Sick tortoise , reassurance wanted

Bethanrs

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Advice needed!
I don’t think Sheldon is very well. He was rather lethargic end of last week. On Sunday evening I noticed a bit of a runny nose. On Monday his nose had stopped running. I took him to the vets Tuesday just to be safe. She said she could see slight wet of the nose but he seemed fine.
She tested for mycoplasma and other bacteria but we won’t have results for 10 days. She said to monitor him. She gave us different vitamis for his food and reptoboost for his baths.
Yesterday he was up and about almost back to normal. Today the same. But he ate the last of his food today and for a while after he was opening his mouth every few seconds! Really worried me. My partner gave him a bath and then he hasn’t done it since! He’s all stretched out sleeping under his lamp now 🙄 I just want a bit of reassurance really , I can’t sleep worrying about him!
He’s been eating , pooping as normal the whole time aswell 🤷🏻‍♀️
 

Tom

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What are your four temperatures? Warm side, cool side, basking area, and overnight low?

What type of heating and lighting bulbs?

What substrate? Is it damp?

What do you feed him?
 

Bethanrs

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What are your four temperatures? Warm side, cool side, basking area, and overnight low?

What type of heating and lighting bulbs?

What substrate? Is it damp?

What do you feed him?
Basking area is 35c cool end is 20c . Overnight low is 20c.
Arcadia 12% t5 , Arcadia basking floodlight.
Slightly damp, I add water twice a week to add humidty and mix substrate. Is coco coir .
Lambs lettuce, raddichio, dandelion, pansey, other safe weeds I come across, campanula
 

wellington

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Too cold.
You need to get the basking to 95-100F
All over for day should be 75-80F
Night can be into the 60'sF
However because he may not be 100% I would get the night temps into the 70'sF
How old/large is he?
A hatchling to about 2 or 3 years need 80% humidity. After that 50% is fine.
Post pics of the enclosure so we can help tweak it.
 

Bethanrs

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Too cold.
You need to get the basking to 95-100F
All over for day should be 75-80F
Night can be into the 60'sF
However because he may not be 100% I would get the night temps into the 70'sF
How old/large is he?
A hatchling to about 2 or 3 years need 80% humidity. After that 50% is fine.
Post pics of the enclosure so we can help tweak it.
I’ve just converted the temps and My temps are correct based on what you’ve said. He’s 8 months, yeah humidty is usually higher but if he has a possible uri I don’t want humidty and damp to make it worse. Humidity is higher under the soils where he burrows. I’ve added the only photo I have at the moment. Since that photo I have a new water dish that is a plant saucer and also have A led bar next to the uvb for extra light instead of the lamp.
 

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Tom

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I’ve just converted the temps and My temps are correct based on what you’ve said. He’s 8 months, yeah humidty is usually higher but if he has a possible uri I don’t want humidty and damp to make it worse. Humidity is higher under the soils where he burrows. I’ve added the only photo I have at the moment. Since that photo I have a new water dish that is a plant saucer and also have A led bar next to the uvb for extra light instead of the lamp.
All of this sounds pretty darn good. It looks like your HO UV tube is mounted too high, but that would not cause this problem. 18-20 inches and set on a timer for 2-4 hours mid day is usually in the ballpark of what is needed for a 12% HO tube.

It sounds like he might be fighting the early stages of an RI, and the best thing to do for that is increase the temperatures. This is much easier to do in a closed chamber. You can lower the basking lamp a little, and add a couple of CHEs over the table and set them on a thermostat, or switch him into a large viv for a couple of years.
 

Bethanrs

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All of this sounds pretty darn good. It looks like your HO UV tube is mounted too high, but that would not cause this problem. 18-20 inches and set on a timer for 2-4 hours mid day is usually in the ballpark of what is needed for a 12% HO tube.

It sounds like he might be fighting the early stages of an RI, and the best thing to do for that is increase the temperatures. This is much easier to do in a closed chamber. You can lower the basking lamp a little, and add a couple of CHEs over the table and set them on a thermostat, or switch him into a large viv for a couple of years.
Yeah I’ll try that I just worry about him getting too hot! Is this a thing? The uv bulb is 18 and a half inches from his shell, I know it looks a lot higher in the photo but it’s not haha!
 

Tom

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Yeah I’ll try that I just worry about him getting too hot! Is this a thing? The uv bulb is 18 and a half inches from his shell, I know it looks a lot higher in the photo but it’s not haha!
Yes too hot is a thing. If the tortoise is getting over 40C and can't get below that anywhere in the enclosure, then you would certainly run into problems with it being too hot. Or if you put a tortoise in a small tub in full sun with no shade, then yes, they will cook in minutes even on a mild day.

An ambient of 26-33C, simulating summer time days in their native range, will never be too hot. A basking area that is 37-38C directly under the bulb, allows them to warm up above ambient, and is necessary. You might try adding a second basking bulb in a different area to see if the tortoise prefers one over the other and will keep itself warmer with the new basking location. Normally, they are fine down to 15C or lower at night as long as they can warm up during the day, but if you are already fighting a possible RI, better to keep them warmer at night.
 

Bethanrs

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Yes too hot is a thing. If the tortoise is getting over 40C and can't get below that anywhere in the enclosure, then you would certainly run into problems with it being too hot. Or if you put a tortoise in a small tub in full sun with no shade, then yes, they will cook in minutes even on a mild day.

An ambient of 26-33C, simulating summer time days in their native range, will never be too hot. A basking area that is 37-38C directly under the bulb, allows them to warm up above ambient, and is necessary. You might try adding a second basking bulb in a different area to see if the tortoise prefers one over the other and will keep itself warmer with the new basking location. Normally, they are fine down to 15C or lower at night as long as they can warm up during the day, but if you are already fighting a possible RI, better to keep them warmer at night.
I took him to the vets again today, they’ve given me 2 weeks of antibiotic injections. He seems fine now we’re home, walking around, eating, no sign of a runny nose.
The vet did say “I can’t make any promises because he’s so small” that didn’t give me the reassurance I wanted. But hopefully I’ve caught it soon enough that he makes a recovery. I’m not sure if RI have a good survival rate but I hope so 🙏🏼
 

Tom

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I took him to the vets again today, they’ve given me 2 weeks of antibiotic injections. He seems fine now we’re home, walking around, eating, no sign of a runny nose.
The vet did say “I can’t make any promises because he’s so small” that didn’t give me the reassurance I wanted. But hopefully I’ve caught it soon enough that he makes a recovery. I’m not sure if RI have a good survival rate but I hope so 🙏🏼
I would not recommend those injections.

1. What did they give you? Most vets ignorantly recommend Baytril, and Baytril is highly caustic. It burns them and causes terrible injury and pain at the injection site. Yet this is what their vet handbooks and vet websites tell them to use.
2. Attempting to treat the symptoms with drugs that are going to mess this baby up in many ways is futile if you don't first discover and correct the CAUSE of the sickness.

Vets don't know tortoises, and often do more harm than good. If your tortoise was eating, pooping and behaving normally, I wouldn't have gone to a vet, and I would not give any anti-biotic injections. Minor environmental tweaks to solve the problem, would have been the best prescription.
 

Bethanrs

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I would not recommend those injections.

1. What did they give you? Most vets ignorantly recommend Baytril, and Baytril is highly caustic. It burns them and causes terrible injury and pain at the injection site. Yet this is what their vet handbooks and vet websites tell them to use.
2. Attempting to treat the symptoms with drugs that are going to mess this baby up in many ways is futile if you don't first discover and correct the CAUSE of the sickness.

Vets don't know tortoises, and often do more harm than good. If your tortoise was eating, pooping and behaving normally, I wouldn't have gone to a vet, and I would not give any anti-biotic injections. Minor environmental tweaks to solve the problem, would have been the best prescription.
Day 3 of injections and it’s like he’s completely back to normal!! It’s not baytril , it’s engymycin. I didn’t go to any vets I went to a specialist exotic vets
 

Tom

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Day 3 of injections and it’s like he’s completely back to normal!! It’s not baytril , it’s engymycin. I didn’t go to any vets I went to a specialist exotic vets
I"m glad everything is working out well, but the "specialist" vets are often no better than any other vet, even though it seems like they should be.
 

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