You're in > TPG Members Forum > Tortoise General Questions > Buying my first Tortoise

Buying my first Tortoise
Posted: 17/03/2011 by EMGOOSE

I'm just beginning to do some research into owning a Tortoise as a pet.
I have an enclosed garden and I am able to dedicate an area to a tortoise. I do grow a small amount of vegetables, but organically. I also have a conservatory. I have no other pets (my husband is allergic to any animals with hair!!)
I only work a couple of mornings, so will be able to dedicate time to looking after a tortoise. Although I'm unsure of the amount of time that they actually require?
However, I have no idea what sort of Tortoise would be suitable for a 'Beginner' owner. I've read that European breeds seem the 'simplest', but beyond that I'm not sure. Are there are differences between owing a boy or girl for example?
What should their box be made from and how big should their enclosure actually be (I've looked at photos, but it's hard to gage the actual size)?
Any basic advice that anyone can offer to a complete beginner would be gratefully received!
Many Thanks

Re: Buying my first Tortoise
Posted: 18/03/2011 by VivTPG

Hi and Click and drag me down to the editorto our site.   It is good to see you are doing your research before getting a tortoise.  The best torts for beginners are as you say the med ones, eg horsfield, spur thigh or hermanns.  Please read the care sheets we have produced for each species, they can be found on the left hand menu under 'The Tortoise'.  They cover all husbandry issues and for torts of different ages.

With regard to an enclosure, the bigger the better!  The tort will need a table top (if baby/juvenile), if older they will require a shed or greenhouse that they can go into if the weather is cooler, in mine I have left a brick out of the base wall of the greenhouses so they can come and go as they please.  Please see some of our members enclosures, both indoor and outdoor, again see 'photo gallery' on left menu, then enclosures. 

If you are only having one tort it doesnt matter what sex it is, you cannot tell the sex anyway until the tort is 6+ years old.

I hope this helps, any further questions please ask away!  Oh and before I forget, DO NOT buy from a petshop or internet dealer, the torts are more than likely to be imported.  We have a list of UK breeders under 'buying a tortoise', any problems let us know, regards Vivienne

Re: Buying my first Tortoise
Posted: 18/03/2011 by tortoise7

WOW what a great start you are getting off to with all your research!!!
This is a great site so you will get plenty of good advice and support. It is really exciting getting your first tortoise, I still remember that day, and they are such fascinating little characters.Another bonus is you get have that feeling back every year when they come back out of hibernation, it's like meeting them all over again teehee
Anyway I look forward to hearing when you have you new little family member, and I don't think anyone can stress any more than please only buy from a UK Breeder, as they are imported from the pet shops and have so many health problems, which causes such alot of stress to the owner and the tort, on what should be a happy time.
Kind Regards
Jane, Keya & Molly

Re: Buying my first Tortoise
Posted: 07/07/2011 by tonib123

hi could you tell me were i could buy cheap but healthy uk torts for beginers. thanks.

Re: Buying my first Tortoise
Posted: 07/07/2011 by tonib123

p.s i would also like to know where to get a cat proof indoor and outdoor pen. are there any breeds that dont hybernate?

Click and drag me down to the editor


web designer: