Russian Tortoise to rehome

fabfourgirl1964

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Jan 26, 2012
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I am looking to rehome my male Russian tortoise. Medical concerns for a family member require me to give him up. I live in Oakley California, which is 50 miles east of San Francisco. My daughter had rescued him from a friend that moved away. They had him for a year. She left him with me when she moved. I've had him for 5 years. I know that he originally came from a pet shop. He is healthy and sees a veterinarian once a year. If you are interested and live in California, please let me know. Thanks.
 

malovett

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Sep 23, 2016
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Since I am new I don't think I can comment. I sent you a PM. I am relatively close and have been looking to adopt a rehomed Russian.
 

malovett

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I am in Modesto, my birds' vet is in Oakley (Medical Center for Birds). I have a roughly 4'x8' solid walled outdoor enclosure with 12" sides and about 6" of substrate on a wired bottom then I have a fence/lid to place over the top. I do not use pesticides in my yard or garden ever. I grow organic veggies and greens for my birds in the spring/summer so Tort will have plenty of healthy greens to snack on. I plan to plant the enclosure with safe, edible plants for enrichment come spring. I currently have mallow in my yard as well as Mulberry tree, roses and hibiscus. Since we are late in the year and headed for cooler temps I had planned to use a large Rubbermaid tub indoors with sand/coir with daily trips to the yard while still warm out until I could learn the newbies normals and behavior then move him outdoors when it starts to warm up next year.
 

Yvonne G

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It would help Fabfourgirl make her decision to know if her Russian tortoise would be an only child or if you already have a Russian or two.
 

malovett

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I have read about their very non-social nature. I have no other torts. If I ever a adopted another (same or different species) they would have a separate enclosure, I have the room to do it. No pool either.
 

malovett

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I am very animal friendly and rescue minded, everyone here has been rescued or adopted I do not breed nor do I buy from breeders.

Outdoor companions are my chickens. Indoor I have cats, dogs, and the birds (parrots and doves). I am well aware of the danger posed by housing predator/prey type animals in the same household.

My dogs and cats are socialized together and the only interspecies mingling that happens unsupervised. My dogs and my chickens are socialized to each other but only together under direct supervision, my chickens tend to literally try to perch on the dogs and thankfully the dogs don't mind but still makes me uncomfortable. When birds are out of their cages dogs and cats are behind closed doors...you can not be too careful. I constantly have people sharing "cute" interspecies videos to my wall and it is absolutely horrifying, there is too much potential for harm and it does a great disservice to everyone involved.
 

fabfourgirl1964

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If you don't mind me asking, but how are you able to take care of them all and have time to yourself to?
 

malovett

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I grew up in the country surrounded by animals, the only time I wasn't around animals was college. I am a home body for the most part. Some people go out and party, I stay home with the critters.
 
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I hate to interrupt but I'm thinking about their safety. Take out the sand. Tortoises and sand don't go well because if they eat some by accident it doesn't go down well and could be fatal. Just use a diff substrate like coir which you already have. Or you can mix the coir with coco fiber which I do, or wood chips. DONT DO SAND! If you do get him, I hope you have a good time with him! But just remember no sand.
 

fabfourgirl1964

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I was really looking for a home that didn't have cats and dogs. Thank you, but I will keep looking.
To RussianTortKing, thank you. I think coconut bark substrate is best for indoor habitats with russian tortoises too.
 

GrassyPatch

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Sep 26, 2016
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Hi fabfour,
Our family (no dogs, no cats, 1 goldfish) is looking to adopt a tortoise for our backyard in Palo Alto, CA. When I was a child in SoCal, my dad adopted a Calif Desert Tortoise and we loved him for over 6 years (also kept in the backyard). After I went to college my folks sold the house and the new owners wanted the tortoise too. It was a wonderful experience! Tortoises are so majestic and inspirational pets.

Our backyard is mostly grass and has low trees (a nice low lemon tree) and shrubs that provide shade and cool shelter.
Our lawn and planters are on automatic irrigation.
Here's a photo:
http://imgur.com/kADIwuQ

There's fencing all around and only one side gate which is kept pad-locked 24x7:
http://imgur.com/nIr3IxC

This is a view of the other side yard (east side of the house). It also has natural bark for ground cover. At the end is a fence, and there's no gate anywhere on this side yard. This side yard is always in complete shade after lunchtime. The fencing (all wood) around the house has no holes nor missing planks.
http://imgur.com/XtLUcuV

We do not use pesticides in our backyard because we have young children who play on the lawn.
Our children love to learn about animals. Their favorite show is Wild Kratts. They are very caring to fish in our aquarium and even the garden snails in our backyard. I will make sure they are knowledgeable about the caring guidelines, eg. on tortoise.org.
We buy only organic vegetables for our meals. There will be a constant supply of fresh vegetables and we'll be sure to stick to the recommended vegetables that are tortoise-friendly.

We are also looking to adopt from http://www.tortoisehome.org and I've started to follow PetFinder.com for adoptions.
If I was closer to LA, i'd love to adopt this fellow: https://www.petfinder.com/petdetail/36322762

What else can I tell you about our habitat?
Donald Lee
 

malovett

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Sep 23, 2016
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Thanks RussianTortKing, I am still learning obviously and thought I had a reliable website for short term indoor habitat (russiantortoise.net). Easy change to make...consider it done. For the wood chips, what type is best? I knew sand was a no go for the smaller reptiles due to eating (for birds too).

FabFour my cats are indoor only and my dogs are only out with me supervised. Obviously your preference though.

I am not in a rush, when the right fit comes along, I am ready.
 

Janelle Green

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Sep 26, 2016
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I saw the comment about sand , I put a little sand in my Russian tortoise outdoor play pen , currently building his backyard enclosure but I want a play pen in front yard while I garden he's out there I have half of it grass half is sand should I remove the sand or is he ok?
 

JoesMum

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I saw the comment about sand , I put a little sand in my Russian tortoise outdoor play pen , currently building his backyard enclosure but I want a play pen in front yard while I garden he's out there I have half of it grass half is sand should I remove the sand or is he ok?
You should not have sand in a Russian's enclosure
 

fabfourgirl1964

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Jan 26, 2012
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Location (City and/or State)
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Nice yard you have there, but I think you are looking for a bigger tortoise than a russian tort. Russian torts are only 5 to 6 inches. They have uvb lighting and heating requirements. They do not eat vegetables or fruit, but only certain greens and weeds. My tort has never hybernated. He has never been outside overnight in his enclosure because we have possums and raccoons that will eat him during night hours. He spends nights and winters inside, protected. Only during hot summer days will I put him out in his enclosure, but then returning him back inside by late afternoon.
 

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