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“How to Take Care of a Pancake Tortoise: Knowing What Makes Them Happy”

Are you wondering to know about Care of a Pancake Tortoise? You have come to the right place.

If you have an interest in reptiles, you’ve probably heard of the pancake tortoise at some point. These small tortoises are popular as pets for a variety of reasons, including the fact that they are simple to care for, do not need a significant amount of room, and have distinct personalities. But, in order to maintain their contentment and good health, they require the same level of care as any other pet. In this piece, we will discuss how to properly care for a pancake tortoise, including what kind of environment they should live in and what kind of food they should consume.

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. The Right Habitat for a Pancake Tortoise
  3. Lighting and Temperature Requirements
  4. Substrate and Humidity Needs
  5. Feeding a Pancake Tortoise
  6. Water and Hydration Needs
  7. Handling and Socialization
  8. Common Health Issues
  9. Conclusion
  10. FAQs

The Right Habitat for a Pancake Tortoise

The requirement of an ideal environment is the first thing that must be done when taking care of a pancake tortoise. These tortoises originated in rocky areas of East Africa, and it is important that their habitat reflect this fact. They require a terrarium that is at least two feet wide and four feet long in order to thrive. Additionally, the enclosure ought to have a height of at least 46 centimetres (18 inches).

It is important that the bottom of the enclosure be covered with a substrate that enables the animals to dig and burrow. Coconut coir, cypress mulch, and sphagnum moss are all excellent choices that you could make.

Lighting and Temperature Requirements

Like all reptiles, pancake tortoises require specific lighting and temperature requirements. They need a basking spot that is around 90 degrees Fahrenheit, while the rest of the enclosure should be between 75-85 degrees Fahrenheit. You should also provide a UVB bulb for 12-14 hours a day to ensure proper vitamin D3 synthesis.

Substrate and Humidity Needs

Pancake tortoises require a humid environment to maintain good health. To achieve this, you should mist their enclosure daily and provide a humid hideout. The substrate should be kept damp, but not wet, to help maintain humidity levels.

Feeding a Pancake Tortoise

The process of feeding a pancake turtle is not extremely complicated. Being vegetarians, they must consume a diet that is high in fibre but low in protein in order to survive. You are free to provide them with an assortment of dark greens that are high in leaf content, such as kale, collard greens, and dandelion greens.

They are also able to consume a variety of fruits and vegetables, including figs and strawberries, in addition to veggies like carrots and squash. It is essential to make certain that they are getting the right proportion of calcium and phosphorus in their diets. This can be done by supplying them with calcium-rich foods like kale or by giving them supplements.

Water and Hydration Needs

Pancake tortoises require a water source for drinking and soaking. You should provide a shallow dish of water in their enclosure that is cleaned and refilled daily. They may also enjoy a shallow pool of water to soak in occasionally.

Handling and Socialization

While pancake tortoises are relatively easy to care for, they are not typically a “petting” reptile. They are not particularly social animals, and handling should be kept to a minimum. When handling is necessary, it’s important to support their entire body and avoid touching their shell, as this can cause injury.

Common Health Issues

Pancake tortoises, like all other types of pets, are susceptible to developing health problems. Infections of the respiratory tract, decay of the shell, and parasites are among of the most common problems. It is essential to keep a close eye on your tortoise for any indications of disease, such as listlessness or a decrease in appetite. If you have any reason to believe that your tortoise is ill, you should not delay in taking them to a veterinarian who knows how to treat reptiles. Visits to the veterinarian for checkups on a regular basis can also aid in the prevention of potential health problems.


Being responsible for the wellbeing of a pancake tortoise can be a satisfying feeling. You can assure the happiness and well-being of your tortoise by providing it with the appropriate environment, lighting, substrate, and diet. It is important to keep in mind that you should constantly handle your tortoise with care and keep an eye out for any signs of disease. Your pancake tortoise has the potential to live a long and healthy life if it is properly cared for.


  1. Can pancake tortoises live with other tortoises?
  • Pancake tortoises are not particularly social animals and are best kept alone.
  1. What kind of substrate is best for pancake tortoises?
  • Pancake tortoises require a substrate that allows them to burrow and dig, such as coconut coir or cypress mulch.
  1. Do pancake tortoises require a UVB bulb?
  • Yes, pancake tortoises require a UVB bulb for 12-14 hours a day to ensure proper vitamin D3 synthesis.
  1. Can pancake tortoises eat fruits?
  • Yes, pancake tortoises can eat fruits such as strawberries and figs, but they should make up a small portion of their overall diet.
  1. What should I do if my pancake tortoise is not eating?
  • Loss of appetite can be a sign of illness in pancake tortoises. If your tortoise is not eating, it’s important to take them to a reptile veterinarian as soon as possible.