Terrapins, tortoises and turtles are collectively referred to as chelonians and have been popular pets in the UK for more than a century. There are many different species to choose from, each with their own specific advantages and disadvantages. They are complex creatures to care for and historically care was very poor with many of them dying at only a few years old - this is a serious problem when some of them are capable of living for over 100 years! The majority of those sold as pets are bred in captivity as there are a lot of laws regulating imported animals. Common pet species include Hermann's tortoise (Testudo hermanni), Spur-thighs (Testudo graeca), Horsefield's tortoise (Testudo horsfieldii) and Red-Eared terrapins (Trachemys scripta elegans). We are extremely experienced in the care and ownership of these pets and are happy to advise anyone from first-time owners to experienced handlers on the best care for their pet.
We offer a chelonian microchipping service at our practice. A microchip is a small glass chip roughly the size of a grain of rice. Every chip has a unique code associated with it that is registered to your pet on a national database. The chip is scanned with a special machine to identify its code and this can be used to find the registered owner's name and address. This is invaluable to reunite you if your pet is ever lost, injured or stolen.
Your pet would have a quick injection of a local anaesthetic to allow us to implant the chip painlessly. Once the chip is implanted, we will ask for your details to be uploaded onto the database, however, if you change address or ownership of the pet, it is ESSENTIAL that you inform the database holders.
Whilst they make great pets, chelonians also take up a lot of time - they need a good diet, heat sources, suitable substrate, exercise as well as access to UV light. This can be expensive to both set up and maintain and getting the correct advice is sometimes challenging in itself.
We are very happy to advise you on the correct housing, diet and care requirements of your pet chelonian and can provide you with information sheets should you require them. Requirements can vary greatly depending on the species you have chosen to keep.
Common problems we see in chelonians are often associated with incorrect housing or diet, such things include:
During consultations, questions we will ask about your pet include:
For more information regarding UV lighting for reptiles click here: www.uvguide.co.uk
The above list does not indicate approval of these methods nor disapproval of things not included in the list, this depends very much on which species you are keeping. Our practice DOES NOT sell any of the above equipment and DOES NOT have any association with pet shops who may sell it. Advice and opinions are given on a case by case basis, we advise people to do some research themselves.
Try the combinations 'wood chip' 'reptile' and 'death' in any search engine. Also try 'reptile' 'sand' and 'death.'
Very often we need to take x-rays and blood tests of chelonians. There are many reasons why testing may be necessary, for more information visit our laboratory testing page. All these costs add up and we advise clients to look at insurance for their chelonians. Look at exotic direct: https://www.exoticdirect.co.uk
Contact the practice directly if you require an emergency appointment during opening hours. If you need help urgently out of hours, please refer to the emergency veterinary cover list.
Monday 09.00 - 18.00
Tuesday 09.00 - 18.00
Wednesday 09.00 - 18.00
Thursday 09.00 - 18.00
Friday 09.00 - 18.00
Saturday 09.00 - 12.00
Village Vets Centre Ltd
65 Quarry St
Tel.: 0151 428 8600
Tel.: 0151 428 8600