Freedom for the mountain tortoise!
On Saturday 30 November we went into the squatter camp to find a dog we’re treating, & what do we find? A sweet little tortoise! He (or she?) had a hole in his shell by which he was chained to the shack. The poor thing was scrabbling in the dust searching for a place to hide from the sun. No water for him to drink & just a box of dried-up cabbage leaves to eat.
Unfortunately, there’s a superstition that having a tortoise tied to your house or bed improves the sex life so we occasionally come across this kind of thing.
We explained to the owners why you cannot keep a tortoise like this: tortoises have very specific needs – if not met, they will suffer & die. It’s also illegal to keep them without a permit. The language barrier makes explaining things very challenging sometimes.
Of course we couldn’t leave him to his fate. So, we unchained him, swooped him up, & took him with us to the vet so he could have the wire gently removed & be checked for injuries. Thankfully, he hadn’t sustained any serious wounds or illnesses (although he’ll always have a hole in his shell).
And then this lucky little tortoise went to a volunteer’s friend who knows tortoises well, has a permit, & whose entire garden is geared towards looking after them! We’re told he’s settling in very well & happily munching on fresh greens every day. Goodbye little tortoise, we’re so glad we could rescue you!
See, FAW doesn’t just help cats & dogs – we love all animals, great & small.