To Be....Or Not To Be ....sick?

Chefdenoel10

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As long as she's hydrated, she can eat whatever greens she likes. Dandelion, chicory, lettuces (any), curly endive, Belgian endive, collards, viola/heartsease/pansy, mustard greens, beet tops, aster, calendula...

The premium at this point is that she keep her energy and calcium in good, balanced supply.

Yes, I agree.
I am offering the lettuces she will eat for now and they are dusted with calcium.
Three days - calcium WITH D3
Four days - calcium with NO D3
Four and three is seven right?? 🥴
Yes...
I am sorry but I always throw humor in scary situations as to cope with being scared... 😣
But I DO take my Sulcatas “Sally” health VERY seriously.
 

ZenHerper

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Too much calcium can cause just as much metabolic disease as not enough (it gets stuck to the phosphorous and magnesium in the wrong ratios, bypasses the bones, and can end up becoming a giant kidney or bladder stone).

Only use a wee sprinkle of the +D3 form three times a week.

The darker the greens, the more calcium is present naturally.
 

Chefdenoel10

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Too much calcium can cause just as much metabolic disease as not enough (it gets stuck to the phosphorous and magnesium in the wrong ratios, bypasses the bones, and can end up becoming a giant kidney or bladder stone).

Only use a wee sprinkle of the +D3 form three times a week.

The darker the greens, the more calcium is present naturally.

Ok..
Got it.

THAT IS EXACTLY what I WAS doing since the beginning when she was a baby!!

Boy , I don’t know why I listen to the vet?
I just don’t understand how they can mess even the smallest form of nutrition up?
This advice was given to me the last time I went to a NEW “exotic” vet.
(Now I have THREE!?)

She and her assistant told me this and I ran out to buy the “no d3” form of calcium.
BOTH of them also told me that THEY, THEMSELVES owned Sulcata tortoises but were much younger.
I told them all about this site and to try and hop on for conversation. (Don’t know if they ever did?)
Thank you so much for YOUR advice!
I know to listen to you!!!
I will be writing all of this info down tonight and pasting it all over the house for other to read..should they want to help me out once in awhile...😂 yea...right.
 

ZenHerper

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It's complicated.

The majority of people are not feeding their torts properly. Animals maintained on light-colored lettuces ("s/he won't eat anything else") and fruit are going to have low blood calcium levels that require somewhat aggressive supplementation.

If owners are feeding varied mature, dark greens and grasses/hay, and an animal is also eating cuttlefish bone, then supplementation should be held at a minimum.

Veterinary staff have to know how to take a dietary history in order to give advice about how to adjust and supplement an animal's base diet. And they need to have a keen interest and facility in nutritional topics.

The way that pet food companies have taken over the domesticated feeding arena has short-sheeted a lot of educational focus on animal nutrition. Vets who cook for their own pets and advocate whole-food diets have worked hard to glean the additional knowledge about dog/cat/ferret/hamster/etc. nutrition. (Interestingly, I have never seen a client with a rabbit living on a grass/weed/hay diet offered a calcium supplement - calcium is in the food.)

If the vet office knows of new research about the subject, always happy to read and consider!
 

Cathie G

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Thank you!!!!!!
I hate Baytril!!
So does she.
You all have said in the past that it stings and/or tastes terrible. Being desperate if I thought it was a RI I would have tried it.
(I have not). I was going by the experts(you guys) and dioing the keeping warm, temps up and soaking adding pedialite to the water.
But it’s great to know what the new improvement to medication is offered!
My Veterinarians don’t even know this!!!
They always give me Baytril.
I will definitely be asking for the new meds for colds from this day forward!!!
Thank you with all of my heart for telling me this!!! ❤️❤️❤️
I just learned something new from all this. I didn't know that Pedialyte could be used on a tortoise. I love that stuff myself if I'm sick. Especially the mixed fruit.🙂
 

Cathie G

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It's complicated.

The majority of people are not feeding their torts properly. Animals maintained on light-colored lettuces ("s/he won't eat anything else") and fruit are going to have low blood calcium levels that require somewhat aggressive supplementation.

If owners are feeding varied mature, dark greens and grasses/hay, and an animal is also eating cuttlefish bone, then supplementation should be held at a minimum.

Veterinary staff have to know how to take a dietary history in order to give advice about how to adjust and supplement an animal's base diet. And they need to have a keen interest and facility in nutritional topics.

The way that pet food companies have taken over the domesticated feeding arena has short-sheeted a lot of educational focus on animal nutrition. Vets who cook for their own pets and advocate whole-food diets have worked hard to glean the additional knowledge about dog/cat/ferret/hamster/etc. nutrition. (Interestingly, I have never seen a client with a rabbit living on a grass/weed/hay diet offered a calcium supplement - calcium is in the food.)

If the vet office knows of new research about the subject, always happy to read and consider!
My little bunny has never had corn 😂 and very little alfalfa. She won't eat her veggies but she loves her Timothy.☺️
 

ZenHerper

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My little bunny has never had corn 😂 and very little alfalfa. She won't eat her veggies but she loves her Timothy.☺️
Timothy-and-broad-leaf-weeds is the correct diet for mature rabbits...alfalfa is too high in protein and calcium; sugary fruits and grains will bork the digestive system (giant tortoise diet, anyone?). Asparagus is a great treat item (giant grass species).

/derail
 

Cathie G

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Timothy-and-broad-leaf-weeds is the correct diet for mature rabbits...alfalfa is too high in protein and calcium; sugary fruits and grains will bork the digestive system (giant tortoise diet, anyone?). Asparagus is a great treat item (giant grass species).

/derail
Yes and that's why Razberri hasn't had that crap and yet they raise baby rabbits that way. I was lucky to get her at about 5 weeks. She's never had corn. I weaned her.
 

Chefdenoel10

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It's complicated.

The majority of people are not feeding their torts properly. Animals maintained on light-colored lettuces ("s/he won't eat anything else") and fruit are going to have low blood calcium levels that require somewhat aggressive supplementation.

If owners are feeding varied mature, dark greens and grasses/hay, and an animal is also eating cuttlefish bone, then supplementation should be held at a minimum.

Veterinary staff have to know how to take a dietary history in order to give advice about how to adjust and supplement an animal's base diet. And they need to have a keen interest and facility in nutritional topics.

The way that pet food companies have taken over the domesticated feeding arena has short-sheeted a lot of educational focus on animal nutrition. Vets who cook for their own pets and advocate whole-food diets have worked hard to glean the additional knowledge about dog/cat/ferret/hamster/etc. nutrition. (Interestingly, I have never seen a client with a rabbit living on a grass/weed/hay diet offered a calcium supplement - calcium is in the food.)

If the vet office knows of new research about the subject, always happy to read and consider!

I thank you for all of this information.
I will pull out the “care package” she sent me home with. It’s looonnggg..
But I knew most of it was wrong or let’s just say old and misinformed .
I would love to post some of the captions about calcium from it but it seems that my phone will not allow me to post pics on this
Page??? I also had pics and a short video of my tort and her actions as of lately.
Thanks again for this information!
I am realizing I was doing everything right from the start but changed it all because
“The vet MUST know, it’s a Vet for goodness sake” mentality set in....
 

Chefdenoel10

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I just learned something new from all this. I didn't know that Pedialyte could be used on a tortoise. I love that stuff myself if I'm sick. Especially the mixed fruit.🙂

Yes Cathie ,
I was informed to get the “unflavored” pedialite and add it to the soaking water to give them a bit of a pick me up.😬
IT WORKS TOO!!!
If I didn’t see it me self I would not have believed it! ❤️
 

Chefdenoel10

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Are you sure the vet meant calcium 7 days a week...or a multivitamin+D3 on some days and a separate calcium on others?

That would make more sense for a mature egg-laying female...

No... she and her assistant both said 7days.
I am sure if that.
That is why I ran out to get the one without D3.
Of course I must say I just sprinkle a little on per day. Maybe the equivalent to a teaspoon?
She also said it was good to give MORE calcium for an egg laying tort because it Will calcify the eggs 🥚? And help them grow ???....
 

ZenHerper

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No... she and her assistant both said 7days.
I am sure if that.
That is why I ran out to get the one without D3.
Of course I must say I just sprinkle a little on per day. Maybe the equivalent to a teaspoon?
She also said it was good to give MORE calcium for an egg laying tort because it Will calcify the eggs 🥚? And help them grow ???...
Vitamin D, like A, is fat soluble. It gets stored in the liver and fat when too much is eaten. It can become toxic when the body is holding too much. So it should be given sparingly, that is true.

Again, for animals eating a varied, nutritious diet, all supplements should be minimized. They're supplemental, not fundamental.

Unfortunately, I still don't find any definitively established numbers for nutrients for reptiles (you know, like AAFCO compiles for dogs and cats, or the FDA for humans). So there's a lot of winging it - skewed, I think, more toward owners who don't feed appropriate foods in appropriate variety and amounts. Throw in insectivorous reptiles being fed cheap, calcium-poor crickets and you can have a monolithic mixed up mess of recommendations. There are clear risks when calcium and vitamin D3 are overdosed.

A TFO member has compiled this (no reference more recent than 2006):

Blood levels of vitamins and minerals is the only way I know to see for certain what effects diet and supplements have on any one individual. When an animal is doing poorly for no other explained reason, testing is a reasonable step.

****************************

In your case, again, I'd start with a palpation and xrays to look for eggs and other obstructive reasons for not eating. Then move on to more diagnostic steps if the xrays show nothing.
 

Chefdenoel10

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Vitamin D, like A, is fat soluble. It gets stored in the liver and fat when too much is eaten. It can become toxic when the body is holding too much. So it should be given sparingly, that is true.

Again, for animals eating a varied, nutritious diet, all supplements should be minimized. They're supplemental, not fundamental.

Unfortunately, I still don't find any definitively established numbers for nutrients for reptiles (you know, like AAFCO compiles for dogs and cats, or the FDA for humans). So there's a lot of winging it - skewed, I think, more toward owners who don't feed appropriate foods in appropriate variety and amounts. Throw in insectivorous reptiles being fed cheap, calcium-poor crickets and you can have a monolithic mixed up mess of recommendations. There are clear risks when calcium and vitamin D3 are overdosed.

A TFO member has compiled this (no reference more recent than 2006):

Blood levels of vitamins and minerals is the only way I know to see for certain what effects diet and supplements have on any one individual. When an animal is doing poorly for no other explained reason, testing is a reasonable step.

****************************

In your case, again, I'd start with a palpation and xrays to look for eggs and other obstructive reasons for not eating. Then move on to more diagnostic steps if the xrays show nothing.

All such great advice and I have learned a lot of new stuff to remember too. Thank you for that. I am waiting for the exotic vet to call me back today. Trying to get in there this week?
If they ask me to “sedate” her to draw blood. What should I say.
(Every vet had asked this because she pulls her head in so fast they don’t want to break the needle or hurt her...
Last time I said no.... they tried but were unsuccessful..
And now... come to think of it; the first vet got blood work from her awhile back.. he never asked to give her sedation??
I wonder if he just did it?
But he is almost never around.
 

ZenHerper

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All such great advice and I have learned a lot of new stuff to remember too. Thank you for that. I am waiting for the exotic vet to call me back today. Trying to get in there this week?
If they ask me to “sedate” her to draw blood. What should I say.
(Every vet had asked this because she pulls her head in so fast they don’t want to break the needle or hurt her...
Last time I said no.... they tried but were unsuccessful..
And now... come to think of it; the first vet got blood work from her awhile back.. he never asked to give her sedation??
I wonder if he just did it?
But he is almost never around.
Everyone's comfort level with managing legs, heads, and syringes varies. Your vet is honest enough to say what their limitations are, what kind of help they have, etc.. Veins are something of an art - some people are just more comfortable and accomplished with them than others.

So. Ask the vet what sort of sedation.

Are they intending to use a mask and anesthetic gas that will wear off very quickly and not leave her drunken for the rest of the day? I'd probably do that, sure.

There are other sedatives - some are injected and last a number of hours and wear off slowly...some are injected and then an reversing agent is given and the critter wakes up fairly quickly. These types of drugs take over more of the brain's autonomy and can have other side effects (aside from the longer time they take to wear off).

If the xrays are clear and they have no direct A-HA! idea of what else is happening, then I'd agree to "mask her down" for the blood draw. Insufficiently small or poor quality blood samples waste your money when they yield unreliable results, so it's important to have a good angle on the vein and the certainty that there is time to draw the sample properly and fully.

Being wrestled, jabbed at, and bruised is arguably as stressful as being sedated (if not more).
 

Chefdenoel10

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Everyone's comfort level with managing legs, heads, and syringes varies. Your vet is honest enough to say what their limitations are, what kind of help they have, etc.. Veins are something of an art - some people are just more comfortable and accomplished with them than others.

So. Ask the vet what sort of sedation.

Are they intending to use a mask and anesthetic gas that will wear off very quickly and not leave her drunken for the rest of the day? I'd probably do that, sure.

There are other sedatives - some are injected and last a number of hours and wear off slowly...some are injected and then an reversing agent is given and the critter wakes up fairly quickly. These types of drugs take over more of the brain's autonomy and can have other side effects (aside from the longer time they take to wear off).

If the xrays are clear and they have no direct A-HA! idea of what else is happening, then I'd agree to "mask her down" for the blood draw. Insufficiently small or poor quality blood samples waste your money when they yield unreliable results, so it's important to have a good angle on the vein and the certainty that there is time to draw the sample properly and fully.

Being wrestled, jabbed at, and bruised is arguably as stressful as being sedated (if not more).

I will do all of this.
Thank you for that response.
I wish I had such knowledge.
It’s when you’re there (in the parking lot) they just tell you quick over the phone
“We have to sedate her”.
It jumbles your brain because you’re thinking the worst..
I got scared that she wouldn’t recover without the side effects you spoke of.
Now I am more educated as to understand the different types of sedation. ❤️🙏
They all know when I show up ..
I know my stuff..
(That’s because before I go there I ask all of you!)😂
They think I am really smart about tortoises!! 😝
Well, I must say ...
after all I have been through with her for 23 years , it’s hard not to be up on your game.
I refuse to let her go after all we have endured. Not on MY watch.! 😉
 

Jan A

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I will do all of this.
Thank you for that response.
I wish I had such knowledge.
It’s when you’re there (in the parking lot) they just tell you quick over the phone
“We have to sedate her”.
It jumbles your brain because you’re thinking the worst..
I got scared that she wouldn’t recover without the side effects you spoke of.
Now I am more educated as to understand the different types of sedation. ❤️🙏
They all know when I show up ..
I know my stuff..
(That’s because before I go there I ask all of you!)😂
They think I am really smart about tortoises!! 😝
Well, I must say ...
after all I have been through with her for 23 years , it’s hard not to be up on your game.
I refuse to let her go after all we have endured. Not on MY watch.! 😉
Well, I have my good vibes hat on for both you & Dawn, Angie, Ray, Zeropilot, Maggie, Mastershake & all my other achy friends on the forum. We all need good summers & well pets!!
 

Krista S

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I will do all of this.
Thank you for that response.
I wish I had such knowledge.
It’s when you’re there (in the parking lot) they just tell you quick over the phone
“We have to sedate her”.
It jumbles your brain because you’re thinking the worst..
I got scared that she wouldn’t recover without the side effects you spoke of.
Now I am more educated as to understand the different types of sedation. ❤️🙏
They all know when I show up ..
I know my stuff..
(That’s because before I go there I ask all of you!)😂
They think I am really smart about tortoises!! 😝
Well, I must say ...
after all I have been through with her for 23 years , it’s hard not to be up on your game.
I refuse to let her go after all we have endured. Not on MY watch.! 😉
How is your tortoise doing the last couple of days? I’ve been thinking about you both, hoping for the best. Praying everything is ok. 🙏🏼 ❤️
 

Chefdenoel10

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How is your tortoise doing the last couple of days? I’ve been thinking about you both, hoping for the best. Praying everything is ok. 🙏🏼 ❤️

I am here!!! I am sorry for disappearing but I have just been waiting.
The doctors office will not see us till next week. They only returned my call yesterday!
Sally (my tortoise) is still soaking day and night in the tub....🙄
She is eating better now (yesterday she ate a whole plateful of dark greens!)
And I forced her to walk around as best she could. She looked like she was fine with that..? She was “digging” under her heat lamp and her Uvb light.... but refused to go outside ???
I just don’t see any eggs???
She has 5 very dark and warm places here inside to “do her thing” so I don’t have to worry about that...
She just won’t use them.?
At this point I am trying to do what she wants just to keep her hydrated until I see the vet...
If it’s eggs.... I will do the “midwife” thing..
🤥 (by that I mean I will sit and wait for her to lay them...)
And if it’s nothing.....all heck is gonna break loose!
Tort head is going to fly!!!
But I guess I’d be happy to know she is alright.... but I am just sooo tired..
picking her up to move her..(she’s 100lb)
Refilling the water every two hours
Begging her to eat
Cleaning the room she goes in and ruines before she walks back to the tub..
Thank God the tub is in the basement!
I cannot imagine having to do stairs too!!
Again, I am sorry for leaving you in the dark about what’s going on but I will be here to update as soon as I know.. I promise!
 

Jan A

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I am here!!! I am sorry for disappearing but I have just been waiting.
The doctors office will not see us till next week. They only returned my call yesterday!
Sally (my tortoise) is still soaking day and night in the tub....🙄
She is eating better now (yesterday she ate a whole plateful of dark greens!)
And I forced her to walk around as best she could. She looked like she was fine with that..? She was “digging” under her heat lamp and her Uvb light.... but refused to go outside ???
I just don’t see any eggs???
She has 5 very dark and warm places here inside to “do her thing” so I don’t have to worry about that...
She just won’t use them.?
At this point I am trying to do what she wants just to keep her hydrated until I see the vet...
If it’s eggs.... I will do the “midwife” thing..
🤥 (by that I mean I will sit and wait for her to lay them...)
And if it’s nothing.....all heck is gonna break loose!
Tort head is going to fly!!!
But I guess I’d be happy to know she is alright.... but I am just sooo tired..
picking her up to move her..(she’s 100lb)
Refilling the water every two hours
Begging her to eat
Cleaning the room she goes in and ruines before she walks back to the tub..
Thank God the tub is in the basement!
I cannot imagine having to do stairs too!!
Again, I am sorry for leaving you in the dark about what’s going on but I will be here to update as soon as I know.. I promise!
OMG, I'm so sorry this is going on in this way. I had no idea. Please be well & be strong. Tell me what i can do to help!!
 
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