Tortoise won't come out of shell

Shamelle

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hello,

My son shtepped on his tortoise. Everything seems ok (no blessing, cracks, etc). I am worried because it's tucked really far into its shell now... and won't come out. I'm worried... is it dying?
 

Yvonne G

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Hi, and welcome to the forum!

If this is a very young tortoise, the shell is a bit pliable, and it would be fairly easy to squish his insides and not break the shell. I think all you can do is adopt a wait and see attitude and hope for the best. I doubt there's anything a vet could do at this point, as the organs and soft tissue don't show up on x-ray. But an x-ray could tell you if the bones inside are broken.

Was this tortoise allowed to roam on the floor out of his habitat?
 

Tidgy's Dad

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Hopefully it's just shock.
A tortoise I help take care of was kicked one time and didn't come out of his shell until the next day.
He was very nervous and jumpy for about a week and then went back to his normal self.
As Yvonne says, let's just hope there's no internal damage.
 

Gillian M

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Fingers crossed - hope to know that it's nothing serious.

Please keep us updated.

And a very warm welcome to the forum.
 

Shamelle

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Hello everyone! Thanks for the advice. I think "Koopa Troop" is fine. He ate an entire dish of food yesterday, wandered around his tank, and even sat in his little pool. I will keep an eye on him for a while, just to make sure.

I also stressed to my son, the importance of NOT taking KT out of his tank.
 

wellington

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Hello everyone! Thanks for the advice. I think "Koopa Troop" is fine. He ate an entire dish of food yesterday, wandered around his tank, and even sat in his little pool. I will keep an eye on him for a while, just to make sure.

I also stressed to my son, the importance of NOT taking KT out of his tank.
Glad to see the tort is getting back to normal.
It is very important that the tort is not allowed to roam the floor or any space that is not designated to just the tortoise. We see injured tortoises all the time on here because the owners let the tort roam the floor.
 

Gillian M

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Hello everyone! Thanks for the advice. I think "Koopa Troop" is fine. He ate an entire dish of food yesterday, wandered around his tank, and even sat in his little pool. I will keep an eye on him for a while, just to make sure.

I also stressed to my son, the importance of NOT taking KT out of his tank.
Great! Take care now.

Would you please post pics of KT and his enclosure.
 

Souptugo

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I don't want to sound harsh but first of all, that tank is way too small. They have no concept of glass and will think they are trapped, frustrated over trying to get out.

You are also feeding him improper food as well (little to no nutrients).

Refer to this: http://www.chelonia.org/Articles/nutrientanalysis.htm

This makes me cringe a little. How does he get stepped on? OMG. Hope you find the time to read more posts on proper care throughout this forum. Accidents happen I'm sure but common sense is common sense.

Please take this as constructive criticism. If your son wants a tortoise, and you want to properly take care of it, please try harder. I don't want to seem mean, but I love these animals. Just my 2 cents.

Welcome to the forum. We are all here with the same goals for our tortoises.
 
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Shamelle

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IMG_0994.JPG
I don't want to sound harsh but first of all, that tank is way too small. They have no concept of glass and will think they are trapped, frustrated over trying to get out.

You are also feeding him improper food as well (little to no nutrients).

Refer to this: http://www.chelonia.org/Articles/nutrientanalysis.htm

This makes me cringe a little. How does he get stepped on? OMG. Hope you find the time to read more posts on proper care throughout this forum. Accidents happen I'm sure but common sense is common sense.

Please take this as constructive criticism. If your son wants a tortoise, and you want to properly take care of it, please try harder. I don't want to seem mean, but I love these animals. Just my 2 cents.

Welcome to the forum. We are all here with the same goals for our tortoises.

1. We've had him 2 days... the tank is temporary until we can get a rubber maid tub (as we were instructed by the breeder)

2. We feed him mix greens, carrots, and a little strawberry... we also supplement with Flukers (as instructed by the breeder)

3. If you were truly trying to NOT sound harsh, the cringe comment, telling me that I should take time to read, AND telling me that I have no common sense was a fail.

4. Obviously... I care about "these animals" or I would not have taken the time to join a forum, post, and take abuse from someone who thinks new owners have no common sense.

... Just my 2 cents

Thanks,
Shamelle
 
Last edited:

Souptugo

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View attachment 200357


1. We've had him 2 days... the tank is temporary until we can get a rubber maid tub (as we were instructed by the breeder)

2. We feed him mix greens, carrots, and a little strawberry... we also supplement with Flukers (as instructed by the breeder)

3. If you were truly trying to NOT sound harsh, the cringe comment, telling me that I should take time to read, AND telling me that I have no common sense was a fail.

4. Obviously... I care about "these animals" or I would not have taken the time to join a forum, post, and take abuse from someone who thinks new owners have no common sense.

... Just my 2 cents

Thanks,
Shamelle

Good. I'm glad you are going to be doing things properly. A baby tortoise getting stepped on is "cringe-worthy" - trust me - ask 100 people and probably ALL of them will think the same as me.

You never mentioned you had this guy for 2 days. And he got stepped on after 1 day under your care? I'm just reminding you that you can't trust a kid with a small animal, not you having no common sense but kids in general are not careful.

If you want to be defensive, it's ok. Doesn't hurt my feelings one bit. I just care for this animal and want him to be well taken care of. This is a forum, you post something without explaining everything, expect to get some constructive criticism.

I wish you the best of luck with your tortoise. He/she is very cute.
 

JoesMum

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Hi @Shamelle

I am trying to make out which exact species this tort is so I can direct you to the correct care sheet for this species.

TFO has species experts that have kindly put together up to date information on care as there is a lot of outdated information widely available on the internet and from pet stores and, sadly, from some breeders and vets too.

If you haven't already read it, I recommend starting with this on Beginner Mistakes
http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/beginner-mistakes.45180/

From my observations of the tank:

It is on the small side and a young tort like this needs it covered, avoiding touching or obstructing the lamp, to create a closed chamber which raises humidity for healthy shell growth.

The basking lamp must hang vertically to be effective. It must be 35C/95-100F directly under it which your tort needs for basking to raise its core temperature to digest food. An accurate digital thermometer is a must; a temperature gun type is inexpensive and best for spot measurements. Don't trust the clamp attachments; they have a habit of giving way and the hot lamp is a fire risk.

A terracotta plant saucer makes a good safe water dish and a large piece of flat rock or slate is an excellent food plate that helps to keep your tort's beak in shape while s/he eats.

Your tort's diet is a variety of leafy weedy greens. Many of us supplement with a pelleted food in winter when weeds are short. Your tort cannot digest sugars properly- they cause digestive and kidney problems - so fruit, carrot, bell pepper and tomato should only be fed very sparingly and very occasionally if at all.

I hope this is helpful.
 

Shamelle

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Hi @Shamelle

I am trying to make out which exact species this tort is so I can direct you to the correct care sheet for this species.

TFO has species experts that have kindly put together up to date information on care as there is a lot of outdated information widely available on the internet and from pet stores and, sadly, from some breeders and vets too.

If you haven't already read it, I recommend starting with this on Beginner Mistakes
http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/beginner-mistakes.45180/

From my observations of the tank:

It is on the small side and a young tort like this needs it covered, avoiding touching or obstructing the lamp, to create a closed chamber which raises humidity for healthy shell growth.

The basking lamp must hang vertically to be effective. It must be 35C/95-100F directly under it which your tort needs for basking to raise its core temperature to digest food. An accurate digital thermometer is a must; a temperature gun type is inexpensive and best for spot measurements. Don't trust the clamp attachments; they have a habit of giving way and the hot lamp is a fire risk.

A terracotta plant saucer makes a good safe water dish and a large piece of flat rock or slate is an excellent food plate that helps to keep your tort's beak in shape while s/he eats.

Your tort's diet is a variety of leafy weedy greens. Many of us supplement with a pelleted food in winter when weeds are short. Your tort cannot digest sugars properly- they cause digestive and kidney problems - so fruit, carrot, bell pepper and tomato should only be fed very sparingly and very occasionally if at all.

I hope this is helpful.

This is very helpful. Thanks! :)

I have a few questions that I'd like to ask you... after I get off of work. Oh, the breeder told me that it's a sulcata.

Shamelle
 

JoesMum

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We love to see photos of torts... just because we do. :)

For sulcatas, you should add these to your reading list:

How to raise a healthy Sulcata
http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/how-to-raise-a-healthy-sulcata-or-leopard-version-2-0.79895/

For those who have a young Sulcata
http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/for-those-who-have-a-young-sulcata.76744/

Your tort will grow very rapidly into a 100lb+ (50kg+) bulldozer that you cannot possibly lift and that needs lots of outdoor space.

It cannot hibernate so you will need to arrange a suitable heated shelter and nightbox outside in just a few years time.
 

Tom

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Hello and welcome Shamelle.

You will quickly discover that there is a lot of contradictory care info of this species out in the world. Most breeders do not start them correctly, and most of the care info out in the world for this species is out-dated, based on incorrect assumptions about their lives in the wild, and just plain wrong. In most cases the wrong heating and lighting info is given, the wrong substrate is recommended, and the wrong diet is suggested.

Joe's Mum linked the correct care info for you and I would add this one: http://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/beginner-mistakes.45180/

I'm giving you this info as someone who has been keeping, breeding and raising 100's of babies of this species since 1991. I followed all the wrong advice and did all the wrong things and through decades of trial and error, I figured out what was really needed. Literally 1000s of people all over the world are doing it this way now and all have the same ideal results. In time, you will also learn what I/we already know, but we'd like to save you a lot of time and also save your tortoise from what will happen if the typical advice is followed.
 
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View attachment 200357


1. We've had him 2 days... the tank is temporary until we can get a rubber maid tub (as we were instructed by the breeder)

2. We feed him mix greens, carrots, and a little strawberry... we also supplement with Flukers (as instructed by the breeder)

3. If you were truly trying to NOT sound harsh, the cringe comment, telling me that I should take time to read, AND telling me that I have no common sense was a fail.

4. Obviously... I care about "these animals" or I would not have taken the time to join a forum, post, and take abuse from someone who thinks new owners have no common sense.

... Just my 2 cents

Thanks,
Shamelle
Some breeders will tell you things so they make money from the company that work with them so they make more money and I think its great, humidity is Up and everything, but you should watch the tortoise more often so nothing like that happens again, these people are just trying to help your situation, they have had tortoises for years, you had one for two days, I suggest using cardboard around the glass so he cant see out of it and add grass to his diet for fiber
 

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