Fussy pancake baby AGAIN!!

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Tortoise

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HI
Still struggling with my remaining baby.
I changed his light from an MVB to a tube UV and a heat emitter.(today)
he did sit under the UV which he didn't often under the MVB.Its only been a few hours though under new light and che.

I read about some appetite stimulants for reptiles-do these work-should I try something like that?

I have fed everything I have read on the care sheets and fresh, dried all organic. There is calcium supplemented, cuttle bone available, rocky hides, a spray of water daily and a bath. There are urates most days but poop only every couple of days.
The appetite is poor_I have had red foot babes over the years and I have 5 hermsans babies and they all eat like pigs.In fact the hermanns are fed similarly to the pancake and they are doubled in weights and have significant growth.

My pancake started at 15g when I picked them up and is now only 23g-he did get to 25g but dropped 2 g recently.
I am not feeling very hopeful for this baby either.

I have read everything I can find on the web about this species and I don't think I have left anything out.

I read others posts here of much better experiences-I am very grateful my situation isn't the normal as far as I can tell.

Comments on the appetite booster products would be great thanks!!
 

EKLC

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I have not had success with appetite boosters. The only thing to do really was hand feed very thin cactus, zuchini, a very small drop of mazuri with strawberry or pumpkin to flavor it, things like that
 

mrlax

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I have no experience with appetite stimulants, but the grassland tortoise pellets totally stimulate our tortoise's appetite. Just the pellets (with no foliage) make our tortoise very happy, but I mix lots of stuff to try to get variety in his diet. I am also raising the humidity in our enclosure- I have been doing research to try to find the humidity in the native of environments of these species, and while I have found nothing conclusive, I'm spraying multiple times a day and working on keeping the enclosure no cooler than 80F (ambient temp averages around 85F- with a 100F hotspot) and at around 65+% humidity.
 

tortadise

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The native environments usually tend to spike humidity 3-4 months out of the year during the rainy season when these guys hatch. However where they live does have a higher humidity level than the outside areas found. Rock crevices usually have alot plant life groing in them which tends to be a majority of the native diet in the wild. But they can also eat a lot of succulents during the dry season, when plush green grasses, and broad leafed plants start to dry and shrivle up. I always maintain 30-45 percent humidity in the summer and then spike it in the winter for a 2-3 months up to 60-70 in the entire building. I will never catch them bask, just early morning and late evening they will literally run out of the hide and devour greens and cactus. This is all they will eat. I have tried other stuff even spring mix, they wont touch it, no squash, peppers anything like that. Just plain greens, and cactus. Mine are from the wild so tells me a little more about what they were used to or similarly have eaten in the wilds of Mozambique rock crevices. Temps in my enclosure are 80 at night to 95 during the day ambiently not cool not hot side at all. The hide they are in is about 5 degrees cooler so thats something to consider as well. Hope this little guy comes around for yah. They are a fascinating species. Its also pretty typical for these guys to pass urates often in captivity. just dont feed fruit at all to them.
 

mrlax

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Kelly- thanks for your comments. Extremely helpful. Our pancake is a 4 month old captive bred hatchling from Northern California, so it is adapting well to many different foods. Freshly trimmed wheat grass, dandelion greens, and spineless cactus paddle are favorites for sure! I appreciate your comments on humidity and it seems I'm basically hovering around those levels. Regardless, our hatchling has gone from 24g to 48g since we got it in mid July, so this is encouraging. I'm hoping some of these tips help the original poster's hatchling as well!
 

tortadise

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Ahhh yes wheat grass is another good one to feed. I always forget and down here it gets so dry in the summer theu would rather have the greens. Seema to be a great food for the mini stacks (baby pancakea)
 

Tortoise

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tortadise said:
Ahhh yes wheat grass is another good one to feed. I always forget and down here it gets so dry in the summer theu would rather have the greens. Seema to be a great food for the mini stacks (baby pancakea)

Thanks for the helpful comments-great to get some others ideas on what is working for their pancakes.
My little guy is still getting a daily bath with sweet potato baby food added and calcium drops-he will drink this every time so at least he is staying hydrated. Since removing the MVB he has been out and about a bit more but still the appetite is poor. Today I tried the new tortoise food that just arrived the grassland as was suggested-so far no interest but I am mixing up greens with it so it can be eaten by accident!
( He did pull out a few pieces of arugula(rocket) I hadn't tried this before-its a bit exotic for our local stores as is wheat grass. I tried growing wheat from my cupboard but it wouldn't sprout so I need another type I think.Again no chance of finding pre-grown wheat grass here we have to do these things ourselves at home more often than not.
The temps are up now no lower than the 80's and I have been spraying but not as much as you guys so I will increase this too.
the weight is staying stable but not increasing.This little guy is till 24g and was a Spring hatchling.I still think he really liked the outdoor UV-very stimulating and sadly now we have cold temps until may here so we have to rely upon the tube or MVB which I think he didn't like.

Just keeping on with the soaking and offering a real gourmet mix of food in hope of he or she growing and developing a love for food.

Thanks again for the responses here I really appreciate any ideas and thank you for your time and effort in helping.

Louise
 

Tortoise

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UPDATE!!!!!!!
HI
I just wanted to give an update of my remaining pancake baby.
A few days ago after the usual soaking in warm water under a bright desk lamp, I noticed a few thread like objects moving in the poop particles, they were transparent and about 4mm long.
We stomach tubed some safe guard into him and we have continued to stomach tube critical care formula as we have done for a couple of weeks now as he had stopped all efforts to eat.
Yesterday he had gained 2 grams but still looked lethargic but tonight he has got himself up and eating some dry weeds I have always left for him in addition to us stomach tubing.

I know he has a long way to go but I am starting to feel a bit more positive.

We had fecals done on the 3 babies previously but nothing ever showed up.
I am kind of glad there may be a reason for the trouble we have had as I have done everything to help these babies and it was heart breaking to lose the 2 of them.

Thanks again everyone that made suggestions, I am hoping we are on the road to recovery here.
 

tortadise

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Well sounds positive. I do have to say if you have seen these in his poop. Makes me wonder if the vet has missed some fecal analysis. I know hooks, and flat worms are sometimes difficult to find. What procedure has been done when the vet did a fecal? Fresh unaltered is the best especially for the hard to find ones like flat and hooks. I know hooks can obstruct a major issue with appetite and suppress the immune system in tortoises especially little ones. Might want to take another sample to the vets to review again.
 

Tortoise

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tortadise said:
Well sounds positive. I do have to say if you have seen these in his poop. Makes me wonder if the vet has missed some fecal analysis. I know hooks, and flat worms are sometimes difficult to find. What procedure has been done when the vet did a fecal? Fresh unaltered is the best especially for the hard to find ones like flat and hooks. I know hooks can obstruct a major issue with appetite and suppress the immune system in tortoises especially little ones. Might want to take another sample to the vets to review again.

Hi
I am not sure how they did the fecal.My vet has no experience with any reptiles so I assume they would have just looked at a fresh smear on a slide whilst I was there.
I know in the past I had a fecal done on a tortoise that I suspected had flagyl problems. There was Flagellates in sample but vet didn't know what was normal so it was inconclusive.

What should I be asking the vet to do in terms of how to test the sample?

We tend to read up a lot and try to work out what we need and ask vet for the drug and dosage etc.they are very willing that way but it would be nice to get more support from reptile specialists.We are so rural here so we only have farm type vets here.Our nearest vet college is 5 hours from here.
 

tortadise

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A float test is going to be the best option in getting good results. Hope everything gets better.
 

Tortoise

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tortadise said:
A float test is going to be the best option in getting good results. Hope everything gets better.

Hi
Thanks for the suggestion.(I'll mention that to the vet )
Do you think the safe guard was the best option for the type of worm.Would you assume a hook worm?
I have Flagyl on hand too but worry about gut flora and don't want to give anything that will make the situation worse especially without a firm diagnosis.
 

tortadise

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For hooks, should use benzimidazoles (albendazole, fenbendazole, and oxfendazole) are suitable anti worming agents.
 

lynnedit

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I don't keep those torts, but I think you treated him correctly as the first step. Flagyl can be very hard on the gut, you certainly don't want that with your little fragile tort.
Do you plan another treatment in 10-14 days to be on the safe side?
Hoping the best.
 

Tortoise

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lynnedit said:
I don't keep those torts, but I think you treated him correctly as the first step. Flagyl can be very hard on the gut, you certainly don't want that with your little fragile tort.
Do you plan another treatment in 10-14 days to be on the safe side?
Hoping the best.

HI Lynne
Thanks:)
Yes in the Tortoise and Turtle encyclopedia it mentions repeating the dose in 2 weeks so I had planned on doing that.It seems that the fenbendazole is really not a bad drug in terms of side effects etc so its good to know it should work.
Thanks for the good wishes.
 

mrlax

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I hope the little guy recovers and gains his appetite soon. At least it seems to be a breakthrough in helping him/her....

best,
ANDY
 

Tortoise

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mrlax said:
I hope the little guy recovers and gains his appetite soon. At least it seems to be a breakthrough in helping him/her....

best,
ANDY
Hi Andy
Thanks so much!
I hope he or she is on the mend.
You have given me a lot of support and I really appreciate it.
thanks
 
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