My daughter has always been obsessed with reptiles. This is her at 1 (she’s 4 now), after randomly finding a turtle in our yard and coming to show me.

Thanks for assuming that, I don't have kids nor never raised them. Just because I don't agree with you, doesn't mean I've never been around a damn kid.

I did not say you were clueless.

it's just a box turtle

This is where you missed the point. It doesn't matter that the animal your kid picked up that time was harmless. You opened up the possibility of her continuing this behavior by encouraging it, and down the road can lead to danger. Don't get me wrong, it's great you're teaching them animal appreciation, especially for misunderstood animals. But teach it from afar. The kid will greatly lessen the possibility of hurting or being hurt by an animal if they don't touch it. This is exactly why I said "what if it's dead, sick, or injured?", which you just proved by saying that your kid is a bigger danger to the animal than vice versa. Take it from someone with firsthand experience, several times over. Don't be so aggressive. Are you like this with other parents giving advice you don't like?

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