Impacted Hermann's Tortoise - not sure what to do!

AQuin002

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Feb 8, 2021
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My 11 year old Hermann's tortoise has been at the veterinary hospital since last Wednesday - 6 days.

She has had scans that confirm an impaction in her upper digestive tract. I've been given 2 options - wait it out or have them attempt surgery. They have advised that her chances of surviving the surgery are not good based on her size and the size of the impaction.

This all started last week when she regurgitated and was incredibly lethargic, so I rushed her to the only available hospital across town. Since then they have been giving her injected fluids and pain medication. Every day they have called and said that she looks bright and alert and is up and moving around, but still no bm. They have been really caring, but I still feel fuzzy on what the timeline is on this sort of thing.

My question is - is it time to bring her home for treatment here and just hope for the best? I'm scared to bring her home and have her suffer or for there to be another emergency, but also if we already know that the surgery isn't a good fit, and the costs of being at an emergency vet for a week are piling up is this just the risk that I have to take?

I'm feeling very nervous and I would appreciate any feedback or personal experiences!
 

method89

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I think you might be wasting your money at the vet. Better tortoise minds than mine may have a different opinion though. @Yvonne G @Tom
 

Yvonne G

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You can spread some mineral oil on a lettuce leaf, roll it up like a cigar and hand feed it to the tortoise.

I have had great luck with the "soak and forget" method: put the tortoise in a clean people bathtub* with warm water that comes up to the tortoise's bridge (where the top shell meets the bottom shell), and go away and forget him. After he's been in there a while he's going to start to get impatient. Scrambling around, trying to get out never fails to make them poop.

*The people bathtub is smooth, slippery,with rounded corners and doesn't allow enough traction to tip over
 

Yvonne G

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If it were my tortoise I would bring it home, but my experience level may be greater than yours, so please make your own decision.
 
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