Urgent Care :: Advice needed on sick turtle at Petsmart

This is not a substitute for qualified and relevant veterinarian care.
Read this before you post a new topic here.

Post Posted: Tue Nov 03, 2015 6:48 pm   Re: Advice needed on sick turtle at Petsmart

Water depth should not be a problem if you keep the tank clear of ornaments that it could get stuck under. Stick to simple, taller wood or rock work to provide easy surface access.
Jeremiah
 
Posts: 575
Joined: Jun 7, 2013
Gender: Male

Post Posted: Tue Nov 03, 2015 11:52 pm   Re: Advice needed on sick turtle at Petsmart

Glad you like her, Steve! :) Day by day her bloated issue seems to be getting a little better. I still would like a vet to look her over though (especially with her appetite issues - i.e., eating very, very little).

On that topic, I have a herp vet appointment scheduled for Winnie at this place (referred to by a couple other vets I reached out to in my area) on Saturday: http://www.vcahospitals.com/cedar I hope it goes well. We'll see how they are...

Still trying to figure out what the spot on her head is. I had her out for a bit tonight - starting to think it's just part of the patterning of her skin. Still not sure though.

Here are a few pictures of her tank - still a work-in-progress (excuse the knick-knacks and, erm, my wife's sword, lol). Winnie's not very excited about the basking area yet, but she loves going under it and kicking sand around. Feedback is welcome!

Again, this is a 75 gallon tank (48.5" x 18.5" x 21", if I recall), filled with probably a little over 20 gallons of water so far. She more glides around on the sand than outright swims, and almost has a hard time getting to the surface of the water as is, and so I am hesitant at this point put any more in.

You'll also notice that it is still filterless. :( Amazon tells me my Eheim Classic should be here by Thursday. Don't know how a canister filter is going to work with water this shallow, but I guess I'll jump off that bridge when I get to it.

Image

Image

Image
User avatar
turtlenojutsu
 
Posts: 61
Joined: Aug 1, 2015
Location: Minnesota, US

Post Posted: Wed Nov 04, 2015 12:03 am   Re: Advice needed on sick turtle at Petsmart

Jeremiah wrote:Water depth should not be a problem if you keep the tank clear of ornaments that it could get stuck under. Stick to simple, taller wood or rock work to provide easy surface access.

Thanks for the feedback!
User avatar
turtlenojutsu
 
Posts: 61
Joined: Aug 1, 2015
Location: Minnesota, US

Post Posted: Wed Nov 04, 2015 3:46 pm   Re: Advice needed on sick turtle at Petsmart

Lol @ the sword. Looks you're doing everything right. She's got so much more room now too. Is she eating?
User avatar
steve
Site Admin
 
Posts: 29019
Joined: Apr 11, 2005
Location: New York, NY
Gender: Male

Post Posted: Sat Nov 07, 2015 5:46 pm   Re: Advice needed on sick turtle at Petsmart

steve wrote:Lol @ the sword. Looks you're doing everything right. She's got so much more room now too. Is she eating?


Lol, yeah - as a big Tolkien fan, my wife got Bilbo's sword for Christmas last year. Winnie is eating, yes - she seems to like Mazuri and ReptoMin floating food, as well as Zoo Med's food/calcium supplement blocks. Her basking habits (or seemingly lack thereof) still bothers/puzzles me to some end, however. She spends a lot of time under the "lit" side of the tank, but it's never up on the basking area. When I wake up in the morning I do sometimes catch her on the ramp under the UVA/heat lamp, though (it's on a dimmer, so I leave it on at a very low level at night).

We just came back from the vet where she got a clean bill of health. The vet did not think much of her bloating, or the spot on her head; and the rest of the physical went well too. We are still waiting on blood work to come back, which should be ready on Monday.

Here's a short update on her new home as well, complete with more sand and an Eheim Classic 2215 filter (with First Age, Elvish sword and Christmas squirrels still intact, lol).

Image

In other news, never did hear back from PetSmart corporate. Not holding my breath with this one, but I did follow-up with them once more via email. It's more my curiosity in seeing how they will handle this driving me than anything else.
User avatar
turtlenojutsu
 
Posts: 61
Joined: Aug 1, 2015
Location: Minnesota, US

Post Posted: Sat Nov 07, 2015 6:45 pm   Re: Advice needed on sick turtle at Petsmart

So what is this community's thoughts on Zoo Med's ReptiSafe? Is it the end-all, be-all solution to using tap water in a turtle aquarium?

Looks like it removes chlorine and chloramine, and has a few other perks too (provides electrolytes and kills off nitrite and ammonia to some degree for you [in addition to your biological filtration, of course]). Maybe it's a huge gimmick though, not sure. How does one measure for chlorine and chloramine? Something you can also get at a pet store? Any other dangerous junk in tap water you should always measure for?

Still using distilled water in my tanks, yikes. Ideally would use tap water with something like ReptiSafe, or find a place that sells reverse osmosis water for a reasonable price...
User avatar
turtlenojutsu
 
Posts: 61
Joined: Aug 1, 2015
Location: Minnesota, US

Post Posted: Sat Nov 07, 2015 7:00 pm   Re: Advice needed on sick turtle at Petsmart

One last thing for now, but any guesses as to how old Winnie is? :) I thought I heard someone at the store say "1-2 years", but I don't really know.
User avatar
turtlenojutsu
 
Posts: 61
Joined: Aug 1, 2015
Location: Minnesota, US

Post Posted: Sun Nov 08, 2015 12:18 am   Re: Advice needed on sick turtle at Petsmart

Chlorine and chloramine aren't the danger for a turtle they are for a fish. It's still something you want to address, but many here just let the activated carbon in their filter deal with it.

The test kits for it are very specialized and very expensive. I wouldn't worry about that.

There's no need for reverse osmosis for a turtle. Honestly, tap water is probably better. It contains trace minerals and is likely buffered so that it eases any ph swings unlike distiller water. I'd say your better off with tap and reptisafe.
Tobi a RES born in 2012
1 dog, 1 teenager, 3 aquariums filled with fish, snails, shrimp and a bit of algae
User avatar
ljapa
 
Posts: 915
Joined: Jul 21, 2012
Location: Near Chicago in IN
Gender: Male

Post Posted: Sun Nov 08, 2015 11:26 am   Re: Advice needed on sick turtle at Petsmart

ljapa wrote:Chlorine and chloramine aren't the danger for a turtle they are for a fish. It's still something you want to address, but many here just let the activated carbon in their filter deal with it.

The test kits for it are very specialized and very expensive. I wouldn't worry about that.

There's no need for reverse osmosis for a turtle. Honestly, tap water is probably better. It contains trace minerals and is likely buffered so that it eases any ph swings unlike distiller water. I'd say your better off with tap and reptisafe.


Thanks for the feedback! I will keep this in mind.
User avatar
turtlenojutsu
 
Posts: 61
Joined: Aug 1, 2015
Location: Minnesota, US

Post Posted: Sun Nov 08, 2015 3:11 pm   Re: Advice needed on sick turtle at Petsmart

I agree with ljapa. And using carbon is much better than adding a chemical like Reptisafe in the tank. All I use is cold water from the tap, which is warmed up before the turtles use it. Minnesota likely issues annual reports on their water testing measures if you're ever concerned about it.
User avatar
steve
Site Admin
 
Posts: 29019
Joined: Apr 11, 2005
Location: New York, NY
Gender: Male

Post Posted: Sun Nov 08, 2015 5:42 pm   Re: Advice needed on sick turtle at Petsmart

steve wrote:I agree with ljapa. And using carbon is much better than adding a chemical like Reptisafe in the tank. All I use is cold water from the tap, which is warmed up before the turtles use it. Minnesota likely issues annual reports on their water testing measures if you're ever concerned about it.


Sweet, I'll check it out. Thanks, guys!

Any recommendations on brand, etc.? I know Eheim makes activated carbon pads for my filter specifically (Eheim 2215), but not sure if those are better than the loose carbon "rocks" you can get.
User avatar
turtlenojutsu
 
Posts: 61
Joined: Aug 1, 2015
Location: Minnesota, US

Post Posted: Mon Nov 09, 2015 1:55 pm   Re: Advice needed on sick turtle at Petsmart

I get 40oz of Marineland Black Diamond Premium Activated Carbon when it's on sale. I empty the old bag, refill, rinse well, then replace. Those pads are probably not a good value, but are probably effective as well.
User avatar
steve
Site Admin
 
Posts: 29019
Joined: Apr 11, 2005
Location: New York, NY
Gender: Male

Post Posted: Wed Nov 11, 2015 12:04 am   Re: Advice needed on sick turtle at Petsmart

steve wrote:I get 40oz of Marineland Black Diamond Premium Activated Carbon when it's on sale. I empty the old bag, refill, rinse well, then replace. Those pads are probably not a good value, but are probably effective as well.


That sounds like a way better deal than the pads, thanks for the tip!
User avatar
turtlenojutsu
 
Posts: 61
Joined: Aug 1, 2015
Location: Minnesota, US

Post Posted: Sun Nov 15, 2015 3:24 pm   Re: Advice needed on sick turtle at Petsmart

Hey again, everyone,

Sorry for the lack of updates as of late - life has been a bit crazy.

Anyway, just finished adding carbon to my filtration set-up, as per Steve's and ljapa's suggestion. Thanks, guys! I got some generic media bags and Marineland Black Diamond Activated Carbon. I did some reading on my state's/city's water too - enough to feel a little better about using it in my tanks. Did a big water change in both aquariums with it in place of the usual distilled. The media bags aren't cylindrical in shape like the filter though - I hope it's OK that it's not covering the entire flow of water.

Question #1: I guess it depends on how much carbon you put in, but how long do you guys change it out? 2, 3 weeks? A month? I've heard varying opinions about this.

Also, Winnie's vet appointment went really well. They did blood tests and a whole bunch of other work... all results came in from the lab. From head to toe-equivalent, lol, she is physically in great health. The experience really spooked her though, so I am guessing it will take some time before she opens up to me again. :( She's been extra shy lately.

However, there was one caveat to her results that I didn't like: she has parasites in her blood. According to the vet they don't normally treat them, as they usually don't affect the turtle, but it still seemed somewhat alarming to me. Maybe this is more common than I think? Heck, maybe my other turtle has had them too all his life.

Question #2: Can these parasites be transmitted from animal to animal? My two turtles are in their own tanks, but I often work on them back to back. Do I need to worry about these things travelling via the water or something between aquariums?

Lastly, lol, PetSmart got back to me. My escalation of the issue to corporate, after two follow-ups, just resulted in a call from the store asking if I had questions about Sidenecks. *sigh* I'm going to let this drop. Again, at least I got Winnie for free (via adoption). Sort of echoing Jeremiah's sentiments from earlier in this thread, beware of supporting these stores by purchasing their animals. It's fine to buy their gear (hey, they do a good job of that in their storefronts), but we can speak the loudest with our dollars. This will be the last animal I ever get from them. I don't want to come across as anti-capitalist though or anything - on the contrary having the ability to speak with your money is the beauty of it. PetSmart's a decent company in a lot ways otherwise, too. But I really think they dropped the ball here on this one, be it due to just plain old bureaucracy or something else.

Thanks again for all the help, folks. If anything else comes up I'll be sure to jot it down here.

Regards,
User avatar
turtlenojutsu
 
Posts: 61
Joined: Aug 1, 2015
Location: Minnesota, US

Post Posted: Sun Nov 15, 2015 9:45 pm   Re: Advice needed on sick turtle at Petsmart

With carbon, I just change it when I clean out the filter. So it can be one or two months. You can prefilter the water with carbon if you want to stretch the replacement schedule. Parasites in the blood is weird, to be honest I've never heard of such a thing. Did they tell you what kind?

Yes, parasites can be transmitted, but I'm not familiar with the kind your turtle has. I would be more careful with the separate tanks until this is sorted out.

Sadly, one of the best ways to get a corporate response these days is through social media but it does work quite well.
User avatar
steve
Site Admin
 
Posts: 29019
Joined: Apr 11, 2005
Location: New York, NY
Gender: Male

PreviousNext

Return to Urgent Care

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests