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I have a small Greek tortoise I hatched that has pneumonia…

Customer Question
I have a small...

I have a small Greek tortoise I hatched that has pneumonia with deep gasping breaths. The symptoms started Thursday night. I took him to my local exotic vet who prescribed sulfatrim, which is not working. I know doxycline will work but this vet didn't prescribe it. I can get in to another vet tomorrow but I don't think the tortoise will last that long. My only hope is that you might have another idea.

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'm sorry to hear that. I'm sure the Veterinarian can help with the pneumonia. What is the tortoise's name and age?

It is

Veterinarian's Assistant: Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about the tortoise?

I am very experienced with tortoises and the tortoise has had excellent care. It's environment is hot on one end and cool on the other. It's diet is Mazuri and greens plus calcium.

Veterinarian's Assistant: What is the tortoise's name?

Babe

Submitted: 8 months ago.Category: Reptile
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Answered in 9 hours by:
10/3/2017
Reptile Expert: Yankmedic911, Reptile Veterinarian replied 8 months ago
Yankmedic911
Yankmedic911, Reptile Veterinarian
Category: Reptile
Satisfied Customers: 64
Experience: I am a Massachusetts licensed veterinarian with a special interest in exotic pets and wildlife.
Verified
I am terribly sorry to hear about your tortoise. Respiratory infections in juvenile chelonians can be difficult to treat. As an experienced herp owner, you know reptiles do everything slowly. It often takes 1-2 weeks for them to start to show signs of improvement and respond to treatment so it may take your pet a wee bit longer to start to improve. Make sure you continue to provide the sulfatrim as prescribed. FYI, research has shown this antibiotic to be effective in many reptile infections with most disease causing bacteria found in reptiles susceptible to it with little signs of antibiotic resistance reported. BTW, Since most bacteria that cause infections in chelonians are of a type called gram negative we often utilize amikacin and ceftazidime as other alternative antibiotics even with respiratory infections such as your tortoise was diagnosed with should the sulfatrim fail. Doxycycline is a very good antibiotic choice for respiratory infection therapy in birds and other species however we tend to use the other three previous antibiotics more frequently in reptiles with good success.Meanwhile I recommend the following care to support your tortoise until you see your local veterinarian again.1. Provide a slightly warmer temperature to improve your pet’s response to the medicine and the functionality of its immune system. Normal POTZ or temp range for Greek tortoises ranges from 80-100F so I would recommend you keep it between 90-100F if possible. You can add heat pads, extra or larger heat bulbs or even a space heater in the room to increase the overall temperature.2. Soak daily in shallow warm water bath to prevent dehydration. It should not be hot but warm. Think bathtub temperature. You only need to cover the bottom half of his shell. Soak him for 30 minutes daily and reward the water as needed.I hope that has provided some information for you. I would recommend you visit a veterinarian experienced working with reptile species. You can locate a local veterinarian in your area by going to the following link which lists vets by state or province.http://members.arav.org/search/custom.asp?id=3661I hope this helps. If you have further questions or concerns please let me know. I wish you and your tortoise all the best.If you liked and appreciated my answers please rate my answer and click on the accept button so I can receive credit for my time and effort. It would be sincerely appreciated.Dr. Adamski
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Reptile Expert: Yankmedic911, Reptile Veterinarian replied 8 months ago
Hi,

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

Yankmedic911
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Yankmedic911
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Satisfied Customers: 64
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Experience: I am a Massachusetts licensed veterinarian with a special interest in exotic pets and wildlife.

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