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Anna
Anna, Reptile Expert, Biologist
Category: Reptile
Satisfied Customers: 11134
Experience:  Have owned turtles, snakes, amphibians, and lizards. Study and provide habitat for wild herps.
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WE JUST GOT HER IS THIS MORNING, 10 IN FEEDFOOT TORTOISE,

Customer Question

Customer: WE JUST GOT HER IS THIS MORNING, 10 IN FEEDFOOT TORTOISE, SHE NOT WALING RIGHT ,AND MOVING HER HEAD WIERD, ALL THE WAY UP AND BACK, AND WALKING IN TO THE WALLS LIKE SHE CAN'T SEE , AND STUMBLING WHEN SHE WALKS
JA: Thanks. Can you give me any more details about your issue?
Customer: SHE SHIPPED OUT LAST NIGHT OUT OF SAN ANTONIO,TEXAS.THEY SAID SHE WAS A 12 INCH FEMALE BUT I THINK SHE IS A 10 INCH.SHE CAME HERE THIS MORNING AT FED EX IN BOULDER,COLO.WHEN WE GOT HER HOME I UNPACKED HER AND PUT HER IN SOME LUKEWARM WATER AND GAVE HER A BATH,YOU CAN TELL SHE IS SHY AND SCARED.BUT NOW AFTER 3 OR 4 HOURS LATER SHE IS WALKING SLOWLY.AND KINDA OF STUMMBLING WITH HER LEGS AND FALLS DOWN.SHE PUTS HER HEAD OUT ALL THE WAY AND LOOKS STRAIGHT UP AT THE CEILING AND RUBS THE BACK OF HER NECK ON HER SHELL,AND WAVING HER HEAD ALL AROUND AND BACK AND FORTH.THEN I NOTICED HER SHELL HAS MARKS ON IT WHERE SHE HAS BEEN RUBBING HER NECK AND IT IS KINDA DULL GRAY ABOUT 2 INCHES LONG.THEN I WATCHED HER WALK INTO THE INCLOSURE WALLS.COULD IT BE FROM THE FLIGHT FROM TEXAS TO COLO.,OR DO YOU THINK THEY DROPPED HER AND SHE HAS BEEN INJURED? OR JUST JET LAG,OR TO COLD?
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Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Reptile
Expert:  Anna replied 11 months ago.

Hello and welcome. My name is ***** ***** I'm a biologist with a special interest in reptiles. I'm sorry to hear your new tortoise is having problems. Unfortunately, this is not uncommon with shipped in reptiles. Many are wild caught and the stress is too much for them. Some are injured as they are shipped from place to place. Others become ill. Any of the scenarios you mentioned could be the truth - we haven't way to know. You were right to give her a bath, but I'll give you a way to make it better. Buy some unflavored Pedialyte (yes, the kind for human infants). Prepare a shallow bath consisting of half Pedialyte and half water. Make it deep enough to cover the tortoise's vent (where droppings pass out). Soak her for 20 to 30 minutes. Be sure to supervise closely. It would be good to give her two soaks like this today, then one per day for the next several days. You may also want to notify the place you purchased her from to let them know there is a problem. However,don't count on them for good advice to n care. They may request you ship her back and they'll send a different one. In that case, the one you have may well die before getting back, and the new one may also have problems. This is a difficult situation for a new tortoise owner, but only you can make up your mind about what to do. Regardless, go ahead with the Pedialyte soaks. Then make sure all lighting and temperatures are right for her. If you need information on care, let me know and I can provide it at no additional fee. I also recommend that new reptile pets be examined by a reptile vet shortly after purchase. If you don't know of a reptile vet, give me your zip code, and I'll try to find one for you. For additional information, or if you have more questions, let me know in a REPLY. Also, let me know if there is any change after the Pedialyte soak. Anna

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
THANK YOU Anna, we will do this right away, what dose the pedialyte do for the tortoise?
Expert:  Anna replied 11 months ago.

You're welcome. Pedialyte is full of electrolytes that the body needs when it has become dehydrated. After being shipped, your tortoise is probably very dehydrated. Water alone is good, but the electrolytes are even better. Reptiles can absorb water and electrolytes through their vents, so that's why you want the water that deep. Dehydration can cause many different symptoms so we want to take care of that before going on to anything else. Let me know how she does.

Expert:  Anna replied 11 months ago.
Hi,
I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?
Anna