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Box Turtles

Profile/Photography: Cindy

Size and Appearance: About six inches. For appearance, see photos at right.

General Requirements: We keep Myrtle in a tank in the house during the winter for hibernation, and at night for safety. Hand washing is required after every time that you touch a turtle or anything in its pen. For this reason, it might not be a good choice for a very young child, who still tends to put fingers in the mouth without thinking. All reptiles can carry salmonella. Our box turtle can do very well without live food, but she does enjoy her earthworms and crickets.

Lifespan: 40-100 years.

Responsiveness to Caretaker: Box turtles can be very interactive and friendly. Ours comes and "begs" when she is hungry. She also gets very excited when we give her "live" food, and almost dances.

Quantity: One

Notes of Interest:
* We also like to let her wander around the yard, and had heard a good way to keep an eye on her was to tape a helium balloon to her shell with packing tape. This is actually quite effective.
* Good for kids who want a hands-on pet (unlike fish).
* The box turtle is a protected species in many areas. Be sure to check with your town if you want to own one, and do not acquire it from the wild.


Profile/Photography: Cindy

Size and Appearance: Over a foot to a few feet long, depending on the species. (This lizard is a species of uromastyx.)

General Requirements: A very large tank. Check for information on the specific species' space requirements. We have several heat lamps, plus an under-tank heater going most of the time. This is not always convenient, so it's an important thing to consider. There is also the salmonella risk, so wash-wash-wash after handling. We did a lot of research before buying. It is important when considering a reptile that you find out how large they are going to get (some are huge), what their temperaments are like (some are skittish, and some downright nasty), and what they eat. Many people are grossed out by feeding live prey to a pet, but not all reptiles eat live prey. The initial investment for a reptile is usually $100-$200 before purchasing the animal, but typically they are inexpensive afterwards, as they do not need frequent vet check-ups.

Lifespan: 10 years or more.

Responsiveness to Caretaker: He is very friendly.

Quantity: One

Notes of Interest:
* They can be taught to walk on a leash.
* There are over a dozen different species of uromastyx.

* Only your allergist can determine what is truly allergen-free for you and/or your child. The animals in the above profiles are fur- and feather-free, but that doesn't mean they will necessarily be allergen-free for all individuals. This website and participants in this article are not responsible for reactions that take place as a result of owning any pet.

Would you like to help by providing a profile of your favorite pet(s)? Only profiles including a personally-taken photo(s) will be accepted. Send an e-mail from this webpage, including all of the following information: your name as you would like to be credited, size and appearance of the animal, general housing requirements, lifespan, responsiveness to humans, quantity, and any fun notes. Thank you for taking the time to share about your pet(s)! E-mails about broken links are also appreciated--just use the link above.

Allergen-Free* Pets Database


This website is for personal support information only. Nothing should be construed as medical advice.