Are Box Turtles Good As Pets? [Here’s What to Expect From Them]

Are Box Turtles Good As Pets

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

Among all the species of turtle, the box turtle is one of the most popular species as a pet. Most of the turtle owners find it comfortable to house a box turtle.

When someone asks if a box turtle is great as a pet or not, I always give them a convincing answer. Box turtles are excellent as pets, and you can not argue that.

If you are a new box turtle keeper, this article will help you to learn more facts about the box turtle. This article will help everyone to build a better relation of understanding with their pet box turtle.

Something About Box Turtle

We all know that turtles are most neglected as a pet. It is because most of us do not know much about this reptile. Box turtles are unique in both look and behavior than other reptiles. It is not like any other species.

When you pick a box turtle for parenting, do not choose a wild one. There are several reasons for it. I will discuss it in the following parts.

Are Box Turtles Good As A Pet?

If I ask you what qualities make a turtle excellent as a pet, it may differ from person to person. But I am sure there will be some common points. 

  1. Considerable size
  2. Easy to handle
  3. Harmless
  4. Habitat

It is true that a box turtle has all these qualities. 

Do Box Turtles Have Considerable Size?

Unlike most other turtles and tortoise, box turtles do not have a large length. The average length of a box turtle is 4 to 8 inches. In most cases, female subspecies are slightly larger than the male ones. It takes 4 to 6 years for a box turtle to gain its full length.

A box turtle is not too big. So it is easy to handle, and you do not need a big tank for it. If you consider all these things, having a box turtle is less problematic than having any other reptile.

Are Box Turtles Easy To Handle?

There are a few species that need your constant care and attention, but not for a box turtle. Box turtles like to spend time alone, but it does not mean that they are not friendly. A box turtle can be really playful and kind to anyone.

This kind of behavior makes it easy to adopt a box turtle as a pet. All you need it to provide enough food and a safe environment.

Are Box Turtles Harmless?

Most of the reptiles carry some bacteria that can cause several minor diseases to the owner. The most usual condition that is caused by reptiles is Salmonellosis. Salmonellosis is caused by bacteria named Salmonella. In this disease, the infected person will show some symptoms.

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea

Many reptiles carry Salmonella bacteria, but box turtle is not one of them. But they can carry it asymptomatically. The bacteria can affect the people who have low immune systems. 

If you are confused that box turtles are not safe because it can carry bacteria, then do not worry. The chances are really low. And just to be protected, wash your hands each time after handling a box turtle.

Where to Keep a Box Turtle?

A box turtle feels comfortable both indoor and outdoor. If you do not have enough space in your home, you can make an outside habitat for your box turtle. But for outside habitat, you have to manage some cautions.

So you do not have to worry much about its habitat. As long as it is getting enough food and a clean environment, it will be alright.

All these points make it pretty clear that a box turtle is an excellent pet.

Advantages of Having a Box Turtle as a Pet

Keeping a box turtle gives you many advantages that you would miss if you have another species. For example,

  • Box turtles hardly fall sick. It will save your medical bills for sure.
  • Maintaining many turtle species can cost you a lot of your money. But a box turtle is not that expensive to maintain.
  • Box turtles are small in size and intelligent.
  • They love to spend time within their enclosure.
  • They love to spend time within their enclosure.
  • If you are new at turtle keeping, a box turtle is perfect for you to start.
  • Box turtles are cheap, and it is easier to feed them.
  • Once the turtles get adapted to the temperature and other details of the tank, they wouldn’t complain about anything else.

Things You Need To Know Before Adopting a Box Turtle

If someone says he is not happy with his box turtle, there can be two reasons for it. 

  1. He failed to choose the perfect box turtle as a pet.
  2. He failed to take care of his pet turtle.

If you think you can pick up any box turtle as a pet, then you are wrong. Sometimes it is illegal, and sometimes you won’t be satisfied with your turtle. So how will you choose a perfect box turtle for you? 

Here are some points you can consider.

  • Do not take any adult box turtle.
  • Do not pick up a wild box turtle. Wild box turtles often find it hard to adapt to the captive environment.
  • Do not buy or pick ill box turtles.

I am sure many questions are going on in your mind. Let me clear all the points to you. 

Why shouldn’t you pick a box turtle from the wild?

  • When you buy or pick a box turtle from the wild, it is totally against the law in some regions. If you are a turtle lover, you must know some subspecies of box turtle are endangered. It is your responsibility to save any endangered species.
  • A wild box turtle feels uncomfortable in a captive situation. 
  • When you pick a wild box turtle, you do not know its health condition. It can have an adverse effect on the box turtle and your other pets.

Moreover, when I am suggesting you to avoid ill box turtles, it is because the injured or infected box turtle can carry germs. Your other pets can be infected by the sick box turtle.

I have been keeping box turtles for years, and I must say I am totally pleased with it. If you are new at turtle keeping, I will suggest you give box turtle a try. I am sure you will become a fan of this species.

About Author

Muntaseer Rahman started keeping pet turtles back in 2013. He also owns the largest Turtle & Tortoise Facebook community in Bangladesh. These days he is mostly active on Facebook.


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