Troubled Tortoise ‘shellabrates’ Recovery Courtesy Of Southfields

A shell-shocked tortoise with an eye-watering problem is now free from the acute pain and embarrassment of his troublesome condition.

The poor pet was suffering from a huge bladder stone and had pushed and strained so hard to pass it that his penis had prolapsed.

It needed exotics pet expert Daniel Calvo Carrasco, from Linnaeus-owned Southfields Veterinary Specialists in Laindon, Essex, to solve his particularly painful problem.

Highly-qualified specialist Daniel explained: “Radiographs revealed the 17-year-old male tortoise had an extremely large bladder stone, caused by a very large accumulation of uric acid.

“It was so large he could not pass it but he had clearly been straining very hard because he also had a penile prolapse as a result of pushing so much.”

Fortunately, Daniel’s expertise and worldwide experience was able to help solve the gentle reptile’s eyewatering issue.

The Southfields consultant vet is an RCVS specialist in Zoo and Wildlife Medicine and a European Specialist in Avian Medicine and Surgery whose interest in exotic species has taken him to the USA, Japan, Peru, New Zealand, Spain, France and now the UK.

First, he had to cut a square access hole into the tortoise’s shell and then he operated to open the bladder and remove the offending stone.

Daniel added: “Everything went extremely well. The stone was removed and happily all is now back to normal and he’s doing very well.

“To ensure there’s no repetition of the problems he’s currently on some medication to help reduce the uric acid levels in his body, which was the original cause of all his distress and discomfort.”

The case is a perfect example of the extensive range of care provided by the Linnaeus-owned animal hospital, one of the few in the UK to have its own exotic pet specialist on the staff.

Daniel, who graduated from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona in 2010, has treated an incredible range of animals since qualifying as a vet.

He said: “I’ve always had a passion for zoological medicine and caring for the more exotic animals, birds and amphibians.

“I really enjoy all aspects of exotic, zoo and wildlife medicine and have treated all sorts of species in my time from parrots and lizards to rarities like the Spoon-billed Sandpiper, Aldabra tortoise, Hyacinth Macaw, Toco Toucan and Seriemas.

“I’m also a keen amphibian enthusiast and in my free time I look after frogs, newts and salamanders, some reptiles and I also have a dog and a cat!”

Hospital director Daniel Hogan says his namesake’s expertise helps Southfields stand apart from other referral centres in the region.

He said: “Daniel is so highly qualified and highly experienced in this field that it made perfect sense to put him in charge of our new exotic animal service, which will offer some of the best and most comprehensive zoo and wildlife care in the region.”

Southfields Veterinary Specialists is dedicated to providing the highest standards of veterinary care for pets and providing a seamless service to owners and referring vets.

The referral centre offers specialist services such as anaesthesia and analgesia, cardiology, dentistry, dermatology, diagnostic imaging, exotics, internal medicine, neurology, oncology, ophthalmology, orthopaedics, radiation and soft tissue surgery.

For more information, go to www.southfields.co.uk or search for ‘Southfields Veterinary Specialists’ on social media.

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