Turtles can be a fun pet and are especially appropriate for a small home since they don’t need a lot of space.
If you purchase a turtle from a pet store, make sure the pet store owners are knowledgeable about turtles and that the turtles seem well-cared for. Have the turtle checked out by a vet to make sure it is really healthy. You can also buy a turtle from a breeder. It’s a good idea to ask other for recommendations to make sure you buy from a reputable breeder. Adopting a turtle from the wild is not always the best option, since the turtle may be sick or carry parasites.
All turtles can carry salmonella, so it is important that everyone who handles the turtle wash their hands afterward. Small children who play with a turtle need to be supervised so that they don’t stick their fingers in their mouths.
Young turtles are mostly carnivorous and eat every day. Older turtles are omnivorous and need to eat every other day. Turtles don’t know when they are full and will continue to eat endlessly, so it is up to their humans to regulate their food intake.
Turtles require a tank, kept at a temperature between 80 and 85 degrees. The tank should have plants and hiding places (especially if more than one turtle share the space) and be kept clean. Young turtles can live together in harmony but older turtles may fight.