home Article What to do if your turtle won’t open its eyes

What to do if your turtle won’t open its eyes

Red-eared turtle does not open its eyes

All pets delight with their actions and positive mood, of course, if they do not get sick. People who have turtles at home can face different problems, the buried eyes of a pet is one of them. Like any animals, reptiles close their eyes when sleeping or resting, but sometimes the turtle does not open its eyes at all, and the eyelids can swell. Then you need to know what to do.


Even if conditions are close to ideal for a turtle, it can still get sick. In this case, there may be sore eyelids. They become inflamed due to conjunctivitis, pneumonia, or rhinitis. It is recommended that the examination be carried out by a specialist, although not everywhere there are such doctors who are able to diagnose turtles and identify the true reason why the reptile does not open its eyes.

Sometimes it happens that after an expensive treatment, the pet does not recover, but becomes even more ill. It is caused by the use of anti-tortoise medication that is not being used as intended. In other words, the drugs are intended for cats and other pets.

So, the main reasons why a red-eared turtle does not open its eyes are:

  • Sleep or hibernation. Depending on the conditions, it may take 2-3 months. If there are no obvious signs of illness in front of your eyes, then you can not worry and wait for the pet to wake up.
  • If there is a white hymen on the eyes, then the cause is incorrect or lack of UV radiation.
  • If the eyelids are swollen and reddened, it means that the pet has a cold or other infectious disease. This is the worst reason for reptiles.

So, having learned all the causes of closed eyes, you need to know the main diseases and methods of their treatment.

turtle, open, eyes

Breeders’ actions with closed eyes

If the pet’s activity has decreased and the behavior does not resemble what it was before, and this behavior is accompanied by closed eyes, then you should start examining and observing the animal. This will allow you to identify the cause, consider the symptoms and begin treatment.

The disease itself is not as terrible as a lack of therapy or a delayed reaction to the manifestation of ailments. Many breeders wait for diseases or other malfunctions of the animal to go away on their own. It is strictly forbidden to do this, because the animal cannot independently control its health and tell the owner that it is unwell. By the way, diseases develop quite quickly in reptiles.

Initially, owners need to make sure that the pet has normal housing conditions. Perhaps the eyes are closed due to a decrease in temperature and thus the turtle is trying to hibernate. In addition, there may be dirty water and bacteria begin to multiply in it. When the care is correct and after the correction of mistakes, the disease can slow down its development.

You should carefully examine your pet, watch how the turtle moves, breathes, eats or does not eat anything, how long it takes to stay on land and in the water. Such observations reveal the reasons why the turtle does not open its eyes. The main thing is not to delay the inspection. It is recommended to observe the order of one day, and the next day to engage in treatment.

Diseases and treatment

The most common disease is conjunctivitis. The signs of its appearance include one or two closed eyes, which, together with this, swell and close altogether. A red tint may appear on the mucous membrane. For treatment, you will first need to transplant the pet into a basin without water or into another aquarium. As a rule, such an ailment is a sign of microbes or bacteria that got into the eyes from the water.

If the turtle is kept further in the water, then microbes will multiply and the disease will flourish. Therefore, for treatment, you need exclusively dry. It is necessary to treat such an ailment with drops of sodium sulfacil (Albucid). They are dripped 2-3 times a day. The main thing is that the reptile does not retract its head, otherwise the treatment will not work. Additionally, tetracycline ointment should be put on the eyes.

If purulent discharge appears in the eyes, then they must be removed with a cotton swab, with extreme caution. It will be good for the patient to make a warm bath, in which the water will be warmer than with the standard content. It is recommended to insist on chamomile in water.

The aquarium should be washed and cleaned to remove bacteria and then refilled with fresh, clean water. It is recommended to add a couple of drops of Methylene Blue to the water. When the eyes open, and the pet recovers, then it can be immersed in your house.

Closed eyelids can often be due to pneumonia. In this case, there is little activity of the turtle, spending time on the water, but without diving and without any movement. Often with pneumonia, the reptile cannot dive. Additionally, appetite disappears and there may be a cough. Treatment is possible with different methods.

If drug therapy is used, then it is imperative to show the pet to the doctor. The veterinarian will have to weigh the patient and, depending on the weight, prescribe a dosage of drugs for injections. The most difficult thing is to correctly calculate the dosage of the drug, because it is done without taking into account the shell, and the slightest overdose leads to death.

If the breeder treats the pet on his own, using folk methods, then the pet will be alive and in the early stages of pneumonia such methods are very effective. For treatment, you will need to transplant the reptile into a dry house, without water. In the room, it is necessary to make the air temperature high and eliminate drafts, it is better to dry the air itself as much as possible. With this therapy, chamomile is considered the main drug, which is sold in the pharmacy. Treatment is carried out with a decoction. Bathing or inhalation can be performed.

With the help of inhalation, the red-eared turtle will warm up the lungs. To do this, boil water in a saucepan and add the herb, after which you should carry out the usual inhalation for the flu. It is recommended to sit comfortably and place a chair with a saucepan and broth next to it. The turtle needs to be right above the pot. Additionally, inhalation can be carried out under a blanket. So that the turtle does not have burns, the distance should be from 10 cm.

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The therapy allows you to breathe with a hot medicinal decoction, which has a positive effect on the course of the disease. Bathing is carried out in a similar broth, but cooled to an acceptable temperature. In such water, the reptile should be bathed for no more than 20-30 minutes, and then put it back in a container without water.

The eyes of a red-eared turtle with pneumonia can be cured with similar drugs as with conjunctivitis.

No less common is a disease called rhinitis. As a rule, with such an infection, the inflammatory process manifests itself not only in the nose, but also the eyes fester. Signs of illness include a runny nose, squeaking during inhalation, and purulent discharge in the eyes.

You can treat it using antibiotics, however, you can also apply it in a dry aquarium or basin without the presence of water, with an additional alternation of chamomile herb baths. The basic rule is to keep your pet from freezing.

For any ailment, you should correctly identify the cause and immediately begin treatment. At home, it is possible to carry out a course of therapy, and it will be very effective, even without medication. Despite everything that may be said, chamomile is an excellent natural herb with healing properties against many diseases. If the therapy used does not bring results within 2-3 days, then you need to contact your veterinarian.

Why does the red-eared turtle not open its eyes?

Every year more and more lovers have exotic animals as pets, especially the red-eared turtles have become popular. Such an increased interest in them is not difficult to explain, reptiles are absolutely not whimsical, they are not difficult to keep, turtles reproduce successfully at home, are distinguished by an inquisitive character and, moreover, have a high resistance to diseases. But, despite all the advantages, even such an unpretentious animal can get sick. The first sign of an onset disease is that the red-eared turtle does not open its eyes. Reptile owners often face this problem and usually start to panic. In fact, such a symptom does not always indicate that the pet is sick, there are other reasons: poor conditions of detention, unbalanced diet, inadequate hygiene.

Therefore, check the eyes of the red-eared turtle more often. If they are clean, have clear lenses, do not watery, the eyelids are not swollen, then the pet is completely healthy. If you notice that the eyes are watering or pus is released from them, the turtle cannot open them, then it is necessary to take measures, the health of the pet is at risk. The turtle’s coordination of movements is impaired, since it cannot see normally, this not only interferes with its daily life, but also causes psychological discomfort. Gradually, the pet refuses food and may even die.

Why does the red-eared turtle not open its eyes?

First, don’t panic, as in fact it can be absolutely safe. First, make sure that this is a non-trivial dream, typical for turtles. hibernation. Such a dream can last from two to three months, it depends on the temperature regime in your room, the nutrition of the animal and the conditions of detention. If before falling into a match the animal was active, absorbed food well, there was no discharge from the eyes, then there is no cause for concern. It remains to wait for the reptile to wake up.

Secondly, if the eyes of a red-eared turtle are covered with a white film or redness on them, then, most likely, the reason must be sought in the conditions of detention. The most common mistakes owners of exotic animals make. ignoring the ultraviolet lamp, which is necessary for the normal functioning of the reptile. Also, many begin to “treat” the pet with unacceptable food, which also leads to malfunctions in the body and causes disturbances. Too cold water in the terrarium, lack of vitamins in the diet often cause illness, the main symptom of which is closed eyes.

The most dangerous cause is an infectious disease or a cold. Your turtle can get sick if it is taken outside in cool weather or in cold water. A common cold symptom is sunken eyes and red, swollen eyelids. If the animal is not treated on time, it may die or go blind.

Swollen eyelids are most likely caused by rickets, vitamin deficiency, bronchitis or fungal infections, conjunctivitis. With conjunctivitis, purulent, mucous discharge is also noticeable. Treatment: sulfonamide eye drops and tetracycline ointment. Until complete recovery, it is necessary to limit the turtle’s water procedures.

The most serious eye diseases are uveitis, panophthalmitis, blepharoconjunctivitis. Blepharoconjunctivitis is caused by hypovitaminosis A. Along with closed eyes, there is swelling of the trunk, peeling of the skin, nasal discharge.

With uveitis, inflammatory processes begin in the vascular membranes of the eyeballs. Treatment in both cases is with broad Spectra antibiotics. Panophthalmitis is provoked by bacteria from the mouth of a reptile entering the cornea of ​​the eyes. If the disease is not treated in a timely manner, the pet may lose sight due to the gradual thickening of tissues and hemorrhage. The eyes of blinded turtles resemble purulent balls with white, cloudy lenses in the center. At the initial stages, the disease is treated effectively with ointments with m antibiotics.

What to do if a red-eared turtle won’t open its eyes?

If there is discharge from the eyes or it is covered with a film, then immediately show your pet to your veterinarian. Do not treat the reptile with ointments or eye drops on your own, especially do not do any injections!

If your eyes are just closed, then watch the reptile. Carefully analyze the conditions of her detention. Diversify your diet by including enough fish, shellfish, and meat. Install a UV lamp if not available. Check the water temperature, it should be within 27-31 degrees.

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If the conditions are correct, but the turtle does not open its eyes or does not look as usual, take the reptile to a herpetologist. He will make the correct diagnosis and give qualified recommendations for the health treatment of your pets.!

The turtle does not open its eyes: causes and consequences

The pet sneezes, scratches swollen, festering eyes, constantly opens its mouth, mucus flows from its inflamed reddened nostrils, bubbles form when breathing and a squeak is heard.


The disease develops with a lack of vitamin A or with the penetration of a bacterial infection into the body. In addition to closed eyes, it is manifested by redness and swelling of the eyelids, purulent accumulations in the conjunctival sac, nasal discharge, peeling of the skin, swelling of the trunk, refusal to eat.


With a cold nature of the disease, in addition to the inability to open the eyes, there are other symptoms.


It manifests itself as a result of inflammation of the choroid of the eyes due to the penetration of pathogenic bacteria. Pus accumulates under the lower eyelid, mucous discharge from the nose appears. The turtle refuses food and is severely emaciated.

Photo and video

“Unilateral eye lesion in a turtle”

Symptomatic treatment

If the eyes of the reptile closed due to improper content, then it is enough to eliminate the cause of the pathology so that the unpleasant symptom disappears, and the animal regains its former activity.

If, after 6 hours, the eyes have not opened, then the pet is sick. In this case, it is necessary to wash the turtle in warm running water and transfer it to another container, and thoroughly disinfect the aquaterrarium and add a few drops of a diluted solution of methylene blue to it.

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Eye drops will help to relieve symptoms (they are instilled under the eyelid twice a day): Albucid (another name is sodium sulfacil), Sofradex, Tobradex, Tsiprovet, Floxal, Eleovit. You can also use tetracycline ointment. If your turtle rubs its eyes, you will need hydrocortisone ointment. Before using eye drops, it is necessary to remove plaque by wiping the eyes with a decoction of chamomile or a 3% solution of boric acid. In case of suppuration or cheesy nitrous oxide, wash the eyes with Ringer’s saline solution. After the procedure, the animal is left on land for 30-40 minutes.

The chamomile bath will also benefit the animal. For its preparation, pour 100 grams of chamomile flowers with 2-3 liters of boiling water. The broth is infused for 15-20 minutes and poured into a container with warm water. Leave the turtle in a medicated bath until it cools down. Then the pet is well warmed up for 6 hours under an ultraviolet lamp.

But the above methods are only used as temporary measures to help the pet open its eyes. To find out the cause of the pathology and eliminate it, you need to contact your veterinarian. In most cases, antibacterial drugs will be required, which only a specialist can select.

Why does the turtle not open its eyes?

There may be several reasons for this phenomenon, and among them there are both completely harmless and very serious, which should immediately attract the attention of the owner and force him to contact the veterinarian.


The cause of the disease is bacteria that penetrate from the mouth of the turtle under the cornea of ​​its eyes. As a result, all tissues and membranes of both eyes become inflamed. In this case, the eyeball becomes cloudy and increases in size, the surrounding tissues gradually begin to thicken, hemorrhages and purulent discharge are observed. In the absence of adequate treatment, the animal can go blind. In this case, the eyes become like purulent balls, in the center of which white cloudy lenses are noticeable.

Home treatment

If you notice that the turtle does not open its eyes, wait 6 hours. if after this time they still do not open, most likely the reptile is sick. The first thing to do is wash the turtle in running water, isolate it in a separate container and disinfect the aquarium well.

Practice a chamomile pet bath. To prepare it, you need to pour 100 g of chamomile flowers with 3 liters of hot water. You need to infuse the broth for about 15-20 minutes, after which it should be poured into a bowl with warm water. Submerge the turtle in the healing bath until the water cools down. After that, the reptile needs to be well warmed up for 6 hours using an ultraviolet lamp.

Turtle does not open puffy eyes: diseases of the red-eared turtle

Unfortunately, reptile owners often face various eye diseases of their pets. In our article we will tell you why a red-eared turtle may not open its eyes and how to cope with this ailment.

What is the owner to do

When the first symptoms of the disease appear, the owners must immediately take measures to eliminate the disease.

Veterinary diagnostics and treatment

The most correct decision when a symptom of the disease appears is to immediately contact a veterinarian. With the help of special examinations, the doctor will determine the exact cause of the disease and prescribe the necessary treatment.

To relieve symptoms, it is recommended to bury one of the drops under the eyelid 2 times a day: Albucid, Sofradex, Eleovit, Tobradex, Floxal. They also practice the use of tetracycline ointment. If the animal begins to rub its eyes, use hydrocortisone ointment.

In some cases, redness of the eye organs and problems with their opening occur due to violations of the rules for keeping reptiles. in this case, the veterinarian will give recommendations on how to improve conditions for the turtle.

The causes of the onset of the disease

The main factors that can provoke the development of eye ailments include:

What To Do When Your Turtle’s Eyes Won’t Open?

  • lack of vitamins;
  • staying a reptile in water with a low temperature, which can cause hypothermia of the whole body;
  • lack of ultraviolet radiation;
  • insufficient filtration;
  • stagnant water;
  • rare bottom cleaning.

In addition to the above reasons, other diseases can cause illness. Consider them.

The causative agent of this pathology are streptococci and staphylococci. Most often, the disease develops if the reptile is in dirty water. First, the inflammatory process begins in one eye, it begins to swell and closes, festers, the mucous membranes and eyelids become burgundy, the turtle constantly rubs the eye. If therapeutic measures are not taken in time, the ailment will cover the second.

The disease is provoked by a lack of vitamin A or the presence of a bacterial infection in the body. The eyes also close, the eyelids become swollen and red, pus collects in the conjunctival sac, nasal discharge appears, the skin begins to peel off, the torso swells, the reptile refuses to eat.

With this ailment, the choroid becomes inflamed, since pathogenic bacteria penetrate into it. Purulent deposits begin to appear under the lower eyelid, the appearance of mucous discharge from the nose is noted. The reptile loses its appetite and becomes severely exhausted.

It is characterized by the presence of inflammation in the cornea, which appears as a result of trauma, burns, winter sleep, or infections. There is redness of the conjunctiva and surrounding tissues, corneal opacity, increased tearing, edema and enlargement of the eyelids, which significantly complicates the opening of the eyes. If there is a traumatic nature of the disease, then blood can be seen in the visual organ.

In a turtle, a constriction of the pupil is observed, while the eyeball deepens inward, its retraction occurs, after which it loses its mobility. In addition, it is heavily covered by the eyelid, as a result of which it does not open well.

There are also other signs: clouding of the lens and vitreous humor, violation of the structure of the retina, atrophy of the optic nerve. The disease can affect both one and two eyes at once. Leads to temporary or chronic loss of vision.

The most common cause of this condition is hypothermia. At the same time, coughing, whistling when breathing, shortness of breath, appetite fades, frothy discharge from the mouth and nasal sinuses. In addition, there is difficulty in opening the eyes, the animal loses the ability to swim and the desire to dive.

In the presence of this disease, the reptile cannot open his eyes, they constantly itch. Most of the time, the turtle is with an open mouth, from which mucus flows, and during breathing, bubbles appear and a squeak is heard.

Lack of vitamin D leads to softening and deformation of the skeleton. The upper jaw may also become deformed, causing the animal to refuse food. If you do not start treatment in a timely manner, redness appears in the eyes, they swell and, as a result, do not open.

Associated symptoms of organism and behavior

In addition to the main symptoms of the manifestation of diseases of the visual organs in turtles, there are also secondary ones, which include:

  • lethargy;
  • increased body temperature;
  • lack of coordination;
  • general weakness.

Since the reptile loses its sight and cannot always see food, the amount of food consumed decreases, and over time it may die.

The main symptoms of eye problems

Determining the presence of a disease of the organs of vision in a turtle is quite simple, since all the main symptoms are “on the face”:

  • the mucous membrane turns red;
  • on the mucous membrane, the appearance of a white plaque is noted, which covers the eyeballs;
  • the cornea becomes cloudy;
  • note the appearance of mucous, cheesy and purulent discharge from the organs of vision;
  • swelling appears on the eyelids;
  • the reptile cannot open its eyes;
  • movement of the eyeballs is difficult.
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In order to prevent the appearance of eye problems in a pet, it is worth adhering to the following recommendations:

  • check your turtle’s eyes regularly;
  • observe the coordination of movement of the animal;
  • change the water in the aquarium regularly;
  • feed the reptile with healthy food, which contains vitamins and nutrients;
  • monitor the temperature of the water in the aquarium. it should not be cold.

In order for your pet to always be healthy and happy, pay attention to him and take care of his health. Unfortunately, animals often suffer from the same ailments as humans, and need timely treatment and care.

Why does the turtle not open its eyes?

There may be several reasons for this phenomenon, and among them there are both completely harmless and very serious, which should immediately attract the attention of the owner and force him to contact the veterinarian.

The most harmless reason why a domestic turtle does not open its eyes is a banal dream. The duration of sleep and the time of day at which the red-eared turtle rests are strictly individual and depend on the pet’s lifestyle, conditions of detention and nutrition. Therefore, if during wakefulness your turtle is active, its eyes are open, there are no symptoms of the disease, then you should wait a while after the eyes have closed and make sure that the animal is just sleeping.

A more serious reason could be a containment breach. During a lack of vitamins, too cold water or improper nutrition, the eyes of the red-eared turtle can become inflamed, reddened, or even covered with a white film. The most common mistakes of novice reptile breeders are neglecting the installation of UV lamps, which are simply necessary for turtles to function normally, as well as attempts to feed the animal with unusual food, most often vegetables and fruits. Remember that red-eared turtles are aquatic predators and their diet includes fish and a variety of marine animals. Here they should be given as a top dressing. A monotonous diet can also lead to eye diseases.

Finally, the most dangerous and serious illness can be a cold or an infection. If the water in the aquarium is too cold or you are walking the turtle outside, then the animal may well get sick. Swollen and reddened eyelids and closed eyes are common symptoms. These are very serious diseases, and without proper treatment, the red-eared turtle can go blind and even die.

What to do if your turtle won’t open its eyes

Red-eared turtle does not open its eyes

Exotic animals, in particular red-eared turtles, are becoming more and more popular for keeping and breeding at home. This is due to the relative unpretentiousness of the animal, its high resistance to diseases, as well as the curious nature of such turtles. However, even these pets can sometimes get sick, and one common symptom is that the red-eared turtle does not open its eyes.

What to do if your turtle won’t open its eyes?

If the turtle does not open its eyes, white films have appeared on them, and the eyelids are swollen or reddened, then this is a reason to immediately contact the veterinarian. Without his recommendations, you should not use any drugs, eye drops, and even more so, do your own drug injections.

The steps you can take on your own are as follows: First, you must observe your pet’s behavior very carefully in order to then describe all the details to the doctor. This will help him make the correct diagnosis and prescribe adequate treatment. The second step is a careful analysis of the turtle’s housing conditions. Red-eared turtles’ diet should be varied and include dry foods (such as gammarus), fish, shrimp, mussels and other seafood. A heating and UV lamp must be installed above the aquarium. The temperature on land in the aquaterrarium should be 30–31 ° С, water in a warm corner. 28–29 ° С, in a cold one. 27–28 ° С. You can also arrange chamomile baths for the turtle: boil 4–5 tablespoons of dry chamomile in water with a temperature of 39–45 ° C and place the turtle there. Keep until the water cools down to room temperature. If, after these procedures, your pet’s well-being begins to improve, then you can postpone the visit to the veterinarian and still observe the animal. If not, then you need to urgently consult a doctor.

What to do with eye disease and red-eared turtles?

Diseases of the eyes of red-eared turtles and their symptoms

The main symptoms of eye problems:

the mucous membrane of the eyes is red;

Concomitant symptoms: impaired coordination of movements, weakness, poor appetite, high fever.

Most often, the diagnosis that is made in the presence of the above symptoms is conjunctivitis. This disease is caused by the bacteria staphylococcus and streptococci.

The cause of an infectious disease can be both poor living conditions and unhealthy diet.

If the red-eared turtle has swollen eyes, this may also be the result of vitamin deficiency or keeping an amphibian in dirty, stagnant water.

Another turtle eye disease is panophthalmitis. This is a deep purulent inflammation of the tissues of the eyeball. The infection first affects the lower eyelid. Then there is a clouding of the eye. Lack of treatment in this case will inevitably lead the turtle to blindness.

Diseases of the eyes of red-eared turtles. treatment

First of all, the animal must be placed in clean water, since it is the polluted environment that often causes eye diseases in turtles.

Medical treatment consists of the use of drops and antibiotics.

One of the drugs (“Sofradex”, “Tsiprolet”, “Albucid”, “Tobradex”) is instilled 2 times a day into the eyes of the pet. If the eyelids are tightly closed, then the lower one must be gently pulled back. The course lasts 5-10 days, depending on the condition of the turtle.

Panophthalmitis is treated with antibiotics. The course of these drugs should be prescribed by a veterinarian, since self-medication with the help of medicines that are difficult for the turtle is usually fatal.

In severe cases, the eyeball is removed.

Treatment of eye disease in red-eared turtles is recommended to be accompanied by the intake of veterinary complexes of multivitamins: “Intravit”, “Multivit”, “Eleovit”. When buying, be sure to read the composition of the drug. It should not contain vitamin D2, as it is poisonous to turtles. Vitamins, on the recommendation of a doctor, can be injected.

Use chamomile decoction and boric acid solution as additional measures to alleviate the condition of the red-eared turtle. Wet a cotton swab with them to remove plaque from the eyes.

For milder forms of the disease, tetracycline ointment is used externally.

Nutrition for eye diseases in red-eared turtles

In case of eye diseases, proper nutrition is very important for red-eared turtles. So, the menu must necessarily contain products containing vitamin A useful for vision, for example, carrots. Feed your pet liver once a week. The main food is seafood. Make Accent on plant foods, especially if the turtle is already an adult: cabbage, lettuce, seaweed, seaweed.

Since a sick animal may lose sight or be unable to open its eyes due to purulent discharge, it is difficult for him to find food in the aquarium on his own. Then the owner will have to feed the pet from a pipette.

If several turtles live in one aquarium, it is better to temporarily isolate the patient.