What a week. So, my in-laws rescued a turtle from their dog last week. Thus, we now have a pet. I figured, at least it won’t tear up my house and my son would be thrilled, so okay. Then starts the endless trips to the pet store.

We get a starter kit, told it has everything we need for our turtle. It had lamps and a filter, but no bulbs, and we had to get our own tank and basking area. Trip two, we get a tank with lid and bulbs. (you are supposes to get one UVA and one UVB bulb apparently). Well, the UVB bulb was too long for the lamps that came in the starter kit. So, we go back. Trip three. Spend about a half hour trying to find a bulb that  has UVB light. Pick out a basking dock that attached with suction cups and get some more food. Told which bulb to buy and go home. The dock doesn’t have the suction cups in the box, so we stay up past midnight trying to figure out a way to attach it to the tank. Oh, and we start to notice that the filter isn’t really working that well. Let’s say we’re totally loving the starter kit at this point. So, we give it a couple of days and drive back down to the pet store. Trip four. Return the starter kit and dock. Get a new filter with basking area and a new thermometer to replace the one that came in starter kit. Get home only to realize we left one of the bulbs in the lamp we returned. Call back so they will hold it. While looking at the box for the bulb, realize the one they sold us that was supposed to be UVB light is actually UVA light. Meaning, we had two UVA bulbs and no UVB bulbs. Urgh! Go back to petstore next day, trip five. Get light bulb (didn’t return it. Only five bucks and figure I will have replacement when other bulb goes out).  Get some replacement cartridges for filter to keep on hand and order the UVB bulb we need online (they didn’t have it in the store).

So all in all, we had five trips to the petstore. Two trips to other store to get things petstore didn’t have. One online order for lightbulb neither store had, and three items that had to be returned. Wow, and I thought a pet turtle would be simple. Hopefully this will end the pet store trips for awhile and we can just enjoy the turtle and save the gas and time. Here’s to hoping.

-A.D. McLain

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