Turtle Skin Problem - Fungus, Bacteria, Parasites, Skin Shedding??

I would like to share that, a month ago my Chinese Golden Thread Turtle (CGTT) had this skin problem. I don't know what is it and how it happen. Its looks like he having really heavy shedding but in the same time the legs and the other parts of body looks swollen.

I assumed this must be some sort of fungus or bad bacteria that infect my turtle. It could be from the water. Dirty water, wrong temperature can give this kind of symptom. But then, I'm using filter in his tank, so what could it be??

Poor baby, his face covered with the fungus. Give swollen looks =(

His leg show some swollen.

Based from my experienced dealing with this skin problem such white spots, fungus and injuries, the home remedy to cure this problem is by soaking the baby turtle in the Potassium Permanganate.

What is Potassium Permanganate?
Potassium Permanganate act as disintectant, used to treat dermatitis, fungal infections, killed bacteria and parasites of the hands or feet. By evaporation of Potassium Permanganate will gives prismatic purplish-black glistening crystals and it will dissolves in water to gives deep purple solutions.

So what I do is I mixed the crystal with warm water. Don't put too many, just few drops like 10 tiny crystal and gives very light purple solution. Then I soaked the baby turtle in potassium permanganate solution for 20 minutes, if I let the baby soak more than 20 minutes, the solutions will turn to brownish also to the turtles =P Don't worry, it won't harm the turtle but do keep on eye if the turtle started makes some bubbles from the nose.. Meaning dat they had enough.

I treated my baby turtle 2 times a day for a week.

Soaking the baby in potassium permanganate solution for 20 minutes.

After the soaking, I dry dock him under infrared bulb as to let him dry and kill whatever things covered his body.

Felt asleep while dry docking

After couple hours dry dock him, I place him in super clean warm water for drinking and feed him pellets as well.

2 Weeks After the treatment.

So far my baby looks much better, eat well and very active.


Anonymous said...

heyy, i just got a turtle about 3 to 4 months ago. his is very tiny and cute. i dont know that much about turtles but i my mom let me keep him. well about 2 weeks ago i left for a camp and my mom was in charge of him. when i came back he had some fuzzy stuff on his skin? and a little on his shell. i tryed to scurb it off with a soft tooth brush but it wont go away. i dont know how to get rid of it or if its suppost to be there. please please help me and tell me what it is.

Azfar Turtles said...

Hi there,
Fuzzy stuff on his skin and shell? Do you have a picture of your turtle? Can you send me the pictures at my email Azfar85@yahoo.com

I need to see your turtle conditions first, take a picture before and after, before is when your turtle is in the water and wet and after picture is a when your turtle is dry completely.

It can be your turtle is shedding since you had him about 3 4 months or maybe a fungus attack him. I will try to help you and your turtle with a good picture :) and picture of your turtle habitat also.

Novroz said...

Sorry to hear that....but I can see that you are such a good nurse :)

Btw he's so cute...I think it's cuter than RES

Azfar Turtles said...

Hehe.. thank Novroz ;) I will do anything for my turtles until my last breath..

Hehe.. yeah~! GTT more cuter than a RES.. GTT got big lips if you can see.. thats why they a bit cute.. Beyonce wannabe perhaps.. har har ;)

Novroz said...

I think they are cutter because they are so round

pesilat said...

salam...hai...sy ade 2 ekor baby kura2 species "kachuga tecta" (indian roofed turtle) tahu tak?? google sendiri...hehehe....

sekor tu ade skin problem, dekat atas leher dia ade mcm bintik putih...cm jerawat masak lah...

baru jer..mlm tadi takda..pagi nie ade lak....

so boleh mintak pandangan tak or solution pasal problem..is it fungus or parasite?

Azfar Turtles said...

Hi Pesilat,

Ok, I've google your turtle species, Though its have similar design like my Golden Thread Turtle.. I'm sure yours is an aquatic turtle.

By your description, it looks like a white spot.. white spot can be fungus or parasite.. Biasa nya terjadi sebab persekitaran ataupun kualiti air.

My home remedy is what I used to do when my baby turtles got this white spot, I separate kan the patient and dry dock the baby.. meaning that, kena provide satu bekas lain yang air nyer sentiasa suam dan harus ade cahaya dari sinar UVA n UVB.. which means matahari.

Can you email me the pictures of your turtle? Shot a close up at the area that sick. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

I just bought my turtles today and noticed one of them having some white spots on his neck and leg. I have sent you an email with the pictures. could you let me know what should i do with these baby turtles? thank you~

Azfar Turtles said...

I already reply your email and thanks for the picture.

Yes, your baby got white spot on its body.

denise said...

just wonder where did u buy Potassium permanganate for your tortoise ? my vet use to give it to me last time but now i am running low on it .
is it possible to advice ?
i am in Kl, near KLCC area!
thanks in advance !

Azfar Turtles said...

Hi Denise,

Sorry if I ask, why are you need the
Potassium Permanganate? Is your turtle/
tortoise got some health problem? Use
it wisely and for certain sickness ok.

You may get the potassium parmanganate
at any pharmacy stores in KL. Just ask
the pharmacist. I'm not sure whether Guardian or Watson have it. I just buy it at local

Anyway nice to help you.

denise said...

my vet ask me to soak my red foot cheeryhead in the solution of Potassium Permanganate from time to time to keep them healthy
so , was thinking of stocking them up since what i hv left is really not much
and i dont wanna go and get from vet as tat is too troublesome and too far.
you sure guardian has it ? i went to ask and they said no...
when was the last time u bought them, if dont mind me asking

Azfar Turtles said...

Owh I see, I'm not really into tortoise actually. But they still reptiles ;)
As I mention before, I'm not sure whether Guardian or Watson have it and most probable they not.

I bought it at local pharmacy. Any 'unbranded' pharmacy near your workplace or home. They should have it. Theres a lot of pharmacy in KL you can go. I bought mine at one local pharmacy at Taman Setiawangsa, Kuala Lumpur.

denise said...

i went there just now
and found it
thanks dear ....

Azfar Turtles said...

Okay Denise, glad you found what you need. Good Luck and all the best with your tortoise. Take care.

Anonymous said...

Salam awak... I naz.. I've just read yr nursing tips n kebetulan I hv potasium at hm.. Just soaked Ben just bout 20 mins n currently drying him up.. I hope he feels better... Thanks to U!! =)

Jordan said...

I have a 2 red eye sliders. And I noticed that one of their eyes are really swollen. I have had him about 6 months. I went to the pet store I got him from and they gave me drop for his eyes. I used them for a few days but it doesnt seem to be working.
I don't know if I can afford to bring him to the vet. Do you know any reasons that could have caused this? Or anything I can do at home to help him get better?


Jane said...

Hi, I have a 3 year old red-eared slider.
I know turtles shed their shell in scutes, but just now I noticed that theres itty bitty pieces scattered all around his water that are from his shell.
They're really tiny, and everywhere.
Is that an issue?

Corey said...

Ok, So I have two baby red eared sliders, and had them about a month now, they are starting to get white debris coming off of them. They are in a 10 gallon tank with two 318 zoo med filters and i change the water once a week, making sure to leave the sponge in the filter clean to keep down ph levels and amonia levels, it doesnt seem serious but i want to make sure its not a fungus. Curious to know if their belllys will get white before shedding.

idavis192 said...

Hi, my baby turtle has the same condition as yours with the swollen feet. Do you know where I can purchase the potassiun permanganate? Ive tried petsmart and a couple of reptiles shops and have had no luck. I also saw something called Kordon Permoxyn for sale on the internet and was wondering if maybe that'll do the job. I love my turtle and I dont want him to die. Please help me! Thanks!

Anonymous said...

hi urm i got a res last week and i recently realised that it had white spots n its legs and around the eye area.I would apprieciate if u would help

My Sweet Adorable Turtles said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
My Sweet Adorable Turtles said...

Hello Destiny,

Sorry for such a late reply, I hope by
now your turtle is okay.

If your RES consistently rub their eyes after a water change, you may suspect high levels of chlorine or chloramines. The use of an aquarium water conditioner may help ease the situation. Home remedies for closed eyes may be small amounts of Vitamin A drops or the application of cod-liver oil onto the eyelids. Try to see if the turtle will open its eyes when dry docked. It is, however, best to seek the help of a qualified vet if there are other symptoms, the condition does not improve, or there is no explanation for the cause. Turtles may refuse to eat if they are unable to see. This can cause an onset of other serious medical conditions.

Try the plain cod-liver oil.

Hi Jane,

Itty bitty pieces from the shell? Are you sure? What does that thing looks like? If it white filmy soft layer.. its their skin. Turtles not just shed their shell but their skin also when they grow big.

Its just a skin shedding. Don't worry unless excessive skin shedding then its another issue need to be consider.

Hello there Corey,

The white debris or white filmy thingy is their skin. If you do the right thing, nothing to be worried, turtles do shed their skin and shell.

Yes, before turtles fully shedding, the part of the shell will become white as that part will fall and replace with new brand parts. :D

My Sweet Adorable Turtles said...

Hi there Idavis192,

I'm not sure whether Kordon Permoxyn is the same thing like Potassium Permanganate. Try to search more the potassium at ordinary local pharmacy. Its a medicine that not for sale at any reptiles shop or petsmart. Good LUck! Keep me update. TQ :D

To the Anonymous,

A condition that should be easy to prevent and treat is fungal growth on the skin. Fungus may appear as a wispy white or brown patch and is clearly visible underwater. Inadequate filtration, poor water quality and lack of basking greatly contribute to this condition.

Make sure you prepare a good basking area, a good filter and with a good UVA n UVB lights. For more details, you may email me at Azfar85@yahoo.com

I'll try to help you as much as I can.

Anonymous said...

hi there
i just bought a pair of chinese golden thread turtle.. 1st n 2nd day they are still active but since ytd.. 1 looked like dead d.. doenst moving at all.. n today my another turtle also looks like die d.. are they hibernating, sick or die d? i'm so worry.. their legs turning into red/black colour..

Anonymous said...

My turtle is not earring and losses a nail and has a red spot where the nail was wat do I do

xee said...

Asalaamu Alaikum,
Very nice home made tank.
Are you useing Heater in winter for the turtles? And what if you dont fut filter in the tank but change the water after a day or more?
please reply.

Anonymous said...

hey there,
baru beli tortoise 2 weeks ago..
start last week ade white spot kat bdn dye..esp kat kaki & tgn..
keep increasing..
2 days ago the white spot turns to yellow..cm bernanah..
any suggestion cmne nk hilangkn the white & yellow spot?

Anonymous said...

hello! pls help me! i just got 2 red ear sliders 2 weeks ago they're quite baby very small! but this evening i realised they got like white patches on their necks n limbs! brought them to a pet shop and got this bottle of medicine to cure body fungus and i added it to the water but didn't have any results! help!!! i dun noe wad to do!!! would appreciate if you can email me at kaiyun92@gmail.com. thanks!!!

Anonymous said...

I have mailes u some photos of my sick turtle. cud u please suggest something to make her better? thanking u in advance.

Lilly said...

My yellow belly slider turtle has a lump on the side if it's face it appears to be beneath his skin rather than on top any ideas what this could be he's booked into a reptile specialist on Monday but really wanted some ideas now

Anonymous said...

I don't know what kind of turtles I have but I had them for a year now and one of my turtles legs is white and swollen and it is shedding on that swollen leg, is Potassium Permanganate good for this infection or do I need to find something else?? Can you please reply because I'm only 12 and I don't know what to do so I will really appreciate it if you replied!


EricaBRanham said...

Hi there! I could use a bit of help. I found my red eared slider a few months ago, and I believ he is around 6 months old. Just a few weeks ago, I noticed that it looked like he was shedding his skin! Now I've read that it could be a fungal infection. That got me worried. I love my turtle and I don't want anything to happen to him...on him arms, legs, and under his neck, I've noticed that there are little whisps of white stuff-which appears to be skin. None on his shell though. Could you let me know of it's normal or an infection?
Please! Lots of love,

Nadya said...

my adolescent painted turtle recently had her eyes swollen shut :( they opened today accept here is still a bit of purple surrounding them. she also has a lot of skin shedding on her all her paws, like a whole layer. i tried to feed her but all she does is paddle like crazy around her tank. she has a heating lamp but no filter, i change her water about every week. everytime she tries to grab a food pellet a bubblt comes out of her mouth nd she gives up.

haitian sensatio said...

i've had my turtles for a few months and one of them has a lump on the side of his face is that some kind of bacteria?

desire123 said...

Hi, I just got my turtle a week ago, then just afew days ago, it started not eating then there was some white thing growing on both its eyes. Then, it started to grow on its legs and hands. What happened? Do i need to bring it to see the vet or just put medication? Please help, thanks and tell me what it is

Swapnita said...

Hi This is Swapnita. I have recently bought two turtles one of which i guess is suffering from fungal attack near its mouth..i really need ur help...my turtles only eat red worms..i feed them twice daily and then keep them in a dry place..after reading all ur comments on this site i kept my infected turtle in potassium permangnate solution, but after 5 mins it started making some real weird noises and also started removing bubbles from his mouth..i m really worried...pls help me..also i can see small holes in the infected area.. :(

Anonymous said...

Hi, i read your little excerpt and i was wondering if you could help me? One of my turtles recently has a illness that i am unsure of how to cure. his lips are swollen and red. would the potassium pomegranate help? thanks in advance. -B

Anonymous said...

hi, i have 6 month res turtle and it has some watery bubbles coming out of her nose is she fine , how do i trest it ? plz help

Brenda Jauregui said...

good job on the website, very informative... where can i buy Potassium-permanganate. so far i can only find one that has chlorine. is that the one you used on your turtle. just want to make sure. Thank you.

sophie said...

can you help me i got 2 turtles 3 monthes ago, bruce(my turtle) is very fat but sheila (my other turtle) hasn't grown! it looks like sheila has some fungus on her shell and she keeps on trying to make her self be sick do you have any idea what i should do?

Anonymous said...

hey plzzzzz plzzzzz help me out...
my tortoise is having red patches on legs.
and he is not able to walk and swim in water
his 2 legs in front are working but the back one are not..
plzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz help me out
am soo worried and cant see him in that way..... plzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

priyanka naik said...

i have already sent you the pics..
please please help me outt as soon as possible pleaseeeeeee............

priyanka naik said...

please any one here can help me out in aquatic turtle.. :( :( :(

priyanka naik said...

from do i get help aabout my turtle..

Amber Wagner said...

I got two red eared sliders about 5 years ago. Recently I noticed that one had a light pinkish growth in between his claws. It has tinyyy, almost invisible, flaps of skin. Is it some kind of fungus? Is it from unhealthy water? I tried gently removing it with a wet wash cloth and he tried to bite it so it obviously hurts. Please help, I don't want him to be in pain and I don't want it spreading to my other turtle.

Anonymous said...

I just looked at my RES and saw that she had some brown/grey stuff on her foot. A few years ago when she was little we used betadine solution for something but I can't remember what. Any thoughts? Could it be a fungus?

Anonymous said...

I have 2 painted turtles full grown and they haven't been wanting to eat there pallet food so I tried feeder and don't seem to notice them one of my turtles has white shimmy stuff on all legs and the same turtle throws up whitenstuff also they stay all day on the basking area sometime they spend the night on the basking area all night and morning what should I do I'm very concerned

Lelia said...

Hi, I have 2 RES turtles and have had them for about 2-3 months now. They were the size of a quarter when I got them and are twice that size now. I don't know if they are going through a growth spurt and are sluffing off skin or if they have a fungus on them. Is there a home remedy that can be used to help to rid them of this? It is only visible when they are in the water. They still eat well, swim well, eat well, and seem to be thriving great except for the sluffing on their skin. Shell is fine. Both turtles have this issue and one has a little more than the other. Can you help me with this issue? I got these turtles for my grand babies and they will be heart broken if something were to happen to them. Please and Thank You

Anonymous said...

Hi.. i hav got two turtles few days back.. one of the two has got white spot in his both front legs.. what shud i do in order to protect him.. from getting those infections on the other two legs . N from my other turtle.. shud i need to keep both of them seperately .. n for how many hours do i need to keep dem in water. Or dry. ?? At night shuld should i keep them in water or dry??plzz help me wth all the doubts.. n reply asap.. coz lil worried for the cutie pie..(turtle.) Plzzz

Anonymous said...

What do i do to make him well again ?? N medication or some thng ??

~Turtles' Mummy said...

Hello there,

Kindly please quote your name :)

The white spot can be the fungus.. you can dry dock them and yes you need to put them separately to avoid the other one from infection.

You need to prepare a good UVB light and heat light for the sick one.

Please refer to my other pages about UVB lights and the heat light at night.

On medication part, there's a page about pottasium permanganate. Please refer and follow the steps how I did to my turtle.

Good luck!

Anonymous said...

I've two indian crowned turtles...one of dem has got some white mushy skin on his leg...what can it be?
Plz reply i'm worried


hi sis,
ive got a turtle just like yours.
im worried as there is white spots like small pimples or growth on one side of the face near the eye area.
what is the cause and what do i do?

P Alex Ribeiro said...

I'm a first time turtle owner (Chinese Yellow Striped) and i watch him closely. I've had him for 3 weeks and absolutely love his stripes. Today ive noticed he has some white spots in his hand and foot (left side only) as well as a white spot on his neck (topside). It looks more like bubbles over the skin actually. Does this sound familiar to anyone? Please i would appreciate some feedback because i would hate to think im not attending to his health in time :(

JEF said...

Hi Azfar,
Glad to find your blog...Thank you for sharing your experience on how to care for a turtle. My family have started keeping two little Map turtles s pet about a month ago. However, two days ago they started shedding and then became still and motionless...are they dead or hibernating? We are in Hong Kong and the weather has turned cooler these past day.
Appreciate your advises. Thank you!

Anali Rubio said...

Can you email me please. I have a baby turtle red eared slider . she has white stuff on her feet and neck looks like pus I don't know what it is but she's not eating nor is active :( all she does is sleep. Can you please help? I can send you pictures. My email is anali.rubio91@gmail.com

Anonymous said...

I have a red eared slider that does not want to move his front legs they look like they are sideways,please help

Grace L said...

I need help identifying my turtle, I got it two days ago and I can.t figure out what species it is. I can send pictures, just email me at gracejliu128@gmail.com. Thanks!

Crystal Benjami said...

Hello I think I have a yellow belly baby turtle and two weeks ago I noticed it has a redish spot on its forehead. And im not sure if the belly had always had red tent to it just noticing it now. I've been trying to Google answers but no luck.

Angela White said...

Hi, I know this post was awhile ago, but I wsd wondering if you could tell me what wss wrong with your slider? Mine also has lumps but he has one on both sides where his cheeks would be. I dont have the money for a vet at the moment dur to my husband losing his job but im trying to find out if its something serious so I know if I need to try and borrow the money for a vet!! Thanks--Angie

Angela White said...

Hi, I know this post was awhile ago, but I wsd wondering if you could tell me what wss wrong with your slider? Mine also has lumps but he has one on both sides where his cheeks would be. I dont have the money for a vet at the moment dur to my husband losing his job but im trying to find out if its something serious so I know if I need to try and borrow the money for a vet!! Thanks--Angie

Anonymous said...

Hello... My brother bought 2 baby red eared slider turtles and now am stuck taking care of them I've had them for 3 months and I started out by buying Reptomin baby pellets and dried mealworms the lady that sold them to him lied big time saying "they will stay little FOREVER" she gave him a cypress mix turtle pellets with vitamins but I don't trust it since it looks cheap I feed them cabbage and carrot shedding once in a while anyhoot, I placed them in a plastic container with h20 a chill dock and river rocks plus h20 decloridizer I would clean the water 1 a week(all products from walmart) 2 weeks ago I bought them a real turtle aquarium kit which includes a 10g tank,filter,dock,and heat lamp (i've read it needs a uvb and uva light???) they are 2inch long and are producing this loose,dry,shedding web like skin on there heads and feet there shells are hard and good but the bottom is creating this brown spots!!! What is it and also one has a pyramid like shell but I've read that it's bad but also Fine if there babies ...HELP PLEASE am so lost sorry for the long comment