How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Joan Your Own Question

Joan
Joan, Internet Researcher
Category: General
Satisfied Customers: 17775
Experience:  I believe that knowledge is Power! I would like to try to share my knowledge with others.
5071285
Type Your Question Here...
Joan is online now

Hi. I have a tortoise (possibly a Horsfield) which came

Resolved Question:

Hi.
I have a tortoise (possibly a Horsfield) which came to live with us about 40 years ago. It's probably about 60 years of age.
We always put it away in a box hidden away in the garage in the cold weather. My main worry is that it hardly eats anything. Sometimes, if I manually feed it, it will eat a little. I have tried lettuce, apple, tomatoes, melon, dandellions, thistle. This morning I bought a pack of rocket & spinach leaves as several people said they like that. But it just turned it's nose up. Is this normal behaviour?
I would be grateful for some advice. My husband says I'm worrying too much. It's probably not hungry. It must be hungry sometimes. It does eat a little sometimes. Some advice would be appreciated.
Thankyou
***** *****
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: General
Expert:  Shantal-Mod replied 2 years ago.
Hello Pat,
I'm Shantal and I'm a moderator for this topic.
We have been working with the Experts to try to help you with your question. Sometimes it may take a bit of time to find the right fit.
I was checking to see if you had already found your answer or if you still need assistance from one of the Experts.
Please let me know if you wish to continue waiting or if you would like for us to close your question?
Thank you,
Shantal
Expert:  Joan replied 2 years ago.

Hello,
My name is ***** ***** I have been a Vet tech for 30+ years with special interst in Reptiles and Reptile rescue.

Is the weather cold where you are now?

Do you have a UVB ligh and basking light?

What type of UVB light do you have, age of bulb, strength and brand?

is ther any runny nose?

Supplements?

Do you offer and hay,orchard grasses or weeds?

Joan

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi

The weather is very hot here at present. We don't have a UVB light and have never had one and my husband says we do not need one. We don't give it supplements. It hardly eats food let alone supplements. We do give it dandellions & milk thistle which it used to eat quite a bit of when it first came out of hibernation but now rarely eats these. It is also difficult to find these at the moment.

As I said previously, it does eat a little if I hold the food for it & "spoonfeed" it but it takes a lot of time to do this.

Pat

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I'm still waiting for a reply to my email this morning

Expert:  Joan replied 2 years ago.

Hello,

I am sorry about the amount of time, but I am on Est Standard Time and work 14-16 hours shifts. UVB lights are a necessity with Reptiles. The tortoise needs two forms of lighting a UVB and a basking light. The UVB alson with a claicum supplement is imperative to prevent Metabolic Bone Disease. http://exoticpets.about.com/cs/reptilesgeneral/a/metabolicbd.htm

I suggest a Reptisun 10.0 linear florescent tube and a Calcium block or a cuttle bone be available at all times. The light cycle and temps goveren the activity level and apptetite on Reptiles. The tortoise shoould also have a basking light that supplies heat. The UVB may make a difference in the appetite and activity level of the tortoise. This is a care sheet for the Horsefeild tortoise tortoise: http://www.thereptilian.co.uk/care_sheets/Horsefield_tortoise_care_sheet_Testudo_hosefieldii.html

The care sheet goes over the need for UVB if the tortoise is housed inside as well as the need for a calcium supplement. The UVB should be 12-14 hours a day in the warm months when the tortoise is not in Brumation.

If he has just come out of Brumation it is not uncommon for the tortosie to take a week or two to start eating well again. I suggsest a good soak in Dioralye and warm water 50/50 to rehydrate him as soaks are imporatan especially to a tortoise that is not eating well.

This is a dietary list that you can try and feed:

Horsefield Tortoise Food list

Endive

Escarole

Grass (Bermuda, Rye, Alfalfa, Blue grass, Fescue)

Radicchio

Green leaf lettuce

Chicory

Pumpkin

Hibiscus flower and leaf

Hosta

Sedum

Mulberry leaves

Dandelion (one of their favorite!)

Mallow

Henbit

Chrysanthemum flowers

White (Dutch) clover

Rose leaves and pedals

Sow thistle

Plantains

Clover

Plantagos

Wild Mustard greens

Most broad leaf weeds

Grape leaves

Japanese waxleaf

Ficus leaves

Kale

Collard greens

Turnip greens

Pear cactus, feed him the pads (called nopales)

Aloe vera

Artichoke

Celery

Cucumber

Fig

Sweet peppers

Violet

Watercress

Mazuri Tortoise Diet ® (exception to the pellet rule)

Use Sparingly

Romaine lettuce

Red leaf lettuce

Cabbage

Spinach

Bok Choy

Chard

Shredded carrot and top

Zucchini/ Squash

Bell peppers

Broccoli

Shredded sweet potatoes

Shredded beets and tops

Okra

Fruit are a treat and only a little at a time and not a Staple:

  • Strawberries
  • Tomatoes
  • Apples
  • Pears
  • Berries
  • Prickly pear cactus apples
  • Watermelon
  • Banana
  • Papaya
  • This is a tortoise pellet food that you can try:

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00IKM69FK/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1634&creative=19450&creativeASIN=B00IKM69FK&linkCode=as2&tag=httpwwwhorsef-21

    This is another food that he may like:

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00AFBYBXG/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1634&creative=19450&creativeASIN=B00AFBYBXG&linkCode=as2&tag=httpwwwhorsef-21

    If he does not start eating in a week after you have the UVB in place and basking light, it may be wise for a Herp Vet visit to rule out a Parasite issue that could affect the appetite. Thse are her Vets in the UK: http://www.tortsmad.com/vets.htm

    http://www.britishcheloniagroup.org.uk/vetscorner/vetlist

    http://www.livefoods.co.uk/Vets.php#Scotland

    Please let me know if you have further questions and I will be happy to continue with you. Joan

    Joan, Internet Researcher
    Category: General
    Satisfied Customers: 17775
    Experience: I believe that knowledge is Power! I would like to try to share my knowledge with others.
    Joan and 17 other General Specialists are ready to help you

    What Customers are Saying:

     
     
     
    • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP
    < Previous | Next >
    • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP
    • I Couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin
    • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C.
    • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex
    • Just let me say that this encounter has been entirely professional and most helpful. I liked that I could ask additional questions and get answered in a very short turn around. Esther
    • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C.
    • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex
     
     
     

    Meet The Experts:

     
     
     
    • Dr. Y.

      Dr. Y.

      Urologist

      Satisfied Customers:

      15024
      Specializing in general urology and reconstructive urology.
    < Previous | Next >
    • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/lyeung1/2010-07-25_032152_tn_IMG_0241.JPG Dr. Y.'s Avatar

      Dr. Y.

      Urologist

      Satisfied Customers:

      15024
      Specializing in general urology and reconstructive urology.
    • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/TA/Tax Expert/2013-8-21_231010_sam.64x64.jpg Sam's Avatar

      Sam

      Accountant

      Satisfied Customers:

      7171
      26 HMRC expertise, PAYE, Self Assessment ,Residency, Rental Income, Capital Gains, CIS ask for Sam Tax
    • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/drhearne/2009-11-8_74742_monika_hearne2.jpg Monika Hearne, M.D.'s Avatar

      Monika Hearne, M.D.

      Board Certified OB/GYN

      Satisfied Customers:

      5180
      With experience and compassion, I treat my patients like family.
    • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BI/birddoctor/2012-6-22_173214_birddoctor.64x64.png Dr. Pat's Avatar

      Dr. Pat

      Bird Veterinarian

      Satisfied Customers:

      2863
      25+ years working primarily or exclusively with birds
    • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/dermdoc19/2010-09-30_160749_Photo_122807_015.JPG dermdoc19's Avatar

      dermdoc19

      Dermatologist

      Satisfied Customers:

      2779
      30 years practice in general and cosmetic dermatology
    • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BU/Buachaill/2012-5-25_211156_barrister5.64x64.jpg Buachaill's Avatar

      Buachaill

      Barrister

      Satisfied Customers:

      2758
      Barrister 17 years experience
    • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/FA/FamilyPhysician/2013-8-31_191624_JA550x500Photo.64x64.jpg Family Physician's Avatar

      Family Physician

      Doctor

      Satisfied Customers:

      2418
      GP with over 27 years experience including emergency medicine