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Newbie - got some questions
Posted: 15/07/2013 by gemsypoo


We are thinking about getting a tortoise. Speaking to the man at the pet shop (which is a very good reptile pet shop, we have had friends/family by a lot of lizards and snakes from there) he advised that a horsefields tortoise would need a 3 foot vivarium and doesn't need to be hibernated if we aren't breeding from it.
Doing some research I see that a tortoise table would actually be the best thing. I have managed to find some cat proof tables on ebay so that is fine. However is it true about the hibernation?
Also, we are getting a bit late in the plant/weed growing season. We will plan to grow some weeds(easy peasy) for next year, but where can I get some decent food for over the winter months?
I am also wondering if there is any pros/cons to the sex of the tortoise? And how people have experienced cats and tortoises getting on? My cats are house cats so will be there all the time, although the plan is to let tortie roam the downstairs while we are in. Obviously it will also be allowed in the garden during the summer months, but being in Scotland, that will only be 2 days a year!!
Thanks very much for your help :-)

Re: Newbie - got some questions
Posted: 15/07/2013 by Tom

Hello, reptile dealers are usually quite good with snakes & lizards, but not with torts. A viv = big takings. It is natural for horsfields to hibernate & don't buy one. The ones in shops are all wild caught (despite what you may have been told). You can still sow weeds & many dom. plants ie pansies are good.
Either sex is ok if you have just one. It's not good to have torts on floors. Several reasons inc. the tort will be frustrated when back in the T Table. Re Scots weather, mini poly-tunnels (walk-ins) online are from only £50.
Have a look on the TPG Breeders list.

Re: Newbie - got some questions
Posted: 17/07/2013 by Bicyclebelle

Hi! Even in Scotland, I am sure you can get dandelions and plantain until late October and grow some stuff on a windowsill. I have resorted this year to the 'living salads’ from time to time as well. Hibernation is good because they get a natural break when food is hard to find for you; otherwise, they stuff themselves all year and get lumpy. It is very easy to pop another leaf in if they look ‘hungry’, which is basically all the time if they are warm. Roaming the house or on a table, he/she will still need depth to dig into and a good UV light. Outside as much as possible is always best. I don't think tortoises make good house pets and I think it’s better to have more than one myself. If ther is plenty of room. And yes get from a home breeder here or elsewhere, not a pet shop.


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