Can Turtles Eat Tomatoes? Good or Harmful

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Can turtles eat tomatoes? Good or Harmful

Can turtles eat tomatoes? If you already have a turtle, you probably know that turtles love to eat tomatoes! The good news is that tomatoes are a safe food for turtles. However, you shouldn’t give them to your pet turtle too often. Once a week they are not usually dangerous.

How often can turtles eat tomatoes

Feeding your turtle tomatoes too often is not recommended as this could make It sick, as well as cause It many other health problems. Since tomatoes are basically fruits, they contain excess acids and sugars which could cause stomach bloating which could cause you severe discomfort and pain.

They can also cause diarrhea and create an environment in the turtle’s stomach conducive to the life of parasites.

Whenever you wonder which foods are suitable for your turtle, the best way to clear your doubts is to find out which species your turtle belongs to, as some turtle species are better suited to certain types of food based on their natural habitat.

Mediterranean turtle species, such as land turtles, don’t have much access to fruit in their natural habitat. Due to this, their digestive systems are not used to large amounts of sugar. Excessive intake of tomatoes could cause this type of turtle to have an imbalance in the intestines. If your tortoise is a land tortoise or another Mediterranean species, it may be wise not to give It any tomatoes, or only give It very sparingly.

This shouldn’t cause you much concern as there are many other inexpensive and readily available foods such as small fish and vegetables that are healthy foods for your pet turtle.

Various species of domestic turtles

There are many species of turtles that are kept as pets. In addition to the Mediterranean turtles, you can also find aquatic turtles to buy as pets. These include box turtles, land turtles, and red-eared turtles.

Some people also have snapping turtles. Each of these species has different food preferences and requirements necessary for a healthy life.

The first thing you need to do to ensure that your turtle has an appropriate diet that keeps them healthy and satisfied is to have identified them correctly. If you bought it from a pet store, the staff should be able to tell you the species and provide suggestions for proper nutrition. If you bought it from elsewhere, you need to have it identified by a vet or a pet store that deals with reptiles.

Food for turtles

The best thing you can do for your pet turtle is to provide it with an adequate diet, and you will only be able to do this if you are aware of what it should eat. Knowing which species the turtle belongs to, it can be herbivorous, carnivorous, or omnivorous.

You can choose to feed It with your own commercial pet food specially made for turtles. They are specially formulated for the various types of turtles and are a balanced food source with the right proportion of minerals and vitamins that can keep the turtle in good health. On the other hand, this food can be tasteless for your pet and quite expensive.

Natural foods are definitely a better and much healthier alternative than turtle food. Having a good percentage of protein, you can feed your turtle with snails, earthworms, crickets, worms, flour, and hard-boiled eggs.

Among the vegetables, you can offer the turtles: beans, corn, beets, potatoes, peas, and carrots. They usually like green leafy vegetables such as lettuce, carrot tops, spinach, kohlrabi, and kale.

A diet containing large amounts of fruit is not good for some turtle species due to their high sugar content. However, you can give them small amounts of grapes, apples, cantaloupe, kiwis, tomatoes, bananas, strawberries, and mangoes.

Turtles also love to eat different flowers such as petunias, carnations, dandelions, and geraniums.

Turtles in your garden

You might choose to place your pet turtle in a garden pond. Turtles are often useful as garden pets, as they eat many of the pesky insects that damage plants. Turtles do not usually cause any particular damage to plants.

As they love to eat tomatoes, you may need to take some precautions to prevent your tomato crop from being damaged. Since their movement is close to the ground, you can protect the vines by placing them a little higher than ground level. You can also put tomatoes in cages and raise the height of unprotected ones, at least a foot above ground level.

You may need to put a fence at least two feet high all around your yard and push it six inches into the ground so the turtle doesn’t escape. Pay particular attention that the fence is built securely so that the turtles do not squash into the spaces.

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About Amanda

Passionate about animals, Amanda draws her expertise from her training as an educator, pet behaviorist as well as her extensive experience with animal owners. A specialist in dog and cat behavior, Amanda continues to learn about our four-legged companions by studying veterinary reference books but also university research sites (UCD, Utrecht, Cambridge, Cornell, etc..)

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