Frogs are fascinating creatures. As such, it should come as no surprise that many people are in search of the best pet frogs! After all, they can make wonderful pets that are a joy to watch and care for.
And fortunately, when it comes to caring for them, the process isn’t too complicated. This is especially true if you get the appropriate habitat set up right from the beginning.
Still, some frogs are hardier than others, as you’ll soon discover on our list of the best pet frogs for beginners and experts alike!
To discover our top picks (open in new tab) for the best frogs to own, simply keep reading!
Table of Contents
Best Pet Frog Recommendation #1: White’s Tree Frog
This frog is one of the hardiest of the frog species. It can live up to 20 years in captivity but tends to live around seven to ten years on average. Their temperament is docile and they are easily and readily bred in captivity.
Breeders usually have White’s Tree Frogs ready for sale in the warmer months. Captive-bred pets are preferable to avoid getting a frog with parasites or that doesn’t adapt to captivity.
These little guys average about 4 to 4.5 inches and have fat little bodies. They are a muted color, generally ranging from soft green to bluish. Four of them will survive in a 20-gallon aquarium, but as always, the more space the better.
⭐️Fun Fact: Did you know? Another name for the Treefrog is “Dumpy Tree Frog” because of their fat and pudgy body type. They are also referred to as the Australian Tree Frog.
They eat mealworms, crickets, and roaches several times a week, but as their nickname suggests, they can get chubby quickly so monitor their diet closely.
They also like to be misted daily and will tolerate light handling by thoroughly scrubbed hands. Be careful not to allow any chemicals or soap residue to have contact with their skin.
Best Pet Frog Recommendation #2: African Dwarf Frog
The African Dwarf Frog is an aquatic frog. This makes it unique from the other examples because it lives its entire life underwater.
However, it does NOT have gills and needs to breath at the water’s surface. It is critical if you have a planted aquarium that you do not let it get overrun with plants preventing the frog from reaching the surface for air.
This frog species is ideal for those who already have some background in keeping an aquarium.
Their habitat set-up is similar to that of freshwater or tropical fish. In fact, if the aquarium is big enough, African Dwarf Frogs can live with other peaceful, community fish.
These frogs live about five to 10 years and are an average of three inches long. You can keep two in a 10-gallon aquarium but not if you have other fish in there with it.
They are usually olive to brownish color but can be spotted. There are four variations of the African Dwarf Frog.
They obviously originate in Africa so they will need heated water and an LED light system. Keep this on a timer because they are nocturnal and will want to know when it’s time to be active and when it’s time to rest.
Lastly, it is important to notes that African Dwarf Frogs prefer a planted tank in a quiet location.
Best Pet Frogs Recommendation #3: Amazon Milk Frog
These frogs are thusly named because of a poisonous, milky substance they excrete when they are threatened in the wild. This is NOT something you are likely to see in a domestic setting.
They are also nicknamed the Gold Mission Frog because they sometimes, but not always, have a golden ring in their eyes. Still yet, they are sometimes called the Panda Bear Tree frog because they sometimes have black and white coloring.
So, what have we learned? That they have many names that are not always accurate!
Despite this, the Amazon Milk frog is a fun species to keep. It has a long snout which they use to push foliage aside while searching for food.
They are nocturnal and tend to sleep through the day but may wake up if their aquarium is misted.
They grow to be 2.5 to 4 inches long with the females being larger than the males.
These frogs are particularly sensitive to being handled so if you absolutely must handle them, wear gloves to protect their skin.
Amazon Milk Frogs do like a more advanced habitat system to make sure their humidity, temperature, and lighting doesn’t fluctuate. However, once this is established the maintenance is basic and all that’s left is to observe, clean, and feed them.
Amazon Milk Frogs eat a wide variety of live invertebrates. You can grow your own fruit flies to feed them but they also like earthworms, crickets, and house flies.
Best Pet Frogs Recommendation #4: Pacman Frog
With its bumpy, stout body, the Pacman frog is reminiscent of a toad. But, don’t get it twisted…this guy is ALL about the aquatic life!
These frogs, also called the horned frog, are bigger than many frogs, but some of this is just an illusion they give off with their hefty girth.
In addition to being hefty, they also move slowly. This means they don’t need as big a habitat as other frog species who are always on the go. Not to mention, caring for them is relatively straight forward too.
This inactivity comes from their natural instincts to burrow in the substrate and patiently wait for prey to go by. They do not actively chase prey like some frogs.
The Pacman frog grows to be about 5.5 inches and one of them will do just fine in a 20-gallon aquarium.
They can live to be over 15 years in captivity but live an average of 10 years. This resilience makes them ideal for many beginners.
They have a big appetite and will eat anything they can, even if it doesn’t fit properly in their mouth.
Most Pacman frogs are kept individually to prevent them from eating each other.
They will even eat small mice and will easily become engorged or overweight if their food sources are not managed.
They come in a great variety of morphs and if you find a bright one it can make for quite the conversation starter in your home.
Best Pet Frogs Recommendation #5: Gray Tree Frog
This gray tree frog is easy to keep. It’s a fairly hardy frog and is easy to find.
In the wild, this frog loves to climb and lives high in the trees for much of the year. They are great climbers and really appreciate a tall, vertical aquarium that lets them get to a higher vantage point.
The gray tree frog can change colors to blend into their surroundings and may have light gray, brown, or green coloring.
They have a warty appearance, but the most interesting part of the gray tree frog is the golden yellow-orange coloring on the inner parts of the back thighs.
Additionally, they have a white patch under each eye that makes them a little more distinctive from other frogs.
🤓Expert Tip: These frogs do excrete a toxic substance that causes extreme discomfort to sensitive skin like lips, eyes, or inside the nose. It’s also volatile if it contacts open cuts and abrasions. If you must handle your frog wear gloves and wash your hands thoroughly after.
Depending on the ambient temperature in your home, the tree frog may not need any supplemental heating. It lives in a variety of conditions in the wild so is fairly durable to diverse temperatures, but stability will make them more comfortable.
If your house is a little on the cool side, adding a low watt heat lamp will help keep your tree frog at ideal temperatures. Aim for 77°F to 80°F at the highest point.
Gray tree frogs happily heat mealworms, crickets, and wax worms. Feed them just before you turn off the lights for the night. They are nocturnal creatures and will appreciate you mimicking nature in this way.
Mist the cage twice a day to maintain humidity and make sure they have access to chemical-free (un-chlorinated) water, just like all other amphibians.
Best Pet Frogs Recommendation #6: Tomato Frog
Once you have seen a tomato frog, you’ll understand how it got its name. Its fat red body is practically begging to be named after a rotund fruit!
The adult female is a brighter orange-red than the males, while younger frogs tend to be more yellow. Keep that in mind when you are browsing for your new pet.
You may not get the color you are looking for until your frog has reached maturity and you will get the most color if you get a female.
Like the Pacman Frog, the Tomato Frog is semi-fossorial, meaning it likes to dig into its substrate so it is partially buried and is watchful of its surroundings.
This tells us that it doesn’t need as big an aquarium as some more active frogs, and that they often wait for their food to wriggle or fly by.
They have surprisingly small mouths for the size of their body (which they can puff up when threatened) so keep food under a ½-inch in size.
They live an average of six years and two can be housed comfortably in a 10-gallon aquarium.
Give them a dense layer of substrate to burrow in, and some hidey holes like a hollowed-out log and they will be quite happy.
They like a moderately warm tank (65°F to 80°F) and their hydration needs are not too extreme. If you mist their tank every day or two and use live plants to keep them hydrated they will be content in their environment.
Like so many other frogs they secrete a mildly toxic poison so handle minimally, wear gloves, and wash your hands well after.
Best Pet Frogs Recommendation #7: Pixie Frog
The Pixie frog, also called the Giant African Bullfrog, is one of the more unique frogs on this list.
It is the second-largest frog species with males reaching six to 10 inches. Females are smaller than males.
They need at least a 40-gallon aquarium per frog and must be housed separately because they can become cannibalistic if housed together.
The pixie frogs have big teeth and can draw blood if they bite you so limit handling.
Every pixie frog has a different personality and some won’t mind being handled, while others are easily scared and act defensive. Furthermore, they could mistake your fingers as food and bite regardless of how tame they may be.
How does such a quirky frog end up on this list? Well, it is a very forgiving frog as far as care goes.
They love to eat and rarely go off their food. They will eat a wide variety of food including crickets, earthworms, silkworms, wax worms, Dubia roaches, and even small mice.
⭐️Fun Fact: To combat the dry and hot seasons, the Pixie Frog digs under ground and cocoons itself for around 3 months, secreting a cool gelatinous substance off its back in the process. This keeps the frog alive until the start of the next rainy season.
Additionally, they will eat pelleted and canned food. They can easily become overweight so restrict food as necessary and look for a frog that is round but not excessively large.
Pixie frogs like an aquarium with a warm side, with 80°F to 85°F ideal. This is best accomplished using an under-tank heating pad.
Mist the tank once or twice a day and provide clean water in a water dish for them to soak in.
The pixie frog lives a long time with an average lifespan of 15 to 20 years, but can live over 30 years in captivity.
They have interesting coloring. They are typically green with bumpy skin and a golden color where their legs meet their body. Their underbelly is often white or lighter.
Honorable Mention: Poisonous Dart Frog
You might think a frog with “poisonous” in its name is not the right frog for a beginner, and you could be right…
However, people are drawn to them because of their bright, beautiful, rare coloring and because they are one of the few frogs that are active during the day. They are fascinating to observe!
Some dart frogs are easier for a beginner to take care of than others. The most important thing to know is that ALL captive-bred dart frogs are non-poisonous.
Even wild-caught poisonous dart frogs lose their poison in captivity; however, they should always be treated as poisonous because it’s not always clear if or when this has happened.
That means many “poisonous” dart frogs are fine for beginners. They are typically not very big. A 10-gallon aquarium is sufficient for two dart frogs.
When they are quite young and small they will need to be housed in a much smaller container, like a plastic sweater box, until they are big enough for their permanent home.
Wrapping Up the Best Pet Frogs
This is not a limited list. Most frogs are easy to keep and will thrive with a beginner owner who is dedicated to their care.
At the end of the day, just be sure to make sure your choice is well-researched and that you have the habitat set up properly.
If you can accomplish these two feats then you will likely find any frog thrives in your home!