Looking for some advice and maybe ideas


New Member
Sep 10, 2019
Location (City and/or State)
So I am currently doing an internship at a rehab center in ohio and I have to do a project with one of the permanent education animals. My idea was to give the one small box turtle substrate that would make her have to use his back legs more often but at the same time wont be to hard for her to get around in. So I was just seeing if anyone would have any good ideas on potential substrate for a small box turtle and I mean small box turtle (I will provide a pic). I was currently thinking either repto bark or coconut shavings(looking for 3 options to try), but please give me other good ideas. And if anyone might have an cool enrichment ideas for her as well that would be much appreciated.

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Yvonne G

Old Timer
TFO Admin
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Jan 23, 2008
Location (City and/or State)
Clovis, CA
your little box turtle is starting to grow a deformed shell. Make sure it's getting the proper UVB, calcium, diet and humidity.

I use a 50/50 combination of clean potting soil/small grade orchid bark. Because they like to dig and bury themselves to feel safe, this combination has worked well for me.

I feed my baby box turtles chopped up small greens and veggies, with a tiny bit of fruit, with the juice from a can of cat food mixed in. After a month or so they are used to eating the greens and I can cut back on the cat food juice. I think it looks like your little baby is getting too much animal protein. What is it's diet? I'm assuming it was rescued from a dog?


Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Jul 20, 2016
Location (City and/or State)
Experimental substrates for a special needs turtle could include ground coco coir, forest detritus, organic potting soil with no additives like perlite, etc., small sized fir bark (orchid bark or reptibark), sphagnum moss, peat moss, aged cypress bark or any combination of the previously listed. For enrichment, I like to offer melons with the rind included, cut bananas with the peel and corn on the cob.