Indoor vs Outdoor Housing & The 10 commandments

Should I Keep my Tortoise Outdoors VS Indoor Housing

Outdoor Eligibility and Requirements

Horsefield Tortoise Outdoor Housing and BorderHousing outdoors is recommended because they are in their natural element. Natural sunlight provides calcium metabolism, you can have larger areas of housing and you can grow food as well as other live plants. If you live in an area with extreme climate it would be best to house outdoors either part of the year and then bring your pet indoors or house indoor all year.  Reasons to provide indoor housing include excessive rain, wind, or extreme temperatures.

Horsefields are use to large temperature changes in nature and can handle many temperatures. In the winter they can be in any temperature above freezing, 0 Celsius (32 Fahrenheit). The hottest temperature they can handle in the summer is 40.5 Celsius (105 Fahrenheit). If your outdoor climate is within these ranges then you are able to provide outdoor housing all year.  The ideal temperature, when not hibernating is 23.9 to 35 Celsius (75 to 95 Fahrenheit).

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Tortoise Table Starter Kit ULTIMATE

Tortoise Table Starter Kit ULTIMATE
#1 Best bet to get you started the fastest and correctly. Includes everything you need to start. Takes all the guess work out of it! For someone getting their first Horsefield, this saves the hassle of piecing everything together yourself and wondering if it's right! Save by bundling and getting all the correct supplies in one place.
Tortoise Starter Kit ADVANCED

Tortoise Starter Kit ADVANCED
Excellent. Includes UV-A / UV-B lighting, engraved pets name, furnishings, food, manual and vitamins.
Grassland Natural Tortoise Food

Grassland Zoo Med Natural Tortoise Food
#1 Best bet for food because it is specifically designed for the Horsefield tortoise and its Testudo Genus. It's formulated just for them with the correct vitamins, minerals and fiber. All natural with no artificial colors or preservatives and mainly consists of their favorite, Dandelion and Yucca.
uvb, uva, visual light and heat Bulb

Exo Terra PT2192 Solar Glo Mercury Vapour Lamp
Perfect all in one bulb that delivers all the lighting your Horsefield will need when kept inside.
Pro Rep Tortoise Life Substrate 25 litres

Pro Rep Tortoise Life Substrate 25 litres
Reliable pro-grade substrate perfect for his housing environment. Buying packaged substrate over wild dirt etc. prevents many possible contamination problems. This is best mixed with other substate sources like Timothy hay, wood chips and sand. Keep dry to prevent shell rot.
Horsefield Care Made Easy

Advanced guide. This is the only guide that is made just for the Horsefield Tortoise. Includes everything on buying, housing, food, breeding, hibernation and health issues. All of the information you need to know specifically about your one type of pet, the Horsefield tortoise, is in this care guide.

Horsefields are a Mediterranean tortoise and they do not like excessive moisture.  If there is excessive moisture in the air they can endure respiratory problems and if there is excessive moisture in the ground and substrate they can face shell rot on the bottom of their shell. Horsefields are use to more dry and arid conditions as apposed to tropical tortoises that can endure such humid conditions.

Indoor Eligibility and Requirements 

If weather conditions do not fit with in the guidelines:

  • Above freezing in Winter
  • Below 40.5 Celsius (105 Fahrenheit) in summer
  • No excessive rain, hail, wind or predators

It is also controversial that indoors is the ideal way for new baby hatchlings for the first 1-2 years as you can control their habitat the most. I take the natural habitat approach as they are proven to thrive in these circumstances overall. After all, baby Horsefield’s grew up in the wild for some time before indoor housing by humans came along! The answer is, either way is fine and if your outdoor conditions are permitting then I recommend doing that.

The 10 Commandments

In this section there are 10 commandments that you must follow to allow your Horsefield tortoise to be the happiest, healthiest and longest living Horsefield he can possibly, in or outdoor.

 rules of horsefield tortoise housing

*Set up the housing before you bring your Horsefield home


This is important to work all the kinks out and get the temperature right before putting your tortoise in the environment

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