Indoor Enclosure Size

Grandpa Turtle 144

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4x8' is the minimum indoor enclosure size I would recommend for an adult of any of the species you mentioned. My care sheet says this. You can find a care sheet that will say anything. Doesn't make it right. A box turtle or tortoise will not drop dead if kept in a 2x4' enclosure, but its not good for it and some would consider that inhumane. Tortoises wander over large distances in the wild. Locomotion helps move things through the digestive tract and keeps them fit. Lots of people don't have the space for a large indoor enclosure. My recommendation for them, and for you, is to find an animal that does fit within the confines of the space you have. When you have the proper amount of space for a tortoise at some point in the future, then go get a tortoise. There are lots of cool reptiles available that can live and thrive in smaller enclosures. Blue tongue skinks, for example are a fantastic species, friendly, easy to keep and will do just fine in a 2x4' enclosure.

I don't want this to devolve into an argument, but all of us stand to gain nothing by telling you these things. Our only interest is in the health and well being of chelonians. Keeping them in enclosures that are too small is just not good for them, and so we don't recommend it.

I also agree that buying a tortoise at a show is not a wise course of action, unless you have previous knowledge of the seller and know how well they start their babies. Many, if not most, tortoise breeders do not start their babies correctly. You stand a much better chance of finding a healthy baby that will not only survive, but thrive if you buy from one of the breeders here on this forum that starts their babies correctly.

Read this for more explanation:
http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/hatchling-failure-syndrome.23493/
Thank you Tom
 

Tom

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I never share my state.

I have had bad experiences buying online and didn't even know you could buy them here.

We ask what state or area you are in because the advice differs with the area. Different advice for NY City vs. South FL of Phoenix, AZ. Perhaps you could share what sort of climate you live in. Humid, arid, frozen winters or not, etc...

There are many online sellers that do not care for their animals properly. Their is a lot of collective experience on this forum as well as a vendor review section to help you avoid the past mistake of buying from the wrong seller.
 

Tom

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well its clear noone is listening, I came here to ask because I knew the care sheet that said 2x4 was wrong and too small.

I can't speak for anyone else, but I understood that when you said it. But you also said that you don't have room for the size enclosure that we recommended at your request. We don't want to irritate you. We want to help you make good decisions regarding your potential new pet so that it ends up being a positive experience for both of you.
 

Tidgy's Dad

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I understood and quoted the minimum sizes listed here as well as what I felt.
And offered the second storey option.
Just trying to be helpful.
 

leigti

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I will add one more thing here, from personal experience I highly recommend you decide what species you want first, get the enclosure built appropriately for the age of the animal you were getting, and then get the animal. This is absolutely vital if getting a hatchling and just common sense if you're getting an adult. I've only been to one reptile show and it was still all I could do not to come home with three or four tortoises :) and actually a box turtle or two also. But I didn't do it and I'm glad I didn't. I have a Russian tortoise and I had a box turtle. Both are great. And they have great personalities also. But they definitely require different care. However I think the size of the enclosures are about the same requirements. 4 x 8' indoors is usually the suggested size. Check out the enclosures section for some ideas. Also check out the species specific sections here to give you more information on different types of tortoises. There is also a breeder and vendor section with reviews.
Please don't make an impulse buy, this is a living creature. Go to the show, look around and ask questions etc. they are a lot of fun. Do research before you go so you can ask specific vendors specific questions. But this website and this forum have the best information out there, it is up to date and based on personal experience and knowledge from many experience tortoise owners.
 

Lyn W

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Hi Elliriyanna, you have very sensibly been researching before you get your tort and this is the best place you could come to ask questions.

My tort was found so I was totally unprepared for the world of tortoise keeping when I brought him home to look after and made lots of mistakes which were quite expensive for me and must have been very stressful for the tortoise. I found this website and it has been a godsend! There is so much to learn - as I am sure you have found out from your research. Everyone is really supportive and any criticism is constructive criticism for the sake of the torts - even if it isn't always what we want to hear.

Thankfully these people give freely of their time to give us the benefit of their experience and are trying to save the torts from distress and us a fortune in vets bills.

Obviously what species you choose and how you keep it will be down to you and your circumstances, but please give their views some serious consideration and follow their advice as best you can so that whatever tort you get it will have a long, healthy life and you will be very happy together. I wish you good luck.
 

johnsonnboswell

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I wonder if that outdoor space can be turned into a habitat even though you're renting. No digging is required. Raised garden beds can be removed when the time comes. So can cinderblock walls. Even if it's a daytime only pen, it's worth it for the health and well being of the animal.

Your opportunity to acquire an animal is unlimited. I suggest that you skip the reptile show altogether so you won't be tempted, and continue trying to solve the problem of how to keep the tortoise of your choice.
 

Elliriyanna

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actually I was not mad at anyone. Just very irritated, it was a long day yesterday. Working with kids especially with special needs is not easy I was irritated and exhausted.

Well its really simple. I don't have the space so I won't get the animal. A tortoise will be something I will look at but I won't buy. I have been researching many animals but was waiting to meet them at the show and see how I feel about them after meeting them in person to really make a choice.

Now as for not going to the show, I need to, I need to pick up some feeders Plus I need to get out of the house and I am going with a group of friends.

I do like tortoises but I really had no intention of getting one now, this just reaffirms that I shouldn't.
 

Tom

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I have been researching many animals but was waiting to meet them at the show and see how I feel about them after meeting them in person to really make a choice.

I think the above is a smart way to go.

I wouldn't skip the show either. I love going to the reptile shows, even though I really shouldn't bring anything home.

Have fun! Take pics of the good stuff and show us how the show was.
 

Yvonne G

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well its clear noone is listening, I came here to ask because I knew the care sheet that said 2x4 was wrong and too small.

I am just asking questions, There is about a 90 % chance I will come home from this show with nothing at all.

Oh, we're listening alright. But we're not giving you the answer you want. Here on this forum, we don't tell people what they want to hear. We give you information that is going to make the animal healthy and happy, not the owner.
 

Elliriyanna

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Oh, we're listening alright. But we're not giving you the answer you want. Here on this forum, we don't tell people what they want to hear. We give you information that is going to make the animal healthy and happy, not the owner.
Please read the post that is two above yours :)
 

Elliriyanna

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I think the above is a smart way to go.

I wouldn't skip the show either. I love going to the reptile shows, even though I really shouldn't bring anything home.

Have fun! Take pics of the good stuff and show us how the show was.
Honestly the only things I am likely to come home with are A.) a crested gecko, or B.) A box turtle hatchling or yearling and the second is a very very very slim chance as I have a friend who breeds responsibly and am far more likely to take that route.

I actually have all the supplies on hand for a baby box turtle, I have been planning to get one for months. The closer it gets though the more nervous I get about a hatchling they are so delicate, and I don't have an enclosure for an adult... So Thats not very likely at all.

There are some very well known and reputable crested gecko breeders at the show.
 

Yvonne G

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Please read the post that is two above yours :)

Sorry, I tend to answer in the order I read the posts. I need to read through the whole thread before I respond. I think you're making a good decision. The tortoises will still be available when you're ready for them! And then, at that time, you might consider a rescue.
 

Elliriyanna

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Both of my current boys are through a rescue. So I have every intention to be put on a waiting list at the rescue when the time is right :)

They are about the only ones I trust, I haven't had good experiences with shipping.

I think i just got caught up in the excitement of my first show and wanted to make sure I wasn't missing something with the possibility of getting one sooner rather than later.
 

Yvonne G

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Oh, boy do I ever know that feeling. That's why the grocery stores put the candy display near the check-out line. Impulse buying! Beware!!
 

Elliriyanna

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Oh, boy do I ever know that feeling. That's why the grocery stores put the candy display near the check-out line. Impulse buying! Beware!!


Very True. A tortoise would certainly be impulse. There are other species of reptile far more suited to my current space.

But I am glad I asked instead of doing something stupid.
 

Elliriyanna

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Well I did get a pet today at the show. From a well known and reputable breeder.

Its not at all like a tortoise but I had been researching for years off and on and found the perfect one.

I got a baby leopard gecko, I did want to come home with an adult or an older one but this little one just called to me.
 

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