Making sure your tortoise is fed well is important for all tortoise owners
And because you love your tortoise so much you want to make sure they are completely full
But a question that may arise is – Can You Overfeed a Tortoise?
Yes, you can overfeed a tortoise since they will keep eating as long as you start giving them food. As a result, fatty acids may begin to build up in their arteries and affect their health. A tortoise’s neck may grow larger as a result of overeating, which prevents it from retreating into its shell, which poses a number of challenges for the animal.
The consequences of overfeeding a tortoise will be discussed in this article, along with the recommended amount of food for tortoises and other issues we felt were crucial.
Carry on reading!
Do Tortoises Gain Weight?
It’s considerably more unusual to see an obese tortoise than, say, a fat cat or dog.
Since tortoises aren’t much more active than other animals, why do we rarely encounter any that are overweight?
Due to their nutrition, tortoises hardly ever get overweight.
When you consider the daily meals they consume, it makes sense.
Why does it make sense?
Because they eat plants, vegetables, and grass, tortoises are mostly herbivores.
All of these foods have very low levels of fats within their structure.
Tortoises’ lack of exercise isn’t the cause of their obesity; instead, it’s the foods they eat.
Their activity level shouldn’t be too low, though, since this would compromise their general health.
However, turtles are not impervious to gaining weight; they too can become obese.
Generally speaking, a tortoise’s owner has neglected to properly care for the reptile if it gets obese.
Tortoises are herbivores, meaning they eat plants.
They do not eat meat. (Check out my article – Do tortoises eat meat?)
You would have to feed fat and carbohydrate-rich meals to a tortoise that isn’t supposed to be in its diet for it to gain weight.
100% of tortoises with poor diets and inactive lifestyles develop obesity, which has a variety of issues that we’ll go through in the following paragraphs.
What happens if you feed your tortoise too much food?
Tortoises are herbivores and therefore do not require much nutrition.
However, they can eat too much at times, causing them to put on excess body mass.
This can lead to obesity and even death.
There is no exception for tortoises when it comes to gaining weight, so even though you can’t see the fatty acids accumulating inside their bodies, they still have an adverse impact on their health.
Heart disease and heart failure are both serious issues that can occur due to poor blood flow through the body.
This can cause clogged arteries and reduced circulation which would ultimately result in heart disease or heart failure.
Overfeeding also causes fatty deposits to begin to accumulate around the neck of your turtle.
You might wonder why this is an issue.
Due to the tortoise’s inability to retract into its shell if its neck is bloated.
Tortoises are vulnerable to attacks and injuries that they can often hide away from.
Tortoise aren’t used to being outside and often get stressed out when they cannot retreat back inside their shells.
A tortoise’s extra weight can cause a number of issues, including causing its legs to buckle under the additional load, which can lead to injury.
Tortoises can get too fat if they eat too much.
This puts extra stress on their legs and feet, causing them to wear down faster than normal.
If this happens, they may break something.
So the question is – How much should a tortoise eat in a day?
Let’s find out
How much does a tortoise eat per day?
There isn’t a specific amount of food required for different species to eat, nor does each species require the same amount of food.
Tortoises that are young or more active than others.
A serving size that is roughly the same size as your tortoise’s shell should be given to them once daily as a general guideline.
It reduces the possibility that you will overfeed them.
It’s also advised to offer your tortoise only water on two days when you don’t feed them at all.
Due to their extremely sensitive digestive systems, tortoises benefit from two days without food so they can process everything.
It’s essential to ensure that the two off days are the same each week.
For instance, the next week, you would retain the exact same days and not feed them on Monday or Thursday.
What Diet Should A Tortoise Follow?
A diet made up of items that a tortoise would find in the wild is optimal.
Because of this, the nutritional needs of various tortoise species vary.
A tortoise living in the Mediterranean region would encounter different foods than a tortoise living on the other side of the globe.
Tortoises love eating vegetables, fruits, herbs, grasses, leaves, bugs, and flowers.
They also eat eggs, meat, fish, and carrion.
In addition to the above mentioned food groups, here are other types of healthy eating habits that we recommend:
Veggies – Carrots, cabbage, Brussels Sprouts, Kale, Sweet Potatoes & Spinach.
Grasses – Wheatgrass, oat grass, barley grass, couch grass, timothy grass, blue grass, star grass, bermuda grass and cat grass.
Plant – geranium. Lemon Balm Plantain Turtle Vine Aloe Vera Prickly Pear Cacti & Clover
Food – Watermelon, strawberries, grapes, raspberries, blackberries, apple and mango.
Dandelion, Hibiscus & Petunia Flowers.
Tortoises require a balanced diet that contains all of the necessary vitamins and minerals they need.
They prefer a low fat, low protein, high fiber diet.
Your tortoise will live a long and healthy life if you check off all of those items.
Can you overfeed a tortoise – Final thought
The majority of tortoises will eat until they are satisfied—or the food supply runs out—so it is possible to overfeed them.
On the other hand, a tortoise gaining weight indicates that the owner is feeding the animal entirely incorrectly.
Low-fat or fat-free meals like plants and vegetables should make up a tortoise’s diet.
If your tortoise gains weight, you’re either feeding them the wrong foods, which are high in fat, or you’re giving them an absurdly large volume of food.
Tortoises are wonderful creatures, and I hope you’ve enjoyed learning how to care for them properly.
Share it with other tortoise owners without fear so they can learn as well!