How I treat Mouth Rot in Aldabras

How I treat Mouth Rot in Aldabras



Hi Sam,

Been a follower of your channel for a few years now, and I'm grateful for the wealth of knowledge you've shared on your channel as well as others.


I have a question about a tortoise of mine, except we're scaling down the size a little(a lot). 


I live in Tennessee and spring is just about here. My russian torts are coming out of brumation and cruising around. I noticed one eating some weeds seemed to have a cottage cheese look inside his mouth. I instantly thought mouth rot.


I've been told this could be linked to respiratory infection, but so far no symptoms. He's basking and eating.


My question to you: is there a way to go about treating this at home? And should I go ahead and pull him in even though he's acting normal?


We're still getting a few cold.nights, but he always goes back into his hide/burrow and out in the morning.


Hoping you can shed some light on this one for me. Also I would love to purchase a galop  in the future once I have the funds to accommodate them down here.



Thanks for all you do



Hi Eddie thanks so much for following.


I have included some pics of what mouth rot in Aldabras looks like.


It runs a course from mild to severe.


You have to open the tortoise mouth and keep it open so you can do your work.

You need to scrub the inside of the mouth with a small tooth brush, scrub the yellow cheese stuff off.

You may see some bleeding.

I use Chlorhexidine solution as it is non-toxic if swallowed.


There are several chlorhexidine solutions you can find for people in the drug store.


But actually it's best to use something we can control the concentration in.

Heree is one you can order online.


I use a little stronger concentration than noted on the packaging.

DILUTION: 2 oz  of Chlorhexidine Solution per gallon of clean water.
It should have a light blue tint to it but you should see readily that it is blue.


The first step in treating mouth rot is to isolate the affected tortoise from other tortoises to prevent the spread of the infection.

Clean the mouth with a soft toothbrush, gently clean the inside of your tortoise's mouth with an antiseptic solution, like Chlorhexidine.

Adjust the diet: Feed your tortoise a soft diet of easily digestible food items like cooked vegetables and fruits. 
Avoid feeding hard, fibrous foods that may further irritate the mouth allow about 7 to 60 days to heal depending on severity 

Keep the environment clean: Make sure the tortoise's enclosure is kept clean and dry to prevent the spread of bacteria. 
Use Chlorine to disinfect and clean the enclosure and any objects within it.

Monitor your tortoise: Watch your tortoise for signs of improvement 
Note: eating and activity levels 
You should see a fast response in minor infection sometimes only needing two or three treatments about 3 days apart. each


If the infection does not improve within two weeks, you should put it on antibiotics 

If the present infection is server,  noted by bleeding and complete mouth filled with smelly cheese like material 

you should start antibiotics immediately 


Getting the Tortoise's mouth open: about 38 years ago, I invented a simple tool made from a butter knife.

I see it used all around the net now, I call it a Jaw Bar.

I made it from a butter knife and a grinder, there are no sharp edges.

I am attaching 3 pictures 


I am also including a video I made deminstarig its use (for a different purpose)

But you can get the idea once you get something in their mouth they try to expel

it so it gives you an opportunity to get in there and work.


Please let me know if you have any questions.



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