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Old 06-04-2012, 10:37 AM
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Posts: 32
Default Tortoise sleeps alot and is not eating

Hi there my Russian tortoise for about 2 weeks has been barely eating and sleeping more or less all day and this is worrying me. He is about 1 year old and is usually very hungry and very active.

Living conditions:
Substrate: topsoil with grass growing in it
Heat lamp on all day heats basking spot to 30 C
Uv lamp is on 12 hours a day
Rest of tortoise table is usually around 25C but it has been cold here the past week.
Gets bathed about once a week

Diet:
Dandelion leaves
Raddicio
Chicory
Sweet basil
Carrot
Dandelion complete diet pellets (cause he likes them)
Fresh water everyday

And advice would be great to put my mind at ease. Thankyou
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Old 06-04-2012, 10:52 AM
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I by no means know much about Horsfields. However, that diet is not ideal. Amongst it is some very strong smelling/tasting items, which he probably finds overpowering. Personally, I would not feed pellets now but keep them for say the winter months when weeds are not so readily available.

Tortoise can take a while to settle in their new homes and Horsfields in particular like to dig. I would have deep top soil without the grass growing in it for an indoor table. Make sure though it is not too high and s/he can climb out over the sides.

With a young tortoise hydration is often more important than food. May be bath him daily for now.

As for diet - you want to feed weeds. Dandelion leaves, flowers, certain sedums, bittercress, shepherds purse, pansy flowers etc. There is a sticky at the top of this section with more ideas. Avoid anything from a bulb, ie daffodil, tulip plus buttercups and daisies. Certain ones are poisonous so if in doubt post a picture on here.

A night time temperature of 25c is possibly a bit too warm.
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Old 06-04-2012, 12:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jordan244 View Post
Hi there my Russian tortoise for about 2 weeks has been barely eating and sleeping more or less all day and this is worrying me. He is about 1 year old and is usually very hungry and very active.

Living conditions:
Substrate: topsoil with grass growing in it
Heat lamp on all day heats basking spot to 30 C
Uv lamp is on 12 hours a day
Rest of tortoise table is usually around 25C but it has been cold here the past week.
Gets bathed about once a week

Diet:
Dandelion leaves
Raddicio
Chicory
Sweet basil
Carrot
Dandelion complete diet pellets (cause he likes them)
Fresh water everyday

And advice would be great to put my mind at ease. Thankyou

Firstly your temps as Stephen at night are too high. Horsfields have much colder temps at night than med tortoises. As their wild conditions and temps are a lot lower. I would think around 15- 20 is far better. My iberas have no extra heat at night than the house or greenhouse. I have no central heating on at night in the house. And the GH has a heater to come on if the temps drop below 5c. And they are thriving:0)
So you can use much lower temps for them at night.
During the day, your temps are a little on the low side:0 32c would be better with a back ground temp of around 25c.
Bathing should be every day for at least 20mins. Especially as the tortoise is new to you. It can take them awhile to ajust to a new home and set up.
Feeding after a bath is better to encourage eating.
I would personally ditch the pellets, I take it you bought your tortoise from a shop?

And more weeds, dandelion, sowthistle, plantain, bittercress, mallows are all around at the moment. Campanula, pansies and aubreshia (sp) are also available to give more choice. Try www.thetortoisehouse.com and www.tortoises.net for great advice and plant lists suitable for tortoises.
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Old 06-04-2012, 12:47 PM
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Posts: 32
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Okay thankyou, at the moment weeds are not very available because it is too cold for them to grow but thankyou.

I have had him for about a year but it has only been the past two weeks where he has not been active or eating
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Old 06-04-2012, 12:59 PM
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Yes I got him from a shop but I have had him for about a year and I changed his substrate to top soil about a month ago, should it take that long to adjust?
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Old 06-04-2012, 03:44 PM
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Don't know whether I'm right on this as I keep Red Foots who need much wetter enviroment but a bath once a week sounds not a lot. I bathe my Red Foot twice a day and most people bathe tortoises(not just the humid lovers) as adults 3 times or 2 a week. Do you have any calcium powder? If, you cannot provide sufficient weeds for him, Kale will be a good supplement as it's high in calcium. How deep is the subtrate as Horsfields love to burrow? I would not be so worried by activity at this age I think it's the eating which is a problem.
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Old 06-04-2012, 03:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jordan244 View Post
Okay thankyou, at the moment weeds are not very available because it is too cold for them to grow but thankyou.

I have had him for about a year but it has only been the past two weeks where he has not been active or eating
How big's your enclosure? Put them under a heat lamp and UVB and they will grow very quickly. I had lettuce 2 inches tall after half a week from being seeds!
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Keeping Tortoises, Snails, Rabbits and a dog among other things.
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Old 06-04-2012, 06:11 PM
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I actually think a quick trip to the vets would be a good idea (Herp Specialist)
It would put your mind at rest and you would know if there is a problem or not.
I also think your torts diet could be improved, I am afraid I don't think Kale is a good substiute, it is high in iron and oxallic acid, niether of which agree with tortoises.
Best wishes to you and your tort
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Old 06-04-2012, 06:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urban tortoise View Post
I actually think a quick trip to the vets would be a good idea (Herp Specialist)
It would put your mind at rest and you would know if there is a problem or not.
I also think your torts diet could be improved, I am afraid I don't think Kale is a good substiute, it is high in iron and oxallic acid, niether of which agree with tortoises.
Best wishes to you and your tort
Yes, try and get him to the vet. You would not want much kale anyway as it's pretty much high in everything.
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A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.
Keeping Tortoises, Snails, Rabbits and a dog among other things.
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Old 06-04-2012, 10:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urban tortoise View Post
I actually think a quick trip to the vets would be a good idea (Herp Specialist)
It would put your mind at rest and you would know if there is a problem or not.
I also think your torts diet could be improved, I am afraid I don't think Kale is a good substiute, it is high in iron and oxallic acid, niether of which agree with tortoises.
Best wishes to you and your tort

Kale is actually not that high in oxalic acid. There's not a lot of difference between kale and dandelions in that respect I think it is just a russian thing, mine have not eaten much this week at all. So long as water is available they usually come through periods like this OK.
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