Is Your Child Ready For A Pet Turtle?

A turtle might seem like a great pet for a child who is not very responsible, but turtles require more care than most people realize. Failing to properly care for the turtle could often mean years of living in substandard conditions. To avoid this, you and your child need to carefully consider what it takes to care for the turtle.

What Should You Consider Before Buying a Turtle?

Before you buy the turtle, you should take the time to determine if your child and home are right for the pet. Turtles require specialized care and if your child is young, he or she might not be quite ready for it. Children who are at least nine years of age or older are better suited for the pets.

Contrary to popular belief, turtles will require visits to the vet for checkups and care. Before shopping for a turtle, you and your child should find a vet in your area that can provide the care needed. It is not uncommon for some turtles to experience stress when switching environments. Leaving the pet store to move into your home could be stressful and the vet's expertise might be needed.

Another consideration is that turtles are not social creatures. If your child is looking for a pet that offers high interactions, another reptile pet might be a better choice. However, turtles do become familiar with their owners. The turtle can recognize your child's voice and even might move towards him or her after recognizing your child.

How Do You Prepare Space for the Turtle?

If you are moving forward with buying a turtle, you must make sure there is a proper space set up for it. You can start with ensuring its tank is large enough for it. A well taken care of turtle will significantly grow over its lifespan. Your child's starter tank needs to be big enough to allow room for the turtle to grow and have water. A filter will be required to help maintain the cleanliness of the water.

You also need the right food for the turtle on hand. The turtle will need plenty of vitamin A. Foods, such as leafy, green vegetables, can provide the nutrition that is needed. Talk to your turtle's vet about finding the right diet to ensure its health.

In addition to this, you need to make sure your child has a clear pathway to wash his or her hands after handling the turtle or its tank. Turtles carry salmonella and if your child is not careful, he or she could become sick. As an added measure of protection, place a hand disinfectant near the tank. 

Contact a shop that has reptiles for sale for more information and assistance.