Turtle, tortoise rescue sanctuary opens new adoption center
An Anderson-based turtle and tortoise sanctuary is branching out.
Katie Hoffman and her husband, Ken, the owners of Tortoise Acres Rescue and Sanctuary, established a turtle and tortoise adoption center at her pet grooming business, Shampnoodles, on East Street.
And business, unlike the reptiles they rescue and adopt out, is zooming.
Although their 10-acre sanctuary established in 2016 is no longer open to the public due to American with Disabilities Act requirements, the adoption center is ADA complaint.
People interested in adopting a turtle or tortoise or those who want to get a close-hand look at the critters can do so from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday through Friday at the adoption center opened about a month ago.
Katie Hoffman, 54, said the new adoption center makes is easier for customers to adopt the reptiles because it has regular business hours in a retail-style setting.
The nonprofit rescue sanctuary saw more than 60 turtles or tortoises adopted since last year, she said.
« We adopted four out in four days, » she said.
Hoffman was busy Friday arranging transportation for three Russian tortoises from the Reno area to the sanctuary. She said eight turtles or tortoises are now up for adoption at the East Street center with more than 60 still at the sanctuary.
But not all of those at the sanctuary are available for adoption, she said, noting that some will live out their days there under a sponsorship program. The sanctuary is the only kind in the North State.
Hoffman offers a variety of species rescued for adoption, including box turtles and Leopard, Sulcata and Russian tortoises.
But turtles and tortoises are not for everybody, For one thing, they are not fuzzy and cuddly. And there are certainly not to-die-for cute. They can also get big and heavy.
« Sulcata tortoises can get to 100 pounds by the time they are 10, » Hoffman said.
There are a number rules when it comes to their proper care.
« There’s a lot to it, » Hoffman says.
To adopt a turtle or tortoise, one must first fill out a two-page application and take a class on the proper feeding and care of the shelled creatures.
Ken Hoffman and his wife Katie run Tortoise Acres Rescue & Sanctuary in Anderson. The couple have around 50 rescued turtles and tortoises at any given time and offer adoption of the reptiles.Greg Barnette/Record Searchlight
But the key to being a good owner of a turtle or tortoise is a commitment and dedication to taking care of the long-lived creatures, Hoffman says.
« It’s a long-time commitment, » she says.
Hoffman’s fascination with tortoises started when a Russian tortoise took up a 15-year residency at her pet-grooming shop.
« My sister asked if she could have him, » Hoffman said. « I didn’t think I’d miss him. »
She did; so much so she and her 62-year-old husband converted their 10-acre ranch into the turtle and tortoise rescue.
« I picked a name and made a Facebook page, » she said. « I advertised the page on Craigslist, (and) within two months we had 27 (animals) surrendered to the rescue. »
But don’t stress over what to name a tortoise.
« They don’t really care, » Hoffman said.
Contact Tortoise Acres Rescue and Sanctuary at 941-0544 or go to www.tortoiseacres.com for more information about the sanctuary and the adoption center.