Yea.. I would agree and say get him to learn about how to care for it. Just to let you know though, I hear that goldfish are not a great food to feed garters, as they supposedly don't have a whole lot of nutrients. I feed mine guppies and tadpoles, and I let her crawl around the garden amd she eats slugs, spiders, and worms on her own. They are great eaters! If that kid wont take care of it the proper way, just let it go and tell him it escaped... then mabye his mom won't be so eager to let him have reptiles.