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So You Want to Buy Turtles!

Most people want dogs, cats, or hamsters as pets. A few ask for birds, rabbits, or even fish. However, to a certain few, turtles make the best pets. But where do you go to buy turtles? What do you look for? Which ones make the best pets? Remember, these turtles last a long time - spend some time doing your research, and buy the turtle that is right for you.

There are many different types of turtles, depending on what kind you want to buy. Some are as small as your cell phones. Others turtles can be as large as a dog. How big of a turtle do you want?

Contrary to popular belief, turtles are not slow creatures. Larger turtles are much faster than you think, and if you let them wander your back yard they can scurry away quite quickly. Do you have the space for a large outdoor turtle, or do you want to buy a turtle that can fit in an aquarium?

The best place to go and buy turtles is the pet store. Here you will find the largest selection of turtles. The most important part here is that they are identified. It would be a disaster if you buy a turtle, thinking it would stay small, only to have it quickly outgrow its habitat. This is why you should avoid shady pet stores - they will often mislabel their animals, leaving you holding the bag.

Turtles are not expensive to buy. Most turtles cost between $5-15 dollars. You will also want to buy an aquarium, as well as some rocks and food for the turtle. If you're on a budget, try craigslist for used aquariums. These can be had for pennies on the dollar if you're in a populated area. Some owners also like to buy a light for their turtle. Turtles seem to like the light when it is cold, and will often sunbathe under the light.

It's great buying a turtle from a pet store because you can interact with the turtle as well. Obviously, you want to pick the healthiest turtle possible. First, look at the shell. Don't get a turtle that has a soft shell, and get a turtle that has healthy moist looking skin, not dry, cracked skin. Finally, look at the eyes. Are they cloudy and yellow? Don't get that turtle. Look to buy turtles with clear, bright eyes.

No matter how healthy the turtle, know that turtles can carry the salmonella bacteria. Wash your hands after handling turtles, and be extra carry if you have small children. Make sure they clean their hands often when playing with the turtle.

Finally, look at the demeanor of the turtle. Do not buy turtles that are timid or overly eager. You are looking for turtles that are "middle of the road" - not too timid, not too eager. These turtles make the best pets.

Remember, you aren't just going in to buy turtles. You are going in to pick up a pet, a new friend. Your new friend will be with you for many years to come, so choose wisely.

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