Do tortoises feel emotion?

Ukgoffer

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One of my tortoises gets very exited when i put my hand in his sight and walks over to it, and i have just got my second baby. The new one is exactly as you said, he is still a little nervous when i try to hand feed, like my first was when i got him. I think it is quite normal, does yours try to bite your finger occasionally?
And my toes if I’m wearing sandals in the garden!
 

Tony the Tort42

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Of course they have feelings. They are sentient beings.
Well, Almost all animals have feelings (like pain, excitement ect) but some reptiles lack the ability to feel love. I was wondering if this was different for torts, as they like neck scratches, and time with humans. I dont doubt they have “feelings”, I was more thinking of love, and feelings like that.
 

queen koopa

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Well, Almost all animals have feelings (like pain, excitement ect) but some reptiles lack the ability to feel love. I was wondering if this was different for torts, as they like neck scratches, and time with humans. I dont doubt they have “feelings”, I was more thinking of love, and feelings like that.
I feel animals that don’t have a natural involvement in the care and survival of their young most likely do not possess the instinct or ability to “love” because they are not made up that way.
 

Tony the Tort42

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Haha. My little one enjoys chin and neck scratches while soaking, I think it relaxes him as he tends to flush himself. I generally change the water half way through, so he doesn't try to drink the water with his own waste in it. I let him soak as he watches me prepare food.
 

Blackdog1714

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So I put my Leopard in the new enclosure for 1.5 hours today. Soon as I came back somebody ambled over quickly for a scratch/butt wiggle and transport out of the evil place. ? seems like emotions on this one!
 

DesertGirl

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Well, Almost all animals have feelings (like pain, excitement ect) but some reptiles lack the ability to feel love. I was wondering if this was different for torts, as they like neck scratches, and time with humans. I dont doubt they have “feelings”, I was more thinking of love, and feelings like that.
I can only tell what I’ve witnessed. We had a pair of Cuban tree frogs for many years. This was back in the 70s. The female died. The male sat in one place, never croaked again, never moved again, never ate again. It took him 6 months to die. I’m calling that profound grief.
 

jsheffield

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Emotion: a natural instinctive state of mind deriving from one's circumstances, mood, or relationships with others.

Given the above definition, I would say that, yes, tortoises have emotions; I just don't think they're the same emotions that we feel. Mine are all individuals, all different from one another in the ways they interact with their environments, their keeper, each other, and (when they get a chance) the outside world... sun, grass, rain, weeds, flowers, thunder, wind, birds, etc.

They like and dislike different things to different extents, they spend their days in different pursuits, they care about me and/or ignore me to different degrees... all lof those imply emotions and emotional involvement, even if I don't understand the emotions.

JMHO, YMMV

Jamie
 

mark1

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Exactly. Reptiles actually lack that part of their brain, as they never need it. I was just wondering if that is different for torts.

birds have very similar brains to reptiles , they also lack a mammal neocortex , but are certainly able to experience emotions ….. i assume you are referring to the neocortex ? modern methods have shown in reptiles the pallium works as the neocortex ........ which makes sense if you believe in evolution ? the neocortex didn't just appear , it evolved .......... i personally don't believe they are capable of complex emotions , but certainly capable of emotions ....... i think emotions are pretty important to survival .......
 

Tony the Tort42

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I tend to agree with you. Birds can certainly feel emotions, whenever I left my parrot for trips he would get mad at me, and after a couple of days he would be back no snuggling me. His friend that he lived with for 5 years, another male, bashed him to death and ripped off part of his head. I was shocked, I still wonder what happened
 

Sa Ga

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Though they probably experience them differently from us (heck, diffr ppl experience emotions differently!), they most certainly do!

Morla, my Russian tort, cuddles (and it isn't just for warmth because the other day, she left her fave napping spot on her pet heating pad to come over and lie on my chest and fall asleep ❤). She gets fussy/irritated when I mess around with her cage to clean an area. She gets excited and yes, I daresay especially joyful some days, when it's time to eat. She gets nervous when Eric is near (she doesn't know him well) and her body language totally changes (she pulls in her limbs, won't sleep, and watches intently). I even think she might get lonely, as when I've had times I'm too busy to spend time holding or being by her for the day, she will not eat until I finally do. I even think she gets mad at me (like when I started having to tube feed her), as she wouldn't give her "nose kisses" and purposefully would dart her head far away from me, tapping me with a foot if I got close.

Do I think she _loves_ me? I can't say of course. I think she trusts me, sees me as a source of pleasure (food and treats, warmth, shell and neck rubs) and I even believe she may know on some level that the unpleasantries (like her hydration tube feedings) are out of caring for her, not just something she's forced to endure. She not only submits to it better now, but also is affectionate afterward. (She used to get mad at me, and right afterward, refuse cuddles or even to be near me without struggling.)

All I know is I love her enough for noth of us! ❤❤❤❤❤❤
 

queen koopa

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Though they probably experience them differently from us (heck, diffr ppl experience emotions differently!), they most certainly do!

Morla, my Russian tort, cuddles (and it isn't just for warmth because the other day, she left her fave napping spot on her pet heating pad to come over and lie on my chest and fall asleep ❤). She gets fussy/irritated when I mess around with her cage to clean an area. She gets excited and yes, I daresay especially joyful some days, when it's time to eat. She gets nervous when Eric is near (she doesn't know him well) and her body language totally changes (she pulls in her limbs, won't sleep, and watches intently). I even think she might get lonely, as when I've had times I'm too busy to spend time holding or being by her for the day, she will not eat until I finally do. I even think she gets mad at me (like when I started having to tube feed her), as she wouldn't give her "nose kisses" and purposefully would dart her head far away from me, tapping me with a foot if I got close.

Do I think she _loves_ me? I can't say of course. I think she trusts me, sees me as a source of pleasure (food and treats, warmth, shell and neck rubs) and I even believe she may know on some level that the unpleasantries (like her hydration tube feedings) are out of caring for her, not just something she's forced to endure. She not only submits to it better now, but also is affectionate afterward. (She used to get mad at me, and right afterward, refuse cuddles or even to be near me without struggling.)

All I know is I love her enough for noth of us! ❤❤❤❤❤❤
How old is your tort?
 

KronksMom

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I didn't think torts could have complex emotions until one day mine got startled by a loud noise and instead retreating into his shell, or even running for a hide, which was closer, he ran towards me. My how my heart swelled that day. Now what that tells me is that he assessed the situation and decided I would protect him better than he could protect himself inside a sturdy hide. So he trusted me. And I know a lot of love is at least rooted in trust.

And as @Sa Ga said, even if I am wrong, it's ok. I love him enough to make up for it.
 

ZEROPILOT

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I didn't think torts could have complex emotions until one day mine got startled by a loud noise and instead retreating into his shell, or even running for a hide, which was closer, he ran towards me. My how my heart swelled that day. Now what that tells me is that he assessed the situation and decided I would protect him better than he could protect himself inside a sturdy hide. So he trusted me. And I know a lot of love is at least rooted in trust.

And as @Sa Ga said, even if I am wrong, it's ok. I love him enough to make up for it.
I've always said that any perception of affection for or with a tortoise can only be beneficial for both of you.
There can be nothing wrong with that.
 

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