Tortoises are unique and interesting animals that have been kept as pets since at least the days of ancient Egypt and probably far earlier. They are central to many cultures’ stories and legends, from the Hindu tortoise that holds the Earth on its back to the Chinese symbol of wisdom and longevity.
Many people want to keep tortoises as pets for many reasons. A common reason is a belief that they are easy to care for. For many people, this is true. Depending on where you live and what species you are keeping, care may be as simple as putting them in a walled garden and otherwise leaving them alone.
Most people, however, do not have this luxury. For these people, we offer the following several pages to introduce them to tortoises as animals and as pets.