As we know, turtles are the most peaceful creatures on the look. They cannot hurt anyone unless you frighten them, where they will try to defend themselves. If they do feel threatened, does it mean they can also feel sad, happy, or bored? Do they have feelings? Well, this is a question asked by so many turtle owners. These creatures remain to be very mysterious up to this day. In this post, we will look at whether turtles do have feelings, as most people assume. This situation is called Anthropomorphism.
So, do turtles have feelings?
Well, there are some feelings that they do experience like pain. They have nociceptors that are responsible for that. They also experience fear and stress. The truth is turtles cannot experience the range of feeling that we humans can. Turtles cannot feel anger, love, or happiness. This is a very debatable topic, and every one comes with his or her theories, which are great, but the truth remains. Turtles cannot experience emotions, as most people think.
Do Turtles Have Emotions? (Happy, Sad, Bored?)
You might have seen turtles fight with other turtles. This is not out of anger or rage. The only thing that matters to a turtle is their survival, and they would do anything. The most obvious reason why they fight is for food and to compete for a mate.
About being bored, turtles do get bored, and it is advised that you make his tank more interesting so that he has more to explore. You should provide him with scopes to kill his boredom. When turtles are bored, they try to keep themselves busy by either navigating the tank or digging, which I understand that they do enjoy so much.
We always say that we should make our turtles happy. Does it mean that they do feel happiness? In reality, turtles do not feel happiness. I think what we mean by turtles being happy is that we should ensure they are satisfied all the time. They don’t get happy as humans do.
This is also the same case with sadness. The part of their brains that is responsible for the processing of sensations does not work the same as in humans. This is the reason turtles cannot feel happy, sad, or love.
Do Turtles Feel Pain?
Pain is the sensation that turtles do feel just like human beings. Turtles will feel pain because they have pain receptors. These pain receptors are responsible for the pain sensation when the turtle is hurt. Their pain receptors are known as nociceptors. The difference is that with turtles when they feel pain, they won’t cry as humans do at times. Their pain is not connected to the tear glands. You will also not hear any sounds, such as sobbing.
This is also debatable because they say turtles produce some sound frequencies that we humans cannot perceive. It is said that their shells are also a living part of his body, and if you tried drilled a hole on the shell, the turtle would feel pain. You should avoid such and also avoid painting your turtle’s shell. The paints may contain harmful chemicals that, when absorbed through the shell could be dangerous. Do not assume that since turtles cannot feel the other sensations like happiness or sadness, they cannot feel pain as well. Always look out for your turtle.
Do Turtles Get Bored?
Here is another question that concerns many. Do turtles get bored? The answer is yes. Turtles do get bored. Most of the time, when they get bored, they will try to find something interesting to do, such as digging and climbing. They will also move around the tank as if looking for something. This is just their way of entertaining themselves.
As the turtle owner, you should ensure that you keep the tank interesting for him so that he does not get bored. For instance, you can make them a maze in their tank or provide rafts and shells. Place plants and sticks that he can climb on and ensure that the substrate you use is soft so he can dig easily without hurting himself.
Do Turtles Get Depressed?
Some research carried long ago showed that turtles do get depressed. Turtles get depressions more often than you can imagine. They do get stressed, and this does affect their normal life. Simple things like a change in the environment will stress out your turtle. This is the reason you will find him hiding most of the time before getting used to it. Their stress is closely related to their fear. Other things that could cause depression in a turtle is an illness, an injury, or even a poor environment.
This research that was carried out by some scientists showed that an injured turtle would heal more quickly if he is not stressed out, and if he is stressed or depressed, his healing takes longer. Do not let your turtle be stressed all the time. Other instances are unavoidable, like change in the environment, but ensure that you don’t change the environment every time. Also, keep your turtle safe. His environment should not have things that may hurt him. The other thing to check on is a proper environment. Ensure that his environment is always clean and with everything that the turtle requires.
Do Turtles Cry?
Since we have seen that turtles do not cry when they are hurt, do they even cry? The answer is yes. Turtles do cry, and they do it so often than we can imagine. The only time when we notice the turtles crying is when the females are laying eggs. This is because this is the time when they are on land. The rest of the time, they are pretty much inside water. These turtles do cry even when they are in the water. They cry for one main reason.
To balance the amount of salt in their body. Since turtles spend most of their time in the water, they have so much salt content inside them. They cannot handle this too much salt. Their kidneys, on the other hand, are not that powerful, so they cannot control the much-accumulated salt content. The tear glands solve this problem near their eyes. They pump out the salt through the tears. Some of the other reasons they cry are to keep the eyes wet when they are on land and to get rid of sand and dust particles in their eyes. Read more why do turtles cry.
Do Turtles Recognize Their Owners?
Turtles are not fast learners, but they do learn. They quickly learn some of the things that help them survive. So, if you provide him with food, he will recognize you. Some of them will even recognize your sound and scent.
Do Turtles Get Attached To Their Owners?
Although these turtles do recognize their owners, and if they left, they will notice a gap, they do not get attached to anything or anyone. If you decided to let your turtle go, that would not be a great deal to him. He will move on with his life and find other means of survival.
Do Pet Turtles Show Affection?
Turtles are not like other pets. Their way of showing affection is very different. They show affection by allowing you to pet him or following you around in the garden. They will not hide when you are around. These are some of the ways that a turtle will show affection to you as the owner.
How To Understand Turtle Behavior?
If you spend more time with your turtle, you will understand him more. You will understand that turtles are shy and get frightened very easily. You will understand some of the things they like to do, such as digging and climbing. You will also learn some of the foods they like to eat. The secret is to spend more time observing the turtle but do not pet him every time.
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