You're in > TPG Members Forum > Tortoise Care, Health/Problems > Whistling Tortoise

Whistling Tortoise
Posted: 15/05/2009 by webbo

Hi I am new to this site so please bear with me.

I have a Hermans Tortoise, approx 20 years old and approx 9inches long. She normally eats well (when its not too chilly) but just lately she has gone off her food. I have also noticed that she "whistles" when she breathes, is this normal? I have read that tortoises can catch colds and this effects their sense of smell and appetite. I am getting worried, and will be taking her to the vet, any suggestions as I don't want to panic!

Re: Whistling Tortoise
Posted: 16/05/2009 by TPGDarren


Whistling is usually down to two reasons. She may have something lodged in her nasal passage or it might be the start of RNS (upper tract respiatory infection). I'd be inclined to take her t a vets for a check-up. If it is RNS - this is best caught early and is treatable with antibiotics (usually Batryl). Left untreated it can cause severe respiratory problems and pneumonia.

There is a list of good tortoise vets on our website:-


Many vets aren't very clued up on tortoise treatment, so it is worth taking your tortoise to see an expreienced vet




Re: Whistling Tortoise
Posted: 20/05/2009 by webbo

Thanks for your input, yes I have already taken her to a specialist, who trimmed her beak and took a blood sample. Waiting for results. He recommended we put a fomula into her bathing water to encourage appetite, but she has only had a few nibbles but is very lively all the same. Do they need to adjust after getting their beaks trimmed??

Re: Whistling Tortoise
Posted: 21/05/2009 by vivtpgadmin

Hi, I was just wandering if you had had the blood results back and how she is now?

The formula the vet is referring to sounds like Reptoboost, this is added to the bath water, the tort has to be 'rinsed off' in warm water after, as it is a food and will attract bacteria if not rinsed away.

When she has her beak trimmed she will adjust herself, just put her food on slate or a slab so that it is worn down naturally as she eats.

Regards Vivienne


Web Design Bristol