Tortoise crushed by owner’s reclining chair gets shell pieced back together by vets

Video: Notts TV’s Sharon Walia meets Taribo traumatised tortoise

A Nottinghamshire tortoise that was crushed by its owner’s reclining chair has received a life-saving operation.

The pet, named Taribo, had his shell screwed back together at the East Midlands Referrals Vets in Hucknall after the accident at his home in Sutton-in-Ashfield.

His owner Nigel Bingham said he heard a sickening ‘crunch’ when he put down his reclining chair one evening at home.

He said: “We took delivery of a new recliner sofa and we were sat watching TV one night as you do on a weekday evening.

“I got the recliner out and later decided to put the recliner down and I then just heard this crunch.

“My immediate reaction was to stop the recliner, get off and to my horror, found that Taribo was underneath one of the actuating arms of the sofa which pierced his shell.

“I felt so sorry for the little fella; he’s been through so much trauma in his life including an incident with a dog some years ago.”

Toribo the tortoise had his shell screwed back together

Graham Oliver and his team at East Midlands Referrals were responsible for making sure Taribo was treated.

He said: “Tortoises are challenging to get good quality x-rays of and we can’t really assess their lung tissue because this was a penetrating injury into his chest.

“But our CT scanner enabled us to have a look at the extent to which the lung tissue was affected.

“He was very unfortunate – probably the first tortoise in the world to be attacked by an electric reclining chair.”

Veterinary nurse Sophie Hesketh stayed up until 2am to look after Taribo after he was taken in to the surgery.

Sophie said: “With reptiles, they don’t have the same muscle groups as we do in our chest, so under anaesthetic, they completely relax so we have to breathe for the animal.

“I had to do that manually while Mr Oliver placed some screws into the shell to help bring the shell back out.”

Taribo is named after Taribo West – the former Nigeria, Derby County and Inter Milan defender, who played for Derby from 2000-2001.


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