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Small Pets: Meet Papoe

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How old are you?

I am almost 1 year old…but I am still too small for my age.

Where did your name come from?

My species can be found in Papua and Mommy’s friend thought that Papoe will suit me. The pronunciation is pa-poo.

How did you end up with your mom?

Mommy just lost her favorite turtle, my eldest sister Kame. She couldn’t handle the pain unless she had a new one to keep her busy. Two days after my sister passed away, she went to a pet-shop and saw me. She brought me home to meet my other sister, Kroten.
Papoe (@underneath the shell)

What type of turtle are you?

(If your mom has any information/links to share about the type of turtle you are that would be wonderful, if not I can look it up and add to the article)
I am a Pink Belly Short/Side Necked Turtle or Emydura Schultzei. I have shared about my species here> http://kamekroten.wordpress.com/2012/03/22/herptile-spotlight-6-pink-belly-shortside-neck-turtle/

What are some of your favorite things to do?

I like to hide under Mommy’s pillow.
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What is your favorite snack?

Hmmm…let’s see! Turtle pellet, carrot and turnip green.

Do you have any tankmates or other furry/finned/feathered members in the family?

I live in one tank with my brother, Kurome. He is a melanistic Reeve’s Turtle
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Do you know any tricks?

Not yet 😦 I am very shy. My Sister and brother already know how to climb on Mommy’s hand…but I still haven’t mastered that because I tend to hide away.
Kroten and Papoe

What would you like others to know about turtles?

Turtles are not as dormant as many people think. We have different personality and can be passionate too. We are no different with Cats and Dogs. I have told you that I am very shy, but other siblings are well trained. My late sister, Kame, was the best. She knew her name, she followed Mommy everywhere, she liked to sleep on Mommy’s leg, she liked to play with things. My sister Kroten slowly acted as passionate as my late sister, Kame. My brother Kurome is very smart…he knows his name in four months and already followed Mommy around.

Does you mom want to share anything about you that others may not know?

Mommy said that I have already told everything about turtles that not many people know on previous question.

Do you know of any other turtles that have blogs/facebook/twitter pages that you would like to share?

Yup, you can read about three little turtle here> http://trailerparkturtles.wordpress.com/
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kurome papoe and kroten (from left to right)

Is there anything else either of you would like to include?

I just want to say that turtles can also be a cute pet 🙂

Turtle Age: Lifespan of Different Turtles

Taken from: http://www.petcaregt.com/Turtle/Age-of-The-Turtles.html)

It is said that the owner of a turtle should be extremely committed and patient towards the pet. Turtle is rather placid and cute pet to keep in initial days, but as it grows people tend to develop a dislike for it. The dislike holds dominance due to the demanding size of the turtle and its extensively long life. Major reason why people disown the turtles is just because of their long lives. Have a look at other side of the coin; there are people who are immensely happy to own a pet which can provide them with a companionship of almost a lifetime. Mentioned below is turtle age information of different species of turtles along with the number of years they live, for you to select the one which best suits you.

  • Green Sea Turtle : These turtles are destined with almost the same number of years as its owner has. The average age of a green sea turtle is around 80 years.
  • Alligator Snapping TurtleA: Actually the potential lifespan of the turtle when not kept in captivity is not known. An assumption by studying various snapping turtles is made that these turtles when kept in their natural habitat can live upto or more than 150 years. But when tamed and looked after in a fairly good manner, their lifespan outgrows 70 to 80 years.
  • Leatherback Turtle : The life of leatherback turtles when set free is around 100 years. In captivity they are observed to live a life of around 30 to 40 years.
  • Red Eared Slider Turtle : These turtles in their natural habitat can survive well for around 60 to 70 years. As one tames them, the lifespan of this turtle becomes limited from 40 to 60 years.
  • Common Musk Turtle : The average age of this turtle when kept in captivity and when set free does not extend beyond 60 years. Usually it is expected to accompany you as a pet for 50 years if you take really good care of it.
  • Big Headed Turtle : The expected life of this turtle when tamed will never exceed 25 years. If it is left in its natural habitat its life can stretch from 30 to 35 years.
  • American Box Turtle : If you are actually out to get yourself a companion for lifetime then the best suited turtle for you is American box turtle. The life of this turtle might not end even after you die as this turtle lives a minimum life of 100 years.

These were some of the turtles along with their life spans. Mentioning their age will help you determine if you can afford to keep a turtle. If you tend to get bored easily by a pet then turtles are certainly not meant for you. But if you have ample of patience or moderately enough patience then for sure you can opt for a pet turtle. Then too mind it, that you never opt for species of sea turtle which reach their juvenility at the age of 150. Yet another breed to be avoided by even the most committed tamers is Aldabra Turtle which is expected to have a life beyond 200 years. So, think before you conclude upon any decision.


Common Types of Pet Turtles:

(Taken from:http://www.petturtlecareguide.com/pet-turtle-facts/)

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  • Slider TurtlesRed eared slider turtles are semi aquatic turtles that are very typical pet turtles. However, there is a misconception that these slider turtles do not require much care. It is a fact that all turtles require a lot of care and commitment to live long, healthy lives. Many slider turtles die early as a result of improper care. With proper care, these turtles can live for more than a decade. An adult red eared slider can grow up to 12 inches long. Male red eared sliders are often smaller than females. Red eared sliders are omnivores, which means they consume a blend of animal and plant matter.
  • Map TurtlesCommon map turtles are both carnivorous and vegetarian. They can eat various kinds of food, such as crickets, fish, earthworms, carrots and leafy green veggies. Map turtles usually prefer large spaces with a dry basking area and shallow water to bath in.
  • Box Turtles: They are semi aquatic turtles, however, they spend most of their time on dry land. They need only a shallow range of fresh water. On the other hand, there are other types of box turtles that are more aquatic, such as the Chinese and Malayan types. Box turtles will generally require a tank with adequate space to bask and swim around in. Water needs to be deep enough to swim through but shallow enough for the turtle to easily climb in and out of it. These turtles eat both plant matter and meat or live foods.
  • Yellow Bellied Turtles or sliders: They are easily adapted to captivity. They are suited to shallow water aquaria. They do need basking areas that are raised above water level. Moreover, they are omnivorous, but younger ones are typically more carnivorous than adults.
  • Mud Turtles: They are semi terrestrial turtles and well suited to sandy, damp, or muddy environments. They are omnivorous and almost never grow over 5 inches long. Like many other types of turtles, mud turtles like to bask. They can live very long lives as well—up to 50 years old.

No matter what type of turtle you buy as a pet, all turtles require fresh food and water. They also require an environment that is most comfortable for them.


Caring For Your Turtle

(Taken from: http://www.wormsandgermsblog.com/M2%20Turtles%20-%20Owners.pdf)

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  • Feeding: Turtles need a wide variety of different foods, from mice to worms to insects, as well as vegetables and some fruit. Land turtles need to be fed differently than aquatic turtles.Commercial pelleted turtle feed is available, but it should only be used to make up a small portion of the animal’s diet.
  • Aquarium/Terrarium: Turtles are cold-blooded animals that rely on theirenvironment to regulate their body temperature. Turtle enclosures requirespecial heating and lighting, and certain types of bedding/litter to ensureyour pet stays healthy and happy. Aquatic turtles need an area to swim,and land turtles need a shallow dish of water to drink from and to soak in

Can My Turtle Make me sick?

(taken from: http://www.wormsandgermsblog.com/M2%20Turtles%20-%20Owners.pdf)
Yes. The most frequent disease people get from turtles is salmonellosis, which is an infection caused by the bacteria Salmonella. Although Salmonella can also make your turtle sick, the majority of reptiles, including turtles, carry Salmonella as part of the normal bacteria in their intestine, and the animal may look completely healthy. Nonetheless, the bacteria can still make a person very sick. Salmonella may be found on any part of a turtle, not just in its stool.
People catch Salmonella by swallowing it. With turtles, this usually happens because people get the bacteria on their hands and then touch their face or the food they are eating. Salmonella also survives very well on objects and surfaces in the house with which a turtle, or something touched by the turtle, has been in contact.

Salmonellosis usually causes diarrhea. Most people recover in a few days, but some people become very sick when the bacteria get into the bloodstream. In some cases, people have died from Salmonella. People can also get Salmonella from touching or eating undercooked food such as chicken that was contaminated with the bacteria during processing, and not from a turtle.
Young children are at an increased risk of catching Salmonella from a pet turtle, because they often do not wash their hands properly after touching a turtle, and they often put their fingers or objects in their mouths. People who are immunocompromised (e.g. HIV/AIDS patients, transplant recipients, cancer patients) are also more likely to get sick from Salmonella because their immune system cannot fight infection


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And for those interested, I found a few great places to explain the difference between turtles, Tortoises and terrapins.
Reeves Turtle Information & Care:

Reeves Turtle Care (Chinemys Reevesii) is a small or medium size species of turtle found in China, Korea, and Japan. They are a semi-aquatic species that thrives in calm streams, shallow pond, shallow parts lake and wetlands. they are also omnivorous, in the wild, they eat native aquatic plants, fish, snails, freshwater shrimp,and incests. These species are currently are facing threat of habitat destruction, human consumption and pet trade.

Size:
Reeves Turtle will reach a maximum of 10″ if they are females, male would be smaller in size.

Captive Habitat Needs:
Provide an large aquarium for adequate space for this species. Provide at least 100 gallon aquarium for a single female and 75 gallon aquarium for a single male.
Use a canister filter, biological filter, or an large power filter to provide adequate water quality. These species are sensible to water quality. These species are susceptible to shell rot if you don’t provide adequate water quality. Provide a basking platform, so these species can bask. Provide UVB and UVA light for this species. Keep water temperature at mid 70’s and 80 degrees, basking temperature should be around low 80’s through 90 degrees.

Feeding:
Feed this species, pellets, minnows, insects, leafy vegetable. Feed this species small amounts until they stop eating, then discard any leftovers.
Outdoor Care:
Reeves Turtle can be kept outside in a shallow pond. provide aquatic plants for cover and food, provide a basking spot for these species to bask. They may hibernate depending on where you live but take precaution.

More on Reeve’s Turtles:

Author’s Note: Many many thanks to Papoe’s mom for sharing pictures of him and the others with us. Photos were used with permission. You can find Papoe, Korten and Kurome at http://kamekroten.wordpress.com/

This post is part of a blog hop.

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Please click the badge page below for more small pet pages. =^..^=

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Small Pets: Meet Shimi

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How old are you?

Iz 1 years old! On da May 24th iz gonna be two!!

Where did your name come from?

My name be japanese! It means spot! Cause I habs a lot ob spots on my back!

How did you come to live with your human family?

Da mommy had three rats already and wanted to habs two new furiends! So hers was looking online when she found me and my sister (Shima) in need ob a home! So hers emailed those people to ask them iffin she could habs us! When she went to visit she fell in love wiff a third rat (Beju) so she ask iffin she could take us home all three! And that was okays! Now we was still to youngs to come homes so da mommy had to waits a few weeks! Two days before she went to pick us up, she got an email… every rat found a new home except for one!!! So they asked if maybe da mommy would likes to takes home four instead ob three! Da mommy said obcourse! So thats why we also gots my other sisfur (Aki)

What type of mouse are you?

Iz nots a mouse! Iz a rat! Iz a pet rat wiff dumbo ears! That means my ears be on da side ob my head instead obs on top!

Do you live with any other furry siblings? If so who are they?

I libs wiff my sisfurs who be Aki, that be a brown rat! Hers name be japanese and means Autumn. Shima looks like me wiff a brown fur and a stripe on years back. Shima means stripe in english. And we habs Beju who be kinda ob a beige color. Beju means beige in english. Aki and Shima be real sisfurs. Beju comes from another mother who had gotten sick. Hers had to get medicine so hers could not gibs milk anymores! Thats why Beju came to libs wiff my mommy and sisfurs! Hers be born on da may 25th so she be one day younger!

Do you know any tricks?

Iz not sure iffin this be a trick but I listen to my name! I also listen to da door! When I gets to run free in da house and somepawdy opens da door, Iz always run to da door to greet thems! Iz also follows da mommy through da house! Likes a doggy!

What advice do you have for someone who wants a small pet?

Nebers just buy a small pet wiffout reading information first! We maybe small but that does not mean wez be easy pets! Most small pets lubs to live wiff cagemates! Except for hamsters! Make sure we habs a big enuff cage and neber ebers buy us from a petstore!

What is a typical day like for you?

Iz nap a lot!!! But Iz also lubs to cuddle or to runs around!

Do you get out of your cage often?

I does! I lubs to snuggle or run arounds! Sometimes Iz just sit on mommy’s shoulder when hers be busy doing stuff!

Is there anything you would like to share that others may not know about you?

Neber buy one rat! No mater how much time youz gonna spend wiff a rat it not da same as a cage mate!


Cages for Rats

(Taken from:http://exoticpets.about.com/cs/careofrats/a/ratscare.htm)
A large wire cage is best, especially one with horizontal bars that allow the rat to climb on the sides if they wish. A tall cage with ramps and platforms is ideal for providing room for multiple rats. As minimum, a cage with 12 by 24 inches (2 square feet) of floor space is okay for two smaller rats, as long as the cage is tall and you provide shelves and/or hammocks for extra space. Larger is always better. Large aquariums are okay, but do not provide good ventilation (and must be cleaned more often).

Avoid cages with wire flooring as spending time on wire flooring has been linked to bumblefoot. Many cages have wire balconies and shelves, which are not ideal. However, you can modify wire balconies by covering them with a thin sheet of wood or other solid material (fix to the cage with wire ties). Also look for wire that is a fine grid (1/2 inch by 1/2 inch maximum). Your best bet is to look for cages that have plastic or wood shelving, or you can modify cages using melamine covered boards to make your own shelves (easy to clean). Many enterprising rat owners have built their owne large cages. See the Dapper Rat’s Grotto and their pages of other ideas for inspiration.

Bedding
For bedding, avoid cedar and pine wood shavings (see “The Problem with Cedar and Pine Shavings” for more information), but aspen (or other hardwood) shavings are fine. There are many other good pet bedding and litter options available these days that are very absorbent, not dusty and safe for small pets. Some are pelleted so might not be all that comfortable for rats to play and sleep in, so some people use the pelleted products (which are usually very absorbent) under a layer of softer loose bedding. For a sampling of the newer alternative pet bedding products, see “Top Ten Alternatives to Cedar and Pine.”


Food & Water

(Taken from: http://www.ratfanclub.org/caresheet.html)

            A bulk grain mix does not meet the nutritional needs of rats.  Food blocks or nuggets made specifically for rats are best.  If a fortified grain mix is fed, you must make sure your rats eat the vitamin/mineral nuggets in the mix.  About 20% of their diet should be a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables such as broccoli, kale, cooked sweet potato, and cooked beans.  Fluoride is toxic to rats so if your water is fluoridated, you must give your rats bottle water.  Chlorinated water also is not good.

 

Accessories

Rats need a water bottle, a food dish for fresh foods, and we recommend a hanging dispenser for dry foods.  Many rats will use a litter box if it is placed in the corner they choose for a toilet.  A concrete block, bird pedicure perch or similar toys in the cage will help keep their toenails short.  Rats also need sleeping quarters and enjoy boxes, igloos, the Super Pet Giant Roll-a-nest and hammocks.  While most rats will chew on a hammock and eventually destroy it, this rarely causes them any harm.


A Rat’s Diet

(Taken from: http://christinepurr.hubpages.com/hub/Pet-Rats-Are-Awesome-Rat-Care-Tips)

Rats in the wild will eat anything they can get their hands on. They’re foragers, thieves, and gluttons when the chance arises… so does this mean your pet rat can eat like a garbage disposal? NO! Domestic rats are different from their wild counterparts, and this is just one of the many differences. A pet rat’s main diet should be of a high quality rat lab blocks or pellet chew forumulated for their metabolism. Harlan Teklad is a great brand, as is Mazuri. Gerbil/Hamster food contains much higher calorie content. Avoid buying rat food which also says ‘gerbil/hamster’ food. A high caloric intake can lead your rattie to a future with tumors. Look for brands that list soy meal as the main ingredient – this food should be their staple food – available at ALL times, along with smaller helpings of veggies and fruits: peas, carrots, broccoli, apples, bananas, banana chips, and pears are recommended often. Avoid feeding rats caffeine, soda, coffee, chocolate, oranges, lemon, and avocado. If you’re unsure about a particular food, look it up. Always better to be safe than sorry. Rats also look forward to treats, so try incorporating the healthy stuff, along with yogies (rats LOVE ’em), into their daily diet. Remember: Rats can’t vomit, or burp, so nothing that can get stuck in their throat – like peanut butter, and nothing carbonated!

Make sure fresh water is available at all times. Water bottles that cling to cage wires or fit over a tank casing are essential as water dishes get beding/rat stuffs into them, getting dirty and contaminated fast. Rats do like playing in water, so having a water bottle and a water dish for play is another idea.


One Rat? Or Two? Buy pet rats in pairs!

(Taken from: http://www.discover-pet-rats.com/buy-pet-rats.html)

Don’t break this rule unless you have a LOT of time to spend with your small pet! When you can’t be with him, a rat is happiest with a rat buddy.

These intriguing critters are social animals, and as much as they thrive on attention from people, life is not complete without a friend of their own kind… Someone to clean out their ears (yum!), to snuggle with for warmth & to pass lonely days.

While you’re unavailable – during school or work time, or taking a snooze, or out munching pizza – they’re busily grooming or playing little rat wrestling games.

Pet rats are also smart critters which makes them prone to boredom and listlessness when isolated. An otherwise healthy rat can pine away when left alone, becoming depressed and vulnerable to getting sick.

With more than one rat, the burden isn’t as great on you to fill their waking hours. Your rats will entertain themselves and still readily include you in their friendship when you give them their daily dose of attention. Buy pet rats a buddy to make life more enjoyable for all!


Author’s Note: My deepest sincerest apologizes to Shimi, this article should have been posted earlier today but I had overlooked it. My dear sweet Shimi, will you forgive me for the oversight?

I would like to thank Shimi for letting me use the pictures and for wanting to be interviewed. The pleasure was all mine. You can find Shimi on facebook here


This post is part of a blog hop.

All blogs/facebook pages, etc are welcome to join as long as they talk about a small pets.  =^..^=

(many thanks to the wonderfully talented Miss Ann of Pawisitively Pets for the badge, it’s adorable!)

Please click the badge page below for more small pet pages. =^..^=

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Small Pets : Meet Buddy Bunchkins

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Meet Buddy Bunchkins

How old are you?

I will be the 3 years in March.

Where did your name come from?

I was so friendly that they say I is the Buddy, and the Bunchkins just came to Lil Momma.

How did you come to be with your family?

I was just the baby and Lil Momma was having the tough times in the life…she needed me and I needed her. We was the lucky to finds each others.

Do you have any cagemates or fursiblings you share the house with?

I has my homes to myself but I gets lots of free times where I runs likes the crazy arounds the house. I has the sidekick..his name is Tiki and he a good boy for the parakeet.

What is your favorite snack?

My favorites snack is the kale. The normal day for me is the love, cuddles, eatings and poopings. I loves to poop. I also love the attentions and playings.

Do you get to go outside when it’s warm?

I loves to lay in Lil Momma lap when it warm outsides. I does not likes it if it too hots – it can be the deadly for us piggies!

What is your favorite thing to do?

My favorite thing to do is the photo shoots with Lil Momma. I loves the camera. I also love to eat. It the way to my heart!

Do you have any advice for someone considering getting a guinea pig as a pet?

Yes, advice to gives the world is we piggies are the special. We are the sensitive, lovings, and loaded with the personality. We loves the attention from our Lil Mommas and Big Poppas in the life. We needs the good care and food so please treats us with lots of the loves, respects and gentles. We only wants to loves you and makes you happy! ….. Thank you for the interviews! I hopes I did the goods job. Sharing is the caring so YAH you can use the photos of me! I hopes we can be the fur-ends!! WHEEEK!!


Author’s Thanks: Thanks to Buddy for letting me use pictures of him with permission. You can find him on facebook, youtube or tumblr


Types of guinea pigs
(Taken From: http://www.cavymadness.com/care/index.html)
The humble guinea pig comes in a wonderful array of textures and colours in its coat. The wild cavy would have a short coat with an agouti coloring, meaning that it would light and dark bands of colour on each hair (much like our Titania at the top of the page). Breeding has wrought a whole assortment of beautiful coats – the guinea pig at right is a Satin, which means a shiny coat.

  • Abyssinian – One of the oldest breeds; a “bedhead” piggy with rosettes, which are cowlick-like hair patterns that radiate from a center point. Breed standards require the rosettes to be in a specific formation; winnie, our model Abyssinian, is not likely a “proper” Abby. The variations of the Abyssian coat can be pretty to downright hilarious.
  • American – The most common breed, and usually what comes to mind when someone mentions guinea pigs. The smooth coat lies flat against the body. The colouring on the coat can be solid or patterned; a white stripe around the middle is a common pattern, and is often referred to as a Dutch coat. Nutmeg (the American, at right) shows an imperfect white band, and you can also see the Agouti colouring in her coat, which is a solid colour with black ticking among the hairs.
  • Peruvian, Silkie, and Texel. – Peruvians often remind Star Trek geeks of Tribbles, for their hair grows forward from the face, often obscuring it to the point where front and back are not easily identifiable. The hair grows from a center part down the back, and requires extensive grooming (and trimming, for comfort). Peruvians’ hair can grow long enough to drape several inches from their body; show-quality Peruvians often spend their days in hair rollers! Silkies (also known as Shelties) are often confused with Peruvians, but their hair only grows back from the neck, and have softer hair. Texels (pictured below) appear to be a Silkie with a perm; their long hair grows in coarse ringlets.
  • Teddy they are result of a mutation, and has a dense, coarse coat that can be either soft (often referred to as a plush coat), or rough, often with kinks in the short hairs. Show-quality Teddies are rubbed from back to front to keep their hair poufy. Titania, our Teddy model at right, has a silver agouti pattern, which is the coat of wild guinea pigs.
  • Baldwins and Skinny Pigs have no coat, save for patches of hair on Skinny Pigs (Baldwins have no hair whatsoever). Their loose, thick skin needs additional care from sun and irritation. Despite their somewhat prehistoric appearance, their temperament is still docile and cuddly.

The white crested is a difficult breed, because the rosette of a Crested guinea pig must be centered between the ears, and no other rosettes can be present. Many guinea pigs will end up with a rosette on top of their head, which gives them this distinctive “stern” look.


Easy checks for a healthy guinea pig

(Taken from: http://www.omlet.us/guide/guinea+pigs/guinea+pig+health/health+checks/)

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Thankfully, guinea pigs are very hardy creatures, and if kept clean and fed well they rarely become sick. There are, however, some daily checks you should make, to ensure that your guinea pig stays well, it also helps you to notice any change very quickly, and visit your vet at the first sign of illness.

  • Eyes- The eyes should be clear and bright, with no sign of cloudiness or discharge. An eye that suddenly goes cloudy may mean that the guinea pig has got an ulcer as a result of a piece of hay in its eye. Any eye problems require urgent veterinary attention. Guinea pigs do normally secrete a milky discharge from their eyes, which precedes grooming, as they use it on their paws to groom themselves, if you see this you do not need to worry about it.
  • Nose –The nose should be clean, and as with the eyes, shouldn’t be runny. Any discharge or sneezing may suggest that your guinea pig has a cold.
  • The coat- The fur should be dense and clean. Any patches of hair loss or areas where the skin is red and sore may suggest that your guinea pig has mites. Watch him closely, is he scratching more than usual? Mites burrow under the skin and cause a distressing condition called mange, and the sooner you spot any problem, the sooner you can get it treated, something your guinea pig will certainly thank you for. Sometimes you may see little tiny nits walking on your guinea pigs fur, these are hay mites, which are harmless and a simple shampoo will get rid of them for you.
  • The feet –Check the nails, and never let them get too long. Guinea pigs have no fur on the bottom of their feet, so check the bottom of their feet regularly for any sign of soreness. If their feet are sore their bedding wants to be as soft as possible, wood shavings and soft meadow hay is best.
  • The bottom –Yes, this bit needs checking too… The whole area should be clean and dry. If the guinea pig is wet and smelly between its legs it may have a urine infection. Old boys may also get a problem where their poo gets stuck, and they are no longer able to eat the sticky caecotrophs as they should. Your vet will be able to show you how to help them.

Diet

(Taken from: http://www.mchumane.org/GuineaPigCare.shtml)

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Guinea pigs are enthusiastic drinkers. Be sure to purchase a large water bottle so they will not run out of water during the day. Be sure to change water daily.
Guinea pigs have a three-part diet.

  1. Give as much timothy hay as they want. This provides necessary fiber and keeps their teeth ground down. Avoid alfalfa hay because it is too rich. 
  2. Commercial guinea pig pellets—give about 1/3 cup per day and leave out so they can graze. Pellet mixes should contain vitamin C and not be too loaded with “treats.” Check the expiration date—the vitamin C breaks down if you keep the pellets too long. 
  3.  Fresh veggies and maybe a little fruit every day. Avoid iceberg lettuce; all other lettuce is fine. So are carrots, parsley, broccoli, collard greens, turnips and parsnip. Give fruits in moderation such as apples, cantaloupe, raisins, grapes and bananas You can buy treats, but give sparingly. Avoid the ones with high sugar or fat content such as yogurt drops.

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Author’s Note: Many thanks to Buddy Bunchkins for answering the questions and letting me use his pictures for the blog. Please visit him on his facebook page.

 
This post is part of a blog hop.All blogs/facebook pages, etc are welcome to join as long as they talk about a small pets.  =^..^=(many thanks to the wonderfully talented Miss Ann of Pawisitively Pets for the badge, it’s adorable!)Please click the badge page below for more small pet pages. =^..^=

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Small Pets: Meet Picaroon the Lovebird

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Meet Picaroon the Lovebird

How old are you?

My vet believes I’m about 3 years old. My human mom says my “gotcha” day is October 3rd since that’s when she got me (celebrated like a birthday).

How did you come into your parents life?

I sort of “flew” into my human mom’s life. Her dog of 8 years had finally lost his battle to cancer the same day I was found “lost” in a neighbor’s yard. Here’s how it’s told on my Facebook page.
“One day I was flying around free when I saw a sad dog angel sitting outside a fenced yard. I was curious and flew down to talk to him (I’m not afraid of dogs or cats). He told me he was sad because he had to leave his human mom and he was worried about her. He had kept her happy and safe for 8 years and didn’t want to leave her side. He explained he couldn’t cross the rainbow bridge til he knew she was safe. I told him that every animal deserves to cross the rainbow bridge. If he needed someone to watch over his human, then why not me? The dog angel smiled and wagged his tail before crossing over the rainbow bridge.”

What type of lovebird are you?

I’m a Peach faced lovebird, but a special mutation called a “red opaline”. This means my whole head is red instead of just my face and my body is a lighter green than a regular peach face.

Do you have a cagemate? I remember reading that lovebirds need to be kept in pairs, does your mom know if this is true?

I don’t have a cage mate, it’s actually a myth that lovebirds need to be kept as pairs. We are, however very smart and (like all birds big and small) seek companionship and entertainment to enrich our lives. Most lovebirds do tend to bond to ONE person or bird, but I love lots of people! Maybe that’s why I make such a good therapy bird!

Are there any other birds in the house with you?

There’s no other birds in the house with me, but there is a dog and a cat. The cat is pretty sure I’m tasty looking, but the dog is very protective of me and won’t let the cat near my cage. It’s like having my own body guard!

Do you know any tricks?

I’m very good at learning tricks. Right now I can retrieve some objects and put them in designated spots. I can go through tunnels. I ring a bell with my foot. I’m also learning to play Blackjack! Right now I just flip over the cards that are face down, but I hope to learn to deal them out soon! So far it’s only taken me about 5 minutes to get the basics of the tricks. I love to work for millet. It’s my favorite!

Does your mom have any advice for owning a lovebird?

All of us birds need a proper diet and vet care like any other pet. I think sometimes humans forget that we’re just as important as, and live as long or LONGER than, a dog or cat. We’re very smart and need stimulation everyday. It’s sad and lonely being locked up in a cage all the time. With someone that has time for a bird, we can be great pets, but also very messy and noisy, hehe.

Does your mom have any websites or information about lovebirds that she is interested in sharing?

My mom says there’s lot of great bird rescues out there and great birds looking for homes! Here’s a list she found of ones all over the world! http://www.avianwelfare.org/links/organizations.htm

Is there anything else you want to share about yourself?

On top of being a smart and silly lovebird, I also do great work as a therapy pet with a group called Furry Friends Pet Assisted Therapy Services. We go around to different places like nursing homes, hospitals and libraries to visit people and make them smile. I think it’s the best job in the world! Right now I visit two nursing homes and the head and neck trauma unit at the hospital here.


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Things to Consider Before Purchasing
(Taken from: http://www.birdguys.com/pet-bird-articles-love-bird.html)

Despite the misconception, love birds can be kept as pets as single birds. If you choose to purchase only one, be prepared to give it a lot of attention or it will become bored, mischievous and quite troublesome. If you don’t have the time to spend with your love bird, then buy it a mate keeping in mind that the affection that would have been for you will now be focused on the partner.

There are numerous types of love birds- some very rare and others quite common. The easiest type of love bird to keep as a pet is the Peachfaced Love Bird.

Love birds are not talking parrots though they can be quite vocal. They are also not that cuddly though this varies from bird to bird as love birds are one species with very strong individual personalities. They can become very attached to their humans, especially when they are kept as single birds. There is some evidence that males are less jealous and territorial than females, so this too must be kept in mind when purchasing your love bird.

When looking for a bird, be sure that you choose a hand raised bird that is very comfortable with human contact. Love birds not constantly handled easily become skittish and nippy. Even a hand raised bird that is later left alone in its cage can revert back and be very difficult to re-train.

Love birds live for up to 20 years so in most cases they will be your pet for life. They cannot be housed with any other species of bird as they can be aggressive and even kill other birds.

Types of Lovebirds:
(Taken from: http://www.birdtricks.com/caring-for-lovebirds.html)
There are nine species of lovebirds; eight of the nine can be purchased as pets. The eight species available as pets are:

1. Abyssinian Lovebirds
2. Red-faced Lovebirds
3. Nyasa Lovebirds (Lilian’s)
4. Black-cheeked or Black-faced
5. Fischer’s Lovebirds
6. Masked Lovebirds (Black-masked or
7. Madagascar Lovebirds Yellow-collared Greyheaded
8. Peach-faced or Rosy-faced

Here’s a neat little chart I found at http://birdboard.com/forum/topic/245843-agapornis-types/, please click on the image to enlarge

lovebirdtypesyp5

HOUSING:
(Taken from:http://www.africanlovebirdsociety.com/lovebirdcare/)
Lovebirds need a cage which has at least two places to perch, with room to fly from one to the other. A cage with a horizontal measurement of 24 inches to 30 inches is appropriate. Anything less than 18 inches would be too small and restrictive. Perches need to be a size which is comfortable for the birds feet, not too small or too large.

It is convenient to have two sets of food and water dishes so that they can be alternated and washed each day. Water must be changed and the dish washed every day. Food dishes can stay longer, with food added each day if preferred, but food dishes do need to be completely emptied, washed, and refilled at least once a week. Caution — food dishes sometimes look full, but only have seed hulls and waste in them, with no good food for the bird!

Lovebirds need activity in the cage to stay healthy. Swings, ladders, and interlocked bamboo rings are favorites. The 6 inch cockatiel swings are the best size for lovebirds. Pet departments or stores have many choices in toys for pet birds. Avoid small toys designed for parakeets and budgies. Lovebirds have very strong beaks for chewing and can break these items. Toys designed for cockatiels and small parrots are the right size for lovebirds.

FOOD:
(Taken from:http://www.squidoo.com/lovebirdcare)
All of our birds are on a mix of roudybush pellets & a good seed mix. Plus lots of fresh foods daily. We start our birds out on fresh food as soon as we can so the birds are willing to accept a wide varitty of foods.

Lovebirds need the same size food as cockatiels and other small parrots. If you plan to feed your birds a seed mix, choose one which contains nutritional supplements to assure a “total diet” to keep birds healthy. Other less expensive seed mixes, or seeds sold for wild birds will not have all the nutrients your bird needs, although they can also be used if you provide lots of fresh foods. I do not recommend a seed only diet. Note –pellet diets like Kaytee Exact or Pretty Bird are nutritionally complete and very good for birds, though some birds will be slow to accept them. Birds that are used to seeds will need to be given adequate time to adjust and learn to eat a pellet-only diet.

Try to give fresh foods at least 3 or 4 times a week. Our birds love apples, broccoli, cabbage, kale, carrots, parsley, and spinach. You can try other vegetables and fruits, too. Our birds also like corn tortillas (not salted tortilla chips) and whole grain breads. Don’t feed anything with high fat, salt, or sugar content, like donuts, cake, or cookies. Caution — remember to remove any uneaten fresh food from the cage before it spoils.

Try to keep cuttlebone in the cage all the time to provide calcium for the bird. Millet sprays, sometimes called “seed trees” are a good treat.

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Activities:
(taken from: http://www.mspca.org/programs/pet-owner-resources/pet-owner-guides/bird-care-adoption/bird-care-guide-lovebirds.pdf)
Lovebirds awaken with the dawn, get a drink, eat, and then immediately begin to chirp. They will generally quiet
down by mid-morning and resume their chirping in the late afternoon.
These birds are very active, flying and climbing about, gnawing on wood or chew toys, and grooming themselves
all day. They love toys of all kinds such as seed bells, swings, ladders, mirrors, shiny objects, and wooden
gnaws. They are natural paper shredders, so be sure to provide them with dye-free paper to play with. A lovebird
outside of its cage will not stay on its playpen since they like to explore. Be sure that any room that your lovebird
is playing in is free from open doors or windows, water containers such as drinking glasses and toilets/sinks and
that they are never near a hot stove. You should always monitor your bird when it is out of its cage!


Author’s Note: Thanks to Picaroon and her mom for letting me use pictures of her (with permission) and for the information. 


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Farm Pets: Meet Pony, Luna & Thunder

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goatxing

What are the goats names?

Thunder, Pony and Luna.

How did they come into your life?

My mom heard from a friend that there were 3 goats on the news who have been wandering around an apartment complex for about 4 months, and animal control was just then trying to catch them. My mom called animal control telling them we could foster the goats if no one else offered to keep them. A few days later at 11:00 we get an unexpected call from AC telling us they were bringing the goats to our house! One of the goats was killed by dogs, so only two goats arrived at our house, a shy male and a pregnant female. They were both skinny and very shy.

We had the two goats for only about 5 days  until male goat died of unknown causes. We were very worried about the female goat, who we named Pony. After the male goat died, she began to walk up to us and let us pet her. We were surprised at how friendly she was!
A few months later she gave birth to two female kids on a full moon while it was thundering. (The July moon is called the ‘Thunder moon’) So, we named the brown kid Thunder, and the pure white kid Luna.
The kids grew up quickly, and learned how to misbehave from their mother. One day I was outside filming my dog doing agility when I suddenly heard a banging noise outside by the driveway… The goats had escaped through a small gap in the fence and were jumping on my dad’s car!! I was so lucky he was out of state with the reserves. (I can’t remember the exact cost of damage they did, but I can find out) I recorded the goats jumping on the car and made a YouTube video.

How did you end up getting featured on Animal Planet?

The local news did an update about our goats, and featured my video of them on the car. This is the original video of the goats jumping on the car

I also received a message from a producer of the show ‘Bad Dog’ wanting to use my goat video on their show.  They interviewed my family and filmed the goats misbehaving. (The goats kept trying to run off/eat their camera equipment!) The episode they were on is called Home Wreckers.

Did you train them? (are goats trainable?)

I train my dogs and my foster Beagles to do tricks and agility, so I have attempted to training our goats, and I failed miserably. Our goats are crazy about food… I tried teaching Luna to jump over a hurdle, and she was actually getting the hang of it until Pony and Thunder noticed I had food. Here is a YouTube video of me trying to train the goats- 

We still have Pony, Luna, and Thunder, but my dad hasn’t has much patience with them lately. He doesn’t have to worry about them jumping on our car now since they’ve gained weight. :p My mom and I absolutely love the goats, they have such unique personalities, and although them being stubborn is usually a pain, it can be cute at times. While many goats escape out of their yard to get to grass, our goats escape and walk up to our house to find us. They are sweet, naughty goats who just want our attention and love.

goatxing2

Goat Information/Care:

(Taken from: http://www.goatworld.com/articles/goatsaspets/petgoats.shtml)
Basic terminology

Learn the lingo:

  • Kid – a goat less than 6 months of age
  • Doeling – immature female goat
  • Buckling – immature male goat
  • Doe – mature female goat
  • Buck – mature male goat
  • Wether – castrated male goat
  • Chevon – goat meat
  • Mohair – the fiber from Angora goats
  • Cashmere – the fiber from Cashmere or Pashmina goats

Fundamental Facts

  • Lifespan: 10-12 years, may live as long as 30 years
  • Productive life of a dairy or fiber goat: 7 years
  • Space required per goat: 15ft2 indoor and 200ft2 outdoors
  • Breeding age: females – 8 to 10 months
  • Gestation period: 150 days
  • Number of kids per gestation: 1 – 2

Behavior Bonuses

  • goats are social animals and enjoy the company of other goats or farm animals.
  • are notorious for undoing simple gate closures.
  • tend to respect electric fencing.
  • investigate everything in their environment with their mouths(!) including paperwork, clothing, jewelry, etc.
  • can be trained to lead, come when called, stand for shearing & milking.
  • are avid climbers!
  • may chew off the bark around trees.
  • Bucks may exhibit active fighting behavior – watch out!

goat4


(Taken from: http://www.goatworld.com/articles/goatsaspets/goatsaspets.shtml)

Goats as Pets

A goat as a pet primarily means that you are willing to let it be the type of animal it is. An outside animal that you cannot necessarily have sleeping on the bed with you each night (though some report that their children make a practice of this). A goat basically needs the outdoors to be within it’s natural elements. Having a goat indoors can pose many problems, to include that your favorite piece a furniture may become a “rip and chew” party. Of course cats and dogs are reknowned for this as well but they appear to be a bit more trainable to discourage that type of undesireable behavior.

For the most part (at least in my opinion), a goat has basically only a few things on their mind; eat, drink water, sleep, play, fight and reproduce. And taking up the greatest percentage of that time is eating. Most goats will eat several times a day, stopping only to rest and letting their rumens process the food. An hour later they are back at it again. So to have an “outdoor pet” of this type, you must be willing and able to provide the proper food and nutrition at all times for your goat just as you would any other pet. And the water is important as well. Never deprive a goat of water. One must either have an ample field or pasture for the goat(s) to browse in addition to supplementing the diet with nutrients not readily available such as hay and alfalfa.


goat3

(taken from:http://www.wisegeek.org/do-goats-make-good-pets.htm)

Do Goats Make Good Pets?

Goats are herd animals, which means that you should plan on keeping at least two if you want them as pets. In addition, they need a roomy space, and do not thrive in restricted living conditions. Because of their natural curiosity, the space also needs to be rich with stimuli, and you should be prepared to put together a varied and interesting diet for the goats to keep them out of trouble. Like other livestock kept as pets, you may experience difficulties finding someone to care for your goats if you go on a trip, let alone tracking down a veterinarian to provide routine care, if you live in a non-rural area. In addition, some municipalities consider these animals to be livestock, and you may not even legally be allowed to keep them in a residential area.

Although they are hardy and adventurous, goats are not self-sufficient. They require daily attention including food, play, and water. If you are keeping them as milk producing animals in addition to pets, they will need to be milked one to two times a day to prevent mastitis, a painful infection of the udders. Goats can also get aggressive if they are bored or sense that you are afraid, which can result in a painful butting. Billy goats, in particular, can be obnoxious if unaltered, and both billies and nannies can emit strong hormonal odors.

On the other hand, goats are loving, affectionate, loyal animals, and many people deeply enjoy keeping them as pets. For people with more limited space, pygmy goats might be an excellent consideration, as they do not get nearly as large as some breeds, such as Swiss Alpines and Nubians. The native intelligent and intensely curious animals are fun to have around, if you are willing to put in the work.


(Taken from: http://exoticpets.about.com/cs/goats/a/goatsaspets.htm)

More on Goats as Pets: 

You should also find a veterinarian who will treat your goats. They are susceptible to a number of infectious and chronic diseases. Vaccinations and routine preventative treatment for worms and other parasites are necessary and you should consult a vet for what is required in your area. It is a good idea to review some of the common problems. Health Topics is an collection of articles from the National Pygmy Goat Association about common health concerns of pygmy goats.
Be sure your goats are obtained from a conscientious breeder that practices good preventative medicine. If possible it is always best to visit the breeder so you can see in what sort of conditions their goats are kept.

Most importantly, you will want to think about whether you can meet the needs of a goat and whether goats will meet your expectations as a pet a goat before committing to goats as pets.


goat2

(Taken from: http://fiascofarm.com/goats/getting-your-goat.htm#taming)

Goats for Pets: Friendly Goats vs. “Taming” “Wild” Goats:

If you want goats for pets, and you want to approach and touch these goats, you need to make sure the goats are approachable and touchable BEFORE you get them. Do not get goats “wild” thinking you will “tame” them later; it can be next to impossible to “tame” a “wild” goat, though, it is not totally impossible in some cases.

There is no simple way to “tame” a goat. To win the goat over will take a lot of patience, caring, love and food treats such as corn chips or raisins. Try not to chase the goat, because, being prey animals, this will only make them more scared of you. Let them get used to their new home first. Once used to their new home, you might try taking advantage of their natural curiosity and just sit there, in a non-threatening peaceful fashion and let them approach you. If, and when, they do approach you, offer a corn chip. Go slowly and patiently and don’t push the issue to fast. The younger the goat is, the easier it will be to convince them that you are their friend, but a young age is no guarantee they will be tamable. The older they are, the more patience you will need.

You can skip a lot of frustration by starting with friendly goats that are already used to people to begin with.


(Taken from: http://www.buzzle.com/articles/raising-goats-as-pets.html)

Choosing the Goat Type

There are several types of goat breeds, for you to choose from. Each breed has its own advantages and it depends on personal choice, which breed of goat to get. Just make sure you follow the above-mentioned pointers while choosing them, such as friendly, debudded, doe-wether combination, etc. There are the Nubians (least naturally healthy and proud temperament), Oberhaslis, LaManchas (wonderful temperament), pygmy goats (docile, small and faithful companions), Nigerian dwarf goat, etc.

Raising goats as pets and raising goats for profit are two different things. While getting goats as pets, one can buy the dairy goats, however, it’s not necessary to milk them. Moreover, as with any other pet, goats also need to have a physical examination, carried out by a veterinarian, once a year and need to be vaccinated. Watch out for attacks by stray dogs and other animals, as goats are fairly vulnerable to attacks. Goats will supply you with lovely milk, however, don’t get a goat for the sole purpose of getting free milk. Get them if you love them and want to take care of them and the milk supplies, cleared plantation, etc. will all be additional benefits you receive, for taking care of these endearing animals


goat1

(Taken from: http://www.fda.gov/AnimalVeterinary/NewsEvents/FDAVeterinarianNewsletter/ucm133649.htm)

Billies or Nannies?

Another issue to consider when deciding to buy a goat is gender. Uncastrated male goats produce a strong, pungent and, to most people, unpleasant odor. Male goats, or bucks, also tend to be aggressive. Both of these less-than-desirable attributes are intensified during the breeding season, which for most goats runs from September to December or January. Buck goats can be castrated as early as 7 days old, which generally mitigates both these problems. Female goats, called does, do not have a noticeable odor, unless they are kept in unclean conditions. Generally speaking, does are even-tempered and affectionate when hand raised. However, I must again point out that goats are highly individual in their personalities. Female goats need only be bred if their milk is desired.

Whether you choose a male or female goat, it should be dehorned. Some strains of goats are born without horns, or polled. Horn buds appear a few days after birth in goats that are not polled. The easiest and most humane time to remove horns is during the first two-weeks of life. However, goats can be dehorned as adults. At any time, a veterinarian should perform this procedure.


Author’s Notes: Many thanks to Miss Molly for letting me interview her about her goats.. the videos were quite amusing. She has a blog too where she mainly talks about her dogs and occasionally mentions her goats.


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Small Pets: Meet Monarchos

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 Meet Monarchos

How old are you?

Coming up on 2 years old, I was an 8 March 2011 hatchling.

Where did you get your name from?

It took an insanely long time to sort out a unique moniker. Greater than 4,000 choices and some weeks later, I was named after a famous horse. My name is “Monarch” with an “OS” on the end like the word “dose” some seem confused by it. I have many nick names but mainly go by Boj.

How did you come to be with your family?

In searching for a Jardine’s parrot, my human visited two others and finally found a responsible, quality breeder. While taking a few days to ponder, the breeder called my human and said she thought we’d be a perfect match. She also stated that I was a special bird, the sweetest, bravest and most curious parrot she’d seen in a long time. Not just any home would do, I was the chosen one and would have been kept outside of the breeding program if not for the loathing of her other companion bird. My breeder felt that my human’s experience in animal behavior and training would be perfect. The rest is a happy ending!

What tricks do you know (if any)?

I wave, stretch my wings out, turn around, shake hands, run through tunnels, turn my head sideways like a dog, give kisses, cuddles, I have a full flight recall, fly to specified locations, I retrieve objects, target trained, talk on cue… I’ve learned to lie quietly with my feet open for nail trimming. I allow my human to flip me around, lightly toss me into the air on my back, there is no place she can’t touch and she really likes to get under my wings! I’m learning to do a somersault tail over head and to roll over sideways. I love learning!

Are you the first feathered family member in the house?

My human has experience with birds, from budgies to amazons and beyond. She even hand fed/reared cockatiels previously to help with another project.

Do you share your house with any furry/feathered/finned siblings?

I have a giant husky brother named Foltaire. About 30 minutes away, I have two larger siblings I see them sometimes, they’re horses. I like to visit, I even touched noses with one!

What type of parrot are you and where does your species of parrot come from?

I’m a Jardine’s parrot from the Poicephalus family which are African species. My species in particular tends to be jolly, less of a “one person” bird and not as loud as others. We also don’t experience mood swings on the same level that other species do. Jardine’s are said to be honest birds…that means, no sneak biting! As for me, I don’t bite at all, I never learned that I could punish people with my beak. It’s taken careful conditioning but has worked wonders.

Is there anyone scared of meeting you because they are afraid of birds?

Initially some are timid but I adore meeting new people and I love to give cheek kisses. I wave and lean forward, stretching toward them, they all relent. I’ve won a huge number of people over with my sweet disposition. Including some who were not keen on birds, they too have come to adore me.

What information would you like to share with people thinking of owning/adopting parrots?

You have to like work and cleaning, your best friend will be a vacuum. You must also like prepping vast varieties of fresh foods, rotating toys, providing foraging, enrichment and ample time out, being social with your feathery friend and ensuring the mental and physical aspects are handled. Lots of problems arise when birds spend too much time in a boring cage.

Anything else you would like to add?

Bird IS the word. (^_^)

You can find him on his facebook page – https://www.facebook.com/MrMonarchos


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About Jardine’s Parrots:
(Taken from:http://www.parrotchronicles.com/species/jardines.htm)

Country of origin: The Jardine’s (black-wing) originates in southern Cameroon, northern Angola and northern Kenya. The greater Jardine’s can be found in northern Tanzania and southern Kenya, and the lesser Jardine’s comes from Liberia and Cameroon.

Size: Small but stockily built with short square tail. The lesser Jardine’s is the smallest at 10 inches long and up to 230 grams. The slightly larger black-wing Jardine’s measures 11 inches and weighs up to 280 grams. The greater Jardine’s also measures 11 inches long but weighs the most, up to 310 grams, or three-quarters of a pound.

Personality: Among the most playful and energetic, with a penchant for “playing dead” like the caique. Generally steady temperament–sometimes described as an Amazon without the mood swings–but can be nippy. Accepting of strangers. Pleasant voice makes it a good bird for apartment dwellers.

Average lifespan: 30-50 years.

Behavior/Health Concerns:
(Taken from:http://www.birdchannel.com/bird-species/profiles/jardines-parrot-2.aspx)
Jardine’s parrots love to talk, and its mimicking ability is close to an African grey’s. They have a pleasant voice, and are gifted whistlers. Jardine’s parrots are known for staying motionless, but get rowdy during playtime. They also go through a nipping stage when they are young, but with proper handling and training, owners can minimize the “teething” as their birds mature. A Jardine’s parrot’s beak can become overgrown, so provide plenty of wood and other hard toys to chew on. Poicephalus parrots thrive on a pellet-based diet along with fresh fruits, vegetables and greens.

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Diet / Feeding:
(Taken from: http://www.avianweb.com/jardinesparrots.html)

Natural Habitat

The Red-fronted Parrots feed on a variety of seeds, insects, flowers and fruits, including the fruits of the oil palm, Elaeis guineensis.

They usually feed in flocks, including joining larger feeding flocks; and, in some areas, they may travel up to 60 km (37 miles) each day to reach their favored feeding sites.

Pairs or small groups of them are usually seen flying swiftly between their night-time roosts and feeding grounds, being easily detected by their noisy contact calls. They typically feed quietly in the upper canopy of trees, where they are well camouflaged.

Captive Diet

They should be provided with a varied diet, including a base diet such as Harrisons, LaFever, Zupreem or Roudybush supplemented with nuts, fresh veggies and fruits every day.

Their beaks tend to grow really fast and may need to be trimmed professionally. However, providing a couple of almonds a day will help keep the beaks trimmed


Author’s Note: Many thanks to Mister Monarchos for letting me do the interview, his facebook page is here. I had never heard of a Jardine’s parrot before so it was a great learning experience for me.. I was amazed to find they live for 30-50 years.. wow. 


This post is part of a blog hop.

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Please click the below image for more small pet pages. =^..^=

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Small Pets: Meet Murtle the Turtle

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Meet Murtle the Turtle

How old are you?

I  am 3 years of age.

Where did your name come from?

Mom had heard the name “Murtle” somewhere on TV. She thought it was a cute name, and when she was naming me, she thought it would be perfect.

What kind of turtle are you?

I am a Cumberland Slider Water Turtle.

Do you have any siblings that you share a tank with or the house with?

I do not share my tank with anyone, but I do share my house with a few others. There are four kitties: Lester, Cruizer, Hazel, and Zeke. There is a doggie: Buddy. And in another tank, there are 2 regular fish, and a bottom feeder fish called a picasimus.

What is a typical day like for you?

I wake up, and I get onto my big rock and sunbathe. I swim around my tank most of the time, then go back to sunbathing. I get fed at night time, and then sleep in the water with my nose sticking out so I can breathe.

Where do you go when your tank is cleaned?

I have a large portable tub filled with water that I can swim in as my tank is being cleaned.

Do you get to venture out of your tank (go outside)?

I do not venture out of my tank. I usually need a place with lots of water to swim around in. I can walk on land, but it is difficult for me to do so.

What advice do you have for someone looking to get a turtle?

I suggest saving one from a pet store, as I was. Never save one from the wild, they need to live on their own, as they also might carry a disease. If you pick a water turtle, be sure to have a very large tank, so they have enough room to swim around. Do not fill the tank up all the way, and be sure to have a sunbathing lamp and a rock for them to get up on. Feed them water turtle food, which should also be at the pet store. They like other things like lettuce and cucumber, just be sure not to overfeed them with it!

Anything else you would like to share?

If you have a turtle, be sure to give them lots of love and care! They are very fun animals to have.


Info on Cumberland Slider Water Turtles

(taken from : http://www.theturtlesource.com/i.asp?id=100200355)

Cumberland Sliders are a rare cousin of the Red Eared Slider, found only in the upper Cumberland and Tennessee rivers in Virginia, Kentucky and Northern Alabama. Lighter and more yellow in color than most Red Eared Sliders, and lacking the“red ear”Cumberland Sliders are similar in husbandry requirements, and in active personalities. Their care and description are essentially the same as the Red Eared Slider and follows:

The most common turtle available the world over, Red Eared Sliders make excellent starter turtles, and adults will brighten up outdoor ponds in nearly all US temperature zones. They do well in tanks, water and land setups, and when kept with most other species.

They bask frequently, and will even pile on top of each other for the best sunning position. In community set ups, it’s often the red ears example that quickens other species taming down. Red ears are omnivorous, eating pellets, most greens, insects, fish, mollusks etc.

Feeding your slider:

(taken form: http://www.reptilecity.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=reptiles&Product_Code=CS2&Category_Code=TURTLES)

Your slider will require a special diet in order to insure proper health. There are a number of commercially available diets, which are made specifically for aquatic turtles, and baby aquatic turtles. The slider is omnivorous and eats a varied diet. It is important when feeding your turtle to carefully move them into a separate feeding container, which also contains water (halfway as deep as your turtle is tall). This allows your turtle to skim and feed off of the surface of the water, as it has evolved to do. It is important to do so in a separate container, to keep the habitat from becoming too acidic. There are a number of theories about how much a turtle should eat. Obesity can become a problem with all reptiles, and likewise can be fatal with all reptiles. If not fed a premixed diet, meats should make up no more than 35-45% of its diet. A turtle is full when it slows down its feeding response. Some experts claim that a turtle should be allowed to eat for only 10 minutes, while others say 1 hour. This theory is a broad guideline, as each specimen is different. Some animals eat faster than others. Monitoring the rate at which the turtle is consuming the food is a safer and more practical approach to judging when it has received enough. While commercial turtle foods are the best, and most convenient, some owners prefer to give their turtles more fresh ingredients to comprise their diets. It is important to properly educate yourself in your turtle’s dietary needs before attempting to regulate their captive diet. Meats and staple protein sources should only be given every 2-3 days. Never feed your turtle raw or uncooked chicken, as this can cause salmonella contamination. Shrimp and krill are packaged for commercially available turtle foods and treats. Various feeder worms, fish, greens, vegetables, and fruits are suitable. Making greens available daily will also provide for healthy turtle habits between protein feedings. Dandelion, romaine lettuce, collard greens, mustard greens, and turnip greens are normally enjoyed by most aquatic turtles.

With proper nutrition aquatic turtles should seldom need supplements. During development, however, aquatic turtle may develop calcium deficiencies. If not prevented this can lead to soft shells, other deformities, and even death. Calcium supplements specifically formulated for the needs of reptiles are available low prices. To administer these supplements, which are in powder form, simply dust the food source in the calcium powder. Do this once to twice a week, and provide the turtle with a secondary calcium source. Turtle will readily chew on cuddle bones, which also are available in most pet retailers. On very rare occasions your turtle may need additional supplement to help it-overcome illness or deficiency. Just as with any other pet, having a good relation with a veterinarian, specializing in herpofauna medicine is advantageous. Not only can a veterinarian assist with medical concerns, but they can also provide answers to questions that you may have regarding captive turtle care.

Turtle Care:

(taken from: http://www.austinsturtlepage.com/Care/care.htm)

Turtles are ectothermic, what used to be called “cold blooded”. This means that they do not generate their own body heat. They rely on the sun to get warm and the water to cool down. You will need to ensure that their air temps, basking temps and water temps are within the acceptable guidelines. This will not only ensure their health, but will give them a more natural feeling about their habitat and allow them to act naturally.

         Turtles are not like dogs and cats – they do NOT enjoy going for walks and being handled. It is key to remember this as some keepers allow their turtles to walk around on their floors, they take them outside for walks or they hold them and carry them around and some even take them to the pet stores as they would their dog. This is not something your turtle will enjoy, nor is it good for them. This causes unnecessary stress and could will eventually lead to health problems. Leave them in their habitat and watch them swim, eat, bask and move about in their home which you have provided. They will be much happier and so will you.

I also found a great website that talks more about turtles, their habitat and food.

http://www.austinsturtlepage.com/Care/care.htm

Also there are restrictions in certain states for having turtle as far as size, type, etc. You may want to check with friends, family or online depending on where you live.

There is a difference between a cumberland slider and a red eared slider.

Posted Image

Above is a cumberland slider and below a red eared slider

Other turtle blogs:

http://2punkdogs.blogspot.com/

http://kamekroten.wordpress.com/


Author’s Thanks: Many thanks to  Murtle for letting me do the interview, check out Murtle on facebook.


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