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Ask Joan Your Own Question
Joan, Veterinary Technician
Category: Reptile
Satisfied Customers: 18189
Experience:  35+ years experience as veterinary tech and 40+ years experience doing reptile rescues.
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It looks like my turtle is also bleeding from his month. I

Customer Question

It looks like my turtle is also bleeding from his month. I just got him a few weeks ago dis the mistake of putting him with other red ear slider I had for over 8 years. Both are not doing well. My older turtle who is female, her eyes are puffy and was swollen shut. I started putting pure cod liver oil and these other reptile vitamin A drops and I see a drastic improvement. She is actually able to open one eye ne the other is coming along. She has been on the rock for weeks and very lethargic. I have since changed water and departed them. My smaller turtle is now bleeding from the mouth. They both have been asking under uv lights for days and just not moving. I don't know what else to do
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Could be a lot of things that cause lethargy. The veterinarian will know how to help your turtle. What is the turtle's name?
Customer: THe baby is henny and the older one is rum
JA: Is there anything else important you think the veterinarian should know about your baby?
Customer: I think the baby turtle may have had a respiratory infection due to a window I had open as he was frothing from the mouth and swimming lopsided
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Reptile
Expert:  Joan replied 8 months ago.


My name is ***** ***** I have been a Vet tech for 30+ years working with Reptiles.

I need to ask some questions.

Can you tell me about the UVB light. Is it a linear tuve or compact coil, strength, brand and age of bulb?

Basking light?

Size of tank?




Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Now that I think about it I have no uvb ray light. Only a basking light. It's an exo terra intense basking spot light at 50watts I think or 100watts. The big turtle is in a 60 gallon tank the small turtle for now is in a 25 gallon tank. Since I got the small turtle it hasn't been eating. It piece of fish and that was it. I normally feed my older turtle romaine and gold fish and pellets
Expert:  Joan replied 8 months ago.

The Big turtle and small turtle are both ill. The big one and small one each need a UVB light. I suggest a reptisun 10.0 linear tube. It does need to be replaced every 6 months. It will not work alone so the turtles need a calcium supplement 5 days a week and a Vitamin. The bigger one can have a cuttle bone as well as a calcium supplement. I suspect the larger turtle has a Vitamin A deficiency. He will need injections from a Herp Vet to get the eys doing better. This will explain about the Vit A issue:

As far as the little one it sounds like he may have Pneumonia and will need to be treated with an antibiotic. The only thing you can do at home is the UVB and basking light and up temps about 5* F until he can be seen by the Herp Vet.

If you supply a State I can locate a Herp Vet for you to have them treated.


Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I live in Brooklyn New York zip code of 11206. Can I get the uv light at a pet store? So they need the uv light and the basking lamp? I have been giving the bigger turtle cod liver oil and these reptile drops the pet store recommended and I've seen great improvement
Expert:  Joan replied 8 months ago.

Unfortunately that is not enough when it comes to a Vit A deficiency. I think the turtle may need more. The Vet can give injections to help you also may want to update the diet to 50% leafy greens, 25% turtle pelles and 25% cooked meats or live prey like crickets, meal worms and even earth worms.

As far as the UVB ask specifically for the Reptisun 10.0 bulb. I prefer a linear tube but they do make a compact coil as well. The linear tube is more effective. Make sure you are using a calcium supplement the UVB metabolizes the calcium into D3 in the body.

This is a link for Herp Vets in NY:

Please let me know how the turtles do after the Vet visit. If I have addressed all your concerns, please take a moment to rate my service 5 stars.


Expert:  Joan replied 8 months ago.

How are the turtles doing? Did you have the ill one see the Herp Vet? Please supply an update?