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Feeding Schedule, Dieting

It is really quite simple: more calories in than are used, and
your turtle gets too fat. No magic there. Since captive turtles
don't have to work much for their food, and don't get much
exercise, and food magically appears and in abundance, obesity in
captive turtles (and most other pets) is an ever-looming threat,
and for many an unhealthy reality.

If your turtle is too fat, he will get heart disease, kidney
disease, and and pretty much any disease that obese people get,
and he has a chance of dying much earlier than his natural lifespan
would suggest.

The only way to get a fat turtle slim is:

* provide more exercise
* feed less and lower calorie food

More exercise
-------------

* Provide the largest tank possible.
* Make the turtle work for its food. If you hand feed, let him swim after your
  hand before you give the food. 
* Put some feeder goldfish in the tank for your turtle to chase. (However, feeders
  are now considered a low-quality food.)
* If your turtle is a land turtle or a semi-aquatic, let him out to play on
  the grass, or even in your room. If your turtle knows you well, it will
  probably come running after you.

Feed less and lower calorie food
--------------------------------

* Commercial turtle foods are high in protein and fat. Use canned commercial turtle
  food (ZooMed) or just occasionally.
* Chicken and beef are much higher in fat than feeder goldfish and earthworms
* Mealworms and giant mealworms are high in fat

The following is a suggested diet plan, which will slowly restore your
turtle to the desirable shape:

    Monday: Life food like earthworms, redworms, or snails.

    Tuesday: Greens (Butter lettuce, braising greens) dropped into tank. Not all
             turtles like all greens, and not all will eat a lot. Also, a hungry
             turtle is more likely to eat his/her veggies. 
             Offer fruit, too. Many water turtles like fruit, too.

    Wedensday: -- Greens (Butter lettuce, braising greens) dropped into tank. Not all
             turtles like all greens, and not all will eat a lot. Also, a hungry
             turtle is more likely to eat his/her veggies. 
             Offer fruit, too. Many water turtles like fruit, too.

    Thursday: Pellets, Dry Food, Commercial turtle food. Don't overfeed. The turtle
              will eat until it cracks at the seams. However, in the wild they don't
              get to do that too often. Turtles are browsers, mostly. Also, all dry
              food slightly expands as it takes on water/digestive juices. This can
              give your turtle a tummy ache, if it eats too much.

    Friday: -- Greens (Butter lettuce, braising greens) dropped into tank. Not all
             turtles like all greens, and not all will eat a lot. Also, a hungry
             turtle is more likely to eat his/her veggies. 
             Offer fruit, too. Many water turtles like fruit, too.

    Saturday: Greens (Butter lettuce, braising greens) dropped into tank. Not all
             turtles like all greens, and not all will eat a lot. Also, a hungry
             turtle is more likely to eat his/her veggies. 
             Offer fruit, too. Many water turtles like fruit, too.

    Sunday: -- Greens (Butter lettuce, braising greens) dropped into tank. Not all
             turtles like all greens, and not all will eat a lot. Also, a hungry
             turtle is more likely to eat his/her veggies. 
             Offer fruit, too. Many water turtles like fruit, too.


The following is a suggested meal plan after your turtle has slimmed down;
adjust it according to your turtle's needs:

    Monday: Life food like earthworms, redworms, or snails.

    Tuesday: Greens (Butter lettuce, braising greens) dropped into tank. Not all
             turtles like all greens, and not all will eat a lot. Also, a hungry
             turtle is more likely to eat his/her veggies. 
             Offer fruit, too. Many water turtles like fruit, too.

    Wedensday: -- Greens (Butter lettuce, braising greens) dropped into tank. Not all
             turtles like all greens, and not all will eat a lot. Also, a hungry
             turtle is more likely to eat his/her veggies. 
             Offer fruit, too. Many water turtles like fruit, too.

    Thursday: Pellets, Dry Food, Commercial turtle food. Don't overfeed. The turtle
              will eat until it cracks at the seams. However, in the wild they don't
              get to do that too often. Turtles are browsers, mostly. Also, all dry
              food slightly expands as it takes on water/digestive juices. This can
              give your turtle a tummy ache, if it eats too much.

    Friday: -- Greens (Butter lettuce, braising greens) dropped into tank. Not all
             turtles like all greens, and not all will eat a lot. Also, a hungry
             turtle is more likely to eat his/her veggies. 
             Offer fruit, too. Many water turtles like fruit, too.

    Saturday: Life food or dry food.

    Sunday: Greens (Butter lettuce, braising greens) dropped into tank. Not all
             turtles like all greens, and not all will eat a lot. Also, a hungry
             turtle is more likely to eat his/her veggies. 
             Offer fruit, too. Many water turtles like fruit, too.

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