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Turtles/Injured turtle


Hi Jeanne,
Bert is a baby red slider I own. I also raise Siberian Huskies. We currently have 3 puppies 8 weeks old. During a large family event the children left a door open. A puppy got out & found Bert in his water bath. The puppy played with him and bit his shell. He had some bleeding & there are parts of his shell ripped. He seems alert & ok.

Any care tips? Does he need a vet?

Thank you!!

Hi Leisha,

Absolutely, you need to take the turtle to a vet ASAP. Dog bites are very infectious, and it's likely that there is damage or puncture wounds that you're not able to see.  In the meantime, keep him in a box with a clean towel in a warm, but not hot area.  Soak him in clean water once a day. Don't try to treat the wounds until he's been examined by a vet, because it could cause more harm than good.  The injuries will need to be cleaned and a course of antibiotics orescribed (at minimum). Good luck!


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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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