Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Pet Turtle Care : How To Take Care Of A Turtle - Important Points

Pet Turtle Care

You might want to know how to take care of a turtle. After all, turtles are among the cutest, most adorable pets around. Make no mistake though. They may not seem as demanding as other common house pets but they do have crucial needs. Since turtles do not bark and jump around, you usually have to anticipate what your turtle needs. Here are a couple of important considerations when taking care of your turtle.

Consider Different Species

You should never forget that not all turtles are alike. There are different species and sub species. This means that each one could have different housing, feeding and water needs. There are differences in how to take care of a turtle even within similar species. Box turtles for example are divided into American and Asian turtles. Each group has different care requirements. Your first concern should therefore be to clearly identify what species your pet turtle belongs to. Only after you have identified your turtle can you recreate the perfect conditions for raising it.

Outdoor Habitat

Turtles do not normally live in solid indoor habitats. As much as possible, the home that you prepare for them should closely resemble their natural homes. That means they should ideally be kept outdoors. This is the main secret to how to take care of a turtle successfully.

Outdoors, they should have a wide enclosure that is at least 15 feet from side to side. An enclosure should have a water source in which they can use to dip in. They should also have a basking area as well as a shaded area.

Indoor Home

You may not be able to supply a fully protected outdoor enclosure. In this case, you do have to settle for an indoor turtle home. Take note that there are aquatic turtles that love to swim in deep water and there are also turtles that prefer shallower areas. You should find out what your turtle is so you can prepare the right indoor home.

Aquatic turtles should be kept in aquariums with deep water, a basking area, heat source and a light source. Those that are mainly terrestrial with some need for water should be kept out of aquariums. They would do better in wide wooden or plastic homes with the right substrate and a wading dish. The ideal substrate for a lot of turtles is potting soil. Wood shavings may result in some health problems. Pine is particularly poisonous. Your turtles wading and drinking water should not contain chlorine.


Turtles are generally omnivores. Turtle species however can be predominantly plant eaters or animal eaters. Again, you have to find out what your turtle is before you will know how to take care of it. In general, turtles benefit the most from a variety of mixed foods every meal time. You can mix worms with vegetables and fruits. Some turtles do not eat everyday while others may not eat at all for a string of days. You therefore do not need to panic right away. Just keep an eye on your turtle's physical activity. If it is active and moving about, then there might be no need to worry.

These are only basic tips on how to take care of a turtle. There may be other important points that you need to take note of. Just remember to find out first about your turtle species before doing anything else.

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