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volans

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I read some articles about hibernating torts in the fridge. I believe they said that the optimal temp is 40-50s.The temp in where I live only goes down to 50-60s at night so i'm planning to put my small DT in the fridge. for the ventilation, do i need to use an air pump or can i just open the fridge several times in a week to let the air in? Thanks...
 

egyptiandan

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Depending on the size of the fridge, you can open it every day for a minute or two. Also you want the temperature to not get above 50F. 40 to 42F is what you want to shoot for.

Danny
 

Crazy1

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Volans, I live in the Inland Empire about 30 miles from Upland and my DT hibernate fine in my shed and a friends in her garage. They usually go down between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Mine went down last week as did hers. They sometimes get up a tad early sometimes in Feb. But that is fine with me.
 

volans

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I was planning to put him in another fridge in my garage, of course, separate from food :p. So it's okay just to put my DT in a cardboard box outside even though the temp goes to low 50ish at nite and fluctuates btw 60-80s in the morning? I thot the temp has to be below 50? I usually put him indoors and I've been putting his enclosures outside for a while for him to get used to the weather. I saw him moving quite abit and haven't settled down yet. I soaked him with warm water quite often before thanksgiving so he's pretty hydrated. Thanks for all ur replies. This is my first time hibernating my pretzel and I don't want him to die, esp ^0^.
 

Crazy1

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Volans, what size is your Pretzel? Please understand that hibernating any tortoise there is a chance that he may not make it. In the wild some do die this way. If he is healthy, well hydrated and his stomach is empty he should do OK hibernating. I would stop the warm soaks at this time. You want his body to naturally cool By soaking him in warm water you are keeping him up. He should have gone about 2 weeks to a month or more with no food before hibernating. When the night time temps get in the 40s is usually when they really slow down. He could be up as late as around Christmas before getting sleepy. I would not place him in a cardboard box outside. He must stay dry and cool. Like in a garage. I place mine in a plastic tote large enough for him to turn around in and place newspapers under them and an old towel over them to help simulate him underground, he seem to like the weight of the towel. I have a tent like shed I place them in that keeps them dry and they do fine. I do put chicken wire over the tote to keep any critters out and I check on them weekly. By the way mine are adults.
If you feel more comfortable hibernating him in a fridge that would be ok also. Just letting you know what I do and I am not too far from you. my temps here next week are to be 81F daytime low 50s F night and mine are sleeping already.
 

volans

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Pretzel is abt 4 inches long. I stopped feeding him for 2 weeks now. I checked his nose and it wasn't runny. I was thinking of putting him outside on my sheltered patio where rain wont' get in the box, so it will be dry and temp would get down to 50s. I don't know if the temp goes down to 40 though, I only live in Upland for less than a year. My garage is pretty warm, like about 65 degrees because there's a huge fridge. I don't know if I should put him there. What is ur temp in ur garage? I heard cardboard box is better since it can breathe and there's ventilation, instead of a tote? So no soaking anymore, maybe with cold water? I don;t really know how to tell if he's drinking enough.
 

egyptiandan

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If your fridge is in the garage, it's best not to use that fridge. For a fridge to work correctly it needs to be at a stable temperature. If the temperatures fluctuate outside the fridge, they will fluctuate in the fridge. If it gets cold in the garage, you can actually freeze your tortoise in the fridge. If your going to use a fridge it needs to be in the house.

Danny
 

chelonologist

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I'd recommend not using the fridge at all. If the temps in your garage get down to 50-60 degrees, that's probably cool enough to keep your tortoise inactive. Even if day temps get higher, the tortoise will stay inactive as long as night temps consistently get into the 50s. You can keep him in a cardboard box, but give him a hide he can crawl into - he'll feel more comfortable with a hide and will likely spend most of his time in it. Check on him periodically to make sure he's settling down.
 

Crazy1

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As I said. No soaking him at all at this time. When torts go into hibernation they don't eat and don't drink. If he is up an altert you can offer him water but be prepared for him not to drink. It sounds like you are very tentative about hibernating him at all. You can keep him up this winter by raising his temps like they are during summer and giveing him a large place to roam. But Michael and Danny have given you solid advice on hibernating him. I would not use the fridg and just place im in a cardboard box or a tote with No closed lid. Like I pm'd you I use chicken wire over the top so no criters get inside. Even hibernating torts move around during hibernation just as bears and other hibernating creatures due. They just don't wake up fully.
 
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