If you own a turtle then you are probably aware of its natural habitat (the ocean). If you are like most pet owners, then you have probably noticed that turtles do tend to get sick from time to time. This is mainly because they are creatures of habit and their illnesses are not unexpected. However, if you own a turtle that swims freely in the open ocean then it is important that you know how to recognize the symptoms of turtle health problems. Here is some helpful information that can help you to identify these problems.
Some of the more common turtle health problems seen in turtles include loss of appetite. This may be due to poor nutrition or to parasites. Some turtles eat so few pellets or vegetables that they gain weight very quickly. To prevent this, make sure you give your turtle a steady diet of live, dried, and fresh food daily. Besides the live plant based foods, which are usually found in the turtle’s shell, feed it high quality calcium and vitamin-rich foods.
Another problem that many turtles suffer from is their inability to shed their shell. Their shells can become cracked and dry because they cannot shed them. If you notice that your turtle has lost its shell, you should pick him up gently and place him in a warmed towel on your towel lined floor or in your bathtub for about half an hour. This will gently pull the dry skin off the turtle’s shell, exposing healthy skin underneath. If your turtle is unable to remove his shell, he will develop bald spots on his back. These bald spots are called nevi.
An unusual looking mole-like protrusion on the back of your turtle is a sign of heat stress. When turtles warm up too much, their moles (growing on their backs) sometimes pop out. Because these cute little moles can cause damage to your turtle’s intestinal system, you should try to avoid letting them pop out of your turtle’s shell. These little moles are actually parasites. There are other health problems associated with these parasites; you should consult your vet regarding these health problems.
One more common turtle health problem is the presence of kidney stones. Although turtles are not as susceptible as dogs or cats to kidney stones, they can still get them. Kidney stones occur when calcium builds up in a turtle’s kidneys causing the animal to feel ill and have a decreased appetite. If your turtle has a kidney stone, do not attempt to force it out of its turtle’s shell. Trying to squeeze the stone will only irritate the animal and lead to further damage. Natural methods such as diapamide will help to get rid of the kidney stone.
Turtle health problems can be prevented by providing your turtle with a healthy diet and a clean environment. This will also help reduce the possibility of turtle diseases and illnesses. When you see signs of these health problems in your turtle, you should immediately take your turtle to the vet. The vet may prescribe an antibiotic, to help treat the illness. In some cases, your vet may recommend that your turtle is put on a diet due to over-feeding.