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Southern California tortoise with cracked shell gets $4,000 repair

Southern California tortoise with cracked shell gets $4,000 repair
A wayward tortoise is recovering from a cracked shell after vets used screws, zip ties and denture material to repair it. (Daniel DeSousa / AP)

A wayward tortoise that cracked its shell after falling off a 10-foot wall in San Diego is recovering after veterinarians used screws, zip ties and denture material to make repairs.

San Diego County Animal Services Director Dan DeSousa says the 90-pound male African spurred tortoise probably was a pet that got loose from a yard.

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He says it was found Sunday after falling over the wall while escaping a dog.

DeSousa says the animal's shell cracked into three pieces. Veterinarians repaired it Tuesday in a three-hour operation.

The $4,000 cost is covered by the county's Spirit Fund. The tortoise will live with a rescue group.

DeSousa says it will take a year to heal, but the 35- to 40-year-old tortoise could have many more decades of life.

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