Leopard Tortoise Care Sheet (2023)

Tortoise Town‘s Baby Leopard Tortoise Care:

Most importantly, reviewing a leopard tortoise care sheet is key to a long happy life for your new pet Leopard tortoise. Secondly, caring for your new pet leopard tortoise is quite simple. Because once you do your research and are prepared caring for a leo is easy.

In contrast, if you are looking for tips on leopard tortoise care, feeding a leopard, building a leopard tortoise habitat or tortoise table you have come to the right place. However, keep in mind thatfirs,t you must explore leopard tortoise care sheets including proper leopard tortoise diet. Lastly, spend some time learning about proper leopard tortoise habitat construction, and review the baby leopard tortoise care sheet.

Leopard tortoise care sheet: Leopard Tortoises Availability

It is imperative that you find the correct leopard tortoise breeders that are breeding healthy captive bred pet leopard tortoise for sale. Above all, captive-bred leopards are sometimes available but sometimes hard to find. Because of the import of wild-caught specimens into the United States was banned in 2000 captive bred is all that is available.

Before the ban, leopard tortoises were commonly imported, and many people currently breed leopard tortoises. Lastly, the Stigmachelys pardalis pardalis the Giant South African Leopard Tortoise is less common in collections than Stigmachelys pardalis babcocki. Consequently, the Giant Leopard tortoise is the most expensive where the Babcocki also known as the standard leopard tortoise for sale is more common.

Leopard tortoise care sheet: Leopard Tortoise Size

Adult leopards grow from 9to 18 inches long (most grow 9-12″ at full maturity) depending on where the tortoise comes from (what geographic subspecies it is from). The Giant South African subspecies, Stigmachelys pardalis pardalis, can grow up to 24 inches, however, most reach around 14-18″, and the leopard giants from Ethiopia and Somalia can grow up to 30 inches.

Consider that most of the time you will find the females outgrowing the males, however depending on the geographic origin of the leopard tortoise baby this may be reversed, or male and females may be of similar size. Remember that male leopards will have a concave plastron, and a longer tale, where females would have a much shorter tail and convex plastron.

Life Span of the Leopard Tortoise:

Leopards live between 50 and 100 years in the wild.

Leopard Tortoise Care Sheet (5)

Leopard Tortoise Habitat and Cage setup

A Leopard does very well whether they are living indoors or outdoors. Inside, consider building or purchasing a tortoise table style enclosure. Alternatively, provide an outside tortoise habitat in areas where the temperature does not dip below 55 degrees at any time. Secondly, apair of adult leopard tortoises for sale can be kept in a 4 foot by 8-foot setup or tortoise table. Lastly, it is important that the walls are a solid material so the tortoise cannot see thru them.

Because of this and for that reason, aquariums are normally not recommended. Basically, do not use them unless the walls can be covered so the animals cannot see through them. Also, you should make sure the tortoise table walls are at least 16-18″ tall and can be made of wood, block or other material that prevents the baby leopard tortoise from seeing out. In closing, leopards are very calm and do not try to dig, or escape like some other breeds of tortoise may do.

Leopard Tortoise Care Sheet (6)

The correct leopard tortoise habitat is key

After reading your leopard tortoise care sheet, be sure to provide plenty of hiding places, a hide box and if outdoors plenty of shrubbery to provide cover for the leopard torts. Planting things like grass that is edible in some portion of the outdoor enclosure is preferred. Provide some uncovered soil areas if your tortoises are old enough to lay eggs, etc. Some rolling terrain is recommended. You will often find your leopard basking in the sun at the highest point of its terrain.

Adult leopard torts can be housed indoors in a stock tank, plastic pool or large tub. Although a pair of adult leopard tortoises could be maintained in an enclosure measuring 8×4 and 1.5 feet tall, larger areas allow more time between cleaning and changing substrates. Keep in mind they will not be an adult size for over a decade.

We recommend a variety of coconut husk, and forest floor as an enclosure substrate, but regular potting soil may also be used. It is important to also offer different micro-climates where the temperature varies like moist hide boxes as well as basking spots and heated areas using a heat lamp or ceramic heating element.

Leopard Tortoise Temperature and Lighting

One of the best things about having a pet Leopard is it does not hibernate. Leopards generally live in areas that are between 70-100 degrees F in their natural habitat. For indoor tortoise table or enclosure of the leopard tortoise, temperatures should be kept between 75 and 90 degrees. Lastly, provide them with a basking spot of UVB light and heat of 95 degrees.

Both natural sunlight or UVB light plays an important role in how the body grows and absorbs and uses calcium. UVB light or natural sunlight allows the tortoise to produce vitamin D3. Vitamin D3 is crucial for the tortoise to absorb and use the available calcium. Lastly, UVB can be achieved by using fluorescent tubes specially made for reptile use. If fluorescent tubes are used for UVB, a separate light or heating element, normally ceramic, may be required for heat.

If housed in an outside or outdoor enclosures for leopard tortoise hatchlings may handle a wider range of temperatures. Similarly, once temperatures drop into the 50s at night or daily high temperatures fail to exceed 70 degrees, move tortoises indoors or provide heat. Lastly, heat may be provided with items such as ceramic heat emitters, infrared heat lights, etc.

Leopard Tortoises (importance of Feeding your leopard tort the right Food)

Leopards are grazers and feed on a variety of weeds and greens. The leopard tortoises diet should be rich in calcium and fiber. In addition to grazing, the captive diet may be supplemented a couple times a week with greens. Most noteworthy, these include: collard greens, turnip greens, mustard greens, dandelion greens and flowers, hibiscus leaves and flowers, grape leaves, escarole, mulberry tree leaves, spineless cactus pads (Opuntia spp.), carrots, zucchini, butternut squash, pumpkin, mushrooms, sweet potato, yellow squash, and bell peppers. Soaked Tortoise food may also be included in their daily dietary needs.

Although some tortoise keepers supplement the diet with manufactured vitamins and vitamin D3, I have not found these necessary if the leopard tortoises are provided with a varied diet and exposed to UVB light. Hatchlings should be fed daily and may benefit from food that is lightly sprinkled with calcium powder several times a week.

Leopard Tortoise Care Sheet – Leopard Tortoise Water

Leopard tortoises readily drink standing water. A shallow water area may be provided, checked on daily and cleaned as required. The size of the water dish should be large enough so the tortoise can get in and out easily and only deep enough to drink. Hatchlings may be soaked one, two or three times a week in shallow, warm water. Remember, hatchling tortoises for sale drink often and sometimes defecate in the water. Because of this, change the water daily.

Handling a leopard tort and leopard tortoises Temperament

Leopard tortoises are shy and will withdraw their head and limbs until they are used to their home/habitat. Over time, however, they generally learn to recognize their keepers and will come for food and if handled in the correct manner will become great pets. If you’re considering where tobuy leopard tort, choose tortoise town for the nicest baby leopard tortoise for sale anywhere. Lastly, if you mistakenly ended up here but were searching for leopard geckos, or a leopard gecko for sale, visit our gecko store over at CB Reptile. If you are looking for a turtle for sale, we recommend our turtles for sale section or turtle store.

Over 25 Species of captive bred tortoises for sale

Other species of tortoise for sale offered here include giant tortoises like the Aldabra tortoise, Sulcata tortoise, Burmese mountain tortoise and more. Medium size species include the leopard tortoise, red-footedtortoise, yellow footed tortoise, mountain tortoise, Burmese star tortoise and the giant leopard tortoise. small tortoise breedsincludeHermann’s tortoise, Greek Tortoise, Indian Star tortoise, Pancake Tortoise, Russian tortoise, and the Egyptian tortoise. Above all, we’ve got the widest selection of tortoise for sale in the USA, including baby tortoise for sale, juveniles and adult tortoises for sale.


What do you put in a leopard tortoise enclosure? ›

For a permanent indoor enclosure, substrates such as grass clippings, peat moss or potting soil work well. Also include different microclimates, including a warm, moist hide box and dry area with a basking light. The size of the leopard tortoise also plays a role. Hatchlings are raised almost exclusively inside.

Are leopard tortoises hard to look after? ›

In the wild, males can get aggressive with other males during mating season, but in captivity, leopard tortoises are relatively docile. They're not ideal for novice owners as they are somewhat high-maintenance compared to other tortoises.

How often should a leopard tortoise eat? ›

Feed adults 2-3 times weekly and hatchlings daily. While grasses and straw should provide 50%-80% of your tortoise's diet, dark, leafy greens like kale and collards are great supplemental choices.

How often should I soak my leopard tortoise? ›

Tortoises need to soak twice a week or so to help them stay hydrated and clean. This keeps them strong and healthy, avoiding getting sick from dehydration or bacteria that can build up on their body. Tortoises also need to soak so that the shell and the skin do not crack from dryness.

How often do you soak a leopard tortoise? ›

Water. Baby leopard tortoises should be soaked in warm shallow water two to three times a week. As they grow, the soakings may be less frequent. Eventually the soaking may be replaced by offering a pan of clean water once or twice a week.

What is the best bedding for leopard tortoise? ›

Substrates suitable for housing tortoises include newspaper, Astroturf, and some of the commercially available substrates. Natural substrate such as soil may also be used to allow for digging. It is important that the substrates either cannot be eaten, or if they are, do not cause blockages as this can prove fatal.

Can I leave my tortoise alone for 3 days? ›

I would never leave a tortoise on its own for four to five days. I would be petrified that it would somehow flip over and there'd be no-one there to turn it over – in four or five days time you would come home to a very dead tortoise! There is also a potential fire hazard here as with anything electrical.

How long do you soak a leopard tortoise? ›

Please soak tortoises in a shallow bowl of warm water twice a week for 10 minutes to encourage drinking and stimulate defecation. Leopard tortoises require a high fiber diet that consists mainly of broad, leafy weeds and grass hay such as timothy hay and orchard grass hay.

How do I keep my leopard tortoise warm at night? ›

It might be necessary to install some form of supplementary heating at night, to prevent the tortoise going into hibernation mode. There are several options: Suspend a ceramic heat emitter above the sleeping area, and attach it to a thermostat so that when the temperature falls too low it will come on.

Do leopard tortoises like to swim? ›

Leopard tortoises can swim!

This means the leopard tortoise is the only member of the family that can raise its head, and thus is the only member that can swim. They are also able to go underwater for up to 10 minutes.

How long can leopard tortoise go without food? ›

He said: "They are particularly resilient and can survive for two to three years without food. In the wild they eat fruit, leaves, dead animals, even faeces."

What is a leopard tortoise favorite food? ›

FEEDING: NATIVE: grass, various succulents, crassulas, thistles, prickly pear, pumpkins, beans, watermelons and toadstools. CAPTIVE: the Leopard Tortoise is mainly vegetarian and prefers green vegetables to fruits but some will eat some form of meat and a mixed diet is therefore advisable for the adults.

What age is a leopard tortoise fully grown? ›

A very long-lived animal, the leopard tortoise reaches sexual maturity between the ages of 12 and 15 years. Captive leopard tortoises, however, grow faster and may mature as young as 6 years of age.

How do I know if my leopard tortoise is healthy? ›

The tortoise should be able to move objects out of the way and try to squeeze through the smallest of gaps. It will dig and climb and it should have good muscle tone in all limbs. The top of the shell (the carapace) should be smooth, feel firm to touch and have no obvious bumps or signs of injury.

Should I spray my tortoise with water? ›

As well as bathing the tortoise regularly you can provide your tortoise with a suitable microclimate to prevent fluid loss from the body. You can do this by making the substrate deep enough so that the tortoise can dig down, and you can mist it daily using a water sprayer.

Do I dry my tortoise after a bath? ›

Once you have finished scrubbing your tortoise set them on a dry towel and very gently pat and wipe away the water. This would also be a good chance to let them walk around a warm room to dry off and get exercise.

Will my tortoise be OK without a heat lamp? ›

Does a tortoise need a heat lamp at night? In most cases, overnight heating will not be required for your tortoise, unless the room temperature gets too cold. If this is the case, it may be better to use heating so that a temperature of around 15-18°C (60-65°F) can be maintained overnight.

How do I know if my tortoise is stressed? ›

Identifying a 'happy' tortoise is not usually possible.
Identifying stress, distress and pain.
AnorexiaAtaxiaClosed eyes
Resentment of palpationBiting/rubbing lesionReduced/no activity
Dragging limbs or bodyWithdrawal of head or limb(s)Neck stretching
3 more rows
Jun 2, 2017

How often should I let my tortoise out? ›

If you can find the time to let your tortoise exercise for an hour a day, then that is ideal! If this is not possible, try to get in an hour every other day. Take advantage of good weather and try to exercise them as much as possible. You may not be able get in any exercise if the weather is not good.

Can a leopard tortoise eat cucumber? ›

Cucumber can be offered to help with hydration, or prescribed medication can be hidden within it and offered to the tortoise as a tasty treat. The leaves and flowers of the Cucumber plant may be fed in small amounts to all species. Tortoises easily become addicted to store-bought diets so avoid long term use.

Can leopard tortoises eat bananas? ›

Fruit eating tortoises can eat melon, raspberries, blackberries and grapes. You can also offer sweet desert apple, in sliced small amounts. Mango can also be eaten, although this can be very sticky and attract wasps. Bananas can be eaten, and cherries, in strict moderation.

Should I let my tortoise walk around the house? ›

Tortoises shouldn't roam around the house. They could get injured, lost, too cold or too hot, fall or get stuck and be attacked. A tortoise roaming around the house might also spread disease.

Do tortoises miss you? ›

Since tortoises are reptiles, they are not capable of feeling “love” as we humans understand it. However, tortoises do show signs of affection and appreciation for their owners. They follow their pet parents around, tolerate handling, eat directly from human hands, and come to us when they see us.

Is it OK to wake a sleeping tortoise? ›

Just as with Sleeping Beauty, sometimes you may need to wake a tortoise. (However, don't do it with a kiss because of the salmonella risk!) The golden rules are to wake the tortoise if: They have been asleep for more than 3–4 months.

Can I pour water over my tortoise? ›

It is perfectly safe to give your chelonian friend a bath, in fact he/she might actually like it! All one needs is a toothbrush, a tub of some sort large enough to accommodate the tortoises, and tepid water, no deeper than is necessary to cover the entire plastron, and a few centimetres of the carapace.

What is the lifespan of a leopard tortoise in captivity? ›

Lifespan. Leopard Tortoises can live up to 50 years in the wild, and around 75 years in captivity.

How do I know if my tortoise is too cold? ›

Between 3 and 7 degrees is generally fine. If the temperature begins to approach 10 degrees, your tortoise will start using up valuable energy reserves that they need to hibernate safely. If the temperature drops below 3 degrees, your tortoise could become ill or die from being too cold.

What time should tortoise go to bed? ›

Your Tortoise's UV lighting should be on for 12 hours a day. A baby tortoise can sleep for around 19 – 22 hours a day, according to the owners of two baby torts – an Iberian and a Dalmation Hermanns, commenting inside the Tortoise Forum.

What is the best bedding for a tortoise? ›

You can use either straw or hay as tortoise bedding but they require more maintenance than some of the other preferred bedding materials.In particular, straw or hay as tortoise bedding must be kept dry so that it doesn't become mouldy as that can make your tortoise sick and attract pests to the enclosure.

Where do tortoises like to be petted? ›

Pet your turtle's shell.

Turtles can feel touch through their shells. As such, stroke your turtle's shell in slow circles or run your fingers in straight lines along the length of its shell.

Are leopard tortoises intelligent? ›

Tortoises and turtles are very intelligent, so it is not hard to believe that they can form bonds and love their owners.

Do tortoises recognize their owners? ›

Tortoises are affectionate creatures, and they readily recognise their owners.

Do tortoises know when to stop eating? ›

Healthy tortoises do eat every day but can easily skip a meal or two. On the colder months they do not necessarily eat every day. When tortoises hibernate, they do not eat for weeks as their metabolism slows down significantly.

What greens Can a leopard tortoise eat? ›

Supplement the grass and weed diet with dark, leafy greens high in calcium and vitamins A and C such as dandelion greens, collard greens, turnip greens, mustard greens, romaine, escarole, endive, and red leaf lettuce. Avoid a lot of kale and spinach, as it binds dietary calcium thereby preventing absorption.

Are carrots good for leopard tortoises? ›

Vegetables. Natural homegrown foods are always preferred but there are many types of vegetables you can buy that can be safely fed to your tortoise in moderation: Carrots. Cucumber.

Do leopard tortoises eat broccoli? ›

Broccoli contains goitrogens that interfere with thyroid activity and could damage the liver and kidneys. Therefore, although Broccoli is not actually toxic, we would advise you not to feed it to your tortoise.

Why do a leopard tortoise dig holes? ›

The leopard tortoise does not dig other than to make nests in which to lay eggs. Given its propensity for grassland habitats, it grazes extensively upon mixed grasses. It also favors succulents and thistles.

How often do leopard tortoises lay eggs? ›

Leopard tortoises are prolific animals. Some females produce clutches every 8-10 weeks, and each clutch can contain from 6-20 eggs. These eggs are large and spherical, averaging 40 mm in diameter.

What makes tortoises happy? ›

Tortoises like space to roam, places to hide, and objects to interact with. They enjoy basking in the warmth, digging in dirt to cool down, and some even enjoy playing with humans.

How do I know if my tortoise is hungry? ›

Most turtles, especially young ones, should be fed daily. For an adult box turtle, a day's food would be three tablespoons of the vegetable mixture and a couple of earthworms. You know your turtle is hungry when it begins to roam around its enclosure checking the place where you feed it.

What does a leopard tortoise need? ›

Ideally a floor pen or tortoise table should be created. This needs to have solid sides (1 foot high) for most tortoises. Many are made out of wood or plastic. As large an area as possible should be provided, but as the size increases extra basking sites will need to be provided.

What should I feed my leopard tortoise? ›

FEEDING: NATIVE: grass, various succulents, crassulas, thistles, prickly pear, pumpkins, beans, watermelons and toadstools. CAPTIVE: the Leopard Tortoise is mainly vegetarian and prefers green vegetables to fruits but some will eat some form of meat and a mixed diet is therefore advisable for the adults.

Do you need to bathe a leopard tortoise? ›

The short answer is yes, tortoises do need a bath every now and then. A lukewarm bath will help clean a tortoise from dust and dirt, reduce bacterias from shell and skin, helps with hydration, and help with passing waste.

What size tank does a leopard tortoise need? ›

If being kept indoors, an adult Leopard tortoise will need at least a space of 80 ft². Zoo Med's Tortoise House™ is an ideal enclosure to house this species as a hatchling and juvenile.

Do tortoises need a heat lamp at night? ›

Does a tortoise need a heat lamp at night? In most cases, overnight heating will not be required for your tortoise, unless the room temperature gets too cold. If this is the case, it may be better to use heating so that a temperature of around 15-18°C (60-65°F) can be maintained overnight.

Do tortoises like to sit in water? ›

Some tortoises do not enjoy being in the water at all therefore if they seem to be trying to climb out then you should take them out, dry them, and put them back into their home. If, however, they do enjoy their bath, you can take a soft toothbrush and use the opportunity to clean their shell and legs.

What age can a leopard tortoise go outside? ›

When can tortoises go outside? All tortoises can and should be out in the open air during the warmer months. They all require the UV rays of the sun for their general growth and metabolic development. Even very young hatchlings should be outside, as long as they are safe and secure.


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