On the 1st of October 2015 a Samaritan arrived at our hospital in Wellington with a badly injured tortoise.
On his way home, in the area of Stanford, the man saw a tortoise in the road and decided to stop. Tortoises are not the fastest of species and he wanted to help this one cross the road safely. Unfortunately it was too late and the tortoise had already been hit by a car.
With the severely injured tortoise in the car, modern technology proved to be of little use. No vet in the area was available to help the tortoise and the Samaritan decided to put away his cellphone and take the injured animal home to Wellington and get help for him there.
The tortoise had multiple cracks in his shell as well as internal injuries. Euthanazia was the first option, but the brave animal looked around and tried to walk. It was decided to try treatment.
After three days of treatment the prognosis looked better and the decision was made to fix the cracks in his shell. The tortoise started walking better and better and munched on all the treats that were brought for him.
At this point everyone felt that the tortoise needed a name. “Torty” just sounded too plain and he was given the name “Stan”. Stan was put outside for a bit of sun and fresh air and when he was put back into his cage, the cleaner had put fresh food, water and newspapers into his cage. The heading on the newspaper in large letters on which he has walking was the following: “Dop to go with your chop”!
Written by Dr Albert van Rooyen