Indian Star Tortoise swallowed a few Screws

ajaydusa1

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My Tortoise was wandering around the house, and she came across some screws which were lying around and she ate around 5 screws and 3 bolts, 8 in total. I was repairing something and opened a case left the screws beside me, and I went to pick up my parcel came back after 15mins and when I was putting back those screws I found that many of the screws were missing. Even though she was not near it, I was sure he must have eaten it. I was not sure about the count, but after doing the X-ray I was shocked to see that she ate 8 screws in total.
She never eats anything, unless until she smells it thoroughly. We even take Good Care of her. Each morning we soak her and bask her in the enclosure(4'x6'), take her to wander her favourite park every week. She does try to come out of the enclosure often. But at times we remove from the enclosure and let her wander around the house. she likes wandering around the house often
It's been 3 days now, consulted a few veterinary doctors. They suggested to do surgery. The chances of survival are 50%. I am quite worried now. She is active though as usual, eats well, and poops well. Each morning I do keep checking her poop. But couldn't find any screws in it. What should I do now? should I wait for a few more days, until she falls sick or should I go with the surgery? Here in India (Mumbai) there are No good veterinary doctors for Tortoise that's why I am hesitating with the Surgery, even though the doctor explained to me the complete procedure of the surgery.
 

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Tom

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My Tortoise was wandering around the house, and she came across some screws which were lying around and she ate around 5 screws and 3 bolts, 8 in total. I was repairing something and opened a case left the screws beside me, and I went to pick up my parcel came back after 15mins and when I was putting back those screws I found that many of the screws were missing. Even though she was not near it, I was sure he must have eaten it. I was not sure about the count, but after doing the X-ray I was shocked to see that she ate 8 screws in total.
She never eats anything, unless until she smells it thoroughly. We even take Good Care of her. Each morning we soak her and bask her in the enclosure(4'x6'), take her to wander her favourite park every week. She does try to come out of the enclosure often. But at times we remove from the enclosure and let her wander around the house. she likes wandering around the house often
It's been 3 days now, consulted a few veterinary doctors. They suggested to do surgery. The chances of survival are 50%. I am quite worried now. She is active though as usual, eats well, and poops well. Each morning I do keep checking her poop. But couldn't find any screws in it. What should I do now? should I wait for a few more days, until she falls sick or should I go with the surgery? Here in India (Mumbai) there are No good veterinary doctors for Tortoise that's why I am hesitating with the Surgery, even though the doctor explained to me the complete procedure of the surgery.
So you've completely ignored the advice we gave you back in June of 2022 when this same tortoise had been wandering around and ate something it shouldn't have, and now the tortoise has eaten something potentially deadly again.

If you do nothing, the screws might pass without perforating the intestine, and depending on what they were, the tortoise might not get poisoned by them. Or the tortoise might die from perforation or poisoning.

If you do the surgery to remove them, it is expensive, difficult and very painful and hard for the tortoise to recover from, if they survive the surgery.

TORTOISES SHOULD NOT BE ROAMING LOOSE IN THE HOUSE!!! This is exactly why.
 

wellington

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That's animal abuse, to know better, because you were told by many here, but then you ignore it even after she had already eaten something she shouldn't.
Either way is risky. If she passes them, it could do damage and kill her. If she doesn't, it could possibly kill her.
I think the surgery is needed and then either do better for her or rehome her!
 

Alex and the Redfoot

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Ask your vet if the minimally invasive surgery (using endoscope and small cut without opening the carapace) can be done. Maybe he knows about medical centers who can do it in other cities. Odds are low and it's much more expensive, but tortoise have better chance of survival.

I sincerely hope, that your tortoise would survive and another chance to do things right will be given to you. Please, don't miss it.
 

ajaydusa1

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Most of the time I do keep her inside the enclosure, but she always tries to climb on the sides of the enclosure trying to come out. At times only I remove her from the enclosure, and constantly keep her on watch. My wife always keeps the house tidy whenever our tortoise is roaming. But I think because of my negligence, it had happened. I am not thinking of going for surgery now, which I think would be more risky.
I have kept on her good diet now, frequently we are feeding her Pumpkin, Lettuce, aloe vera, lady finger, etc. I will be again going for X-ray after 2-3 days to check for any improvement. If there is no improvement then I would be going for surgery.
 

wellington

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Agree with Yvonne.
You are finding out the hard way, why they should not roam your floors. Obviously you and wife aren't perfect, no one is, and this is what can happen. Most hatchlings lost outside is roaming under the eyes of their owners that say they watch them 100% of the time they are outside, yet they lose them. Just that 1% not paying attention can cause heart ache.
 

ajaydusa1

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She's eating and pooping well though. Everyday we are taking her out in the Garden, where she is freely roaming and tries to poop while walking. I am feeding her every day with Lettuce, aloe vera, and pumpkin. Also every alternate day I put slight drops of liquid paraffin in lettuce and feed her. Tomorrow or the day after tomorrow I would go for the X-ray. I don't think so, any screws might have got out from her stomach because we do check every poop, hoping that at least we will find one. It's been 11 days now, I am getting worried as the days pass by.
 

ajaydusa1

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Today we took her for X-ray. There is slight relief now. There are only 3 items left. I am not sure what that round object is on the left side. I think daily good diet like (romaine lettuce, aloe vera, pumpkin, etc ), soaking, along with Good exercise played a key role in removing those.
Most important of all was the Exercise. She stopped pooping in the tub after consuming the screws, even though we used to soak her at least for 1-1.30hr. Every day I started taking her out for a walk in the Garden for 1 hr atleast, where while walking she opens her mouth wide open and tries to poop after every slight distance. I will again be going for the X-ray after couple of weeks, hoping by then everything clears out.
 

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