So you are planning to serve watermelon to your pet turtle and don’t know if it is safe for them to eat it.
The first question in your head when you first think of feeding your pet turtle watermelon must be, can turtles eat watermelon?
Yes, turtles can eat watermelon. They are delicious for turtles when served in small quantities, and it is entirely safe for turtles and provides different health benefits to them.
You can feed them other fruits in limited amounts as your pet can get nutrients from them. But, before serving any food item to them, you need to know it is safe for turtles to eat.
In this article, you will learn everything you should know before feeding watermelon to your pet turtle.
Can Turtles Eat Watermelon?
Watermelon will not harm your pet, so you can feed it to them without considering their safety. As most turtles are omnivorous, feeding them watermelon is delicate, but you need to provide a balanced diet to your pet turtle. And not only watermelon, but you can also provide them with other fruits like apples, pineapples, bananas, etc.
Along with good taste, it is a very healthy and nutritious food you can offer to your pet turtle. Still, if you feed your turtle with excess watermelon, there is a high possibility that your pet can face digestive disorders and bloating, which can be very painful to that little creature. Its high sugar content can lead to obesity and heart disorders. So, feeding them a minimal amount of watermelon is recommended.
The nutrients in watermelon are calcium, Phosphorus, Magnesium, Potassium, Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Vitamin B6, Carbohydrates, Sugar, Fiber, and Calories.
Watermelon can be good and bad simultaneously, but if you can successfully manage their diet’s phosphorous and calcium ratio, you can feed it to your turtle safely. So, now let’s understand how often you can give your turtle watermelon.
How Often Can Turtles Eat watermelon?
You can feed watermelon once or twice to your pet turtle. When feeding your pet turtle watermelon, the most important thing you need to know is how often the turtle can eat it without any problem. Providing watermelon in moderation will not only fulfill the turtle’s body’s requirement of vitamin A but won’t cause any rise in sugar levels or issues related to their digestive system.
According to some studies, it is recommended that their diet must comprise a certain amount of plant-based food like vegetables and flowers. Again fruits should only comprise 10% to 15% of their diet, so you should not feed them watermelon daily.
Watermelon contains high sugar, has an unsuitable ratio of phosphorus to calcium, and has a good chance of obesity. These are the reasons why you should only feed them watermelons occasionally.
Even though watermelon doesn’t have a good ratio of phosphorous to calcium, it still contains many vitamins that are very beneficial to the body, and that’s why you should not rule out watermelon entirely from their diet. And if you are providing your pet turtle with a balanced diet, then feeding them a little watermelon every week won’t be a bad idea.
5 Benefits of Feeding Watermelon To Turtles
Watermelon has a good amount of benefits associated with it. So, feeding it to your pet turtle can benefit their health. Fruits, including watermelon, are often liked by turtles over vegetables. Here is a list of the benefits of feeding watermelon to turtles.
1: Water is Good for Hydration
Watermelon has almost 90% water content. Turtles enjoy eating it as it is easy to swallow compared to other food items provided to them. Watermelon is a very refreshing fruit that helps turtles to keep hydrated. It helps turtles maintain the water level in their body, which eventually helps to keep their skin moist.
2: Vitamin C Boosts the Shell
Watermelon contains a good amount of vitamin C, and it is well known to everyone that it plays an essential role in maintaining and developing bones. Since the entire body of a turtle is covered with a shell (made of bones), they require vitamin C. Some other food items you can feed your turtle for vitamin C are tomatoes, oranges, pineapples, etc.
3: Vitamin A is for Overall Health
Watermelon is an excellent source of vitamin A, and your pet turtles need this vitamin. It is an essential vitamin that turtles require to keep them healthy. Vitamin A helps turtles in developing their healthy skin and mucous membranes. With the lack of vitamin A, they can suffer from Hypovitaminosis A, which majorly affects the normal functioning of their skin and a few vital organs. Watermelon is required to prevent vitamin A deficiency.
4: Fiber Works for Digestion
The rind of the watermelon is rich in fiber which helps turtles with constipation. You should consider feeding watermelon rind for easy digestion if they face any digestion-related issues.
5: Serve to Be a Treat
If you feel like treating your pet turtle, consider providing watermelon to them, as it is one of their favorite treats. Watermelon has 90% water content which makes it easy for them to swallow it. If you observe that your turtle is not eating correctly, you must try giving watermelon as a treat to them, and it works as it persuades them to normalize their eating habit.
How to Feed Watermelons to Turtles?
When you are serving watermelon to your pet turtle, there is a way how you should feed it to them. You need to be very careful with everything and need to observe the slightest change in their body and their behavior as well.
If you see anything wrong with them, you should immediately take them to the vet without any second thought and get them checked. Here is a guide to how to feed watermelon to turtles.
Chop the Watermelon Finely
When providing watermelon to your turtle, cut it into small pieces so your pet can chew it easily without choking. This way, turtles will enjoy eating watermelon.
Remove the Seeds
Ensure to remove the seeds before feeding watermelon to turtles. It would help if you obliterated the seeds. Feeding them watermelons without removing their seeds can lead to choking and death.
Prefer Feeding the Red Part
Feed your turtle the red part of the watermelon and not the green outer layer. The green outer layer is tough to chew and digest and can cause your turtle to choke.
Mix with Other Fruits
As watermelon is sweet and overeating may affect the turtles’ health adversely, you can mix it with other fruits. You can also prefer giving homemade watermelon juice to your turtle.
Turtles are omnivores so they can eat both animal-based and plant-based foods. Baby turtles need more protein and rely on animal-based foods, but adults can eat both. Now you know the answer to the question, can turtles eat watermelon? Yes, they can eat watermelon; not only can they eat it, but it is imposing for them.
But there are a few things to remember, and you should only feed them watermelon occasionally. Once or twice a week is more than enough for them. Watermelon is rich in vitamin A, vitamin C, fiber, and a considerable amount of water. All of these are very beneficial for turtles. But it also contains sugar, and too much feeding watermelons to your pet can cause an increase in sugar levels, heart-related issues, and obesity.
So, to keep your pet healthy, avoid feeding too much watermelon, check their health, and immediately visit your vet if you observe anything wrong with their behavior.
Other Preferred Foods for Reptiles
Can baby turtles eat watermelon?
Yes, baby turtles can eat watermelon, but they need to consume more animal-based food than plant-based foods as they need more protein than adult ones, compared to fruits and vegetables.
Can turtles eat watermelon skin?
No, it would help if you did not risk feeding the hard green part to your pet turtle, as it can choke them and be life-threatening.
Can turtles eat watermelon seed?
No, they can not eat watermelon seeds; you must remove them altogether before feeding them. As watermelons contain a lot of sources, and they can choke your turtle and which can be deadly.