Cache Valley Bee Removal

Jump to content

- - - - -

VV urgent help for star tortoise

  • Please log in to reply
3 replies to this topic

#1 aalya


    Starting Member

  • Members
  • 6 posts

Posted 12 March 2003 - 09:54 AM

Dear Sir, Madam, Hi! We badly and urgently need your good advice about our sick Star Tortoise. The communication below has 3 parts. (A) A Very Brief History (B) A Detailed History © Medical history as per our doctor. (D) Conclusion. Please feel free to go through it in however much detail you desire. Thank you very much.
We need IMMEDIATE & URGENTadvice, please, in order to save her life
Digital close up photos of our tortoise & its wounds can be seen at :

A) Very brief case history.
Our Star Tortoise was bitten on the front of both forelegs by a rat and inspite of best efforts, her left foreleg deteriorated and had to be amputated and stitched at the soft tissue where the leg starts, leaving no stub. The right foreleg too, though less affected, has strength and she uses it but a couple of wounds manifesting in holes in the flesh is not healing inspite of daily medication of a spray, and a cream. Our major concern is 5 fold at this time. 1) The amputated leg heals where the stitches have been given without developing infection. 2) The right foreleg does not go the way of the first leg which had developed lack of blood supply and thus it needs to be treated correctly and cured with the right advise 3) How to rehabilitate her to enable her to move around on 3 legs provided the right foreleg cures. 4) God forbid the right foreleg does not cure and also has to be amputated, whether she can be rehabilitated with just 2 hind legs (with maybe the trolley idea described later or any other suggestions as per your experience). 5) Recently, say for 3 days before the amputation she has moved around a bit with her eyes closed, especially the right eye. After the amputation however for a day both eyes were open, but today the left was open but the right again closed. Does this indicate anything or does anything need to be done? Otherwise she appears healthy. We badly need your good advice on the above 5 issues please
We need IMMEDIATE & URGENTadvice, please, in order to save her life
B) Detailed History.

About 4 months ago our Star Tortoise was bitten by a rat on both front forelegs on the front part near the joints with some bleeding on both. At first the wounds were cleaned and a drying powder was applied for 7 to 10 days which seemed to dry from the outside, but the tortoise was still very inactive as far as moving around was concerned. Then the doctor opined that the wound only looked dry from the outside but probably was infected from within so 5 to 6 antibiotic injections were administered in the hind legs every alternate day which seemed to dry up the wound from inside of both legs and the oozing seemed to stop after about 2 weeks on daily medication and dressing. In the meantime, a spray and a cream were being used to dress both legs daily. This resulted in neckrose tissue slowly sloughing off and new tissue seemed to be developing from within on both legs. The left leg however was always much worse than the right leg. After some time both legs wounds seemed to localize at the top and manifest in a couple of small dry holes on the top of both legs. In the meantime, since the left foreleg was very weak, she could not lift her weight and her shell to walk, so we made a small trolley about half a centimeter high on ball bearings and would place her on that for 4 hours daily, so that she could move without having to lift her own body weight. This she did and she would move 100-120 feet a day on this trolley which we attached under her bottom shell with a tape. In the meantime, we have also been force feeding her daily through a syringe and tube which she still is taking well. The food was in the form of special tortoise food in the form of tablets which we would dissolve in water and then put it into a small syringe along with some water and the doctor would force feed her daily once with this, which she took well. We did this as she appeared to eat less naturally herself than before and to keep her strength up so that the wounds could heal and so she would continue to walk and be mobile, we did this. In the meantime, she hardly ate anything on her own, maybe because we used to force feed her anyway, but once in a while had some lettuce, tomato and cabbage etc., but very little, may be once in 2 days and only 1 or 2 pieces we donít know whether we are feeding her too little or too much but apparently if fed too much, they throw it out of their mouth, while feeding, and occasionally maybe once in 2 days would drink a few sips of water. She would also urinate and excrete once in maybe 3 to 4 days, sometimes more often sometimes less often. This force feeding continues till today. After about a month of the above described dressing, the doctor opined that the visible tissue from the top was not healing and to enable it, the wound should be looked at from inside, and any bad tissue inside should be scrapped off and then the wound stitched from the top to enable healing. This was done and about 5 stitches were given from the outside and the doctor opined that from inside when he went in, there was quite a lot of dead tissue which he scrapped off and then above 5 stitches were given, which were progressively later removed.. This was now about 2 months after she had been bitten and 2 months from today. About a month later, meaning one month ago, we noticed that the left foreleg had developed a small cut close to the base (meaning the opposite side of the toes) as that leg which had been stitched would lie outside and not fold inwards under the shell and therefore fell close to the right foreleg which had some scaly tissue which had made a small cut. Two stitches were given at this point too and there was no oozing. But around that time or around 7 days earlier we had noticed that the leg was drying up perhaps indicating lack of blood supply and the nails were turning black, then it developed a reddish tinge but the tips of the nails started to show white but the leg kept kind of drying and blackening perhaps indicating no good blood supply was going and about a week ago it was indicated by the doctor that it needs to be amputated, and this was done 3 days ago under anaesthesia and stitches were given as described in the very brief history. Since then the very next day she took her force feeding well and moved around a little and a bit on the trolley also but mainly we have left her quiet in a place with no vibrations and sound to rest, and show her the sun everyday for an hour and put her on the trolley just for a little while and then put her back into a quiet place. In the meantime, the right foreleg now continues the same dressing daily but two small holes persist there which donít seem to be healing, even though no ooze is coming out, but our concern is that this leg also should not dry up and start blackening after sometime. It seems to yet have a lot of strength in it for when you pull it out to dress it she retracts with considerable force but we need badly to prevent this leg going the same way as the other.

Medical History
The rat bit wound was present on the both fore legs with deep tissue penetration and tearing of tissue apart with infection.

Left leg was damaged more than right leg.

1. Antibiotics used: for treatment Ampicilline + Cloxacilline @ 10mg/kg/body weight
2. Local dressing with Pendistrine ointment
3. Cleaning with tincture iodine
4. Anesthesia used: Ketamine 20mg/kg/body weight, reducing 30% for shell weight, local anesthesia.
5. Lingnocain 10% was given.
6. The aprox weight of tortoise is 1Kg.

7. Ingredients of Pendistrine cream:
a. Procaine penicilline GIP 100000 units
b. Streptomycine sulphate 100mg
c. Sulfamerazine B.P. (vet) 0.5g
d. Hydrocortisone Acetate I.P. 20mg in Plastobase

ToTo Food analysis

∑ Min. crude protein 38%
∑ Max. crude fiber 02%
∑ Min. crude fat 05%
∑ Max. moisture 08%
∑ Vitamins min amount per lb 454gm
∑ Ascorbui Ė 2 Ė Polyphosphate 200mg


In summary, we need general advice and precise medical advice if possible on what exactly to do now about the 4 major concerns outlined above in part A.

Sir/Madam, If you are able to give advice but could also put us in touch with any other individual if you deem fit who could render further advice, we would also be very grateful, as we are committed to saving our dear pet alongwith our doctor who has done everything possible on a daily basis to save this tortoise and make her as comfortable as possible.

Thanking you for your patience and looking forward to your early urgent response, within a day or so please.

We remain,

Yours faithfully,

#2 JJ


    Addicted Member

  • Members Plus
  • 4,206 posts
  • Location:Canada

Posted 12 March 2003 - 10:10 AM

Welcome aalya to TT.

Very graphic pictures and this needs to be attended to by a vet. Are you in singapore, where it's illegal to have such pets. But the Star Tort needs a vet, not advice, but real treatments.

Maybe Brian and Jay, who are from Singapore can give advice what to do.


P.S. YOu can also ask the person to join the Star Tort Yahoo Group if they have not already. Many keepers from the group are Asian. Maybe they will have solutions.


#3 Jay


    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 1,519 posts
  • Location:Singapore

Posted 12 March 2003 - 10:43 AM

oh mine..this is real sad...[icon_smile_sad.gif
aalya..this injury is really advanced n like wad JJ needs professional your vet trained in handling reptiles? u need a vet who really know turtles n tortoises to do the good n right thing..tell us where u from, so that we can help in suggesting vets or places to get stuff dat can help in some way or another. If from, brian or claire can help in suggesting some good vets.

#4 Acutus


    Boxie Dude

  • Members
  • 4,622 posts
  • Age: 50
  • Location:Catonsville, MD. USA
  • Interests:Have kept and worked with reptiles for most of my life.

Posted 12 March 2003 - 12:40 PM

The tort needs systemic antibiotics. the infection is in it's body. Topical solutions will not work the tort needs injectables!!

YOur Tort will be fine with 3 legs!! Save the tort first then worry about rehab!!

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users