DSPCA issues appeal to the public after "helpless" sick tortoise dumped in field 4 weeks ago

DSPCA issues appeal to the public after "helpless" sick tortoise dumped in field

"Another helpless victim left in critical condition."

The Dublin Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (DSPCA) has issued an appeal to the public after a "helpless" sick tortoise was found dumped in a field.

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Named Derek and estimated to be 10 years of age, the tortoise was found in a field by a dog who brought him back to his owner.

The DSPCA said his nails and beak had become overgrown, that his shell was in "appalling condition" and that he was dehydrated.

"Another helpless victim left in critical condition," the organisation wrote in a Facebook post.

"Someone owned him at some point and just dumped him. This unfortunately is something that we see happen a lot."

The DSPCA said that tortoises can live past 60 years of age but require specialised care.

It stated that Derek needs heat to survive, as well as a UV lamp in order for him to eat and receive any nutrition from his food.

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"It is just heartbreaking that anyone could leave a poor helpless animal to fend for itself when the climate in our country is absolutely not suitable for them to survive," the DSPCA said.

"Derek is very lucky to have been found because he simply would have died."

As part of efforts to help Derek recover, staff from Shauna's Pet Shop on Capel Street in Dublin donated a special UV lamp, as well as food and calcium.

The tortoise has also had his nails and beak trimmed by the DSPCA's veterinary team who are monitoring his condition closely.

"Derek has a very long way to go and we hope he pulls through," the DSPCA said.

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The animal rescue service appealed to the public to do research before considering any reptile as a pet.

Main image via DSPCA/Facebook