Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Pet Turtle Care: A Fun and Low Maintenance Buddy

Turtle As a Pet - A Fun and Low Maintenance Buddy

A lot of people have preferred a turtle as a pet. You will see different = varieties and types raised now - from the familiar box to rare turtles such as the albino and soft shelled variety. For different personalities, there is certainly a suitable pet turtle. Turtles can make interesting pets though their long life means that raisers should be ready to take care of them for long.

You can search out a turtle as a pet and then just start to be familiar about practical pet care when you start to care for it already. Basically, the needs of pet depend on the kind of turtle you chose to raise. Of course, you wish to know about the specific variety of turtle that you chose, however there a few tips to know when raising them. Also, it is desirable to know about turtles and turtle species before getting to raise as your pet.

Though they are low maintenance, a turtle as a pet could involve care tips regarding water ones and land ones. To assure your pet's long life, provide a comfy environment for it. Water turtles like map ones and slider ones need to be endowed with at least 20 gallons tank together with an area for basking, UVB light for them to absorb food nutrients and a handy heat lamp to substitute for sunlight.

Sea turtle as a pet swims fast and gracefully, thus it is a must to provide them ample swimming space. Meanwhile, land turtles, such as box turtles, necessitate more space to roam. Plus, provide them with flowerpots and hollow logs for them to hide in, a sunning spot and heat lamp, a water bowl for soaking and some vegetation. Especially-made pens can make pet turtles get pleasure from the outdoors and to lie dormant through chilly weathers.

The care tips mentioned earlier help raise a turtle as a pet and turn a room into an inhabitable space. Turtles are omnivorous. Feed them with pre-prepared turtle foods moderately. You can also feed them other foods fit for their diet. Most sea and land turtles consume snails, earthworms and crickets.

Marine turtles adore goldfishes and minnows. They can also eat prepared tuna, shrimp or chicken. It is really enjoyable to have a turtle as a pet, mainly because they are not choosy with food. So, if you do not have that much time to really take care of an animal as pet, the turtle is one pet that you can get.

Pet Turtle Care: Are Pet Store Turtles a Ripoff

Are Pet Store Turtles a Ripoff

Serious turtle enthusiasts insist that you should never buy a pet store turtle. Then they will proceed to tell you horror stories of pet store turtles that died within months of purchase and looked sickly since day one. These people would recommend that you only consider a pet turtle from a breeder or a turtle farm.

Some of these claims of less than perfect pet stores are absolutely true, but that does not mean you have to go to a breeder to find a good pet. You can find a great pet turtle anywhere as long as you know what you are looking for.

Pet stores are no different than breeders, some are good and some are not so good. Theoretically a breeder would have the very best specimen of turtle with the best health and life expectancy.

Unfortunately, this is only true if it is a good breeder you are dealing with. If the breeder puts in the effort and does what is necessary this would be true. Unfortunately the title breeder alone does not ensure quality pets.

When looking at turtles in the pet store you should go over a small check list of things to look out for. You want a healthy turtle with a strong chance at a long life. Before you decide to purchase a turtle you should insist on looking at every part of its body.

Ask someone to get it for you! Do not reach in and grab it yourself. They hate it when you try to reach in tanks and cages. This is simply to protect the animals.

Inspect the Body

Check all over the turtles shell for cracks or week spots. Little dents can be fine, but cracks or soft spots indicate a calcium deficiency or possible mistreatment. The turtles shell is a huge part of its health. As it starts cracking away the turtle can get serious infections. To prevent the shell from weakening pet turtles are given calcium supplements.

Look at the skin and face of the turtle. The skin should have color and not be drab, or covered with a faint white film. The eyes should have no crust or dryness and there should not be any kind of discharge, or slimy stuff coming out of the nostrils or eyes. These can either be symptoms of a captured wild turtle that is over stressed or just illness in general.

Check for Stress

A common problem that gives pet store turtles a bad rap is that some purchase turtles that were captured from the wild. Its recommended that you never keep a wild turtle. Often times the stress of capture is so great that it causes illness and eventually an untimely death. It is also illegal for certain types of turtles to be taken from the wild as they are protected species.

Check the turtles general behavior. Turtles are not the fastest animals on the planet, but they should be alert and active. A listless turtle could be a sign of illness. A healthy turtle may not necessarily be active at the time that you are visiting the store. You could try moving your fingers near the tank to see if it moves at all or check the other symptoms mentioned above.

If you want a pet turtle you do not have to go to a turtle farm if you would prefer not to. Some pet store turtles are quite healthy while others have seen better days. Applying the tips mentioned above will give you a strong guide line for what a healthy turtle looks like and how it should act.

Most pet stores have a very capable staff of workers and have good procedures in place for giving their animals proper care. If you know what you are looking for you can spot a healthy turtle anywhere.

Pet Turtle Care: 4 Ways to Know If You Are Choosing a Healthy Turtle

4 Ways to Know If You Are Choosing a Healthy Turtle

It is very important to make sure that you are not bringing home a sick turtle. Depending on what is wrong with the poor creature, an illness can be spread to you, your friends, family, and other pets in the home. There are four main signs of a healthy turtle that you will want to look for.

1. Bright Eyes

The eyes of the turtle should be bright, alert and clear of any gunk that could be affecting the turtle's vision. If you come across a turtle that does not have bright eyes, it is best to leave it be and to make sure that you wash your hands right away if you touched it.

2. "Clean" Firm Shells

The shell of a turtle should be hard and firm. There are exceptions for soft-shelled turtles, which of course have soft shells. However, if the turtle is supposed to have a hard shell and does not, then the turtle is not in good physical shape. If there are bumps on the shell that should not be there, this is another sign of an unhealthy turtle. Another sign of a health problem is fungus growing on the turtle's shell. The turtle's shell should be "clean" of any such growths.

3. Healthy Appetite

Of course, the turtle does not have to appear to be starving but a healthy turtle is one that should have a healthy appetite. If the turtle goes for several days on end without eating, this is a sign of a turtle in distress. Generally, turtles will eat 3 or 4 times per week.

4. Clean Nasal Passages

Another sign of a healthy turtle is one that does not have a lot of fluid build up in the nose. If the turtle looks like it has a cold, it could very well have a cold or some other kind of infection. Colds are one thing but what appears to be a common cold could very well be something much worse for the turtle.

There are other signs of poor health that you will want to watch for such as the appearance of disorientation. When you stop and closely examine the turtles, you will find that many of the ones being sold are more than likely sick turtles. It is up to you to be an educated consumer and purchase a turtle that you know is in good health.
As you can see, proper pet turtle care should begin before you get your turtle home.

By taking the time to learn more about turtles, and particularly how to properly care for them, it will feel good when you bring your pet turtle home knowing that you can give it a comfortable and healthy life. Because your turtle is in good health, you do not have to worry so much about the health of others or vet visits for the turtle. Make sure that you are giving good pet turtle care by keeping the cage or aquarium clean and make sure that your turtle is getting proper nutrients and your turtle should remain healthy for many years to come.

Pet Turtle Care: Can You Teach Your Pet Turtle Tricks

Can You Teach Your Pet Turtle Tricks?

A lot of people believe that turtles are not smart enough to learn turtle tricks and are pets that are more for show than anything else. The truth is that although their brains are a bit more primitive than say a dog, it is still possible to teach your them skills and tricks, but I say this knowing that it won't be a straight forward ride for the an owner that wants to invest time and effort to teach their turtle these new skills.

In fact there are three things which I think you will need to make it easier to teach your turtle new things and these are...

1) The age of the turtle

Young turtles are much easier to teach turtle tricks than older more mature ones. Unfortunately it's a case of not being able to teach old turtles new tricks because the older ones get stuck in... yep you guessed it, their old ways. Younger turtles from the ages of a year old are ideal to start practicing with and if your patient and make it a routine you'll notice the progress.

2) The species of turtle

Some species of turtle are smarter than others and trying to train them will be easier. A Snapping turtle for example will be much harder to train than a box turtle as box turtles are reasonably intelligent turtles. The majority of turtles can learn new things but some are just a little slower than others.

3) How good a bond you have with your pet

To really help your turtles development, you have to have a good bond with them. If your turtle is uncomfortable or scared of you it will be difficult to even get them to come out of their shells around you. If your turtle bites you when you try to touch it, this is also a clear sign that it does not trust you so in cases like this you have to take the time to build trust between you and your turtle and only then can you take things further by teaching them turtle tricks.

Pet Turtle Care: 5 Tips For Easily Cleaning Your Turtle's Home the Right Way

5 Tips For Easily Cleaning Your Turtle's Home the Right Way

Whether you have always loved reptiles in general or you are someone who simply adores turtles, you will find that there is a lot that this pet has to offer! Turtles are ideal pets for monitored children and adults who love wildlife and you will find that they are very easy to care for. Remember that every turtle does need a clean cage, so take a moment and think about how to clean your turtle's home the right way; it is easier than you might think.

1. Remove the turtle
When you are looking to clean your turtle's tank, remove him to a place where he is not going to be injured or frightened. What might look like a simple chore to you can be a little alarming for him, so take moment to remove him to another container or, if you don't have one, to a clean bathtub! This is an important part of pet turtle care.

2. Drain the tank
When you are doing a thorough cleaning job, make sure that you have a place to drain the water. A siphon hose that is attached to a battery operated water vacuum is something that can drain the water relatively quickly, and you can always throw the excess water into the garden and allow it to nourish your plants.

3. Cleaning the accessories
While the tank is draining, take a moment to clean off the toys, hides and other accessories that are in the tank. Never ever use harsh chemicals when you are cleaning your turtle's tank; the fumes can be very bad for your pet and can result in poor health or even death. Instead of using harsh chemicals, you can get practically any stain out by using a toothbrush and white vinegar. With those two common household cleaning supplies, you'll be prepared to do a thorough cleaning job that will leave the tank sparkling clean.

4. Choosing the right kind of water
When you are thinking about how to make sure that you are providing the best pet turtle care, think about the water that you are using. Tap water is usually not recommended because of the chlorine and the fluoride that is often added to the water in an attempt to "purify" it. This is where de-chlorinated water can come in very handy; all you need to do is to set some water aside for twenty four hours before putting it in the tank. Remember this tip because it can help you keep your turtle much healthier.

5. Stick to a schedule
Your turtle's tank should be cleaned regularly, and ideally, you should also spot clean it when needed. This is an important part of making sure that your turtle stays clean and happy. I've seen tanks that literally had gunk growing on the walls and a very strong smell coming out of the tank. In a case like that, it is any wonder why their pet turtle was so inactive. It is quite likely their pet was sick due to the horrible conditions of its living quarters!

Taking good care of your turtle can provide a much longer life with a higher quality of health. By learning as much as you can about pet turtle care you will be able to provide a much better home for your pet.

Pet Turtle Care: The Pros & Cons of Owning a Pet Turtle

The Pros & Cons of Owning a Pet Turtle

Turtles are loved by children, possible because they are slow-moving creatures and for this reason some families choose them as pets. However, it's important to examine the pros & cons of owning a pet turtle before obtaining these magical creatures.

Generally, as long as you have the time and resources to properly care for them turtles will make excellent pets.

The following are some aspects to take into consideration if you own pet turtles:

First, you have to prepare a suitable home.

Perhaps the most critical aspect of owning turtles as domestic pets will be to maintain their home. Make an effort to establish a similar environment such as their natural surroundings. To do this, you have to distinguish the species. For instance, the box turtles will spend the majority of time on land, only returning when it's time to drink water. Nonetheless, the land turtles could also delight in a periodic frolic in the water.

However, the water turtles normally would need a substantial area of water. In this case, you could get an aquarium that can hold at least forty gallons. Keep in mind that this measurement will differ based on the turtle size. Additionally, make use of water filtration since these turtles are going to sleep, eat and then defecate in the aquarium. You also want to put a good amount of rocks and plants in the aquarium as this could supply a resting place.

At this point, if you are confident that you can take care of these pets, then the following will highlight what you should know before making a purchase.

These creatures have natural bacteria called Salmonella which causes a disease in human called salmonellosis. If your children are younger than five, you should not have this pet.

Adhere to your local regulations. Several states do not allow their residents to keep certain pets.

Take into account the size that they are expected to reach over the years. Having one of the larger sizes will mean a lot more space, water and food.

In the end, considering that you will discover a lot of turtles recognized as endangered reptiles, it is important to consider all the pros and cons prior to deciding on these animals as pets for your children.

Pet Turtle Care: Yellow Belly Turtles

Yellow Belly Turtles - Helpful Tips For the Novice

Yellow Belly Turtles are one of the most popular types of turtle to keep as pets. Contained in this article is some basic information, which has been collected from experts and owners alike, about Yellow Bellied Sliders. With these tips and advice added to your own knowledge, you should be able to decide if the
Yellow Turtle is the right kind of pet for you to purchase. If you are presently an owner, this information will provide you with useful counsel on how to make your pets healthier and thrive.

As its name suggests, the bottom part of the shell (known as the plastron) of a yellow belly turtle is predominantly yellow, highlighted with green specks along the edges.

It is interesting to note that this species has the capacity to interbreed with other species, such as Red Eared Sliders. Mating can take place in spring, fall, and summer. The female Yellow Bellied Sliders are normally larger than the males.

As hatchlings, this type of turtle requires an aquarium filled with up to 10 gallons of water. The Yellow Turtle will, however, need more space as it grows older. You should also make sure that their housing is large enough to allot an area in which the turtles can wander around, bask, and dry off completely after they have finished swimming. Even though direct sunlight is always the best choice for their lighting needs, you can improvise if necessary by placing a UV-B heat lamp in their tank in order to maintain an average temperature of 89-95 degrees Fahrenheit.

As your turtles grow, it is also advisable to provide a nesting place for the females. Make sure to construct a place that will be safe for the female to lay her eggs on, and for the eggs to hatch.

Yellow Belly Turtles, like others in their family, naturally produce a lot of waste. You should, therefore, invest in the best filter you can afford, which should keep the water clean and clear for the longest time possible. Another point to consider: Small and colorful pebbles, sold in pet shops, may produce a pleasing aesthetic effect to your pet's housing, but they will only make the cleaning of your turtle's house more tedious and difficult. Perhaps it will be best, then, to steer clear of these decorations.

Like the majority of turtles, the Yellow Turtle is omnivorous. This large array of food options makes feeding your pets simple and easy. Plants such as elodea can be left in the water where you keep your turtles.

You can also provide your yellow belly turtles with escarole, romaine lettuce, collard greens, freshly killed fish, and small insects. As turtles have become more and more popular in the pet trade, commercially-prepared reptile food and vitamins are now manufactured and available in the market. These can also help in keeping your turtles healthy.

As time progresses, your pet will eventually associate your approach to his feeding time. Whenever you move towards him, if you notice the turtle swimming back and forth expecting food, bear in mind that there must be a limit to the amount of food you should offer your pet daily. Do not overfeed him, because obesity is a common problem in pet turtles.

Turtles are said to require more time and effort from their owners than other pets, but this should not discourage you from keeping them. Yellow Belly Turtles are excellent additions to your household: Your care and love ensure that they will be with you for years to come!