Three things we humans love but maybe don't think of providing to our pet tortoises!

GSM

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Dec 27, 2020
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London
This topic can be discussed about all pet animals, really. The most common point is food - you often hear of owners feeding the same item every day, because it's healthy to the species. Yet, we don't apply that to ourselves - indeed we would hate to eat the very same thing each day, multiple times, regardless of taste or health benefits. So a variety is not only important for expanding types of nutrient intake, but prevents boredom.

So, probably no need to go into that. However, there are other things we humans value greatly, but can survive without, and tortoises share some of them, in my experience. Try them out, if you haven't already!


Sun umbrella

This happened by accident - I placed a toy airplane inside the enclosure, eventually making its way under the bulb. We all know tortoises love some heat, but is this the case for their entire body? Well, my tortoise's regular behaviour suggests not. I've noticed he sometimes places his head underneath the wings as a method of shade. We often do the same at beaches and restaurants, so we shouldn't be surprised! For those of you with large tortoise species, at least you can offer a sun umbrella (and not buy an actual plane..). Check out the examples below:

umbrella.jpg

umbrella.gif



Dining Table


For eating! Although tortoises have long necks, which they often use to eat food on the ground, they're not always terribly accurate and end up with more than one attempt, especially with small pellets. And this appears to turn into a strenuous exercise. Imagine replacing our knives and forks with basic sticks - the frustration would quickly kick in and ultimately offset the enjoyment of eating. Let's not ignore this could happen with animals too, including tortoises. Gif examples below!

SmartSelect_20210717-200800_Video Player.gif

SmartSelect_20210717-200858_Video Player.gif



Pillow

Would we die if our pillows were taken away? No, but the spine pain receptors would soon kick in! We can walk to our local GP/doctor, explain the issue and get a fix. Tortoises can't, of course. So, it's up to us pet owners to be considerate on a different level to how we are with our friends and family. This isn't an issue during their night sleep - they can rest their head inside their shell or simply position for comfort when borrowed underground - it's when they're basking, where I believe we can be more thoughtful.

I placed these two wooden pillars as a toy for my tortoise to push around. My intentions were ignored, but it soon became a favourite resting block for his head. And that's when it kicks in - "of course, why didn't I think he'd want that?". Quite a cute look to it, too:

20210616_140442.jpg

20210628_162508.jpg

(footrest too!)

20210704_215507.jpg

Hope this helps those who haven't noticed or thought of it. Try them out and send over your own pics!
 

TisMary

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Mar 1, 2021
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126
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it's when they're basking, where I believe we can be more thoughtful.
Great pictures @GSM! I just read that turtles and tortoises stick out their necks and legs to maximize heat from their basking source. Maybe what your little one is doing? Check out this guy!
1626708971960.png
"A basking turtle employs isolation from cooler surfaces, plus limb and neck extension to rapidly gain heat from solar radiation. The limbs and neck are rich in blood flow and rapidly 'circulate' heat to the core. They are also areas that are very important to Vitamin D3 synthesis" The Effect of Basking Lamps on the Health of Captive Tortoises and other Reptiles
 

Krista S

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Messages
843
Location (City and/or State)
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Great pictures @GSM! I just read that turtles and tortoises stick out their necks and legs to maximize heat from their basking source. Maybe what your little one is doing? Check out this guy!
View attachment 329359
"A basking turtle employs isolation from cooler surfaces, plus limb and neck extension to rapidly gain heat from solar radiation. The limbs and neck are rich in blood flow and rapidly 'circulate' heat to the core. They are also areas that are very important to Vitamin D3 synthesis" The Effect of Basking Lamps on the Health of Captive Tortoises and other Reptiles
Looks like turtle yoga! 😍 That’s quite the balancing act he‘s doing on that rock. My tortoise has done that on occasion, mostly when he was smaller. He would have his back legs fully extended and suspended in the air. It was so cute.

28B691E4-8DC9-4A93-95A0-DB1338A5490A.jpeg
 
Joined
Mar 25, 2021
Messages
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Cloud Atlas, North Carolina
AWWWW, this is so precious, I Love It! He probably rests his head on the "pillows" because it has your scent and he knows its safe, plus it came from the hands that feed him! Very thoughtful, you have a good heart Sir.
 

TaylorTortoise

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Joined
Mar 24, 2020
Messages
959
Location (City and/or State)
Abington
I just wanted to say how awesome this post was.
I really enjoyed it, and it made my perspective on tortoises to be more creative with comfort and similarities in comfort to us humans! Very cool and interesting.
 

Sa Ga

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 19, 2019
Messages
654
Location (City and/or State)
MN
This topic can be discussed about all pet animals, really. The most common point is food - you often hear of owners feeding the same item every day, because it's healthy to the species. Yet, we don't apply that to ourselves - indeed we would hate to eat the very same thing each day, multiple times, regardless of taste or health benefits. So a variety is not only important for expanding types of nutrient intake, but prevents boredom.

So, probably no need to go into that. However, there are other things we humans value greatly, but can survive without, and tortoises share some of them, in my experience. Try them out, if you haven't already!


Sun umbrella

This happened by accident - I placed a toy airplane inside the enclosure, eventually making its way under the bulb. We all know tortoises love some heat, but is this the case for their entire body? Well, my tortoise's regular behaviour suggests not. I've noticed he sometimes places his head underneath the wings as a method of shade. We often do the same at beaches and restaurants, so we shouldn't be surprised! For those of you with large tortoise species, at least you can offer a sun umbrella (and not buy an actual plane..). Check out the examples below:

View attachment 329272

View attachment 329273



Dining Table


For eating! Although tortoises have long necks, which they often use to eat food on the ground, they're not always terribly accurate and end up with more than one attempt, especially with small pellets. And this appears to turn into a strenuous exercise. Imagine replacing our knives and forks with basic sticks - the frustration would quickly kick in and ultimately offset the enjoyment of eating. Let's not ignore this could happen with animals too, including tortoises. Gif examples below!

View attachment 329275

View attachment 329274



Pillow

Would we die if our pillows were taken away? No, but the spine pain receptors would soon kick in! We can walk to our local GP/doctor, explain the issue and get a fix. Tortoises can't, of course. So, it's up to us pet owners to be considerate on a different level to how we are with our friends and family. This isn't an issue during their night sleep - they can rest their head inside their shell or simply position for comfort when borrowed underground - it's when they're basking, where I believe we can be more thoughtful.

I placed these two wooden pillars as a toy for my tortoise to push around. My intentions were ignored, but it soon became a favourite resting block for his head. And that's when it kicks in - "of course, why didn't I think he'd want that?". Quite a cute look to it, too:

View attachment 329276

View attachment 329277

(footrest too!)

View attachment 329278

Hope this helps those who haven't noticed or thought of it. Try them out and send over your own pics!
Yes! Morla LOVES a "pillow," as I first discovered when I came to find her sleeping happily supported by a small rock. I put more "pillows" in and she pushed them around to her liking.

However, my gal is posh...and her fave pillow is actually the corner of my MyPillow! It's so cute--she'll scoot fwd and get comfy and fall asleep.

I just can't believe how much I adore her! ❤
 

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