The Issue: Rescued Turtles and Tortoises in Need of Medical Care
While many turtles and tortoises that arrive at American Tortoise Rescue are healthy—given up by families who decide they can no longer care for them—many others are deformed or in need of medical attention. Spinner, for instance, is a paralyzed female box turtle. Instead of walking in a straight line, she can only turn in a circle, presumably due to children swinging her by the arms. Sushi, on the other hand, lost her feet when her owner didn’t notice she had mites. She now lives with Spinner in supervised care.
The Campaign: Providing Medical Services for Turtles and Tortoises
All donations to this Grassroots campaign will be used by American Tortoise Rescue to provide lifesaving medical services and veterinary care for rescued turtles and tortoises. For every $500 raised, American Tortoise Rescue can fund medical services for one turtle or tortoise. Whether these animals arrive to the shelter ill, deformed, or injured, the all-volunteer staff does its best to give it a healthy, comfortable life and home.
American Tortoise Rescue
American Tortoise Rescue was founded by husband-and-wife team Susan Tellem and Marshall Thompson, who began advocating for the humane treatment of animals after adopting a pair of desert-tortoise hatchlings. Since that first adoption, their organization has rescued more than 3,000 turtles and tortoises of various land and water species, focusing their efforts on abused turtles or those with special needs—and has expanded its scope to the treatment of these animals worldwide.
At American Tortoise Rescue's facility, approximately 125 animals live in an enclosure that mimics the wild, having freedom to play on the ground or surf in the water. Sick turtles receive medical care from the all-volunteer staff, and stay in the house—or "turtle hospital"—until they're healthy enough to go outside. And to supplement these rescue efforts, the organization also provides information and awareness about the care and rehabilitation of tortoises for the public, working to prevent the sale of hatchlings, the importation and live-market slaughter of adult turtles, and the destruction of the desert-tortoise habitat.