Weak front legs

by Karen

I have a male hermanns spur thigh tortoise 4 years old who hasn't hibernated this winter. He mainly feeds on fresh veg and he is eating what he normally eats (he doesn't have fruit in his diet only very occasionaly) and we don't have a problem. He wont eat the dried tortoise pellets (have tried soaking them but he still won't eat it). He is active, trotting around and climbing but eating only small amounts, has runny faeces and his front legs seem to be weak. His back legs are strong and he starts off walking fine with his front legs but quickly ends up walking with his front legs kind of pulled in and pushing himself around by his back legs. Our heat lamp has broken and we are waiting for a replacement, so is lack of heat the problem? He seemed ok until I gave him a bath and used warm water to warm him up. Up until then he would trot miles. Now, I can tell he wants to but stops after a short period. Can you shed any light on his problem. There is no sign of worms or undigested food in his stools, its just runny poo.

Comments for Weak front legs

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Jan 30, 2011
Hibernting tortoises
by: Shelly

Thank you for reporting back.

You should hibernate only very healthy animals. Yours have had a bit of a rough time, and even though they seem fine now, I would wait at least until next year.

Keep it slow and steady.

Jan 15, 2011
George is a lot better!
by: Karen

Good news! George is alot better. Took him to the vets after your comments, along with his brother just so the vet could look over the 2 of them, incase it ways something catching. The vet couldn't come up with any reason for the weak front legs but did give us meds for the runny poo and a vitamin powder which also gives them calcium to give them every day. But its been just over a week since the visit to the vet and they both seem a lot brighter, poohing normally, eating me out of house and home and George has started to walk normally with his front legs.We did get a new heat lamp at the same time so whether it is the lamp or treatment that has done the trick I don't know but something has worked! Really pleased to seem them back to their old selves.

Can I ask a hibernation question? Wanted to hibernate the boys and thought they would stop eating themselves when the time was right but they just kept eating. This is why they are both still around this time of year. They are only young (4 and 5 years old) and we haven't hibernated them before. According to the vet we should withdraw their food to make them stop eating. I know they have to had no food for 3 weeks before hibernating so they have got an empty stomach but how do we achieve this as obviously leaving it to the tortoises didn't work. Any advice please? Thanks

Dec 26, 2010
Sick Tortoise
by: Shelly

Please see a vet as soon as possible. When you know what the treatment will be, please come back and tell us what happens. This will help others who visit the site with problems similar to yours.

Keep it slow and steady.

Dec 24, 2010
by: Anonymous


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