Found a tortoise in the garden, shell damaged. please help.

lacrime

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Hello,

I found a tortoise in the garden a few days ago, and his/her shell seems to be damaged and I don’t know much about tortoise species but his/her whole body seems to have a yellowish hue. I don’t know how old he or she is, how long has he or she been out there, what happened. The temp is about 13C and it’s raining and to this day I see no hibernating attempt. I checked on the tortoise today and it was out in the open. When I picked him/her up, seems responsive but eyes seem to be slowly opening. Attached are some pictures I took.

Any advice I appreciate.

Ps. I hope I managed the attachments.

F1A1B19B-33EE-43A0-9F67-A396CBB43333.jpeg 94E011FB-111A-454F-B429-2D88ABA184C7.jpeg 869BA045-0EC9-4753-B096-4540D89AFC7E.jpeg 61690836-2BC3-4669-9CB8-7AFC272E0763.jpeg
 

Bee62

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Hello, where do you live ?
I think the tort you have found is an older Testudo Hermanni. The shell damage is old and seems not dangerous for the tortoise to me. The issue on the foot is new but not so bad. Can you keep her inside where it is warm ? She should not hibernate when it is unclear in which health condition she is.
Can you build her an enclosure where it is warm ( 25 - 27 C ) with a basking spot of 40 C ?
 

lacrime

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Hello, where do you live ?
I think the tort you have found is an older Testudo Hermanni. The shell damage is old and seems not dangerous for the tortoise to me. The issue on the foot is new but not so bad. Can you keep her inside where it is warm ? She should not hibernate when it is unclear in which health condition she is.
Can you build her an enclosure where it is warm ( 25 - 27 C ) with a basking spot of 40 C ?

Hi!

Thank you for the reply. I live in Turkey, Mediterranean coast so the weather is warmer compared to other places. It’s currently 12C and raining, it doesn’t get any colder than 7 degrees here I think.

I put her in a spot I made in the garden to keep away from the rain and wind. I was out, had to go to doctor myself, and it’s dark now but I bought a bulb that might provide the heat for basking and will see what I can do about keeping her inside tomorrow. Glad to hear you don’t think anything’s serious. I wonder if there’s anything I can do for the foot? Have no idea what’s wrong and don’t want to use anything that might eventually harm her.

The bad thing is, I can’t get help from any vets here, no one knows anything about tortoises, it’s so frustrating.
 

Yvonne G

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Just keep it clean and dab on some first aid ointment. Don't allow flies to lay eggs on it.

I'm going out on a limb here and guessing this tortoise probably has a respiratory infection. They don't just hang around out in the open when the weather is bad. It needs to be brought into the house and set up in an enclosure for the rest of the winter. Warm it up to at least 80F degrees, but provide a hiding place where it can get out of the harsh light/heat.
 

lacrime

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Just keep it clean and dab on some first aid ointment. Don't allow flies to lay eggs on it.

I'm going out on a limb here and guessing this tortoise probably has a respiratory infection. They don't just hang around out in the open when the weather is bad. It needs to be brought into the house and set up in an enclosure for the rest of the winter. Warm it up to at least 80F degrees, but provide a hiding place where it can get out of the harsh light/heat.

Thank you for your reply!

For a few days I’ve been putting it back to that spot I arranged in the garden to keep it away from the rain and wind, and it always comes out on its own but I’ll keep in mind what you said and will look for arrangements for the winter tomorrow.

As for the first aid ointment, anything specific I should look out for? I’m really skittish about meds for torts cause I have no bets here to take help from.
 

MPRC

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Are antibiotic ointments available over the counter there? In the US we have neosporin (brand name) or generic versions. Cleaning it is the most important part even if drugs aren't easily accessible.
 

Bee62

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Are there news about the tort you found ? I have fear that she is sick or will get sick with temps like you described and rain.
 

TammyJ

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I am also concerned and hope that this tortoise is still being helped. Thank you for your efforts!
She needs to be clean and warm. I hope you can arrange to keep her indoors, even in a covered cardboard box in a warm corner for now.
 

lacrime

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Thank you everyone for your comments and concerns. No worries, I’ll be taking care of this fella as best as I can, can’t just leave it out there after finding it. It just came at a time when I’m suffering from a health problem myself. All good though.

I couldn’t get to it in time yesterday but it seems to be moving on its own in he garden but still I’ll get a box and bring it inside somewhere. I already got a lightbulb to provide the heat, keep it warm and fed and hopefully it’ll be okay. I’ll keep you all posted after I somewhat arrange things.

Do I need to be worried about substrate? I’m a bit tight in space but as long as it’s out of bad weather.
 

lacrime

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Are antibiotic ointments available over the counter there? In the US we have neosporin (brand name) or generic versions. Cleaning it is the most important part even if drugs aren't easily accessible.

I’ve got Thiocilline which seems to have the same ingredient as the one you mentioned.
 

lacrime

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Hey everyone, I hope someone can give me advice. I’ve brought the tortoise in, but she seems active, eating, pooping and peeing. Aside from the thing on her foot, she seems fine. Now I’m wondering if she was better off in the garden? My own tortoises can’t stand to be inside, even my two year old one was done with indoors after I got him in when he was sick. The minute he was better, he was restless.

Anyway, I don’t know much about torts so I want to make sure I’m doing the right thing here. The weather is 17C, with humidity around 54%, the lowest Celsius is 7 for the rest of the week. When the sun is out, it still warms up. Is it okay to bring her out, or do I keep her inside?

Any advice is appreciated.
Ps. I probably shoudn’t let her hibernate with the poop and pee and the fact that she seems to be eating still, but I can check on her every day because the garden is next door. Though I didn’t see any attempts to hibernate on her part.

Thanks in advance!
 

Cheryl Hills

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My opinion would be to keep her in. Temps are really still to cold and she needs to heal that foot. I believe they have the same requirements as a Russian tort. Check out or care sheets in the tort specific area, it will give you all the info you need. Good luck
And no hibernation yet. She is still eating and it could cause a problem since she has food in her gut.
 

lacrime

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My opinion would be to keep her in. Temps are really still to cold and she needs to heal that foot. I believe they have the same requirements as a Russian tort. Check out or care sheets in the tort specific area, it will give you all the info you need. Good luck
And no hibernation yet. She is still eating and it could cause a problem since she has food in her gut.

Thank you for your reply. Yes, I think I’ll keep her in, the foot is yet to heal and though she seems to be active in the box I provided her, in the garden I remember her not hiding for the night or the bad weather. I’m not going to leave it to chance. And yep, I remember that about eating and hibernating. Thank you!
 

Bee62

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My opinion would be to keep her in. Temps are really still to cold and she needs to heal that foot. I believe they have the same requirements as a Russian tort. Check out or care sheets in the tort specific area, it will give you all the info you need. Good luck
And no hibernation yet. She is still eating and it could cause a problem since she has food in her gut.
I agree. I would keep her in too.
It seems that you have a new shelled friend, or do you want no tortoise ?
 

lacrime

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I agree. I would keep her in too.
It seems that you have a new shelled friend, or do you want no tortoise ?

I’m okay with a new tortoise friend, I already have two :) I keep them in the garden though and they’re hibernating now. I just wanted to do the best for this fellow but seems like the best choice is to keep her in so, new housemate.

I haven’t got experince about keeping a tort inside so I’ll have to look around to see what I can do about enclosure though. For now she’s in a box with newspaper lining and a lightbulb for heat.
 

Kristoff

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Hi Gökçe!
Just saw you're back! How are Bicirik and Kimble? Were they OK last winter? (My Kristoff and Elsa are re-homed, as we moved abroad and I couldn't get the permission to take them.)
Thank you for taking the injured tortoise in. He/she is probably Testudo graeca ibera. We'd need to see the plastron and back legs to be sure. Please keep us posted. :<3:
 

lacrime

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Hi Gökçe!
Just saw you're back! How are Bicirik and Kimble? Were they OK last winter? (My Kristoff and Elsa are re-homed, as we moved abroad and I couldn't get the permission to take them.)
Thank you for taking the injured tortoise in. He/she is probably Testudo graeca ibera. We'd need to see the plastron and back legs to be sure. Please keep us posted. :<3:

Hi Lena!

It’s so good to hear from you! How are you doing? Bicirik and Kimble were okay last winter and they’re hibernating this winter too hopefully. They disappeared on me! :)

The tortoise I found is stil with me but to be honest, I’m a bit worried because I have no idea about this tortoise’s routines or whatnot. She seemed to be doing good the past weeks but lately she doesn’t seem to move much, in fact, she went to one corner of her box and hasn’t moved from the spot since yesterday. She hasn’t been eating as well, not that I could see, and I’m afraid she might be attempting to hibernate? I don’t know if the conditions in the house are suitable for her hibernating. I mean the house is around 18-20C degrees I think. I was about to come on here to ask for opinions!

I’m sorry to hear about Kristoff and Elsa, that you couldn’t take them with you, but I hope they’re in a good home and are happy and well taken care of ❤️

It is so good to hear from you, truly. I hope you’re doing well! Much love!
 

Kristoff

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Hi Lena!

It’s so good to hear from you! How are you doing? Bicirik and Kimble were okay last winter and they’re hibernating this winter too hopefully. They disappeared on me! :)

The tortoise I found is stil with me but to be honest, I’m a bit worried because I have no idea about this tortoise’s routines or whatnot. She seemed to be doing good the past weeks but lately she doesn’t seem to move much, in fact, she went to one corner of her box and hasn’t moved from the spot since yesterday. She hasn’t been eating as well, not that I could see, and I’m afraid she might be attempting to hibernate? I don’t know if the conditions in the house are suitable for her hibernating. I mean the house is around 18-20C degrees I think. I was about to come on here to ask for opinions!

I’m sorry to hear about Kristoff and Elsa, that you couldn’t take them with you, but I hope they’re in a good home and are happy and well taken care of [emoji173]️

It is so good to hear from you, truly. I hope you’re doing well! Much love!

Yep, she might be attempting to hibernate - they do that sometimes when they sense it’s winter even if it’s not cold enough. 18-20C is too high for safe hibernation, but probably not high enough to keep her active. Any chance you could add a heater and bump up the temperature around her to 25-30C? If she has RI, she should stay warm, as you’ve done it with Bicirik.
(Hope more experienced members will chime in soon.)
 

lacrime

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Yep, she might be attempting to hibernate - they do that sometimes when they sense it’s winter even if it’s not cold enough. 18-20C is too high for safe hibernation, but probably not high enough to keep her active. Any chance you could add a heater and bump up the temperature around her to 25-30C? If she has RI, she should stay warm, as you’ve done it with Bicirik.
(Hope more experienced members will chime in soon.)

Thank you for your input, Lena. I’m honestly at a loss here about doing the best for this tortoise. When the weather was bad-raining and coldish- she stayed out so the experienced members suggested I take her in because she might have RI. Later, she seemed fine but yeah, I think now she attempts hibernation. She stopped eating, I see no defecation, her eyes barely open, she’s barely moving.

I don’t know if I should put her back to the garden and let her hibernate? Or I keep her in and increase temps to help her through winter?

I know so little about especially this one, have no clue. She’s a wild one so she managed till now but I took her in and don’t want to do anything wrong and harm her eventually, you know?

Sorry if I gave you a headache with the long post! :)
 

lacrime

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Hey everyone, I know I keep coming back, but can anyone help me about this tortoise’s attempt to brumate?(I believe this is the right term)

She’s become very inactive, doesn’t eat, does not defecate, her eyes are closed and barely open. This has been going on for a few days now that the temps have decreased. I think the temps in the house are about 18-20C at the highest, and maybe around 14-15C at the lowest. Would it be safe if I pick her up now and soak her in warm water, increase the temps in her enclosure to wake her up? I really don’t want to harm her and take an irreversible step or something.

Any advise is appreciated!
 
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