Getting the correct type and amount of vitamin & supplements for your red eared slider is essential if you want your turtle to stay happy and healthy. Even if you give him the very best live food and veggies, and a great place to bask daily, he will still need some supplements to keep him in optimal condition. By getting to know the details about these vitamins and supplements, you can ensure that you are properly educated about giving your turtle the very best care.
The first thing you need to consider when looking for red eared slider vitamin & supplements is calcium. Calcium is what keeps your slider’s shell hard and healthy, so obviously it’s very important. A calcium deficiency can result in your turtle’s shell becoming soft (i.e. metabolic bone disease), which is very hard to cure. Sliders can get a lot of their calcium from eating live fish and other live food, but they still need a calcium supplement sprinkled on their food once or twice a week.
The next vitamin & supplements component that you are looking for your red eared slider is vitamin D3. Vitamin D3 is another nutrient that can be found in live fish (in their liver oils), but it is also manufactured through natural processes when the turtle basks. Regardless, you should also give your slider a D3 supplement. A D3 deficiency will also result in your turtle developing a soft shell, as vitamin D3 is an integral part of calcium absorption in your slider’s intestines. Without it, your turtle cannot properly metabolize calcium and will develop metabolic bone disease, or shell softening.
The good news about red eared slider vitamins & supplements is that they can all be found in one place. While a healthy, natural, balanced diet rich in live food and veggies goes a long way, a reptile multivitamin can supplement that diet with calcium and vitamin D3. A lot of research has been done on these popular pets and we know how to take care of them. Regardless, always make sure to check for calcium and vitamin D3 before buying a reptile multivitamin for your slider.
Even if you have the very best basking area and all-natural diet for your turtle, you should still give him red eared slider vitamins & supplements, just to be safe. No matter what we do, we can never reproduce the slider’s natural habitat 100%, so we have to make sure that they get plenty of supplements so that they’ll be happy and healthy.