a lump of crushed coral. The sulcata is currently back to normal and eating normal, and will soon be up for adoption.
 
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