Why Does My Turtle Keep Trying to Climb Out?

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

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Are you wondering why does my turtle keep trying to climb out? Well, you’ll find the answer in this article. So, keep reading.

The most common reason for your turtle to keep climbing out of the tank is, the habitat is not ideal for it. If you are keeping the turtle in a bad set up then it will obviously try to get out of that setup. Also, not only set up, the cause may lie in somewhere else such as not getting the proper food, dirty tank, bad water quality etc. Here I am explaining each of them in details:

Why Does My Turtle Keep Trying to Climb Out?

Here are the most probable reasons:

  • The tank is not properly sized for your turtle. Most turtle owners make the mistake of buying an undersized tank for their turtle. They think of saving money, but in the long run, it would cost them more money instead. That’s why it is always recommended to get the largest tank that your budget permits.
  • It is a rule of thumb that a turtle of one-inch shell length needs at least a 10-gallon tank. So, you can do the math and get an appropriately sized tank for your turtle. It will save most of your turtle keeping problems in the long run.
  • The next most probable reason is, there is not any or enough hiding place inside the tank. Turtles need hiding places. They are generally very skittish animal. In the wild, they always have to be aware of potential dangers and preys. So, they use hiding places as a protection against all types of dangers.
  • It is their natural instinct. So, if you don’t provide any hiding places inside the tank, there is a high chance that the turtle will always remain stressed and want to climb out of the habitat.
  • The next reason is, your turtle tank is dirty and not maintained properly. To properly keep a turtle, it is very important to maintain the tank and keep the water clean. For keeping the water clean, there is no alternative to investing in a professional canister filter.
  • There are many types of filters in the market, but most of them are not suitable for handling a turtle tank. I got a good result from using this canister filter. It easily handled the load of my tank for a long time. If you want something that can last a while and take a huge chunk of the load from your shoulder, invest in this canister filter.
  • Maybe you are not doing regular water changes and that’s what causing the issue. Water changes are extremely important for keeping anything in the aquarium, whether it is fish or turtles. Water changes are what that keeps the water quality safe for the inhabitants.
  • Also, if something is wrong with the water parameters, then a fail-safe way to restore that would be a water change. So, must do weekly water changes.
  • Maybe there is something wrong with the water parameters. The nitrate, nitrite and ammonia level should be as low as possible. You can do a general check-up with this water test kit. It will tell you what is going on with the turtle tank water.
  • The last reason is, and it will probably make you sad, turtles are not meant to keep in tanks. They need to explore, hunt and have physical as well as mental exercises and stimulations. These are required to keep a turtle mentally happy and satisfied. So, if nothing is working out, then you’ll just have to accept the fact that turtles are not meant to be kept in a boxed environment.
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I hope this article has helped to shed a light on the question why does my turtle keep trying to climb out. If you still have any more question, do not hesitate to ask in the comment box below. I’ll get to you as soon as I can.

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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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