For the record: my daughter is 8 years older than me, and also a red eared slider turtle.
Turtles, like human children, are supposed to eat their greens to stay healthy. Tippy, also like human children, is a huge brat and hates eating her greens. She goes through phases. When I first adopted her from a family that, while having good intentions, neglected her and her nutritional health, she wouldn’t eat anything but ReptoMin pellets. According to Tippy’s vet, her diet should only be 50% ReptoMin pellets. First, I got her to eat freeze-dried river shrimp with her pellets. THEN I got her to eat zucchini bits with her pellets, but she stopped wanting to eat the dry shrimp. THEN I gave her a cooked cocktail shrimp as a treat and she stopped wanting to eat anything but shrimps!
This is a problem because I had just gotten Tippy’s shell from a dusty sickly stuck-shed brown to a beautiful shiny black! It only took a few months for Tippy’s picky eating to result in some dry patches on her shell so I knew I had to do something. I took Tippy to her annual vet exam and asked for some advice. (NOTE: Tippy was the coolest turtle in school in her dinosaur sweater from her Auntie Vicki! <3)
The vet suggested that I chop up Tippy’s veggies and hide it in some shrimpy jello. Which sounds as disgusting as it SO. WAS. I’m a vegetarian and I’ve never made jello before despite the fact that I’m a shitty vegetarian who totally forgets to not eat gelatin so I looked up a recipe to make sure I didn’t fuck it up too much. I got the general idea from this recipe posted on redearslider.com’s Turtle Talk! forum . Mine is a lot simpler though, as I had not thought about adding anything other than greens and shrimp to the gelatin. Next time I do this, I will follow their recipe a bit more and include calcium powder and pellets! So here is my very SIMPLE turtle jello recipe:
Simple Turtle Jello
– Knox gelatine (1 packet)
– Red leaf lettuce (approx. 4 leaves)
– Precooked cocktail shrimp (2 large)
– Boiling water (1/2 cup)
– Ice cube tray
– Food processor or blender or willingness to finely chop lettuce and shrimp together
1) Clean and roughly chop the lettuce and shrimp
2) Put it all in a food processor and blend!
3) Mix the pureed green/shrimp mixture with one packet of the gelatin and add 1/2 cup of boiling water.
4) Spoon the liquid into an ice cube tray! (Bacardi Bat ice cube tray not required, but HIGHLY recommended)
5) Refrigerate for 2 – 3 hours!
1) I cannot EXPRESS to you how nasty this smelled. Again, I am not a meat-eater so I am not really into fishy smells. But I am not one of those vegs who tries to feed their pet veg because I am not a doofus SO I GRINNED AND BARED (BEARED?) IT.
2) I actually think I could have used a higher ratio of gelatin/water to puree because the cubes did not hold their shape very well (see above)
3) I tried shoving some ReptoMin into the cubes because I was afraid that the cubes were too greens heavy and I needed to make sure that Tippy’s nose said FISH and not LETTUCE. This would have been a lot easier had I done it BEFORE refrigerating like the forum suggested but OH WELL
4) Tippy LOVED IT. When I first walked up to her she was like go away mom I’m friggin sun bathing
But then I wafted a piece of the jello towards her and she (slowly) jumped into the water and NOMMED the HELL out of it
Based on her reaction I give this recipe TEN TIPPYS OUT OF TEN PLUS ONE SHRIMPIE