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Do Frogs Make Good Pets?

May 1, 2024

We usually talk about dogs and cats a lot on our blog, but this time, we’re focusing on a small but rather underrated pet: the frog. Frogs may not be stealing the limelight this month, but they deserve a little attention. A local veterinarian explores the captivating world of pet frogs in this article from Arapahoe Animal Hospital, your Boulder, CO animal hospital.

Are Frogs Important?

Every living being, even those we may not particularly favor, like mosquitos, is important in some way. Frogs are truly remarkable creatures who play a crucial role in our natural world. They consume billions of insects every year and serve as a source of food for other animals.

In recent years, the frog has taken on a much more important role by serving as an indicator species for the health of their natural habitats.

Which Frogs Are Appropriate Pets For Beginners?

Before bringing a pet into your home, it’s important to do your homework and conduct thorough research. It’s worth noting that there are quite significant variations among different frog species.

That said, here are some excellent beginner frogs:

Amazon Milk Frog These cute tree frogs display a lovely blend of brown and white hues, accentuated by their endearing blue feet. They get their name from the milky substance they release from their backs when they feel threatened. These can grow to a considerable size, measuring up to 5 inches. They require adequately sized enclosures, which should stay at a temperature range of 70 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit at all times. It might be worth considering getting more than one Amazon milk frog, as they are known to be quite sociable creatures.

PacMan Frog Originally from Argentina, this frog acquired his nickname because of his big mouth. Its vibrant colors, slightly grouchy appearance, and undeniable passion for food make it truly captivating. Pacman frogs thrive in a moderately humid environment and have specific lighting requirements. They also prefer live food.

White’s Tree Frog Calm and friendly, the White’s tree frog is a favorite among those new to frog-keeping because of its small size and easy care needs. It tolerates a wide range of temperatures, but it does best at a range between 75 and 85 degrees. They’re also super cute! 

Gray Tree Frog

This cute little frog is a small, nocturnal critter that is very easy to take care of. There are no specific humidity or temperature requirements for this type of frog. However,  this guy does benefit from UVB light. Its tastes in food are quite diverse, but it likes things to be, well, still moving.

American Bullfrog 

The largest frog in North America, Jeremiah can grow up to eight inches. American bullfrogs are amazing jumpers. In fact, they are able to cover an impressive distance of up to six feet in a single bound! This frog requires a bit more attention and care than some of the others. They require semi-aquatic habitats,  which need daily cleaning.

The Pixie Frog

Contrary to what its name might suggest, the Pixie frog is actually one of the largest frogs in the world. In fact, they are surpassed only by the Goliath frog, which can reach lengths of over a foot. The Pixie frog can reach a maximum size of ten inches. They thrive in large, open habitats. They are quite resilient and generally require minimal maintenance. Just be prepared to commit. With proper care, they may live up to 20 years. Just like many of our other patients, they are prone to getting a bit chubby.

Regardless of what sort of frog you get, be sure to ask your Boulder, CO vet for care tips!

Do I Need To Entertain A Frog?

Let’s be real; some frogs don’t really do much. However, even the most easygoing pet still needs some form of entertainment. It is essential to establish a captivating atmosphere. Your pet will have a great time exploring the branches, finding cozy hidey holes, and enjoying the lush greenery of plants and leaves. Ask your Boulder, CO veterinarian for personalized guidance.

What Differentiates Toads From Frogs?

Many people learn this in school, but it tends to be one of those things that fades from memory over time. All toads are a type of frog, but not all frogs are toads. Frogs tend to prefer to live near water, while toads are better suited for land habitats. Toads have distinct bumps on their skin, while frogs do not.

Do Frogs Make Good Pets?

Frogs can be great pets, but they aren’t the right option for everyone.

One good thing about them? They don’t need much daily care. It is crucial to ensure that their habitat is set up correctly. Once you have everything in place, you won’t have to do much for your little companion on a daily basis. It’s perfectly alright if your frog doesn’t have much on his agenda.

They’re low energy. It’s probably safe to assume that your frog doesn’t have much on his schedule, aside from sitting around pondering, well, we don’t know. Flies, maybe.

Observing frogs can be interesting. Well, kind of. Some do in fact lounge about like lumps on logs. However, they can be incredibly adorable.

Here are a few other pluses for frog ownership:

  • Their environments can be visually appealing.
  • They also don’t require any training.
  • Frogs will make sure to avoid chewing your shoes or leaving hairballs on the rug
  • No need for walks or playtime

Are Frogs Expensive?

Frogs are actually quite inexpensive. The primary cost is setting up the habitat. Aside from that, your main costs will be replacing light bulbs and substrate and buying food. Like any other pet, veterinary care costs can also factor in. Of course, your pet may run your electric bill up a bit. 

Are There Any Downsides To Owning A Pet Frog?

The major concern is their capacity to carry salmonella. You’ll need to take this into account if your child is asking for a frog.  Make sure that your child washes their hands thoroughly before and after interacting with their pet.

Certain frogs require a diet composed of live bugs, which might not be very appealing for anyone who is easily grossed out. They also aren’t very charismatic. Don’t expect your frog buddy to hop around with excitement when you get home. (Top hats, canes, and tap dances are also out of the question.)

Longevity is definitely something worth considering. Frogs’ life spans can vary substantially. Some can potentially live up to 20 years!

How Do You Identify Signs Of Illness In Frogs?

Frogs are prone to various illnesses, including parasites, viruses, chlamydiosis, thiamine deficiency, fungal diseases, mycobacteriosis, metabolic bone disease, and obesity. There are several symptoms to watch out for, such as loss of appetite, withdrawal, low energy, prolapses, changes in skin color or lesions, and changes in droppings. It can be challenging for someone with limited experience to determine if their little companion is unwell. Be sure to ask your veterinarian for specific advice.

Schedule An Appointment At Our Boulder, CO Animal Clinic!

Do you have any questions about caring for frogs? Don’t hesitate to contact Arapahoe Animal Hospital, your Boulder, CO animal hospital, whenever you need assistance. We are delighted to assist you!