doing my homework first

Discussions about turtles.
Post Reply
rapterble
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 11
Joined: Wed Nov 06, 2002 4:55 pm
Contact:

Hello, This is my first time here. My 8 year old daughter has her heart set on a box turtle. The pet store has a rescued one that was tore up by a dog, they have taken care of it for 3 months and said she could have it if we get all the housing, etc. that it would need. We know NOTHING about turtles and want to know what we\'re getting into first. The shell of this turtle is still very jagged on the side and the coloring doesn\'t look as nice as others, but they said it is doing great. I did notice that it was a little more flighty when being held then the other one was. Any suggestions? Also, any suggestions on the most inexpensive way to house it and still give it all it needs would be much appreciated. She has $50.00 birthday money, the turtle is free, but the setup they showed us was $140.00! We\'re willing to help her some, but that was quite alot more than we had expected to spend. Thanks in advance for all your advice and wisdom :)
turtlecrazed
Level 3
Level 3
Posts: 105
Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2002 10:33 pm
Contact:

Box turtles are generally better off outdoors, however if you are set on getting one for inside, I would recommend NOT putting it in an aquarium. Box turtles, especially wild ones such as this, become stressed and can injure themselves in a glass aquarium. I would suggest building a wooden enclosure. Box turtles can be finicky eaters, they generally rely on live prey. Will you be willing to feed her live foods. Also getting a wild turtle to eat what is good for her in captivity is difficult. Box turtles kept indoors often have humidity related problems. Can you prevent this? They are often problematic for novice turtle owners. I would recommend a different type turtle, because as a rule, box turtles are generally not a beginners turtle. However, if you\'re determined to have her, I can only encourage you to read everything you can get your hands on, and don\'t rely on the pet store employees, as they are probably just pushing for the sale.

Good luck. Their are several box turtle books available.
turtlecrazed
Level 3
Level 3
Posts: 105
Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2002 10:33 pm
Contact:

Also I commend you for doing your homework first. Too many turtles are bought on a whim and then mistreated or not cared for properly.
rapterble
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 11
Joined: Wed Nov 06, 2002 4:55 pm
Contact:

turtlecrazed wrote:
Also I commend you for doing your homework first. Too many turtles are bought on a whim and then mistreated or not cared for properly.
rapterble
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 11
Joined: Wed Nov 06, 2002 4:55 pm
Contact:

Thank you for your reply! I really appreciate your imput on this :)
The way I understood it, this wasn\'t a wild turtle, but someone had previously kept it as a pet and a dog got ahold of it. The owner took it to the pet store to see if they could help it and he didn\'t want it back then. They\'re offering the turtle at no charge if we will care for it properly, housing it properly, etc. I know though that pet store employees can\'t know everything about each animal. They said it was eating nightcrawlers as well as the pellets they feed the other box turtles. Are there any other land turtles that you would recommend?? I don\'t think I want to get a water turtle for her as they seem to require much more cleaning that would be harder for a child to do (with my help I\'m sure :) ) Here in the State of Indiana, any turtles under 4 inches are illegal to sell, so that limits us much more. I was looking at the tortious, but realize that they will get larger than we can probably care for eventually. We\'re not dead set on getting a turtle (although my daughter is :( ) But, I want to be sure that it\'s the right thing to do and that we know what we\'re doing beforehand. We also have a lab, which is a service dog for our handicap child thru Canine Companions for the Disabled, and an Umbrella Cockatoo. Before we got our cockatoo, breeders had recommended that we started with a smaller bird, which we did...but I KNEW I wanted an umbrella. The smaller bird was so messy and loud, our umbrella is much easier to care for even though she is much larger. We\'ve had her since she was weened, she\'s now 4 years old. We were able to adopt the smaller bird to a good home before we got our umbrella. So, I\'m not totally sold on the \"start easier first\" idea, however, I understand what you\'re saying. Thanks for your help, any other info or suggestions you can send my way would be great! Thanks again!
turtlecrazed
Level 3
Level 3
Posts: 105
Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2002 10:33 pm
Contact:

Let\'s see, if it\'s not a wild turtle, that\'s a good start. If it\'s eating, that\'s an even better start. What I would suggest rather than an aquarium, and it\'s MUCH cheaper too, is the largest rubbermaid container you can find at your local Walmart, Target, etc. You will need to add the appropriate substrate (nothing too scratchy) for the turtle to bed in. You will also need a shallow water pan. Remember, boxies can\'t swim, so don\'t make it too deep. You will need a basking light and a UV light. Mist the substrate daily to keep the humidity proper. Also, the best advice, if it is warm in your area, let the turtle get some natural sun daily. Feeding her worms and pellets is also not enough. She needs fruits, flowers and veggies, as Box Turtles are omnivores. Try dandelion, tomatoes, cantaloupe, melons, corn, as well as the pellets and worms.

Hope I didn\'t forget anything....
Good luck.
Post Reply
  • Information
  • Who is online

    Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests