Sick Turtle - Any Turtle Experts Here?

That’s good to know - thank you. I’ll just do my best to give her and her cat-rescued buddies a great life here in that case. We certainly do enjoy watching them and taking care of them.


Back at the vet today for another vitamin injection. Shu has gained four grams over the past couple of weeks according to my scale, so I suppose that’s good. But her eyes are still closed and she’s still fairly inactive. Hoping she starts doing better soon.


Much like everything with turtles, healing is a slow process. Any weight gain is a positive, and she’s still hanging in there, so you’re doing all you can. Hopefully with more time, you’ll see more activity and positive strides towards health.


I keep a dozen or so water turtles for over twenty years. In my experience, the symptoms you describe are almost always caused by poor water quality. I know you stated that the water was clean, but I would take another look. One slider measuring 4” will contaminate their water and cause conjunctivitis like symptoms in a few days. An appropriately sized enclosure would be 100+ gallons. If you are not changing the water everyday you will want a great filter. Filter manufactures rate their product for the aquarium size with a couple of fish. Turtles are messy and inefficient feeders that waste a good portion of food. Each turtle creates more waste than 10 fish their size.
For a trio of 3-4” turtles I would provide a minimum of a stock tank filtered by a DIY 5-gallon bucket filter. Outdoors.


Sorry it’s been so long since I’ve updated - I just haven’t been on the forum lately.

Here’s your update. And it’s a good one! After her third injection of A and D vitamins, Shu completely turned a corner. Started keeping her eyes open longer, started being more active again… and then started eating on her own! Man, that first bite of food was such an exciting moment for me. What a relief after worrying about this little one for so long!!

So it seems it was indeed a vitamin deficiency! We also put together a stock tank turtle pond in the front yard so the turtles have lots of space and more real sun. It was always our plan to move them outside when they got a little bigger - we were just afraid that something might catch them when they were tiny. The one is a pretty decent size now, and I think she’ll be safe. But Shu and the other are still pretty small, so I worry a little, as we live in the country and there are lots of predators around. But so far they’ve been just fine. We arranged stones in the pond so they would have plenty of hiding places, and they sure are good at using them, so I’m starting to feel more at ease about them being outdoors.

Thanks to everyone for your advice and ideas! I’m so glad this little one pulled through and is healthy and happy once more.


That’s great! I’m so glad to hear that she’s doing better.


So happy to hear that everything has worked out for the best!!! Kudos to you for all your hard work to bring the little one back from the brink and give her a lovely life in captivity.

A suggestion about the pond and predators: perhaps invest in a koi pond netting kit. Gives a barrier to keep things from snatching anyone, but is easy enough to see/feed through.

I’m thrilled all the suggestions led you to a great outcome, may she and her fellow turtles enjoy their cushy lives with you for many years to come!