Too big of an enclosure

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34KING18

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So I want to get a tortoise and I heard that old book shelves on their back can serve as tanks when all the shelves are taken out and it's lined. I want to get a russian tortoise.

http://www.tortoisesupply.com/products/Russian-Tortoise.html

I was wondeering if my enclosure would be to big for him because my enclosure right know is at 60x30x12 ( lxwxh ). Would it be too big for him to walk around in and get tired or the bigger the better?
 

Tom

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There is no such thing as too big for an enclosure. If the enclosure were 5 acres, it would not be too big. Think of how much they would walk, forage and wander in the wild in just one day. It can be miles in some cases. When compared to that, 60x30" is tiny. I'd rather see 96x48" for an adult Russian that is going to be housed indoors for most of the year.
 

dmarcus

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I agree with Tom, there is no such thing as too big of an enclosure. The bigger the better I think.
 

StudentoftheReptile

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For a young tortoise, sure. But for a tortoise hitting a shell-length of about 6-8" or so would start to need something larger.
 

Tom

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Just to elaborate a little...

There are many reptile pets that do fine in relatively small enclosures. Corn and king snakes in sweater box racks come to mind as an example. Tortoises are not one of these. Much like a horse, locomotion is a vitally important part of their digestion. They need to move those legs to help keep the food moving along the digestive tract. The first thing usually recommended when a horse kept in a stall starts to colic is to either hand lead them on a walk or put them on the hot walker for an hour. It's is for this reason among others, that tortoises just should not be kept in small enclosures. They need room to walk about. Even in a relatively large enclosure, there is not that much walking space once you put all the furniture in. An entire room in a normal house would make an adequate enclosure size for a Russian or a red foot. This is why many of us say to just make the enclosure as big as you possibly can for the space you have available. They can survive in smaller spaces, it's just not what's BEST for them. Personally, I think of the indoor enclosure as just somewhere to stick them when the weather outside is not suitable, and as a place to start babies for the first year or so. Tortoises really do best in large, well planted outdoor enclosures. For someone with limited space, I would suggest a different pet in many cases. Hope this further explanation helps.
 
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