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REPTILE / new pets

A Set-up Guide for New Chubby and Tomato Frogs

Tips for home, health to fun


Five things to know about your frog

  • Tomato frogs live up to 7 years
  • Chubby frogs live up to 10 years
  • Both types grow to be about 4 inches long
  • When threatened, they secrete a substance through their skin that can irritate human eyes and the mouth
  • They are a good choice for beginner frog parents

Your chubby and tomato frogs’ home

Your chubby or tomato frog can share a terrarium with other frogs of the same species. Just be sure all of the roommates are about the same size.

A 10-gallon terrarium will comfortably house two to three adult frogs. If you’re keeping more than that, get a larger habitat. Be sure your frog’s terrarium has a screened lid.

What to put in your frog’s habitat

  • Line the bottom of the terrarium with 2 to 3 inches of coconut-fiber or bark bedding — frogs enjoy burrowing in it. Scoop the poop at least once a week and change out the bedding completely once a month.
  • Provide branches for hiding. Living plants will help keep the habitat humid, which your roly-poly pet will like.
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Heat & lights

  • Tomato and chubby frogs are nocturnal, meaning they’re more active at night. They don’t require sunlight, but they do need a “day” and a “night” cycle in their habitat. If they’re in a dim room, light the terrarium for 12 hours a day with a fluorescent bulb.
  • At night, switch to a night-specific bulb so you can watch your frog with minimum disturbance.
  • Your frog’s terrarium should be warm — between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and 65 F to 70 F at night. If necessary, use a heat bulb and/or a night-specific heat lamp for warmth. A thermometer at each end will help you monitor the temperature.
  • Your froggy likes humidity between 50% and 80%. Use a hygrometer — a device that measures humidity — to keep track.
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Help your chubby and tomato frogs stay healthy

Chubby frogs and tomato frogs need Vitamin D in their diet.

Try not to handle new frogs for three or four days to give them a chance to get acclimated to their new surroundings. Whether your frog is new or settled-in, be sure to contact a vet if you notice any of these symptoms of illness or distress:

  • More time spent hiding
  • Eating or drinking less; weight loss
  • Discolored skin
  • Swollen joints
  • Discharge from the eyes, nose or mouth
  • Runny droppings for more than two days
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