How to Care for a Salamander

A salamander is an amphibian and is characterized by its slender body, short nose and long tail. Salamanders have no claws and most of the species have four toes on their front legs and five on their rear legs. They range in length from a little more than an inch (2.5 centimeters) to nearly 5 feet (152 centimeters). However, most salamanders are between 4 and 8 inches (10 and 20 centimeters) long. Salamanders need to keep their skin moist and therefore like being around water. Like other vertebrates, salamanders can regenerate lost limbs and other body parts [source: Exotic Pets]. Reading our salamander care sheet will help you go about caring for your salamander.

  • Housing The salamander's new house should mimic its habitat in the wild. Salamanders prefer a moist, damp habitat with ample places to hide. You can put your salamander in a plastic container with a tight lid. Drill some holes on the side for ventilation and place the container in an area that doesn't get direct sunlight. Cover the floor with bark chips, potting compost or moss.
  • Environment Salamanders are comfortable in temperatures between 55 to 65 degrees Fahrenheit (12.7 to 18 degrees Celsius). Make sure that the tank is kept cool, especially during the summer. Salamanders must be moist, so make sure you put a dish of water in the box. The dish will have to be cleaned out frequently.
  • Food As salamanders are nocturnal, it's best to feed them at night. Salamanders are carnivorous and should be fed earthworms, slugs, wood lice etc.
  • Handling Handle your salamander as little as possible. Their delicate, moist skin cannot tolerate too much handling. It's best to enjoy them from a distance [source: Exotic Pets].
  • Health Clean the box out every 2 to 3 months with warm water and mild dish soap. Don't use chlorine disinfectant to clean it, as even remnants of chlorine may harm the salamander [source: NEHERP].