box tortoise

by Peter
(Malacca Malaysia)

I have 2 Asian Box Tortoises which live and sleep in our back garden.We have had them 3 years,and found them in the wild.One is fine,the other has not eaten or moved,neither does it retract its head or paws when touched,for a number of weeks.It is about 7 inches long,so is mature.

Because of the climate here ,tortoises do not hibernate.
We are worried about Georgina so any advice would be appreciated.
Thanks Peter

Comments for box tortoise

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Jan 26, 2010
Box Tortoise
by: Peter

Thanks Greek tortoise Guild for the advice,I will look, into what you said.
The thing is we found her outside the back garden wall,next to paddi fields where we live,also we have had both tortoises for 3 years ,and the other one is fine.
Before this happened ,Georgina had a problem with her left front leg,she did not use it to move.There was no physical damage.
Unfortunately there does not seem to be any vets in malacca that deal with tortoises.
Thanks Peter

Jan 26, 2010
Do you have a verterinarian?
by: The Greek Tortoise Guild

This could be serious.
If you have a veterinarian close-by (or even not-so-close-by) that specializes in reptiles I would suggest taking your tortoise to him/her. If, however, your veterinarian deals primarily with dogs and cats, you might be better-off to do your own research and call another veterinarian on the phone.
If you have to do your own research then I would suggest finding out what the differences are between the environment that you are providing your tortoises and the environment that they have in the wild. Did you find them in the wild in another location from where you are living now? If so, anything/everything from humidity to temperature to the amount of sun that they get needs to be evaluated. An excellent source of very reliable information is the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Here is their page for what I think must be your tortoise (or turtle, I suppose):
Copy and paste that link into your web browser, look at the pictures under the "Images and External Links" tab and read some of the descriptions to make sure that this is in fact your chelonian. Once you've determined that you're looking at the right animal, start going through the information there and compare their natural environment to the one that they are living in now. If there are any major differences, change your environment, take the tortoises back to where you found them, or give them to someone that can provide the appropriate habitat.
It's hard to diagnose chelonian health problems because they don't whimper or meow like most people's pets when they're uncomfortable. If their current habitat is vastly different than their natural habitat then you can safely bet that they're not comfortable and probably not healthy--even though they may not "look" any different than when you picked them up out of the jungle.
The IUCN has been very helpful to me and has returned my emails when I asked questions. If the information on the page that I linked to above is not sufficient, I would suggest emailing them and asking for any further information on your chelonian. They are very friendly and helpful.
I hope this has helped some. Feel free to ask any other questions you may have. While I'm not a specialist on this type of chelonian (my specialty is Greek Tortoises), a lot of chelonian care is general and can applied to all species. You can reply back on this post or contact me on my blog at
Good luck!

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