Why Is My Turtle Eating Rocks? (3 Reasons Why + What To Do)

Your turtle’s diet greatly affects the health of the animal, this is true for all animals. If an animal does not eat well then it usually won’t live well, so, if you find that your turtle seems to love eating rocks then you’d understandably be worried

This article is a look into why your turtle seems to love eating rocks

Why is my turtle eating rocks?

You may be giving your pet turtle all the food that it needs but it may still prefer eating rocks, and this will understandably confuse you

Here is why your turtle seems to love eating rocks:


One of the reasons why your pet turtle may love eating rocks may be that the animal is bored.

These reptiles, in the wild, have the option to, and enjoy, exploring their vast environments. Captive turtles have the desire to explore their environment as well

If your pet’s enclosure has become boring and mundane for the reptile then your turtle may start to chew on and eat rocks because it is bored.

What to do:

You can add some excitement to your pet’s life by moving things in its environment around, this should be enough to get some excitement into your pet’s life.

You can also add more decorations to your pet’s enclosure. Wood structures and new plants will make the environment feel different for the turtle.

Taking your pet out of its enclosure, if you can, and letting it roam free around your home will also keep your pet from becoming bored in its enclosure.

Looking for food:

Your pet may also be eating rocks because it is looking for food.

Your pet should be fed according to its size, age, and species. If the animal does not have enough food then it will go out looking for more food

In this case, you’ll notice your pet seeing the rock, picking it up, chewing it, spitting it out, and repeating this cycle.

What to do:

Make sure that you’re adequately feeding your pet, there are various ways to measure how much food to feed your pet.

You could feed your turtle the amount of food that it can eat in 5 minutes, or, you could feed the animal as much food as can fit in its head if the head is hollow.

For a more accurate way to feed you could figure out how much your pet should be eating based on its species, age, and weight and work with this measurement.

Avoid overfeeding the animal, these animals will eat more than they need to if given the opportunity to

Mineral deficiency:

Another of the reasons why your turtle may be eating rocks may be that the animal has a mineral deficiency

A mineral deficiency can happen even if you are feeding the animal the right amount of food, but not the right balance of vitamins and minerals

In this case, then your pet is likely suffering from a calcium deficiency.

What to do:

Remedying this issue is as simple as adding a mineral supplement or more calcium-rich foods to your pet’s diet.

You can sprinkle a calcium powder on top of your pet’s food or you can choose to give your pet a cuttlebone as a source of calcium.

Cuttlebones are generally recommended because your pet will gnaw on the block for as long as it needs to in order to get as much calcium as it needs.

If your pet doesn’t want to chew on the cuttlebone then sprinkling calcium powder on top of your pet’s food will do the trick

The other benefit of cuttlebone is that it helps wear down the turtle’s beak

Your pet turtle will stop trying to eat rocks some time into you adding more calcium to its diet.

The rocks that your pet turtle eats should pass through eventually, even if the rock seems big. Just monitor the animal to make sure that it is pooping and poops out the rock

If you enjoyed this article then you may also be interested in other turtle/tortoise related articles. Here are some articles that you may be interested in: Why Does My Turtle Tank Lose Water? Why Is My Turtle Water Slimy?Why Does My Turtle Tank Water Look Oily?Why Does My Turtle Like The Filter?Why Is My Turtle Tank Growing Algae?Why Is My Turtle Tank Slimy?

Why Is My Turtle Eating Rocks? (3 Reasons Why + What To Do)
Scroll to top