SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - They may seem slow and harmless but pet turtles can be a danger to children.
The Centers for Disease Control says the number of salmonella cases connected to turtles is on the rise.
That's why owning any turtle less than four inches is illegal.
Forest Park's Assistant Education Director Teralyn LaChance, told 22News, "They think it's a toy and then they play with it and put it in their mouth and then it easily contractible, the same thing if you're touching them anytime I handle any of our reptiles I always watch my hands. "
LaChance doesn't recommend any turtles as pets because most can live up to 100 years and grow to more than 200 lbs.
Those who own turtles should put them in their will, because their pet will likely outlive them.
She told 22News the Forest Park Zoo frequently gets calls from people looking to give up their turtles.