Tortoises & Hibernation
This year hasn't been a great year for tortoises in the UK. We've noticed a significant increase in the numbers of tortoises being presented with diseases related to hibernation and the cold snaps last spring followed by the very hot spells this summer and now a very up and down Autumn.
Over the last 25 years, since AlphaPet was established, a huge amount of new knowledge has been gained about how we should be looking after these fascinating creatures. Years ago, if a tortoise didn't wake up after hibernation, one simply went out and bought another one. Thankfully, those days are gone and tortoises are more highly valued as family pets, often being passed down from generation to generation.
The problem is that they were never designed to live in the UK. Many species evolved in a Mediterranean type climate, so they need higher temperatures and a lot more sunlight (ultraviolet) than we normally have in the UK. Hibernating tortoises for 4-6 months is unnatural and fraught with risks.
If you'd like more information about how to best look after your tortoise, please book in to see one of our tortoise specific nurses, Charlie Sampson, Sue Eaton or Hayley Goddard.