Cherryhead doesn't eat or poop

Tortisedonk7

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Hello,
I’m new here and looking for some advice.

A week ago I got two baby cherry heads, about 3 months old. One of them (Atlas) won’t eat or poop, however she does drink a lot. She ate some hibiscus leaf and flower the first 2 days then pretty much stopped eating, and seeming hasn’t pooped since then as well. I live in, and keep them in a hot tropical environment so I doubt temperature is an issue. I’m offering most all foods including: hibiscus, shedded carrot, leafy greens, jicama(more recently), little bit of mango and papaya, no pellet food yet. The other Tortise loves to eat most all these things and poops 1-2 times per day (But He hides if not eating)
I think I saw the tiniest bit of poop from Atlas today, it was gray and really sticky /gooey. The only thought I had was that she ate some of the sphagnum moss I use in their hide box and is now impacted. I’m worried if this continues much longer she will die. What can i do for her?

thanks!
 

Yvonne G

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Allowing a young tortoise to sit in a little tub of water for over a half hour seems to help in getting things moving. The scrambling around, trying to get out, is what does it.
 

KronksMom

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And try to offer food right after the soak. Many tortoises like to eat right after. Kind of like they're refilling, since they just peed and pooped everything out.
 

Toddrickfl1

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It's pretty common for a new tortoise to eat the first day or two then stop for a few days till they settle in. It's a good sign that the tort is drinking though. I would try something real enticing to get it going. Something like banana, tuna, or even and Earthworm.
 

Tortisedonk7

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I bathe her every evening and offer little fruit after. No poop yet. Maybe because she is empty? The first day or two I got her she pooped, but hasn’t eaten munch since so maybe there is nothing to come out
Just posting my observations here.
When she’s in the enclosure she doesn’t want to eat, Just roams around or hides in a corner. When I put her in the grass she does a decent job grazing and goes crazy for worms.
 

ZEROPILOT

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I bathe her every evening and offer little fruit after. No poop yet. Maybe because she is empty? The first day or two I got her she pooped, but hasn’t eaten munch since so maybe there is nothing to come out
Just posting my observations here.
When she’s in the enclosure she doesn’t want to eat, Just roams around or hides in a corner. When I put her in the grass she does a decent job grazing and goes crazy for worms.
What type of enclosure, lights, foods, etc?
What is the humidity and the temperature?
If temps or humidity is too low, it'll cause digestion and hydration issues.
If the temperature is too high, itll cause stress issues.
Photos please, and as much information as you can rattle off.
 

Tortisedonk7

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What type of enclosure, lights, foods, etc?
What is the humidity and the temperature?
If temps or humidity is too low, it'll cause digestion and hydration issues.
If the temperature is too high, itll cause stress issues.
Photos please, and as much information as you can rattle off.
I already put some of this info on another thread thinking it was this same one. I’ll add it here again.
I live in hot tropical environment so I don’t use lights or heat. The average temp here is about 26-28C humidity 80%
Foods I’ve Tried are leafy greens,(hibiscus, kale(but not western/american type kale) other leafy water greens) jicama, mango, pineapple, banana, smashed carrot, pumpkin squash, cucumber, Mazuri pellet just yesterday. But she will only some times eat a small amount of pineapple or mango out of all these things.
She seems to like grazing, although still eats very little compared to her brother. The first poop came last night it was small weirdly gray and mucousy. Had some whiteish/yellow stuff inside of it that was dry and might have looked like digested sphagnum moss or was it urates...? I regret that I couldn’t get a quality pic.😑
she had another poop this morning that was more normal, a little soft but looked heathy just by comparison to her brothers giant poops green poops.
The small green enclose is 13x26inches. I know it’s too small. Next week they will move to the big one with grass. 8ftx2ft
Thanks for all your advice.
 

Rijal

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Hi, fellow Indonesian here and I also have a cherryhead.

In which city do you live? You might want to check again your temperature and humidity. Before, I also kept my baby CH in an open enclosure but found out that during a hot dry day the temperature can go up to 33-34 C and humidity went down to 60%, especially now during dry season. He never came out of his hide and eat very little. Then, one day I can see sign of dehydration even with daily soaking and access to water. That's why now I keep mine in an indoor closed chamber and I am able to keep the temperature below 30 C with humidity no less than 90% all the time and I can see the change of activity level and appetite. I plan to keep him until a little bit bigger to move him outdoor.
 

Tortisedonk7

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Hey there, nice to hear from a fellow tortoise owner in Indonesia and some one on the same time zone as me.
Im in Balikpapan Kalimantan Timur.
Where are you?
Yeah the temperature here can get 30-33 sometimes. The humidity I don’t worry too much Bc they have damp substrate and damp moss inside there hide.
What where the signs of dehydration you see?
the tortoise have pretty opposite behavior. One eats a lot then returns to the hide all day. The other does not eat much but will walk around the enclosure most of the day going in and out of the hide.
 

Rijal

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I'm in Jakarta and it is really hot since the past few days.

The signs at that time were he weighted less, sunken eyes, and there were bubbles coming out of his mouth.

One thing came to mind, since you have a pair in one enclosure, maybe the other tortoise became the dominant and chased the other one out of the humid hide. Then she became stressed due to the aggression + the hot weather during the day since she cannot stay in the hide. It's just a hypothesis though but the major consensus here is that tortoise must not be kept in pair.
 

Tortisedonk7

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Got her eating a tiny bit of cooked potato tonight.
Having difficult time getting my wife to understand not to touch and bother the tortoise all the time. I know it causes Stress for them.
 

Tortisedonk7

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I'm in Jakarta and it is really hot since the past few days.

The signs at that time were he weighted less, sunken eyes, and there were bubbles coming out of his mouth.

One thing came to mind, since you have a pair in one enclosure, maybe the other tortoise became the dominant and chased the other one out of the humid hide. Then she became stressed due to the aggression + the hot weather during the day since she cannot stay in the hide. It's just a hypothesis though but the major consensus here is that tortoise must not be kept in pair.
It is possible that the other one is dominate. But they share the hide together at night. And some times during the day. And I never see any type of aggression between them.
Next week I will separate them to see if that works.
Mostly I just think the one that not eating is more active, seems she is always looking for something when walking around.
 

Tortisedonk7

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Well... she doesn’t eat anything I give her. But sure enjoys grazing.
How can I post a video here?
 

Zoeclare

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Hi I'm not an expert but I also have a cherry head. I definatly think separating the two is the way to go, also you could try offering some smelly foods like tuna or mine goes crazy for mushroom, if he's grazing outside that's good. With regards to the poop I'm not sure what to suggest to improve the consistency but they do eat their own poop sometimes which could be why you're not seeing much?
 

Tortisedonk7

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We watch her very closely and I’m sure it not a case of eating her own poop. However we did get a small poop today. Please see picture. I’m not there to physically examine it but kinda looks like she ate some of the coconut husk that I use for substrate. Which likely caused impaction. Last week we got one small poop as well, when I dissected that one it looked like there was digested sphagnum moss in it. Why is she eating the substrate...? :(
The poop is saved and will try to find a vet that can check for parasites.
 

Minority2

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1. Get rid of the sphagnum moss.

2. Separate the two tortoises. Give them a week or two apart and see whether or not the one tortoise that wasn't eating get's their appetite back or not. If the appetite and general demeanor is better than your questions are solved. Keep them apart. Continue to monitor the daily temperature and humidity level changes, ensuring that the substrate is damp and that ample shaded areas are plentiful in the separate enclosures.

The cherry head tortoise that continually wanders is probably doing so because it's either trying to find food (that isn't guarded by the other tortoise) or a way to escape the enclosure in order to find their own little patch of land that isn't constantly being challenged over. Not all cherry heads and red foots are able to get along with pairs. Many do fine but there's always a chance one of the tortoises might just be a jerk.
 

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