Class Pets

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AnnieK
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Location: New Jersey

Class Pets

Post by AnnieK » Mon Feb 03, 2020 12:12 am

Hi - I’m new to this group but I am looking for some help. I am a preschool teacher and we have hermit crabs as our class pets. We currently have 7 crabs named Bob. I’ve had hermit crabs as class pets for about 15 years. My problem is that I have a principal who thinks our crabs are dangerous for the children. Her concerns are:
Children who have seafood allergies (none do)
Can the children get sick from the crabs?
What if they get pinched?
I had them climbing around on a classroom table and she was quite upset. I have explained the children are not permitted to touch the crabs (I don’t want the crabs infected with any germs- 4 year olds are a hotbed of germs) so they will not get pinched.
I told her the crabs are considered pretty much hypoallergenic and do not transmit disease. My request is, where can I find proof to show her it is safe. Thanks in advance. :crabbigsmile:

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CrabbyLover77
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Re: Class Pets

Post by CrabbyLover77 » Mon Feb 03, 2020 12:49 am

AnnieK wrote:Hi - I’m new to this group but I am looking for some help. I am a preschool teacher and we have hermit crabs as our class pets. We currently have 7 crabs named Bob. I’ve had hermit crabs as class pets for about 15 years. My problem is that I have a principal who thinks our crabs are dangerous for the children. Her concerns are:
Children who have seafood allergies (none do)
Can the children get sick from the crabs?
What if they get pinched?
I had them climbing around on a classroom table and she was quite upset. I have explained the children are not permitted to touch the crabs (I don’t want the crabs infected with any germs- 4 year olds are a hotbed of germs) so they will not get pinched.
I told her the crabs are considered pretty much hypoallergenic and do not transmit disease. My request is, where can I find proof to show her it is safe. Thanks in advance. :crabbigsmile:
I'm not sure if this would convince her, but here is some info from The Hermit Crab Patch:

https://www.hermitcrabpatch.com/Hermit- ... -a/151.htm

Many of us buy their food, shells, and other products (my hermies love their food!) They are very knowledgeable.

I'm sorry your principle is giving you a hard time. Hermits don't transmit diseases to us like reptiles and birds can. Hermies always have the possibility of pinching, but if the kids only watch, that eliminates that. Good luck with everything. Hopefully someone else can point you to another resource for proof.

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My Pets: 1 Pomeranian, 1 Russian tortoise, fishes/snails(40 gal freshwater aquarium), and 4 hermit crabs.
"Animals are my friends, and I don’t eat my friends".
-George Bernard Shaw

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Links
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Re: Class Pets

Post by Links » Mon Feb 03, 2020 6:53 am

I’m just glad kids are seeing correct conditions for a hermit. I never knew they needed certain conditions to thrive. I always thought they just needed to be in something so they wouldn’t escape. Then I just knew when we came back from vacation with that little kritter keeper and the crab just sat in the corner, something wasn’t right. Thank goodness I found HCA!


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angelbear
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Re: Class Pets

Post by angelbear » Mon Feb 03, 2020 7:01 am

I thought the same thing when our director came in and said every class must have a pet and handded me one of those little round reptile bowls and two hermit crabs.......yeah. Neesless to say one died before I knew better, Iobbied for a bigger tank got a 5 gallon with a mesh lid. Learned a bit made improvements. He actually survived a hurricane when the building got flooded. He was sitting in the middle of a table abd the table floated. We didnt know it was going to hit us so bad or I would of brought him home. He is now upgraded to a 30 gallon and is huge and doing much better.
Hi, I have been crabbing about 5 to 6 years now, and these guys have put up alot with my growing pains.
Proud mama of 4 shell babies:
1 e, and 3 pp

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Links
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Re: Class Pets

Post by Links » Mon Feb 03, 2020 7:47 am

angelbear wrote:I thought the same thing when our director came in and said every class must have a pet and handded me one of those little round reptile bowls and two hermit crabs.......yeah. Neesless to say one died before I knew better, Iobbied for a bigger tank got a 5 gallon with a mesh lid. Learned a bit made improvements. He actually survived a hurricane when the building got flooded. He was sitting in the middle of a table abd the table floated. We didnt know it was going to hit us so bad or I would of brought him home. He is now upgraded to a 30 gallon and is huge and doing much better.

Wow!!! That’s crazy! What hurricane was it? Did you name the crab after the hurricane?


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angelbear
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Re: Class Pets

Post by angelbear » Mon Feb 03, 2020 8:00 am

Oh gosh. It was harvey. My job was in kingwood and when they released lake Conroe all the water ran down hill increasing the water level we already had we got to 8 or 9 feet in our building.
Hi, I have been crabbing about 5 to 6 years now, and these guys have put up alot with my growing pains.
Proud mama of 4 shell babies:
1 e, and 3 pp

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Crabby7Crabber
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Re: Class Pets

Post by Crabby7Crabber » Mon Feb 03, 2020 8:58 am

I agree with the others; it's great that you're showing kids that those little critter keepers are not suitable! Not to be nosy, lol, but what does your crabitat look like? I'd like to see it as well as your crabs, if you don't mind. I'm a sucker for these creatures, haha! :lol:
Three PPs (Hoodini, Aaron Burr, and Jubali)
R.I.P George Washington, Zero, Domino, Billy, Eduardo, Shelly, and Cosmo the dog

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wodesorel
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Re: Class Pets

Post by wodesorel » Mon Feb 03, 2020 10:18 am

Children who have seafood allergies (none do)

With a severe enough seafood allergy, their feces could potentially be allergenic. Their diet should also contain insects and seafoods, so cross-reactivity is also a concern. The crabs themsleves should be hypoallergenic as rhey don't shed, but their homes and anything they get on themselves may not be.

Fungal and mold growth is also a risk and those allergies are a LOT more common. I get stuffed up working in my crab tank regularly, and it's from my mold allergies.


Can the children get sick from the crabs?

Again, the risk comes from their environment. It's a big hot moist petri dish with slowly decaying food. E. The same bacterial risk with foods come into play - salmonella and e. coli, and the other fun ones.



What if they get pinched?

No permanent damage. If it breaks skin it's the same risk as a scratch. It does hurt like heck, and you cannot pull them off without killing them. This one would be hard to explain to a 4 year in searing pain! Either the crab ends up sacrificed, or you have to wait them out by sitting perfectly still for 5 minutes or more. Sometimes putting them underwater will get them to release quicker.

(I don’t want the crabs infected with any germs- 4 year olds are a hotbed of germs)

Luckily diseases won't transmit the other way around and the crabs will be safe. Chemicals though, that is a worry (lotion, soap, handcream) so it's good they are hands off.



They have similar risks to any small pet, including hamsters and the like.
Want to see all my crazy pets? @waywardwaifs on Instagram

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Renroc
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Re: Class Pets

Post by Renroc » Fri Feb 07, 2020 2:17 am

The getting pinched part could be removed totally by not handling the crabs. Crabs are really a hands off pet so the children should be encouraged to watch the crabs going about their crabby daily life while they are still inside the tank and in a warm humid environment. Not handling of crabs means no chance of being pinched means zero chance of getting infections (even if they could transmit germs)
Crazy crab lady with 2 babies raised in captivity. One female on male and one unknown. Also 2 adults living in a 4ft tank. Hope to get some girls soon to have another breeding attempt.


Topic author
AnnieK
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Joined: Mon Feb 03, 2020 12:01 am
Location: New Jersey

Re: Class Pets

Post by AnnieK » Sat Feb 08, 2020 12:48 pm

Thank you to all for your responses. I just want to have information in case she tries to make me get rid of them. “The Bobs” are a very important part of our classroom community and it would be so sad if they had to leave. Thanks for your help and support.

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