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Turtles/Turtle with shell rot.



I have a rescue red ear slider turtle who was given to us with shell rot. I am currently treating with peroxide and silver sulfadiazine cream. I will be switching to chlorhexidine instead of peroxide. I have him in a 55 gallon tank with uvb lights, heat lamp , basking area, and a 80 gallon canister filter. I was wondering if the silver sulfadiazine should be cleaned off before placing him back in his tank.



Hi Kurt,

It sounds like you're doing everything correctly.  You don't have to clean the sulfadiazine off before returning the turtle to his tank, but you should dry dock him first.  Minimum 2-4 hours, but you can try overnight.  Put a folded towel in a box or plastic bin so he has somewhere to hide, and he may not be too stressed.  Then he can be in the tank during the day.

Here's some additional information on prevention and treatment that may be helpful:  And thank you for helping this guy out.  A lot of RES are living in miserable conditions, so it's great to hear that this one is getting the help he needs.  


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Questions regarding husbandry of Russian tortoises and other Mediterranean species, sulcata, and redfoot tortoises; general tortoise and turtle care; box turtle care. If I can't answer a specific question, I can provide sources for further research. Disclaimer: My advice is not a substitute for vet care. If I think your tortoise/turtle has a specific medical condition or injury that warrants a vet visit, I'll tell you so, and if possible I'll help you locate a vet. It is neither legal nor ethical for me to provide veterinary advice.


I have kept and bred Russian tortoises for over ten years and have other Mediterranean species plus redfoots and box turtles. I've worked with other tortoise and turtle species while doing volunteer rescue work; mostly sulcata but some leopards, California desert tortoises, yellowfoots, all box turtle species, red-eared sliders, etc. I don't personally keep aquatic species, but have access to a wealth of information and research to help you with any questions you might have.

My knowledge is based on hands-on experience keeping, breeding, and working with tortoises and turtles.

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