Alethea111

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Now we’ve had sulcatas for years but one of our 4 1/2 year olds was eating just fine one day then stopped the next we weren’t to worried about it at first but then it turned into a whole week! So we started looking him over and offering treats hoping that he was just getting tired of Romain every day! But as we were checking him over we remembered he wasn’t pooping at all! So we looked him over and came to the conclusion that he had a blockage due to maybe eating something off the floor or outside, so we immediately went to Walmart and got a large syringe and some mineral oil we looked up a video and put some down his throat! Now this was yesterday and he’s doing much better but still won’t eat and hasn’t pooped any! So today when we went to put some more down his throat we thought maybe we’d put some up his cloaca.. now we have owned this tortoise all his life and we also have his brother who is also the same age! When we went to put some oil up his cloaca we noticed that his tail was tucked super weird so we looked at his brother who is perfectly healthy and his tail was tucked normal! So we tried prying his tail out but we couldn’t... keep in mind he hasn’t eaten in a week and is very ill and weak so his muscles aren’t that strong! We kept trying and after while we noticed his tail smelled like an infection... we’re thinking we should put him out and try prying his tail out that way! So literally he tucked his tail wrong and it’s stuck he won’t eat he can’t poop and we’re not sure what to do! Thankfully he’s 4 1/2 years old so that does give him an advantage! We really don’t want to put him down😢😭Please let me know if this has ever happened before and if you guys have any suggestions
 

Alethea111

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Id fill a nice large tub up with a few inches or more of warm water and soak that tortoise & make it swim about. When the water cools, dump it out & start again.

I would stop trying to pry the tail loose. Careful too with that mineral oil injections. Soak soak soak.
That’s what we’re trying today! I’ll let you know if it works! Thank you for the advice!
 

Yvonne G

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I need to make sure that everyone who reads this thread is aware you NEVER, EVER PUT MINERAL OIL INTO A TORTOISE'S MOUTH unless it is wrapped up in a food item. Mineral oil is soft and slippery and the tortoise can't feel it in his mouth. Because of this you run the risk of him inhaling the oil into his lungs.

The only thing you can do now is a real long soak in warm water. . . an hour isn't too long. Afer he's soaked for a long time take a screw driver or a pencil - something firm you can insert between the tail and shell and gently pry the tail away from the shell.

It's very important for all tortoise-keepers to give their tortoises an overall inspection about once a week. especially the tail area. Sometimes poop builds up instead of falling away, especially with babies or male sulcatas. When the poop builds up around the cloaca, and hardens, the animal can no longer poop. If not taken care of, he will die.
 

Alethea111

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Thank you, we had syringe so it shouldn’t have gotten in his lungs. He absolutely refuses to eat so there wasn’t any other way
 

Alethea111

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We are definitely going to soak him as much as possible. Unfortunately though if that doesn’t work I don’t know if anybody has some suggestions about this but we are thinking of taking him to one of our vets and putting him out that way he’s relaxed and we can get his tail out easier. Let me know if you have any comments or suggestions on this(-:
 

wellington

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We are definitely going to soak him as much as possible. Unfortunately though if that doesn’t work I don’t know if anybody has some suggestions about this but we are thinking of taking him to one of our vets and putting him out that way he’s relaxed and we can get his tail out easier. Let me know if you have any comments or suggestions on this(-:
As long as the vet is well educated in tortoises then that may be the easiest way.
So many vets do not have enough or any education of tortoises and do more harm then good.
How has the soaking gone, any progress?
 

Alethea111

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I would soak soak and soak some more Before a vet visit. Definitely make the depth of the water deeper to enable swimming-like action with the hind legs. Monitor closely.
Thank you for the suggestions everyone! They are greatly appreciated! Yes soaking has made some progress so we’re going to try again today! Thank you all again!
 

Alethea111

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Also has anyone heard of this before? I’ve had tortoises for quite some time and have had many odd things happen but never this
 

Yvonne G

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I've seen it many times, but usually in babies that haven't been cleaned off and poop builds up. It also happens a lot with male sulcatas because of the inward curve of th shell above the tail.
 

Alethea111

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Ok thank you! We’re going to keep trying! I thank you all for how kind you all have been! Thank you again!
 

Alethea111

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Well, we really think we’re going to get it unstuck today! So yay! But he’s still not eating we’ve tried giving him everything
 
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