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Posted: 10/05/2010 by adie.k

hi all. new to your site and if i can pick your brains.......
i have a hermann tort and we think he is around 18mths old. ever since we got him, around 6mths ago, on and off he has had a weepy eye. he lives in a table with beech bark as the base. has a combination uva - uvb bulb. gets a soak three times a week and garden fed. when we looked at him this morning his eye was closed and didn't open for around five minutes. a bit sloughy and then very wet with bubbles in it. he is eating and doing everything from the other end as he should , but maybe a little on the sleepy side.if any information could be given it would be great. thanks in advance.

Re: adie.k
Posted: 10/05/2010 by tpgarlene

Hi Adie

Welcome to the site!   There is lots of good information on here, and lots of people on the forum who are always happy to answer any questions you have, so please do make use of us!

OK, weepy eyes are sometimes a reaction to an environmental irritant - I would change the substrate that you are keeping him on first off, even if it is not causing any irritation, tortoises need to be able to dig and create little 'microclimates' within their enclosure, which may be a bit more humid, or cooler than the surroundings.  In the wild they often dig little scrapes, and it is important to give them the opportunity to do this when kept indoors too - a simple mix of top soil and kids playsand to a depth of about 3" is ideal.  It is important to get your tort ouside as much as possible too, the weather is picking up now, tortoises are definitely outdoor animals - there are lots of examples of good outdoor enclosures on the site, you do need to make sure it is fully secure for escape purposes, and also from any other animals or large birds.

Did your tortoise come from a pet shop?  As this has been going on for a little while now, and he seems a bit sleepy, I think it would be wise to get him checked over by a vet, it could be that there is a bit of an infection there which needs treatment.

I hope this helps, please let us know how you get on


Arlene TPG

wet eyes
Posted: 10/05/2010 by adie.k

thanks for the quick reply.

i have had the little (fella???) out in the garden on the hot days we have had. i think he found it a bit daunting on the grass and just kept running for cover. i take him out in his table now and he seems much better. i am currently building him an enclosure so he can have a good run out on clover, grass and the dandelions we planted last year. his left eye is not as bright as the other one and  definitely seems lazy and crusty in the morning. i have taken your advice and just changed the substrate to the mix you suggested. i will post again if any future developments. once again thanks for your help.


Re: adie.k
Posted: 10/05/2010 by adie.k

p.s arlene.

could you just clarify rthe basics  again for me as you know much more than me about torts.

do they eat every day at this time of year, and can he be over fed with leaves from the garden?

do i have to sprinkle the calcium powder irrespective of what he is eating.

should he come out every day?

can they eat CARROTS. this is yes or no on every site i go on.. i ask this 'cause some sites say that the eye thing is a lack of vitamin A and you should give  carrots which are high in that vitamin..


Re: adie.k
Posted: 11/05/2010 by VivTPG

Hi, in answer to your questions,

Torts are quite greedy and will eat all the time if you let them, best to limit the food and aim for slow smooth growth, give as much as he will eat in 20 mins or enough leaves to cover his shell on top (carapace). 

Yes continue to sprinkle nutrobal and limestone flour, use one one day and the other the next.

If the weather is warm enough then get him outside as much as you can, it the best thing in the world for them!  Ideally if you could fit a basking lamp in his outdoor pen (hutch or kennel for example) he can stop out all summer.

With regard to carrots it ok to feed them as an occasional treat, I occasionally grate some on their weeds.

Regards Vivienne

Re: adie.k
Posted: 11/05/2010 by adie.k

Vivienne. thank you very much for your information. i will get it all in place today. hopefully all will be well



Re: adie.k
Posted: 24/05/2010 by adie.k

hi tortoise lovers...

thanks all for your information.

i have changed all the things you guys suggested.

his eye is looking much better, almost there to look at and doesn't irritate him.

outside in the sunny weather and loving it, he has made the entire corners and seems to sniff the mew parts as he goes. seems to favour eating clover though. A bit of a shame as we planted almost every flower and weed on the reccomended list in the start of the spring.

i don't know if yiou guys have come accross a homing tort before, but he seems top find his way back to his table (put on the floor) from wherever we put him in the garden. can get back home from 50 yards, and gets there 9 times out of ten. very relaxing tortoise watching in a hammock with a beer.

once again. thanks for all your help.



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