Salamanders come in a variety of breeds that vary in size, color, shape,and natural habitats. Just like with humans, correct nutrition and a balanced diet are key to the well-being and health of your pet. Salamanders are carnivores, like most all reptiles. Knowing what and what not to feed him can help ensure your little buddy has a healthy, long life. In this post, a veterinarian lays out a few salamander diet dos and don’ts.
Salamander Diet Dos
As reptiles, salamanders should be fed a carnivorous-based diet that consists of foods they would eat in their natural habitat, which includes water and land environments. If your pet is a water-dwellers, you’ll need to feed him water-borne critters, like nightcrawlers, bloodworms, and brine shrimp. If he’s a land-dweller, insects, mealworms, tubifex worms, white worms, and crickets should make up the bulk of his diet.
Commercial Food Options
Commercial food options,most of which come in pellet form, are another way to go since they contain processed versions of worms and insects. However, processed pellets shouldn’t be the main part of your salamander’s diet. Reptiles are natural-born hunters. This means they need to hunt for their food. Also, some captive breeds will refuse to eat pellets for that very reason. Feeding your salamander freeze-dried insects instead of live ones is another option to consider.
Salamander Diet Don’ts
One common misconception about feeding salamanders is that they should be fed daily. Actually, adult salamanders only need to be fed two or three times a week, and always at nighttime. On the other hand, the juvenile or younger salamanders require daily feedings. And always have clean, fresh, chlorine-free available for your little buddy.
Fruits and Vegetables?
Your salamander’s digestive tract can’t really process anything besides meat, so don’t feed him fruits or vegetables. Since your pet does still need some fruit and vegetable-based nutrients, be sure the insects you feed him have eaten lots of these types of foods.
Most reptiles don’t need supplements or vitamins in their diets, unlike humans. However, your little salamander buddy will need calcium powder supplements for bone health. And too, be sure the calcium powder you give him doesn’t include vitamin D3 since this can be toxic to reptiles.
If you have more questions or want to schedule your salamander for a checkup, don’t hesitate to call your local vet today!