Can my turtle sleep on my bed?
You may think that having a pet would mean spending hours each week taking care of its needs.
However, there are many ways to enjoy pets without being tied down to long periods of responsibility.
For example, you could take advantage of the fact that turtles don’t eat much food to feed yours snacks throughout the day.
Another option is to find someone else willing to share the responsibilities involved in caring for your pet.
There are plenty of options available to those looking to adopt a reptile companion.
Maybe you’re thinking about cuddling with your pet at night?
Question is – Can I put my turtle on my bed?
Turtles do not belong on your bed. They pose a danger to themselves and to you. Turtles commonly carry Salmonella bacteria, which can lead to severe illness. Also, falling off of an elevated surface like a bed could result in injury or death.
If you’re looking for ways to connect with your pets, but don’t like the idea of cuddling with them at night, here are five reasons why sleeping together could actually harm your relationship.
And, just in case you were wondering, yes, they do smell bad.
Why does my turtle pose present risks sleeping on my bed?
Turtles carry salmonella.
Turtles can carry these diseases through feces, shell scrapes, and saliva.
These illnesses can spread easily to humans via direct contact with reptiles or indirect exposure to contaminated environments.
People should avoid handling sick animals and wash hands after touching any animal.
Salmonella bacteria do not usually harm turtles; however, they can lead to severe illness in humans.
Children, seniors, pregnant women, and individuals with weakened immune systems are particularly vulnerable to salmonella infections.
Salmonella infections usually begin within 12 hours after exposure to contaminated food or water but may occur at any time during the incubation period.
Symptoms typically appear 2–7 days after ingestion of the bacteria and may include stomach pain, diarrhea, and sometimes bloody stool.
Other signs and symptoms may include headaches, muscle aches, joint pains, fatigue, low grade fevers, and swollen lymph glands.
People infected with salmonella often recover completely within 5–10 days without treatment; however, severe cases may lead to hospitalization and death.
In recent months there has been a number of salmonella cases reported across the country.
These include illnesses associated with pets like dogs, cats, birds, fish, snakes, lizards, frogs, tortoises, iguanas, chameleons, geckos, and turtles.
Most recently, a salmonella outbreak occurred which was linked to a pet turtle
There were at least 35 confirmed human infections children under 12 years old made up a third of the hospitalization
Turtles should never be fed raw meat; instead, feed them commercially prepared diets made specifically for reptiles.
Turtles do not digest cooked food well, but they can eat uncooked foods such as fruits and vegetables.
Be sure to wash any fruit or veggies thoroughly before feeding them to your pet.
Wash your hands well before handling turtles.
Don’t let your pet lick its own feces; instead, clean him off using a damp towel.
Also don’t feed your pet anything he hasn’t eaten himself.
And never touch your pet’s eyes, ears, or mouth.
These areas contain salmonella germs.
If you own a pet reptile like a snake, lizard, tortoise, gecko, iguana, chameleon, etc., you should never allow them to roam freely on your bed.
They could easily contaminate your pillow case and possibly infect you with salmonella.
To prevent this from happening, put down a towel or blanket underneath your pillow before placing your head onto it.
Also, wash any linens used near your reptiles after each time they urinate or defecate.
Risk to a turtle being on the bed
Turtles should never be placed on a bed or any kind of elevated surface.
They could easily slip off and injure themselves.
Falls like these can lead to broken shells or limbs.
Turtles need to stay active and engaged during their recovery period.
Make sure they don’t become bored or lonely.
Cracked shells can lead to other health issues, including infection.
Also, if a turtle rolls onto its belly, it could damage internal organs like the intestine.
In the worst case scenario, a rollover injury could kill your pet.
Turtles should never be left alone after they’ve been injured; instead, call your local animal hospital immediately.
Turtles’ shells are made of calcium carbonate, meaning that they’re vulnerable to cracking if dropped hard enough.
Cracked shells don’t heal well, and turtles often die within hours of being hit.
Don’t try to repair broken shells yourself — only a professional can do this safely.
Your vet can provide instructions on how to care for your turtle once he arrives.
Turtles should never be kept in bedrooms due to the potential health risks associated with turtles being near humans’ faces.
Turtles do not naturally carry salmonella bacteria; however, they can become infected through contact with human feces.
Sharing a bedroom with a turtle increases the likelihood of exposure to fecal matter, increasing the chances of getting sick.
What to do with your turtle
There are many ways to enrich your turtle’s environment while bonding with him/her, without sharing your bed.
Your pet turtle must have access to plenty of space to roam around and stretch its legs.
Aquatic turtles require tanks that hold at least 55 gallons of water.
They also need a larger swimming area and a smaller resting area.
Turtle terraria should provide a safe environment for terrestrial turtles.
They also require at least 12 square feet of space per individual.
Providing a cool area, as well as a basking area, will ensure that they stay comfortable.
Whether your turtle is aquatic or terrestrial, you can provide him with plenty of stimulation through appropriate substrates, hiding spots, live insects, and safe toys.
Floating logs are an excellent option for aquatic turtles, as they provide a place to climb and explore.
Similarly, you can provide natural branches to your terrarium turtle.
Just make sure these branches are secure so that they won’t fall over onto your turtle.
You can also add climbing rocks and non-toxic plants (or artificial plants for those without a green thumb).
Turtles aren’t social creatures by nature.
They may bite you when they are taken by surprise or mishandled.
However, if you are patient, persistent, and gentle with them, they can learn to interact with you comfortably.
Never pick up your turtle unless it is absolutely necessary because this causes stress and discomfort.
If you must pick it up, do so slowly and gently.
Hold your turtle securely with both hands.
One hand should grasp each side of its shell between its front limbs and back legs.
Place it very gently on the ground when placing it down.
Turtles love to swim around in shallow water, so if you plan to let your turtle roam freely, confine him to just one tank or small pool.
Hardwood and tile surfaces are ideal because they are easy to clean after he finishes swimming.
You can even bring your turtle outside if it isn’t too cold.
If you want to interact with your turtle, sit near it and allow it to approach you when it’s ready.
Then you can try to pet it gently on its head, neck, and cheeks.
You can also stroke its shell, but be very careful not to scratch it.
After returning your pet turtle back to its home, clean and disinfect the area where it was roaming, and wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water.
Can you cuddle with a turtle?
Many turtles prefer to be left alone, and they rarely accept being picked up and touched.
They also dislike being petted or cuddled, and they do not play with toys.
As a result, some owners give up caring for them after a few weeks because they get bored.
This should never be the case because there are plenty of ways you can show affection to your turtle