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Leo the Tortoise at the vet's office Leo the Tortoise at the vet's office
Leo at the reptile vet's office. (Image: CTTC Valley)
See his slide show and read his story here.

July 1, 2020
Veterinary Reptile Specialists
U.S. and International Lists
Veterinary Reptile Specialists
U.S. and International Lists
Veterinary Reptile Specialists
U.S. and International Lists


Obviously, reptiles are different from mammals. What may not always be so obvious are the specific ways in which they differ when it comes to medical care. For example, the anti-parasitic agent known as Ivermectin is fatal to turtles and tortoises for all that veterinarians often successfully use it for de-worming both dogs and cats. This article by the Tortoise Trust documents some frightening mistakes made by veterinarians who were not reptile specialists but who nevertheless attempted to treat tortoises who had parasitic infections. In terms of surgery, doctors must have specific training in how to safely cut into the shell of a turtle or tortoise and how to reseal the shell when finished. Again, some unhappy situations have resulted from those not specifically trained in reptile medicine making attempts. Luckily there are turtle, tortoise and herpetology organizations that have compiled lists of veterinarians believed to have experience with veterinary practices associated with reptiles. Since these lists were compiled by various groups and individuals — some, perhaps, more experienced than others — you might also want to check out this page from Melissa Kaplan's Herp Care Collection that includes various aspects of Choosing a Good Veterinarian for your reptile or amphibian. These vets are sometimes referred to as "Herp" vets because "herpetology" is the study of reptiles and amphibians. So go ahead and scroll down. I've also linked to some general articles that deal with turtle & tortoise health care and strategies for preventing health problems before they start. Finally, here's an entire article devoted to detailed care instructions for specific species of turtles or tortoises. —CH

Reptile Veterinarians

Reptile Veterinarians

Turtle & Tortiose Health Care Articles

Turtle & Tortiose Health Care Articles

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