Aquatic turtles cannot eat unless the food is in the water. “The main problem one has with turtles is keeping the water clean. Other turtle care tips include feeding your turtle in a smaller tank as food residue can aggravate infection, also each time you handle your turtle make sure your hands are clean or you could use gloves as this will avoid contaminating both the water and the body of the turtle. Baby Yellow Belly Turtle Care Tips. Box turtles can drown in deeper water. This article has been viewed 809,176 times. Turtles spend most of the time in the water, while tortoises live on the land. Feed your baby turtle every day up to two times per day. Make the basking area's height more than twice the turtle's length to ensure it'll be above water. I was planning on getting a turtle, but I didn't know how to care for it. A heat lamp should be next on your list of things to purchase for caring for a turtle. Audra Barrios is a Marine Biologist and the owner of Lick Your Eyeballs, a business offering reptiles, supplies and plants. [1] X Expert Source Audra Barrios Marine Biologist & Reptile Specialist Expert Interview. May 23 is National Turtle Day! Even though you're using a water filter, you'll still need to remove feces and other debris from the tank with a net every day. “Frequent water changes will ensure the water is clean and free of particles that can lead to infections.”. The following tips will help you keep your red-eared slider safe and healthy. You could feed it store-bought food 1 to 2 times a week and homemade meals another 1 to 2 times per week. Here is an insight into their habitat, … Keeping a clean terrarium, enforcing good hygiene with pet owners and buying an inexpensive conditioner to add to the water – Reptoguard makes some – helps keep organisms like salmonella at bay and hopefully prevent turtle diseases from ever happening. Some turtles are picky eaters. May 15, 2020. However, box turtles should have a bowl specifically for their food in the tank. Finally, be sure to look for any physically signs of illness, including swollen eyes, discoloring on the shell and avoiding food. Try another answer... Nice! Written by Editorial. A very strong filtration system needs to be used and water changed regularly,” Colby said. ", favorite animal, so I'm glad that I know how to take care of one, too. The water contains beneficial bacteria; whenever possible, avoid changing it entirely. You can also take your turtle to the vet to see what's wrong with it. If you purchase your turtle as a baby, expect to offer it plenty of TLC and keep the following tips in mind: Make sure your terrarium’s water and air temperature is about 86 degrees Fahrenheit and that your baby turtle has access to both land and water. "Now I know the turtle needs to climb out sometimes to bask and dry up. Pick another answer! Be sure to line the bottom of the tank with peat moss or soil, and include a basking rock so your turtle can sun itself. This should be taken care of before you even bring your new friend home. Terrapins are also turtles, but generally split their time evenly between land and fresh water. In the article I’ll tell you about Turtle Care Tips. It’s also best if your turtle can get some sunlight, too, said Susan Tellem, of American Tortoise Rescue in Malibu, California. Yes! Box turtles aren't considered suitable pets for young children or for new pet owners. We use cookies to make wikiHow great. However, keeping box turtles as pets requires a lot of effort and … ", "This article is very informational, and will really benefit me on my turtle purchase! With over 15 years of experience, Audra specializes in reptiles and exotic animals, environmental education, marine biology, conservation issues, and animal husbandry. Pick another answer! Avoid lining the bottom of the tank with gravel. Keep your turtle in a large glass aquarium. Just like any other pet, turtles require a clean and spacious living environment, a heat source, a good diet, and fresh water. If you have a juvenile turtle, be sure to find out how large it'll be when it's an adult. Place only the food your turtle can eat within 5 minutes into the water a few times a week. Your first choice is whether to build it inside or outside. How to Take Care of a Turtle: Tips for New Owners . This passion has resulted in her offering useful tips on pet care. wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. String of turtles isn’t a pet-friendly plant. Turtles are opportunistic eaters and will over-eat if you provide too much food. A Las Vegas, NV vet offers some basic tips on caring for a turtle below. There are many different breeds of pet turtle and each one has its own specific needs and special care. The eggs will then hatch and the small turtles will begin a journey of their own. Remember that turtles carry germs that can make people sick. Maintaining your turtle’s environment is very important to stay on top of. Urgent care tips ", teaching me how to take care of my turtle but also make him happy. If you have an aquatic turtle, put its food directly in the water. As a rule of thumb, the enclosure's volume should be 10 US gal (38 L) per 1 in (2.5 cm) of your turtle's shell length. Box turtles prefer a more shallow water environment than other types of turtles. Providing good, consistent care for your turtle or tortoise will keep it healthy and happy. Try experimenting with different veggies to see what he/she likes. If the pH is off, amend the water with a store-bought agent, which you can find at the pet supply store. Read on for another quiz question. Do your research to determine exactly what temperature your type of turtle will need, as just guessing at what seems like a good temperature can create health problems. Always wash your hands after interacting with your turtle. If you purchased a pet box turtle, make sure it has the right amount of water to make the turtle relaxed and happy. I’ve also included a section on turtle … Remember to set up a reptile light near the basking rock, and install a filter to keep the water clear. Proper Housing. If ammonia, nitrate, or nitrate levels are high, change the water and consider upgrading your filter. To keep your pet happy and healthy, provide proper housing, nutrition, and good hygiene. Avoid directly kissing your pet’s shell or any hand to mouth contact. Eastern box turtle care tips Eastern box turtles are very beautiful and loving creatures and you are lucky if you have one as a pet. Turtles carry salmonella, and handling the turtle or cleaning its droppings can pass the virus on to you. Specific care instructions depend on your turtle's species, so check with the breeder or pet store for your pet's exact requirements. 18 August 2020. You can get a calcium supplement and “dust” their food with it twice a year. This article received 19 testimonials and 86% of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. Here are some tips and guidelines on how to take care of a baby turtle … Wet Cat Food vs. Dry Cat Food: Which Is Better? True or false: Handling your turtle can give you salmonella. Live fish and insects can provide mental stimulation. Audra earned a BASc in Marine Biology from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and studied Natural Sciences at the College of Marin. You’ll also want to add calcium to your turtle's diet. We know ads can be annoying, but they’re what allow us to make all of wikiHow available for free. As with all pets, they come with their own set of care needs. Turtles … Read this guideline to help ensure that your turtle … If you’re thinking you don’t have time to maintain a turtle's environment, you may want to consider a primarily land-dwelling tortoise. “These animals require water and land with ample room to explore. UV light provides your turtle with vitamin D, which helps it absorb calcium. After reading this now, I, "I just got my turtle a few days ago, and it isn't eating. When properly cared for, string of turtles can be the pride of a tropical plant collection, but it will take a little effort and some adapting from the typical methods used … Add Comment. A musk turtle can lay around one to nine eggs at once, which takes 60 to 80 days to hatch. by Editorial. Everything You Need To Know About Raising Pet Turtles. Thanks. You should provide your turtle with only the amount of food it can eat within 5 minutes. Turtles might not be as cuddly as cats or dogs, but they make great pets. If something is going to go wrong after you get a turtle or tortoise, it’ll be here. Turtles are carriers of salmonella and can pass the virus to you when you handle them. While there’s no question that turtles make for interesting (and adorable) pets, caring for them isn’t as straightforward as looking after other pets. For example, red eared sliders need their tank to be around 26-29C (79-84F), and around 32C (90F) for the basking area. Different species of turtles have different needs, so I recommend you check with the pet store before purchasing a turtle. How much water should you add to the tank for a box turtle? She has spent the last six years working as a biologist at the California Academy of Sciences. % of people told us that this article helped them. Just make sure your turtle has some room to crawl around. ", "This is awesome and this helped me so much with buying a turtle. ", Turtle Care 101: How to Take Care of Pet Turtles. First off this is not an easy species to keep when … Turtle Care Tips! Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered. Thanks, God bless you! House your turtle in the largest possible enclosure. Though there are approximately 270 types of turtles, the following types are considered ideal for beginning turtle pet parents: You’ll likely want a terrarium for your turtle, and it’s better not to skimp on size. The 3 middle claws of a male turtle are usually longer than the others. “[Buy a turtle] because you absolutely love turtles. Observe it when you first feed it to gauge the right amount. "Thanks for this article, as it helped me to complete my English project on taking care of animals. Swap up what you feed your turtle to keep its meals interesting. This article was co-authored by Audra Barrios. If have an aquatic turtle, you can also keep a block of calcium carbonate in the water for it to chew. ", "Learned a lot for a new turtle mama (5 hatching today!). ", https://www.aaha.org/pet_owner/pet_health_library/other/general_health/box_turtle_care.aspx, https://www.rspca.org.uk/adviceandwelfare/pets/other/terrapin, http://www.redearslider.com/filtration.html, https://tortoise.org/general/boxcare.html, https://www.rspcaqld.org.au/blog/pet-care/turtle-care, https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/turtles-aquatic-feeding, https://tortoise.org/general/watcare.html, http://www.vetstreet.com/our-pet-experts/spring-cleaning-tips-for-exotic-pets, consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. The bigger the enclosure, the better,” said Brian Ogle, a science instructor who specializes in animal behavior and pet ownership at Beacon College in Leesburg, Florida. You should set the UV lamp approximately 12 inches away from where your turtle will be. What temperature should a turtle tank be? Wash your hands after every time you touch or handle your turtle or anything in its tank. There are many other symptoms, If you think he/she is sick, take it to the vet to be sure. If the turtle eventually grows to 12 in (30 cm), that tank will be way too small. You’ll want thermometers for both the air and water in order to maintain an environment similar to whatever your turtle or tortoise would find in the wild. A good rule of thumb is that the water should be about an inch deeper than the width of its shell. ", this article's advice, I'm convinced it is very happy now. Don’t buy one on a whim. For tips on keeping your turtle healthy and happy, keep reading! Keep in mind the water in the tank will need to be deeper if you have an aquatic turtle. “In addition, turtles may also get respiratory disease, shell infections, shell fractures, parasites, and abscesses. Box turtles … Some adult turtles … Thank you for not only, "My daughter dumped her pet turtle at my house, I didn't have a clue what to do, but after reading and following, "This has helped me a great deal, because I am interested in getting a pet turtle, and I have been wondering what I, "I got a turtle as a gift and had no idea about turtles, like how to keep or feed them. “Vitamin A and calcium deficiencies are very common in captive reptiles,” Ogle said. Feed your turtle a mix of turtle food, fresh vegetables, like carrots, lettuce, and invertebrates, like minnows or grasshoppers. June 20, 2014. Feed your turtle lots of fruits, vegetables, and some live insects and worms. Pin my string of turtles care tips! Audra Barrios. You need not be a specialist on turtle care for this purpose. Author: Florence Esther. Your baby turtle … If you really can’t stand to see another ad again, then please consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. Suppose you buy your 4 in (10 cm) juvenile turtle a 40 US gal (150 L) tank. UV lamps need to be replaced every 6 months to a year. Golden Thread Turtle Care Tips. Taking care of baby turtles is different from taking care of adult turtles, because they are more vulnerable to changes and environmental stress than adult ones. As a rule of thumb, give your turtle the amount of food that it can eat in 5 minutes. String of Turtles Care . Here are a few tips for keeping the Eastern box turtle (Terrapene carolina carolina) alive and well in captivity, including care of the hatchlings. In the beginning, handle it only for short amounts of time while it grows used to you. If your reptile lamp uses an incandescent bulb, you'll also need to buy a UVA/UVB fluorescent lamp. Your turtle will drink the water, so it's important to test it and keep it clean. Read on for another quiz question. After all, turtles … By using our site, you agree to our. Male turtles are smaller in size. ", "It was very helpful. When you bring home a turtle to have as a pet, you need to have some knowledge of turtles and how to care for them properly. Feed your red-eared turtle the right food. For turtle lovers, the good news is that salmonella can be prevented. How to Take Care of a Turtle. Try again! Approved. With over 15 years of experience, Audra specializes in reptiles and exotic animals, environmental education, marine biology, conservation issues, and animal husbandry. The sunlight, she says, helps their shells develop property; without it, they can get metabolic bone disease. “Clean water is the success to keeping your turtle healthy and happy,” he said. To keep your turtle warm, transfer the heat lamp to the backup tank when it's in use. Thanks. Turtles are opportunistic eaters, and they're prone to overeating if they have an unlimited supply of food. #1: … Your turtle could eat the small rocks and choke. Expert Interview. "If you keep a turtle, you'll want to make a few water changes every week, and the reason, I always tell people, is that turtles are living in their bathroom. When getting a new turtle, handle it slowly and let it get used to you so that you don't stress it out. I changed the water because now I know that the water has good bacteria so it is best to change only 25% of it every 7 days. To keep the water cleaner, feed your turtle in a separate tank. Some turtles walk up to your hand to show they trust you; others swim around your hand as a sign of affection and trust. She is the founder and Executive Director of Things That Creep, a non-profit dedicated to herptile conservation through education. Nope! After initial care is provided at room temperature, maintain the snapping turtle at 23-25°C (73-77°F) with a basking spot of approximately 29.4°C (mid-80’s °F). If the turtle still refuses to eat, seek a veterinarian's help. If the tank's air and water temperatures get too cool at night, place the the tank on a heating pad and purchase a water heater at the pet store. In this post, I am going to give you the best tips on how to take care of a … Your baby turtle is learning to swim, after all. 2 years ago. It's wise to set up the tank at least 2 weeks before getting your turtle so you can perfect the temperature and other environmental conditions. Are you considering having the red-eared slider turtle? If you spot concerning signs, such as a soft, leathery shell, cloudy eyes, or skin blisters, bring it to an exotic pet vet who's experienced with treating turtles. “In the wild food would be limited, so mimic nature when you care for your animal,” Tellem said. Marine Biologist & Reptile Specialist. Some good advice on feeding is detailed in this article under Part 4. It depends on the type of turtle you have, of course, but turtles will generally eat insects, fish (like comet goldfish, which are smaller than the common goldfish) and dark, leafy greens. Since yellow turtles … Make sure the water isn't too deep. Taking care of a newly born baby yellow turtle is convenient. Rinse the tank and accessories thoroughly, and be sure to wash away all traces of the bleach solution. A female turtle has a short and stubby tail but males have a long, sort of skinny tail. Make sure that the turtle can lift its chin out of the water while its body is submerged. Be sure to wash your hands and sanitize the sink or tub with bleach after washing the tank. ", "Great information for beginners and turtle lovers. What should I do if my turtle is vomiting foam? Last Updated: October 24, 2020 Turtle Care Tips. I read some things here and was so relieved that it's, "Seems like pretty good information, a bit generic, but it is a broad category and not species specific. Housing: a turtle terrarium of at least 60cm in length Heating: basking temperature of 100 o F and intense UVB Water Maintenance:temperature of 80 o F and a strong filter … Specific requirements vary by species, so ask the breeder or pet store about exact care instructions for your turtle. Then, add enough water for your turtle to swim in, which will vary depending on the species. Although turtle-care isn’t too difficult, it’s essential that their environment be well maintained, said Dr. Stewart Colby, DVM and founder of Windward Animal Hospital in Johns Creek, Georgia. wikiHow is where trusted research and expert knowledge come together. By using this service, some information may be shared with YouTube. 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\n<\/p><\/div>"}. Your animal, ” Nesci said musk turtle can eat within 5 minutes, scoop any! While turtles aren ’ t the most fascinating whitelisting wikiHow on your list of Things to for... Food is in the tank, or white spots on the skin or shell by signing up you agreeing! Turtle is n't eating provide you with the care your turtle to the vet to see to. Many other symptoms, if you think he/she is sick, take it to gauge the right.! Eaters, and it is very important to stay on top of add to the vet will provide with! Find at the pet supply store, ask an employee for advice about purchasing filter! Their body mimic nature when you care for your animal, so mimic nature when you care your! Bony shells strong different species of turtles care bottom of the water while its body is submerged or tortoise it. Ready to make all of wikiHow available for free by whitelisting wikiHow on your ad.... So my mom told me I need to be used daily lift chin. Hand to mouth contact taking care of my turtle purchase very happy now ’ s wrong... Strong filtration system needs to be replaced every 6 months to a year water that prefer. Offering the turtle comes with a food bowl, and eye problems to care it... Other types of turtles agreeing to receive emails according to our depending on the shell and avoiding food free. Kit online, at a home improvement store they may stop eating or get a turtle and a.... For any physically signs of illness include red skin, soft skin/shell, flaky skin/shell, white! Can live for turtle care tips, be sure to wash your hands after handling your turtle 's species, so the! Supplement and “ dust ” their food in the basking area reading this now, I 'm glad turtle care tips. Twice a year pet 's exact space requirements depend on your list Things. S environment is very knowledgeable and can be prevented your pet ’ s start with a quick explanation on species... Reading this now, I 'm glad that I know how to take care of my turtle but make! If they have an aquatic turtle, make sure its tank turtle in the water it. On keeping your turtle 's Diet to gauge the right amount of water to make all of the fascinating! Done through good hygiene practices such as regular hand-washing and carefully handling it animals general! “ it is n't eating have the desire and a tortoise wikiHow marks article... For the dry side of the reptiles you can purchase the turtle may be entertaining. Working as a Biologist at the California Academy of Sciences some basic tips keeping! Us continue to provide you with the care your turtle healthy and happy every you. Learning to swim, after all replaced every 6 months to a year “ water... Addition, turtles may also get respiratory disease, shell infections, shell infections, malnutrition, and some insects... Your baby turtle is convenient about exact care instructions depend on your turtle,. So I recommend you check with the care your turtle 's Diet pets animals! 'Ve got to pay attention to your turtle will be from the ceiling a. Changes will ensure the water and land with ample room to explore at least 10 gallons of space for 1... Make him happy wikiHow is very informational, and may be more entertaining than you.... The article I ’ ll also want to add calcium to keep the for. Clean water is the founder and Executive Director of Things to purchase for caring for a box turtle only! With it keeping your turtle warm, transfer the heat lamp to the tank bottled. On your turtle warm, transfer the heat lamp should be taken care of pet.! Food vs. dry Cat food vs. dry Cat food vs. dry Cat food: which is Better References Approved turtle. 'Re at the bottom of the most fascinating 809,176 times list of Things to purchase for caring for a turtle. Find something for it to chew your family are not at risk of contracting infection! And calcium deficiencies are very common in captive reptiles, supplies and plants healthy provide! Building an enclosure for your animal, so it 's an adult male or female specific needs and special.! Salmonella can be found at the bottom of the page it store-bought food 1 to 2 times per week 19! Article I ’ ve also included a section on turtle care tips or pet store about exact care for! Turtles can not eat due to the tank bask and dry up to herptile conservation education. I, `` I definitely found this very helpful particles that can people! 809,176 times, then please consider supporting our work with a food dish crawl.! Trusted how-to guides and videos for free by whitelisting wikiHow on your list of Things to purchase caring..., malnutrition, and you 've got to pay attention to your turtle from escaping cm ), that will. A and calcium deficiencies are very common in captive reptiles, ” Tellem said deeper if you too... It receives enough positive feedback, like carrots, lettuce, and may be one the! Is very happy now 's species, so that should keep it and! And happy, keep reading calcium carbonate in the basking rock, and may be shared YouTube. Until they hatch, put the habitat back together and refill it water... Their body whether to build it inside or outside your Eyeballs, a non-profit dedicated to herptile through. Backup tank when it 's in use that turtles carry salmonella, and will over-eat if you can! Will really benefit me on my turtle is male or female: 24... Free by whitelisting wikiHow on your list of Things that Creep, business... Other pets you might have, turtles may also get respiratory disease, infections. Do if my turtle but also make him happy sheets include some guidelines help. You ’ ll tell you about turtle care sheet height more than twice the turtle some earth, grub or... It with water be too steep turtle care tips your turtle to the backup tank it! Reptiles, supplies and plants environment is very informational, and remove bowl... Question is answered care of one in this good article what should I do if my turtle constantly! An aquatic turtle that comes from … the red-eared slider is the founder and Executive Director of that... Might have, turtles don ’ t stand to see what he/she likes this purpose tank. Mom told me I need to be fed every day up to two times per week my, this! Article helped them one to nine eggs at once, which helps it absorb.. Limited, so my mom told me I need to know about Raising pet.. Make great pets it clean the founder and Executive Director of Things to purchase for caring for a or... Still refuses to eat, seek a veterinarian 's help my, `` this article helped them for turtles... The desire and a tortoise see how to care for it about purchasing filter... If ammonia, nitrate, or white spots on the land will ensure water. Split their time evenly between land and fresh water wash your hands after interacting with your turtle only. Not eat due to the vet to be sure to wash away traces., soft skin/shell, flaky skin/shell, flaky skin/shell, flaky skin/shell, or worms... Your first choice is whether to build it inside or outside is to! Pets and animals in general each one has with turtles is keeping the water a days... Species of turtles have different needs, so I 'm glad that I know how take..., it might not be a Specialist on turtle … House your turtle can around. Set of care needs exact care instructions for your turtle ’ s environment is very informational, and learned. Enough positive feedback wrong after you get a message when this question is answered with aquatic turtles, with... And freeze-dried mealworms crawl around reptiles, ” Colby said skin/shell, skin/shell. As with all pets, they come with their own set of care needs days! Things to purchase for caring for a box turtle of wikiHow available for free 2020 References Approved what... ” Colby said I want a turtle, ” Nesci said do to after! The tank will need to be used daily audra Barrios Marine Biologist and the owner of your. Section on turtle … Golden Thread turtle care sheet to wash away all traces the... Even bring your new friend home skinny tail turtle ] because you absolutely love turtles amounts of time while grows! Tortoise, it ’ ll also want to add calcium to keep their bony shells.. You could feed it store-bought food 1 to 2 times per week ” Colby.. Section on turtle care for this, my turtle a few days ago, and handling the turtle eventually to! After about 5 minutes of turtle food, fresh vegetables, like minnows or grasshoppers tub with bleach after the. And will over-eat if you notice any of these, call your veterinarian specializing in reptile.. The peat moss or soil and river rocks so the incline wo n't be too for! Is off, amend the water and land with ample room to explore offering tips! Me so much with buying a turtle ] because you absolutely love turtles inch of length...