Keeping a pet turtle can be a fun and rewarding experience. It is often thought that turtles do not require much care because it looks like they just lie around or swim all day. However this is far from the truth. Turtles like most reptiles require a specific diet and living environment depending upon their age and species type. This is why it is not good to give a turtle as a novelty pet.
The new owner must be well informed as to the proper tank maintenance, dietary needs, proper care, and health concerns to look out for. If your new turtle is kept in an ideal environment you can expect to have this pet for many, many years, some pet turtles have been known to have lived for 100 plus years. Plan for that!
The buyer should be aware that pet turtles can spread salmonella which is common for pet turtles to have. It is crucial to wash your hands after every time you pick up a turtle. This is a reason why pet turtles should not be kept around an expecting family, one with small children, elderly adults, or anyone with an immune system problems.
Different species of turtles will require completely separate environments and husbandry. Research by visiting local pet shops or familiarizing yourself with options in advance will lead to a happy and healthier experience.
You should also plan a visit with a veterinary reptile specialist sometime within the first year and every year after that. Keeping your turtle in check with a vet is your new friend’s best defense against possible diseases. A reptile vet specialist will be able to recommend any changes in diet as well as things to look out for. Don’t be surprises if your vet even tells you that you should change the living environment. This happens a lot with new turtle owners as they sometimes overlook the obvious.