Frankie Tortoise Tales Frankie Tortoise Tails sulcata care tortoise sulcata husbandry Frankie Tortoise Tails Frankie Tortoise Tails: Annual Check Up, Part I



March 30, 2010

Annual Check Up, Part I

Spring is time for Frankie's annual check up. Lucky for me, I just got paid by Reptiles Magazine for the article on Gold Dust day geckos. My budget is $250. I am hoping for $150. A girl can hope can't she?

Knowing I cannot pick Frankie up anymore I had to think up some devious scheme on how to get him there. The perfect opportunity came up when Greg told me he was taking Friday off from work. Greg can lift Frankie! I have a solution.

Even before I ask Greg, I scheduled Frankie's veterinarian appointment for the Friday that Greg is taking off of work - is this bad? Already having the appointment set is all the leverage I have: "But Greg, I already have an appointment."

Greg thought Frankie's 10:00 a.m. appointment especially inconvenient since he wanted to sleep in. Gads! Isn't sleeping past 7:00 a.m. sleeping in? Far as Greg is concerned, sleeping until 10:00 a.m. is sleeping in. Anything less is waking up on time or just not enough sleep. Go figure. Greg never gives me an answer so as Friday gets closer I am just hoping Greg will be there.

On Friday morning at 7:00 a.m., I get up by myself. No sign of Greg. Just in case getting Frankie there is totally up to me, I consider how to get Frankie in the car by myself.

Frankie is 65 pounds so I figured I was good for one good Frankie lift. One only. After that my back would be totally blown. Once I got him in the car I would ask someone in the veterinarian clinic help me get him out of the car and back in the car. Getting Frankie out of the car isn't all that difficult: aiming a 65 pound falling sulcata away from toes is difficult.

At 8:50 a.m. I hear signs of life upstairs - Greg is in the shower. He is going to cut it close. And at 9:15 a.m. Greg is ready to go. It is looking good. Really, it's not the human's that I have to worry about, we can cut a minute or two to get caught up, it's Frankie. It is going to take him five minutes to walk from the gecko room into the garage - fire under his sulcata tail or not. With luck, we roll out of the garage, Frankie in car, and head out.

On the way I suggest that Greg stop by Starbucks to get a Cappuccino. I figured he deserved Starbucks for his efforts to get up and to be ready to go at the very last moment.

Frankie is asleep in the back of the car....he never fully wakes before 10:00 a.m., if he can help it. He never even notices the stop by Starbucks.

We got to Riverview Animal Clinic at 10:00 a.m. on the nose. Greg unloaded Frankie while I dashed in to assure the staff that Frankie will be there in 10 minutes. You heard me - 10 minutes for Frankie to walk from car into clinic into reception area.

Riverview Animal Clinic has an excellent Exotic Practice and one of the best turtle veterinarians in the Southern U.S.: Dr. Alvin Atlas. At the reception desk I check in with the clerk. Dr. Atlas is seeing Frankie today for his annual visit. We want to include a fecal float, x-rays and a reptile blood panel.

By the time I get paperwork sorted, Frankie has arrived at the desk. The staff ushered us into an examination room immediately because they knows Frankie will tear up the front waiting area, terrorize the cats waiting for adoption, and challenge obnoxious dogs.

Up next: look at poop and a look inside.

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