Can Turtles Eat Canine Meals? Vet Permitted Info & Security Information

Wet and dry pet food. Cat or dog pate on old table. Top view

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The knowledge is present and up-to-date in accordance with the most recent veterinarian analysis.

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As omnivores, turtles must eat a mixture of plant and animal-based meals. Getting captive turtles to eat a balanced weight-reduction plan might be onerous, so realizing which meals are okay to feed is necessary. Whereas turtles can eat small parts of pet food, consuming an excessive amount of may cause long-term well being points for these reptiles.

On this article, we’ll focus on the professionals and cons of feeding turtles pet food and the way to take action safely. We’ll additionally cowl the fundamentals of a turtle’s every day weight-reduction plan, together with different animal protein sources that is likely to be higher choices than pet food.

turtle divider AH

Why Would You Wish to Feed Turtles Canine Meals?

Not like herbivorous tortoises, turtles must eat animal protein to remain wholesome. The precise proportion of plant and animal meals sources in a turtle’s weight-reduction plan will fluctuate by age and species. Younger, rising turtles typically want extra animal protein than full-grown adults.

To offer the broadest mixture of vitamins, it’s finest to feed turtles a wide range of animal-based meals. As a result of canines are additionally omnivores, their kibble is usually excessive in protein. Pet food supplies a low-cost, simply accessible supply of protein for turtles.

turtle eating vegetables
Picture Credit score: Wirestock Creators, Shutterstock

The Downside With Canine Meals

The first drawback with feeding pet food to turtles is that it’s not formulated for his or her dietary wants. Pet food is nutrient-dense, and though it incorporates minerals and protein that turtles want, the quantities are unsuitable for turtles. Over time, these extra minerals construct up within the turtle’s delicate tissues.

Mineralized delicate tissue, particularly within the coronary heart or kidneys, may cause harmful, typically deadly well being points for turtles. Processed pet food might also include components that aren’t wholesome for turtles, together with synthetic flavors and colours. It has extra fats, sugar, or salt than a turtle ought to eat.

Methods to Feed Canine Meals to Your Turtle

In very small quantities, canine kibble is kind of secure to feed your turtle as a deal with, however keep in mind that treats shouldn’t make up more than 5% of a turtle’s every day weight-reduction plan.

What Different Animal Proteins Can Turtles Eat?

Industrial turtle pellets are essentially the most dependable method of offering your turtle with the proper stability of vitamins, however listed below are some dwell meals decisions as nicely:

  • Earthworms

  • Mealworms

  • Feeder fish

  • Slugs

  • Snails

  • Shrimp
lots of mealworms
Picture: Pixabay

What Else Ought to Turtles Eat?

Once more, relying on their age and species, round half of a turtle’s diet ought to be made up of plant-based meals. Present a wide range of meals and rotate what you supply to supply as a lot vitamin as potential. Greens, particularly darkish leafy greens, are possibility.

Listed below are some greens you possibly can feed your turtle:

  • Collard greens

  • Edible aquatic crops

  • Romaine lettuce

  • Kale

  • Dandelion greens

  • Squash

  • Carrots

  • Inexperienced beans

Turtles can eat fruit however solely in small portions or as treats. Some secure fruits to supply embrace melon, apples, and berries. Some species should take calcium and vitamin dietary supplements to make sure they obtain all the required vitamins, however by no means add dietary supplements to meals with out first checking together with your vet or reptile specialist that they want it.

Small quantities of plain cooked meat, like rooster or beef, will also be fed as a deal with, however giant quantities of meat can result in kidney harm.

turtle divider AH


Whereas turtles can take pleasure in canine kibble as an occasional deal with, there are potential long-term well being issues in the event that they eat it recurrently. To make sure your turtle is receiving the suitable stability of vitamins, they have to be fed a weight-reduction plan of economic turtle pellets, plants and vegetables, and animal protein.

Featured Picture Credit score: Jiri Hera, Shutterstock

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