Everything You Need To Know About Owning A Box Turtle

An animal can provide you with some much-needed companionship in your home; however, not all of us want to go down the traditional route of pet ownership. Cats and dogs are great, but there are other options available. For instance, the box turtle is a great pet. They are gentle creatures that require minimal effort. Although, it is important to know about the pets that you keep, which is why this article will give you a few tips for owning a box turtle.

It Needs To Feel Secure

Box turtles are sturdy creatures. There isn’t a lot that can get through their hard shell; however, they still find themselves as prey to many large birds in the wild. While they do have a shell to hide inside, it can be warm within.

Therefore, you will need to provide them with plenty of other places to hide inside its enclosure. A few cardboard boxes or plastic tubs will do. Just make sure that they are big enough to fit your turtle and they will feel much more secure in your home.

They Are Placid

One of the best reasons to keep a box turtle as a pet is that they are a generally placid animal. This means that you and your family can handle them with ease without the risk of being bitten. Unfortunately, many people have found themselves asking: do box turtles bite? You can read more here about that topic, but the answer is generally no; however, they will only act out if they are ill or handled wrong.

They Can Feel Their Shell

A common myth about all species of turtle is that they cannot feel their shell. This is indeed a myth, and box turtles can in fact feel their shells when you touch them. That is because these shells contain nerve endings like the rest of their body. However, these nerve endings aren’t as sensitive as the ones in the main part of their body, which means they will only sense vibrations through their shell rather than pain.

They Are More Active Than You Think

Box turtles are slow creatures, and you may find that they rarely move when in your presence. This lack of movement is a defense mechanism as most of their predators have sight that is based on movement. You may be surprised to learn that box turtles are quite active. They will spend several hours a day roaming their environment searching for food and will only revert to their shell if they are tired or feel threatened.

They Can Swim

The distinction that most people make between turtles and tortoises is that the tortoise can swim while the turtle will not. However, this is a myth that will only serve to confuse those that struggle to identify the two.

Box turtles are keen swimmers if a little clumsy. You may want to put a shallow pool of water in their enclosure so they can have a dip in the warmer seasons, but don’t expect them to excel at the activity.

Summary

There you have just a few ideas about how to properly care for a box turtle. They aren’t complicated animals, which makes them a great pet to have alongside small children.

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Mike Stiven
 

I'm a pet owner, blogger, and writer from the Massachusetts. I've worked at the Alpha Dog Training Center, a dog boarding and training facility, and also shared the knowledge garnered over the years with a good number of pet sites. As a firm believer that great care has to be given to pets, beside sharing my whole experience in this blog I also work as volunteer at pet stores during the weekend.

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