Tiger Salamander Care Sheet

General Information

When you hear the name, salamander, what do you think? Is it the first animal you think of as a pet? Almost every time the answer is no. This is because salamanders have gotten a reputation for being fragile animals who aren’t very interactive with their owners, and don’t make great pets. The tiger salamander takes all those concerns and throws them in the trash. You can find this salamander across the United States, Mexico, and Canada. This salamander is my personal favorite salamander out there, because of it’s easy care, excellent personality, and it’s ability to adapts to different environments. Of all the amphibians out there, the tiger salamander is considered by most, the most interacting species among the amphibian families.

Lifespan and Size

If you’ve always had a dream to own the largest animal of its species, than you’re in luck. The tiger salamander is the largest land-living salamander out there. With averaging around 11 inches, this animal is a perfect size for an amphibian owner. Some of them get even larger than 15 inches. These wonderful creatures can go from juveniles to adults in less than a year, and most of the tigers live for around 10 years, although there are cases where they have lived up to 14 years old.

Baby Tiger Salamander.


Sadly, despite their excellent personality, the tiger salamander is crazy hard to breed in captivity. This can be a problem for most people wanting to get a tiger salamander. Most tiger salamanders, that live in captivity, were caught in the wild. This makes it harder to acquire a salamander, but the hardest part about a tiger salamander is that some states have them protected by law. For instance, California and New Jersey both have specific species of salamanders under protection and restrict the possession of these salamanders. This can be a consequence for anyone living in these states. This usually means that you probably want to get a different type of species of salamanders. Research your state, find out what you need for your salamander, and you’ll have one in no time!


When it comes to tiger salamanders they’re one of the best/easiest species of salamanders to raise and care for in captivity. But you should know, that if you have a larvae or a terrestrial tiger, than the requirements are completely different.

The water dog is kept practically the same, in aquatic standards, as the axolotl. In a short explanation, they’re going to need still water, with a full, clean and aquatic setup. When your larva has loss its tail fin or is close too, you’re going to want the water level to barely be over the salamander. Make sure you have a little island or a spot where he can come out of the water. This way, when he’s ready to leave his aquatic pass, he can. THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT! If you don’t have an area that’s above land, your salamander could potentially drown. This is a delicate time for your salamander. When it comes to size for your larvae, a ten gallon will work for around 3 of them, and I wouldn’t put any fish with them either.

A group of Tiger Salamanders.


The tiger salamander’s main diet in captivity will consist of nightcrawlers and crickets are amazing for your tiger. In the wild, they usually eat insects, such as beetles, earthworms, and crickets. All of these insects offer a variety of nutrients, and you know what I love to say, “The more variety, the better.” Certain insects, such as waxworms should only be fed on occasions. Tigers love these little fellas and will eat them on almost every occasion. Considering that these worms can hold a good amount of fat, it’s best to make these treats for your salamander. Tiger salamanders can become obese pretty easily. It’s important that you offer them the healthiest options possible. Make sure that no matter what you feed your salamander, that they’re being gut-loaded with cricket diet and fresh vegetables. Of course, you’ve got to offer vitamin and mineral dusting to all your insects. This is important to give the salamander the nutrients it deserves.

Fun fact: tiger salamanders spend most of their time in their substrate, buried.

Because of this fun fact, this means you may have to bring your salamander out of the substrate to feed it. When they become more accustom to you and become more tame, you’ll find that’ll be on the surface a lot more. This happens to a lot of animals, not just salamanders, but you if do something like make a noise or tap the tank before you dig up your salamander to eat its food, eventually most salamanders will learn that this means food and will emerge from their hiding spot.

When you’re feeding these awesome little creatures, you’re going to want to feed all that you can to the animal for around 10 – 15 minutes. These guys can and should be fed around twice a week or even three times. Once winter swings by, you can lower this down to once or twice a week. Salamanders don’t eat as much during the winter.