Friday, March 13, 2015

Eating A Cuttlebone for a Strong Shell & Trim Beak

This is how to remove the hard shell part off a cuttlebone before eating the soft chalky part.  I'm sharing this advice, which my human received from someone on one of her online groups.  Apparently, we sulcatas can't digest the hard shell part of a cuttlebone, which is why your human needs to remove the former before serving the soft chalky part to us.  Cuttlebones are a good source of calcium and eating it helps us trim our beaks  =)  By the way, vitamin D3 from unfiltered sunlight exposure will help us absorb the calcium that we eat to avoid soft shell problems and any illnesses related to calcium deficiency.

Soaking the cuttlebone in water for 2 days will make it easier to remove its hard shell, Place a something heavy like a rock on top of the cuttlebone to keep it submerged in water.
Now 2 days later. My mum's trying to pry off the hard shell from the chalky part.

Success! Let the whole soft chalky chunk of cuttlebone dry before eating  :)  nomz nomz!

It's so crunchy and chewy! Nomnomnomzzzz! :))

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Most Recent Photo 2014 - Sleepy Time for Sleepy Tort :)

Look at me now!  I'm almost as big as my human's bedroom pillow  :D  huehuehue!

This is me at 4 years old. Taken Oct. 2014

Friday, January 10, 2014

For My Fellow Torts Refusing to Eat - Force Feeding Resource Materials

This post is for my fellow tortoises out there who are currently feeling sick or poorly and refusing to eat.  Your human must be so worried sick by now.  Show this to your human for some alternative ways to get some food into your stomach  :To the humans who are reading this post, here are four alternatives to force feed your sick tort:

ALTERNATIVE #1:  Hand Feeding
Hold your tort's food right in front of his/her mouth one piece at a time.  This is applicable to any mix of food that you would like to prepare for your shelled friend. And because by this time, it may be over a day since he/she last ate, you will want to feed him/her with nutritious food that is not just grass or hay.  Furthermore, I highly suggest that you add a pinch of reptile phosphorous-free multi-minerals powder with calcium (and vitamin D if your tort currently has no access to unfiltered sunlight due to the cold weather) to your tort's food.  My human hand fed me this way back then when I suffered from a respiratory disease and which made me feel very lethargic and refusing to eat.  This is time-consuming and will require a lot of patience, but the pay-off is that you will be able to sleep soundly at night knowing that your sully will still be alive when you wake up the next day  :)
Offer your sulcata one piece of green at a time. Let the leafy green touch her mouth while letting it caress/slide across her beak from side to side to allow her to smell it and hopefully want to eat it; This technique is helpful especially if your sick sully refuses to open her eyes due to weakness or if you suspect that she's gone temporarily blind. If she rejects it, grab another piece of the same type of leafy green. Be prepared to have a "variety" of tort food handy just in case your sick and picky sully refuses the ones you're currently offering. In this video, I offered Peachy a piece of mustard green, then some pieces of water hyacinth (kangkong), some jute leaves (saluyot), and some of her favorite raw squash sticks -- which is guaranteed to make your sully want to eat.  "I made it look easy for my human to hand-feed me in this video taken Jan. 6, 2015 only because I wasn't sick in this video." -- Princess Peachy

 ALTERNATIVE #2:  Soaking in a Warm Shallow Pool of Blended Greens & Multi-Minerals Supplement
 During most times when I'm soaking, my human never sees me actually drinking and yet I still manage to get water into my body.  This is because water also enters thru my cloaca (butt) when I soak. Chop some of your sulcata's food such as hibiscus petals, dandelion petals, pumpkin or squash cubes (for vitamin A), mustard greens, kangkong -- chuck into a blender, add a pinch of your tort's "phosphorous-free rmulti-minerals supplement with calcium and vitamin D3", and add slightly warm water.  Blend until smooth.  Pour  the warm soup onto your sulcata's bath tub (or whatever shallow dish/tub that your tort uses for soaking).  Then let your sulcata soak into this warm, shallow veggie soup for 15 minutes to allow him/her to absorb the liquid thru his/her cloaca.  Afterwards, please don't forget to soak your sulcata in a shallow slightly warm, clean water bath for less than a minute to wash off the veggie soup residue from his/her body.  I would also suggest that you keep a basking lamp on above your soaking sulcata to ensure that he/she doesn't get chilly while bathing.  Do this once daily until your tort is strong enough for at least Alternative #1 above.  I personally recommend this alternative especially for sulcatas that are too lethargic to open their eyes.  Just because your sulcata's eyes are closed doesn't mean that he/she's just asleep the whole 24 hours.  He/she may be too weak to open his/her eyes.  Follow this alternative to keep your sulcata hydrated and nourished to keep him/her alive (for a few more precious hours or minutes) until you get him/her to a veterinarian who specializes in reptiles.

ALTERNATIVE #3:  Tube Feeding -- Replace the Syringe Needle With A Sterile Catheter Tube / Soft Tube
Use a blender or Osterizer to prepare your shelled friend's food.  Just chuck in the greens, maybe add some acorn squash for vitamin A, enough water to blend the mix, and a pinch of reptile multi-minerals powder with calcium (and vitamin D if your tort currently has no access to unfiltered sunlight due to the cold weather) into the blender.  Fill your syringe (REMOVE THE NEEDLE) with the blended soup, then watch this video courtesy of

ALTERNATIVE #4:  OP Tube Feeding (Do Not Try This At Home) - Please Ask Your Reptile Vet to Administer This
The following Youtube video is again courtesy of

You May Also Want To Read Some of My Other Related Blog Posts:
•       My Recommended Nom Nomz List: Grasses, Flowers, Greens & Other Sources of Multiminerals
•       Having A Detox Spa In My Soaking Tub (a topic on the importance of soaking)
•       Why Basking in Unfiltered Sunlight is Important For You & Me =)

Don't forget to donate to The Jill Martin Fund for Tortoise Welfare and Conservation  : )

Thursday, January 9, 2014

My Christmas 2013 Photo & Video Op. :)

HO!  HO!  HO!!!!!!! Happy  birthday, Jesus!

Look how I've grown!  I have a message for all you tort lovers out there. Watch my vid till the last second  :)

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Treating My Eye Inflammation

"Here's what my inflammed right eye looks like today. At least now only about a fifth of my eye is covered with inflammation, unlike yesterday when half the front of my eye was covered due to inflammation. My vet says that it may have been due to an insect bite or I might have accidentally scraped my right eye on something, which caused the infection 'n inflammation. Usually, my human would use her hand to laddle warm water onto my eyes twice to make the teary red eyes go away. But since it's been three days as of yesterday, my humans decided to bring me to my vet."
"Here I am being brave 'n trusting, looking directly at my human's finger as she was about to slather some vet prescribed Tobradex (generic name: Tobramycin Dexamethasone) sterile ophtalmic ointment -- it's an antibacterial & anti-inflammatory ointment for the eyes. Pls. have your human ask your vet first before using this on your yourself  :)  I'm thinking here, "Easy, easy, be careful now...maybe if I don't move a muscle she won't accidentally poke out my eye". lol!"

"My human put a generous amount of the vet prescribed Tobradex (generic name: Tobramycin Dexamethasone) sterile ophtalmic ointment all over the tip of her finger to make sure that it gets on the surface of my eyeball with whatever part of her finger that touches my eye lol :D I was very calm the entire time :) I was thinking, "Pfft! Easy as a a plate of squash cubes! It doesn't hurt at all!" By the way, my human washed her hands thoroughly with anti-bacterial dishwashing liquid before she did this procedure (yup! dishwashing liquid lol! Just to be that her hand's squeaky clean 'n free from the moisturizer content of her hand soap lol!). But as an afterthought, I highly recommend asking your human to use sterile surgical gloves when doing this procedure on you :) She was very careful not to press on my eyeball. She just gently spread the ointment onto the surface of my right eye."
"Here's my 's right eye after my human put Tobradex (generic name: Tobramycin Dexamethasone) sterile ophtalmic ointment on it. About 1/5 of my eye is still covered in inflammation, while yesterday half of my eye was covered in inflammation. The vet says the ointment should be applied onto my right eye twice daily until there's no more inflammation. He also said not to worry and that it'd take only three days or less for my eye to get better :) I sat on my lap the entire time :) Pls. have your human ask your vet first before they use  this ointment on you. And don't forget to ask your human to wipe the excess ointment on your cheek."
By the way, my chelonian vet injected me with steroids, vitamin A, and vitamin E before giving me a prescription for Tobradex (generic name: Tobramycin Dexamethasone) sterile ophtalmic ointment which my human needs to put on my right eye twice daily until my eye's swollen inflammation disappears.

"My human had been applying Tobradex on my eyes twice daily without fail. But more than week after, my eyes were still inflamed. Even my vet was puzzled, as I had access to plenty of nutritious food, I got my steroid shots twice already, got my vitamins A, D & E shots twice already, my human had thoroughly cleaned my room (the TV room lol), and my Tobradex eye ointment was supposed to be potent. So one night, my human took a picture of my closed eyes while I was sleeping. And when she went on to look at my photo, she zoomed it, and this is what she saw. As you can see there are at least four specks of dirt stuck on my eyelid. And during my waking hours, these specks of  dirt constantly rub against my eyeball and irritate it. This explains why my eyes get inflamed an hour or two each time after my human applies the steroid based anti-bacterial/anti-inflammation Tobradex eye ointment on my eyeball.  =)"

My human used her hand to laddle clean, slightly warm water onto my head about 15 to 20 times (about 3secs apart to allow me to breathe in between) to get the dirt off my eyes. So there you go. My eyes are bright, shiny and healthy again.  Mystery solved.  Case closed.  =)