Considering a pet frog? Read Darren’s advice
April 21, 2022
Here at Molesey Veterinary Centre we know that even though frogs are small, they are huge commitments when keeping them as pets. With all of the housing, feeding, and social requirements, keeping a pet frog can become complicated quite quickly. So, follow our Vet Darren’s advice on how to properly keep a pet frog.
So, can you keep a frog as a pet?
Just because you can keep some types of frogs as pets doesn’t necessarily mean you should. Frogs are wild creatures with natural behaviour and habitat needs that must be fulfilled for them to be happy and healthy. If you are considering choosing an exotic pet frog, it is important to do thorough research first. Our Exotic Vets can offer you advice on amphibian care so do get in touch.
How to keep a frog as a pet
According to Darren, you will need to consider the below before purchasing a pet frog:
The housing requirements for pet frogs depend on where they come from in the world. There are a variety of tanks such as the terrestrial tank (for a dryer climate), the aquatic tank (for water dwelling frogs), the half terrestrial, half aquatic tank (for semi-aquatic frogs) or the arboreal tank (for forest dwelling frogs). As for heating, all frogs require different temperatures, lighting, and humidity. To control these factors, owners can buy heat pads, basking lamps, LED lights, a method of misting, and a method to drain water from the enclosure. Check online retailers or in your local Surrey aquarium shop.
Most adult frogs rely on a diet of live insects and sometimes rodents. They are opportunistic feeders, so try to replicate this natural behaviour inside the tank. As for the frequency of feed, this depends on the activity level of the frog; for more high energy frogs, keeping live food items available at all times is a good idea, however for more sedentary frogs, feeding live insects a few times a week is enough. Make sure the insects are of appropriate size and never feed your frog fruit or vegetables as they are meat eaters.
Interestingly, frogs do not drink water, they absorb it through their skin via a diffusion process called osmosis. This is why the humidity levels have to be high at all times. However, the water must be dechlorinated and free of any chemicals which may harm your frog. Dechlorinators can be found online or search for an aquarium store in Surrey.
The most common frog related illnesses arise from poor nutrition, water quality, and husbandry. However, fungal infections, mechanical wounds, and red leg parasites are also relatively common. If you see any signs or discomfort in your frog i.e. drowsy, unusual wounds or colouring, or a rapid gain/loss of weight, book an appointment at Molesey Veterinary Centre with our Exotic Vets.
Some frogs can also carry diseases – the most common being salmonella – so it’s worth getting a check-up at our Park Road practice before you introduce the frog to other animals. Also, always wash your hands after handling them!
Because frogs absorb practically everything through their skin, touching them can sometimes cause them harm. Handling frogs should be avoided straight after applying lotion or oils to your skin. Rinsing hands and leaving them slightly moist is always best.
Types of pet frog
There are over 8200 species of frog, so it may be difficult to find the one that’s right for you – not all frogs can or should be kept as pets, so research is key. Some frogs prefer to be solitary, whilst others can tolerate living in groups, but you have to consider the size of the enclosure if more animals are being kept inside. Which species you decide to keep massively impacts on the way you house, feed, and handle your frog, so make sure to do extensive research before making a final choice.
Long-term amphibian care in Surrey
Once the research is complete, you’re free to enjoy up to 20 years with your pet frog. They are fairly cheap after the initial outlay of equipment and can be a great way to learn more about exotic animals.
Remember, if you are looking for an Exotic Vet in Surrey to care for your amphibian pet, contact Molesey Veterinary Centre on 0208 979 1384.