Keeping Turtles As Pets

Keeping Turtles As Pets

Keeping Turtles As PetsPet Turtles

Keeping turtles as pets requires a lot of care and know-how. You may need special equipment to maintain your pet turtle’s habitat.

You’ll need to know the answer to “what do turtles eat?” and of course you’ll need to learn about turtles and what it takes to keep them as pets.

It also depends which type of turtle you have as to how you’ll need to care for them.

Pet Turtle Habitat

In order to keep a turtle as a pet, you’ll need to have a good habitat for him/her. A turtle habitat needs to have a variety of things.

First of all, you need some type of enclosure made for holding water. Next you’ll need a gravel susbtrate, some logs/rocks and interesting things for your turtle.

You should always make sure your turtle can access “land” and can bask in sunlight or else specially designed UV lamps. If your turtle lives outdoors, you’ll need a different setup altogether but the concepts are the same.

Turtles love lots of space to swim, roam and climb. They love getting around and this is good since it counts as exercise.


What Do Pet Turtles Eat?

One of the first questions you’ll need to find the answer to is “what do turtles eat?“. Of course you want your pet turtle to be 100% happy & healthy.

So you need to make sure his/her dietary needs are taken care of. There are some important things to think about when looking at turtle food.

First of all, you don’t want to give them anything that is poisonous to them! There are certain flowers & vegetables that turtles just shouldn’t have.

Likewise, not all turtles should eat meat! You should check on your specific type of turtle before deciding on what to feed him/her.

Keeping Turtles As Pets

Any pet turtle owner wants their pet to be happy & healthy. This includes making sure they are mentally stimulated in a positive way as much as possible.

You can of coarse choose how far you want to go with this. Some people cuddle their turtles, let them explore their house and even talk to them.

Anything which is not dangerous to your turtle, but is interesting for him/her to do is probably a good thing!

Turtles As Pets For Beginners

Turtles As Pets For Beginners

Turtles As Pets For Beginners

Turtle Care

Caring for turtles is a very important part of owning a turtle. As a pet owner, you will no doubt want to give your little turtle all the “turtle care” in the world. This will make sure he/she grows to be strong and healthy.

What do turtles eat? Of coarse giving your turtles the right types of food is a very important part of turtle care. There are many things to know about turtle food to make sure your turtle stays alive and well.

In general, it’s important that a turtle has a varied diet. A general rule of thumb for turtle diets is to feed them 50% protein (meat-based) foods and 50% plant-based, vitamin-rich foods.

Turtles As Pets For Beginners

Depending where you live depends on what turtle is best for your pet. In  America the painted turtle is a common and one of the easier turtles to take care of. You can find more information about keeping a painted turtle as a pet here.

You have to be prepared for the long haul before you decide on getting a turtle as a pet. Painted turtles have been known to live up to 50 years in captivity. Whilst their average age is normally around 30 years.

The box turtle is another common turtle through America and can be easily found to purchase.

In Australia the long neck turtle is a common pet but they cannot be taken from the wild. You have to purchase one from a licenced reptile breeder or owner.

The turtles as pets for beginners are quite strong and hearty turtles. I understand that being new to having a pet turtle is exciting but it is extremely important that you do not over feed your new friend.

Old and uneaten food needs to be removed from the tank so it does not turn the water rancid.

Equipment Needed For Turtle Care

Turtles As Pets For Beginners


Baby turtles up to 6”/15cm in shell-length are normally kept indoors in glass tanks or enclosures that include ponds.

The smallest tank for the tiniest turtles should be at least 4’/120cm long, 18”/45cm wide, and 18”/45cm tall.

Part of good turtle care is making sure your turtle has a safe place to swim from which they can climb in and out.

They also need to be able to bask in warm sunlight or appropriate artificial lights.

In setting up a habitat for your pet turtle you can use gravel, objects for your turtle to lie on such as logs and islands, a water filter and also a submersible water heater.

You should check on the requirements of your turtle species as it’s often a good idea to add a little bit of aquarium salt to the water. You should consult a pet expert before doing so.

What you will need in order to take proper care of your turtle will also depend on whether they will live indoors or outdoors.

Exercise For Pet Turtles

Turtles need a lot of exercise – which surprises many people. You should make sure your turtle has plenty of room to swim around and also access to “land” structures.

Some turtles love to climb around out of the water as well as swim. Exercise is an essential part of turtle care and should never be ignored.

Here’s a video which shows how to care for box turtles


Painted Turtle Pet – What To Feed A Painted Turtle

What To Feed A Painted Turtle Pet

What To Feed A Painted Turtle Pet

Painted Turtles Have Beautiful Colors And Markings

The painted turtle is small reptile that has a shell or carapace with various colors. Some species have red or yellow running through their carapace.

Their legs and neck are dark, with a colored striped tail and yellow eyes. The male painted turtle are known to be smaller and flatter than the female counterpart.

What To Feed A Painted Turtle PetThe painted turtle are diurnal species, which means that they are active mainly in the day.

Painted turtle spend most of their time in the night sleeping in the water however some painted turtle have been discovered to be active at night.

Painted turtle become very active when we have sunrise and spend their time in the water and on rocks.

Painted turtle are omnivorous, which mean they feed both on plant and animals.

The male painted turtle reaches maturity between 4 to 6 years. While the female becomes mature from 6 to 10 years. The main predators of the painted turtle are man, bird and snakes.


Painted Turtle Habitat

What To Feed A Painted Turtle Pet

Painted turtle are prevalent in North America and are one of the most common turtle species in United States and Canada.  They have also been discovered in European and Asian nations.

Painted turtle prefer shallow water and dense vegetation. They are found around freshwater environments and are also present in brackish waters. Painted turtle can also survive in polluted waters.


Painted Turtle Size

Apart from their beautiful color, another aspect of painted turtle is their manageable adult size.

The adult western painted turtle grow up to six inches, while the south painted turtle are more than six inches.

Those painted turtle found in the East are between 6 and 7 inches. The male painted turtle is not as big as the female.


How Long Do Painted Turtles Live?

Painted turtle have a long life span, and are recorded to live up to 50 years in captivity. So they are a long time companion as a pet.

If feed and kept in a good environment you can expect your painted turtle to live up to 30 years. The life span needs to be considered when getting a painted turtle as a pet.

Painted Turtle Pet Habitat

Proper lighting and temperature are crucial for maintaining your turtle in good health.

The house should be between 70-90F, and the water temperature may be between 63-76F degrees.  Check measuring tank thermometers and humidity daily will be a good choice in maintaining their body temperature.

Expect to replace the UVB lamp for basking area every six months.


What To Feed A Painted Turtle

Since they are omnivorous, painted turtles enjoy a wide variety of foods. Painted turtle food needs to be provided with it’s nutritional needs in mind. You can supplement the basic foods below with turtle treats

But nothing is as good for your turtle as natural foods, such as worms, insects, fish and vegetables, especially leafy greens.

In the wild young painted turtles mainly consume plants until they get older. Ask your veterinarian about providing calcium and vitamins for your pet turtle.

Find a veterinarian specializing in exotic species to care for your pet. It is unlikely that a normal dog and cat veterinarian can treat your painted turtle.

What To Feed A Painted Turtle Pet

Painted Turtle Diseases

Turtles are prone to eye disorders, conjunctivitis, and corneal ulceration. Subcutaneous abscesses are another common problem with painted turtle; appearing as swelling of the skin.

In case your painted turtle is not eating well or breathing slowly, go to your veterinary doctor will be a wise choice. Your doctor will take a fecal sample to ensure that your painted turtle have doesn’t intestinal parasites.

When keeping a painted turtle ensure that it is in a suitable aquarium with an adequate lamp for heating. Direct sunlight is preferred.

Make sure you have a cooler place so the painted turtle can take shelter if desired. Furthermore, the housing must be safe, that is to say, that the turtle will not escape.

A painted turtle will require good quality water as dirty water can lead to various diseases and infections. An aquarium pump is necessary. Painted turtles cannot be let loose in the house or garden.