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Dublin: 7 °C Saturday 23 November, 2019
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Have you seen this tortoise? 100-year-old pet makes quick getaway in Dublin

Florentine the tortoise’s escape has been trending on Twitter in Dublin this afternoon after his unexpected getaway.

Florentine the tortoise
Florentine the tortoise
Image: Eogan family

MISSING: ONE TORTOISE. Last seen: Dublin. Appearance: Possibly shell-shocked.

A family in Dublin is appealing for help in tracking down their household pet after he unexpectedly escaped from their home.

Florentine the tortoise, who is around 100 years old, escaped from the back garden of the house on Brighton Road  in Rathgar yesterday afternoon after a back door was briefly left open. The Eogan family has been appealing for anyone in the area who may have seen him to get in touch. Meanwhile,  #rathgartortoise has been trending on Twitter in Dublin this afternoon as tweeters have spread the word of the escape.

“We know he’s not dead because he’d be on the ground somewhere, it would be obvious,” says Cliona Eogan, whose family has owned Florentine for forty years. “But we don’t know if he escaped into someone’s garden or if someone picked him up or even took him”.

Cliona’s mother has put up posters around Rathgar and contacted gardaí in nearby Terenure garda station in the hope that someone finds the tortoise.  Cliona told TheJournal.ie that contrary to popular conception, tortoises can move surprisingly fast.

We like to say that he’s solar-powered. When it’s warm and sunny he’ll fly around the garden. He can walk quite far: he likes to walk around the garden all day so he can walk for quite some time. He always follows the sun because he doesn’t like the shade.

Florentine can survive for some time without food. “He could be by himself for a weekend and he would be ok.  He’s easy to look after. He eats a lot of lettuce,  bits of cheese, boiled potatoes, soft potatoes – anything soft, really,” says Cliona.

However, he shouldn’t be put in water; tortoises can’t swim and would drown.

Cliona said that the tortoise is part of the family. Florentine has been with the Eogan family for forty years but he is believed to be around 100 years old.

We got him from an elderly lady who had had him for about 40 years. We had him checked out a few years by a vet in UCD who told us you can tell his age by counting the rings on his shell, so he’s around 100 years old.

The family are hoping he is found soon. In the meantime, we’ll keep an on this this story as it (slowly) emerges…

(Rathgartortoise, tortoise, and Rathgar have all been trending in Dublin this afternoon. Image: Trendsmap.com)

UPDATE: He’s back! Rathgar tortoise returns home >

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