What are the different costs of owning a tortoise?

What are the different costs of owning a tortoise?

How much will you pay for a tortoise?

Every species of tortoise costs a different amount due to different things such as age, breed and where you get it from.

  • Age – If the tortoise is older it tends to be more expensive. You can buy a baby tortoise starting from around £50. If you are looking to get an older tortoise they can go for hundreds to thousands of pounds.
  • Breed – The average price of a Hermann’s tortoise is around £150, while another species such as an Indian star tortoise can cost anywhere between £350 and £1000.
  • Where to buy a tortoise – You can buy your tortoise from a breeder, retailer or private seller. If you choose to get your tortoise from a private seller, they may have some of the set up for your tortoise, which would help bring the overall cost down for you.

Different breeds and their costs

  • Hermann’s tortoise – They can cost anywhere between £75 to £400 depending on the age.
  • Horsefield tortoise – They can cost up to £250, and the cheapest you can get them is around £35 when they are younger.
  • Leopard tortoise – They can cost anywhere between £90 to £250.
  • Spur thighed tortoise – They can cost between £80 to £250.
  • Indian star tortoise – For the younger tortoise it is around £180. If you are looking for an older one it will be around £1000.
  • Sulcata tortoise – There was a range of prices for this species. It is around £50 up to £425.

What kit do I need for my tortoise?

Even though tortoises have their hard shell and a very long-life expectancy, they are also delicate creatures who need to have specific living conditions.

The kit:

  • Tortoise table: These can cost from £40 to just over £100 depending on the size and the size of your tortoise. The perfect size is 4ft by 2ft and about 10-12 inches deep.
  • UVB lamp: This is an essential part of your tortoise set up, as it will stimulate the metabolism of calcium and vitamin D3. This can be bought for around £100.
  • Tortoise run: An enclosure that provides your tortoise with the option of going outside away from any dangers and get some exercise. Depending on size, this can be between £50-£200.
  • Sterilised soil: This goes in your tortoise table and is the best substrate for your tortoise. It is free from anything harmful which means it will keep your tortoise safe from digesting anything bad. You can buy this for about £7
  • Heat basking lamp: Tortoises are cold blooded animals and so they need to be kept warm. These will give them the extra warmth they need. This can be bought online for £20 although you may be able to find cheaper ones.
  • Dimming thermostat: These provide an easy way to control the temperature, which can be set to a minimum temperature to ensure your tortoise’s habitat is never too cold. Prices range from £50-£80.
  • Ceramic heat emitter: Perfect for giving off heat at night as it does not give off light. The bigger the Watts the more expensive it is so they range from £7.99 to £23.99
  • Pulse thermostat: These are essential as it regulates the temperature of the ceramic heat emitter. Prices can vary from £40 to £60.
  • Tortoise food: Tortoises mainly feed on leaves. Growing their food in your garden is a great way to minimise the risk of pesticides being used. A monthly supply of tortoise food will cost around £15.

Tortoise vet

Your tortoise will need a specialist exotic vet. Make sure you are aware of the nearest one in case anything should ever happen to your best friend!

British Pet Insurance Services offers a range of exotic pet cover levels, insuring; lizards, snakes, tortoises, parrots, birds of prey and small mammals. With up to £5,000 vet fees and a range of optional extras, select the level of cover to suit your needs.

Get a quote today