Frankie Tortoise Tales Frankie Tortoise Tails sulcata care tortoise sulcata husbandry Frankie Tortoise Tails Frankie Tortoise Tails: Finger Pointing



December 5, 2012

Finger Pointing

I want to tell you something.  Something that happen.  But I am afraid if I just come out and say it then it's gonna be misunderstood. 

If I just came out and said 'Frankie bit me' it's gonna sound wrong.

So first, before I go further, let's find some common ground by explore the meaning of some things.

Like "bite'.

Usually when someone says they got "bit" by an animal images of teeth and dripping saliva and blood and ripped skin flashes through the mind. Horror stories are conjured up like the werewolf or Cujo.     
This would be giving you the wrong idea of what happen.

Not all animals bite.  Well, not all animals open their mouth intending to put your flesh between their teeth so they can purposely infect pain and injury. 

Sometimes it's not the animal's intention at all.  It's even very possible that the said-animal never intended to touch human skin at all much less pierce the thin surface and cause bloody harm.

Possibly it may not be their fault at all.  It could be said that said-person knew better than to put their finger into fore-mentioned animals's mouth.

Putting skin or finger or hand into the mouth of an animal who otherwise does not want your skin, finger or hand in their mouth could very well be the fault of the skin's owner.

So, if we are are all on the same page and everyone is thinking is unclouded by previous experiences and notions, I can explain how my finger got into Frankie mouth.

There is not a lot of grass in the yard.  Frankie has to do a lot of walking to find a mere blade of grass over 1/4" long.  As it's colder out there Frankie doesn't even want to do a lot of walking to find a mere blade of grass.  So as it's colder outside and there isn't much for Frankie to graze on I step in to supplement his food by bringing him grass and weeds.

Sometimes I find some grass and weeds in other areas outside of Frankie's yard.  There are a few areas that are chemical free like my garden.  When I clean up the weeds from the garden area naturally I bring those to Frankie.

I found a very small bunch of green weeds mixed with a few blades of grass in the garden.  Not a handful but a Frankie mouth size bunch that I knew he would appreciate.

The small bunch fit nicely on the end of my fingers so I presented it to Frankie for consumption, thumb up, fingers curled under, greenery out front.

Frankie nipped the greens very gingerly.  He wasn't greedy.  He took the greens very calmly, and gently, along with a slightly protruding middle finger.

And there was a very slow tug back and forth between Frankie with a firm hold on a middle finger and the person responsible for puttinng that finger there.

Quite aware of the sheering jaw power of an 85 pound sulcata tortoise my first thought was just how much of a finger nub was coming off the end of my finger.  There was no terror.  I was quite calm.  Surprisingly there was no pain. (yet)

Frankie wasn't trying to bite down hard.  He was just trying to hang on to his greens while bring his head down to a comfortable swallowing level.

Which is why I think I still have my whole middle finger.

A couple of firm spine tingling tugs and my fingernail scraped against Frankie's botton jaw and was free.

Frankie's little bundle of greens disappear into his mouth.  My mouth gaped open in surprise at the appearance of a whole finger  And no blood.

On my right middle finger is a very sinister deep red-purple bruise across the whole finger nail. Looking at it one wouldn't suspect that it had been slammed in a car door.  Except for the odd but telling red striped badge of horror on the nail, the rest of the finger is remarkable undamaged.   ...and it does hurt.

What I am saying is Frankie didn't bite me.

I put my finger in Frankie's mouth where it shouldn't be.

And lived to tell.

1 comment:

  1. I can't say I enjoyed this but I did learn a lot from it. Good for you, helping Frankie still get his greens during the winter.