If your dream contains a turtle or the image of a turtle it suggests a certain contentedness with your life, a broad apprehension towards change characterizes many of your decisions. It also implies a generally willingness to bear the rigors of change in a staid fashion. Turtles also convey information about your relationships if they appear in conjunction with someone in your life. If that person is romantically linked to you it suggests that your relationship is stable and satisfying; change would be unwelcome and likely damaging. If they are a family member it means that you consider them a source of confidence and emotional support. Friends who appear alongside a turtle are viewed as steadfast and loyal, but about all of these people, even the closest, you feel a small, niggling anxiety that you won't always be near them, that things can't go on as they are and one day you might lose them. This fear robs some of the happiness of the present.
The presence of a tortoise describes a much stronger willingness to cling to the status quo and a much greater resistance to change; a resistance that often takes on an active form. They also imply that there is someone in your life junior to yourself, who relies on you for guidance and wisdom. Snapping turtles, especially if you dream of being attacked by one, suggest a tendency towards rather bitter melancholy, an inability to let go of the past, indeed a tendency to dwell on it that affects your ability to live in the present. The turtle in this situation is urging you to come to grips with your past, face it openly and then realign yourself towards the future.
A painted turtle is a rare and colourful creature. To dream of a painted turtle suggests that you have found yourself in a situation where you are in over your head. Overmatched by your colleagues, perhaps, or simply not equal to the challenge. But there is hope; it also implies that you are not fully exerting yourself; your hope lies in finding and exploiting that untapped potential. It also suggests a certain level of envy of those around you and their abilities and a sense that they might perhaps be using them to intentionally put you down.
An empty turtle shell signifies a general perception of a lack of intellectual challenge. You find yourself, and in particular your mind, stagnating due to a drought of proper mental stimuli. Under these circumstances you mind has reached out and alerted you to the dangers of stultification, your priority should be to find some hobby or pass time to challenge yourself and exercise your mental powers.
If you dream of a turtle in captivity it suggests that you are rankling under the overbearing influence of another. Your desire to escape this influence informs the activity of your subconscious mind.