Why Is My Turtle’s Mouth Bleeding? (2 Reasons Why + What To Do)

Bleeding means injury, this is true for humans and turtles. If you notice that your pet’s mouth is bleeding you may start to question why your turtle would bleed from its mouth and where in the turtle’s body the injury would be.

This article looks into why your turtle’s mouth bleeding.

Why is my turtle’s mouth bleeding?

If your turtle starts bleeding at its mouth then you’d likely become very worried for the animal and want to figure out what the issue is as soon as possible.

Here is why your turtle’s mouth is bleeding:

A fall:

One reason why your turtle may bleed from its mouth may be because the animal fell recently.

Turtle shells are generally quite strong and will protect the animal’s body from a fall but the shell does not protect the animal’s head.

If your turtle fell on its head then the impact of the fall could have caused internal bleeding in the animal’s head/neck area. This may be why you’re seeing blood coming from the animal’s mouth.

Your pet won’t always have external injuries after an accident like a fall but the bleeding is a sign of an internal injury.

What to do:

You won’t be able to tell where the injury is from the outside so you’d need to take the animal to the vet to get an x-ray done.

Once the x-ray is performed your vet will be able to determine what organs are injured and come up with a treatment plan.

There isn’t much you can do while waiting to get to the vet other than keeping the animal comfortable, keeping it happy, and keeping it safe from other turtles, if there are any, in the enclosure.

Keep the animal from swimming around after the fall, the animal’s body will try to get the blood at the injury to clot, help this process along by keeping the animal dry.

You should however put the reptile in a tub with about 1cm of water in it so the turtle doesn’t get dehydrated.


Another reason why your turtle may be bleeding from its mouth may be because the animal ingested a foreign object.

Turtles are opportunistic feeders, if you watch them free roam around your home you’ll notice that try to smell and eat anything then can.

Your pet may smell and eat something it shouldn’t, like a sharp foreign object, this foreign object may be causing the bleeding

This foreign object may be trapped in the turtle’s respiratory or GI tract and it may be causing internal injury or ulceration, this may be why the animal is bleeding.

What to do:

Look into the animal’s mouth and try to find the foreign object. If you can see the foreign object then gently remove it.

If you look inside, but can’t find the foreign object in the animal’s mouth, then it may be deeper in the animal’s body. In this case, you’d need to have your pet seen by a vet.

The vet will take an x-ray of the animal’s body looking for the foreign object. Once found your vet will offer treatment options to get the object out.

If you enjoyed this article then you may also be interested in other turtle/tortoise related articles. Here are some articles that you may be interested in: Why Is My Turtle’s Tail Swollen?, Why Did My Turtle’s Tail Fall Off?Why Is My Turtle’s Tail Curled?Why Does My Tortoise Wag Its Tail?Why Is My Turtle’s Tail Tucked In?Why Does My Turtle Keep Opening His Mouth?, Why Do Turtle’s Eyes Turn White?What’s Wrong With My Turtle’s Eyes?Why Is My Tortoise Blowing Bubbles From His Mouth?

Why Is My Turtle’s Mouth Bleeding? (2 Reasons Why + What To Do)
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