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I have had 2 RESs for about 3 months now. They are currently

Hello. I have had 2...
Hello. I have had 2 RESs for about 3 months now. They are currently in a 20 gallon tank, 100 watt sun dome and 75 watt ceramic heat lamp over their floating dome. Equipment is only 2 days old as I was supposed to only be watching them (petsitting) but apparently their owner has no intentions on picking them back up. For about 2 days now they have had their eyes closed (look swollen) and they are not eating. trying my best here but not sure what else to do. I realize they will need a bigger tank but unfortunately I don't have the space for a bigger one right now. Please help!
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Answered in 22 minutes by:
8/15/2017
Joan
Joan, Veterinary Technician
Category: Reptile
Satisfied Customers: 18,770
Experience: 35+ years experience as veterinary tech and 40+ years experience doing reptile rescues.
Verified

Hello,

My name is ***** ***** I have been a Vet tech for 35+ years and have worked with Reptiles over 40 years.

Can you tell me if you have a UVB bulb, it is a special bulb that supplies artificial sunlight? Linear tube or compact coil, strength and brand?

Diet?

Supplements?

Basking light?

Joan

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Thank you for responding Joan. I do have a compact UVB bulb for sunlight. The bulbs brand is reptisun.
Yes on basking light.
I was feeding them crill and yesterday bought some recommended pellets (not home at this moment so I can't check the exact name).
No on supplements.

Thank you for all the Pictures. Since the bulbs are new they can be ruled out as the reason for the swollen eyes.

You do not need the heat emitter unless temps drop way down. They do need an in tank hearter to keep the water about 78* and the Basking area under the basking light should be 90*.

The Diet should include 50% leafy greens, 25% pellets and 25% live prey to include meal worms, small crickets or cooked organ meats ot cooked chicken.

The turtles do need 5 days a week of calcium and 2 days a week of vitamins. You can also add a calcium block or cuttle bone into the tank for the turtles. The UVB metabolizes the calcium in the body into D3 to prevent Metabolic Bone Disease.: https://www.thespruce.com/metabolic-bone-disease-in-reptiles-1237237

I suspect the turtles have a Vitamin A deficiency, which is the cause of the swollen eyes. This may also be a result of the a Repiratory issue. In a situation lke this the turtles will need to see a Herp Vet to be treated. I would be happy to locate a Herp Vet for you with a State. I am also going to give you a care sheet for these turtles that Anna and I coauthored:

SLIDER TURTLE CARE SHEET

Well-cared for sliders can live 30 years or more.

The Tank

It's recommended that a baby slider have at least a 15 gallon tank. By the time the turtle is 3-4 years old, it will need a 60 gallon tank, so it's best to get the biggest you can in the beginning. You can also use a large RubberMaid tote. That's not as pretty as a tank, but costs a lot less. Set up the tank so there's a land area and a water area. Put the basking light at one end so the whole tank doesn’t get too hot. You want the water to be about twice as deep as the turtle is long. If the turtle is two inches long, you'll want four inches of water.

Temperatures and Basking Area

Turtles need certain types of lighting and need to be warm. Air and water that are not warm enough can lead to fungal and respiratory infections and unhealthy shells. Turtles must have a basking area where they can get out of the water, dry off, and bask in very warm light. The ambient air temperature in the tank should be around 75 *F (24*C) , with the basking area warmer still. Over the basking area there should be some sort of lamp that will take a 40-60 watt incandescent bulb (or you can buy a ceramic light fixture made just for reptiles). If you live in an area that has farm stores, you can buy a metal light fixture made to keep baby chicks warm for just a few dollars. Don't buy the accompanying bulb, however. You need an ordinary incandescent bulb in the basking light. Hardware stores sell similar fixtures as work lights. The basking area should be kept at 85-90*F (29 to 32*C). Use a digital probe thermometer to be sure. You can adjust the temperature by raising or lowering the light fixture.The lights that come with the covers on aquariums are not suitable for turtles. You'll also need a submersible aquarium heater that will keep the water 78-82*F (26 to 28*C).

UVB Light

It's extremely important that you buy an additional light that produces UVB rays. A Reptisun 10.0 is a good brand that does. If you choose another brand be absolutely certain it provides UVB rays. Don't take the word of pet store personnel, but read it for yourself. Full-spectrum, DayGlo, sunGlo, UV, or UVA are not the same thing. I'm putting a lot of emphasis on this because it's crucial to your turtle's health. Without this light, Metabolic Bone Disease (MBD) will develop because your turtle won't be able to produce vitamin D. Vitamin supplements are not a good replacement for the proper lighting. MBD causes a very slow and painful death.UVB bulbs must be replaced every six months as they lose their effectiveness after that, even though they may still look fine. Light that comes through a window isn't sufficient because the glass filters out most of the rays turtles need to stay healthy. To prevent MBD, turtles also need calcium. The easiest way to provide it is to place a cuttlebone in the tank. Cuttlebones are sold in bird departments of pet stores.

Filtration

Turtles are very sensitive to water quality. Even if you change the water every day, it can still contain harmful chemicals. A good filtration system is essential. Water changes are also needed even with a filter. If the tank is too small, no filter can keep up with the amount of waste that turtles produce.

Feeding

Feeding is an area where pet stores often give out bad information. Commercial food should make up only 1/4 of the diet. Animal products (cooked meat, earthworms, canned cat food) should make up another 1/4. The remaining half should be plant foods (dark lettuce like romaine, bits of strawberry or melon, etc.). Hatchlings should be fed every day. Older turtles should be fed 3 times per week. Overfeeding can lead to gout and kidney failure.

For Further Reading

This is among the most reputable sites on turtles.

http://www.austinsturtlepage.com/Care/caresheet-red_ear_slider.htm

http://www.austinsturtlepage.com/Care/cs-yellowbelly.htm

Please hit reply to discuss this information and to supply a State so I can locate a Herp Vet for you.

Joan

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Thank you for your time. I could def use a referral if you have one. In or around Selden, NY.
Thank you again.

These are Herp Vets in NY:

http://www.herpvetconnection.com/newyork.shtml

http://www.anapsid.org/vets/newyork.html

Hopefully there is a Herp Vet nearby where you live that can see the little ones. If I have addressed your concerns, Please take a moment to rate my service 5 stars, I am not paid until I recieve a Positive rating.

Joan

Joan
Joan, Veterinary Technician
Category: Reptile
Satisfied Customers: 18,770
Experience: 35+ years experience as veterinary tech and 40+ years experience doing reptile rescues.
Verified
Joan and 87 other Reptile Specialists are ready to help you
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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Thank you so much. Will do.
Ask Joan Your Own Question
Joan
Joan
Joan, Veterinary Technician
Category: Reptile
Satisfied Customers: 18,770
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Experience: 35+ years experience as veterinary tech and 40+ years experience doing reptile rescues.

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Anna

Anna

Reptile Expert, Biologist

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Have owned turtles, snakes, amphibians, and lizards. Study and provide habitat for wild herps.

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35+ years experience as veterinary tech and 40+ years experience doing reptile rescues.

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