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Dr Scott Nimmo
Dr Scott Nimmo, Small Animal Veterinary Surgeon.
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 20749
Experience:  BVMS, MRCVS. { Glasgow UK }
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I am looking after my friend's 57 year old tortoise whilst

Resolved Question:

I am looking after my friend's 57 year old tortoise whilst they are away. Napoleon apparently has been off his food for a while and since he came to stay with me 10 days ago he hasn't eaten anything despite being offered dandelion leaves and cherry tomatoes (cut in half). I have put him in a shallow warm bath twice a day for about 10 minutes each time but has not passed any motions and, although he keeps his head out and moves around in the crate (with a hobby lamp on 24 hours to keep a stable temperature) he is still not eating. There are no exotic vets near where I live in Surrey and the one in Berkshire is not back until November. Can you suggest anything please. Kind regards, Janna
Submitted: 1 month ago.
Category: Vet
Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 1 month ago.

Hi,I'm Dr Scott. Welcome to JustAnswer, I am working on your question now, you can expect a written reply sometime within the next ten minutes or so.

Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 1 month ago.

Hello again,

I have worked out an answer for you below.

1. Actually inappetance in the tortoise is a fairly common problem, and once they have not eaten for a while they then can go into a downward spiral, however you have done all the right things so far. One thing that I sometimes found to be effective in such cases was a vitamin B12 injection which your regular dog and cat vet will be able to give, hopefully this will have the effect of boosting is metabolism and hence his appetite, and if he starts eating things should stabilise. This is certainly worth a try and if there is no response then repeat it five days later.

2. But in any case I should be available online for you the next four or five hours today so please do not hesitate to get straight back to me if you would like to talk things over with me further.

Regards,

Dr Scott
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Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Thanks for the advice. In which part of the body do you give the injection and what dosage is correct for a standard size one please?
Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 1 month ago.

The injection is normally given into the inner thigh region on a hind leg, but you have to take care with cleanliness, the injection area has to be thoroughly cleaned first with surgical spirit or similar. I personally would give 100 mcg in this sort of situation.

Regards,

Dr Scott
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Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Thanks - I'm going to our vet today with our cat so can ask if she feels able to give Napoleon an injection :-)
Customer: replied 1 month ago.
If it doesn't work, what do you think the prognosis will be ?
Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 1 month ago.

Hard to say in this sort of situation, all you can do is to give it a try and see what happens ...

Regards,

Dr Scott
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