Are Desert Rain Frogs Good Pets For Beginners?

How To Take Care Of Desert Rain Frog

If you notice potato-shaped desert rain frogs, you must be allured to keep these cute frogs as pets. But, their requirements might make people wonder about the pros and cons of keeping desert rain frogs. So, people often ask about their confusion on various frog forums- are desert rain frogs good pets for beginners?

The care level of desert rain frogs is moderate for beginners. These frogs are low-maintenance pets. But, they require accurate environmental conditions to thrive. If you are able to fulfill their basic requirements, they can thrive and adapt in your closed space.

In this article, I’ve explained both pros and cons of keeping desert rain frogs as pets for beginners. After reading the entire article, you’ll be able to decide whether you should keep desert rain frogs as pets.

So, let’s go through this article without any further ado.

Overview of Desert Rain Frogs

Scientific NameBreviceps macrops
Common NameBoulenger’s short-headed frog, Web-footed rain frog, Desert rain frog, etc.
Size4-6 cm (1.6-2.4 inches)
Required Tank Size10 gallons
Optimal Humidity75-100%
Optimal Temperature30 degree Celsius
Toxicity StatusNon-toxic
TemperamentFriendly and playful
Lifespan4-15 years
how to take care of desert rain frog infographic showing desert rain frog's overview, size, lifespan, price, and detailed care guide.

Want to get a printable version of this infographic? Click here! [If you want to use this infographic on your website, please link back to this post as the source!]

Pros of Keeping Desert Rain Frogs As Pets

There are lots of good things about desert rain frogs that make them good pets. These pros can help you decide to keep these frogs as pets.

1. Easy Habitat Set-up

If you are a beginner, you may want lesser hassles of setting up the housing of your pet frog. Also, it’s pretty tough for beginners to maintain a difficult setup. In that sense, Desert rain frogs will give you the benefit of easy habitat set-up.

Let’s see what you will need to set up a desert rain frog tank.

5-10 Gallon Tank

Since these desert rain frogs are terrestrial, you should buy a terrestrial terrarium. You might know these potato-shaped frogs can be as large as 2.4 inches. So, you need to buy a 10-gallon tank to house a single desert rain frog. 

Good Substrate

If you know about the state of desert rain frogs in the wild, you’ll find them underground most of the time. These frogs remain burrowed the entire day. Because of being nocturnal, desert rain frogs come out at night time.

See also  How To Take Care Of Desert Rain Frog? [With Interesting Facts]

Mimicking the wild environment, you should provide at least an 8-inch deep substrate for your desert rain frog. Make sure that the substrate holds the maximum moisture for your frog.

Under Tank Heater

Generally, desert rain frogs do well at room temperature. You need to ensure that the room temperature remains 17-20 degrees Celsius. Otherwise, you should keep an under-tank heater if you live in a cold country.


Desert rain frogs do not have any demand for special lighting. Since these frogs are nocturnal, you should keep the usual lighting for maintaining a day and night cycle. Otherwise, keep a dim light for night-time. These frogs remain burrowed in the daylight.

Décor Items

In the overview of desert rain frogs, you might have noticed the mention of the playful temperament of these short-legged frogs. To boost their activity level, you can keep several décor items in their tank.

Other Essential Items

You do not need many items to keep in the tank of tour desert rain frog. Since these frogs require an optimum level of humidity, you should get a humidifier.

Along with a humidifier, a thermometer is a must need for your frog’s tank. Besides, you should keep a shallow water bowl.

You can check out this article to know about 17 essential things that you’ll need to keep a pet frog.

2. Docile Temperament

For beginners, it becomes a tough job to handle an aggressive pet. So, you can go for desert rain frogs, which have a docile and playful temperament. Due to their peaceful temperament, you will not have many hassles to keep these desert rain frogs as pets.

3. Simple Diet

Another reason why desert rain frogs are good pets for beginners is their simple diet. These frogs are opportunistic eaters and insectivores. In addition, you can feed them only 2-3 times a week. So, you need not do much hardship in arranging varieties of items for these frogs.

The diet of desert rain frogs is based on small insects and invertebrates. You can also feed them commercially available insectivore foods. In the list of desert rain frog foods, there are beetles, larvae, ants, worms, crickets, moths, dragonflies, slugs, termites, dubia roaches, etc.

You should ensure that the size of these insects is smaller than the space between the eyes of these frogs. Otherwise, these can cause choking. However, desert rain frogs prefer live insects.

4. Non-toxic

Another good thing about desert rain frogs is that these frogs are not poisonous. You might know about the dangerous toxicity level of dart frogs that can kill 10 people at once.

So, maintaining such toxic frogs as pets is hard for any beginner. When you have children in your house, you should remain concerned before keeping poisonous pets.

If you look for a non-toxic pet, desert rain frog will be one of the top listed pets. These frogs will not be a danger to humans.

See also  What Do Desert Rain Frogs Eat? [In Wild & Captivity]

Can You Handle Desert Rain Frogs?

Since desert rain frogs are not poisonous, you can touch these frogs without any fear. But, these frogs get frightened quickly. They love to remain burrowed under the surface during day time. So, you should minimize the handling as much as possible.

5. Low Maintenance

These desert rain frogs do not have many requirements. Since they remain burrowed for a maximum time, they do not make the tank messy. These frogs come out of the substrate only to eat their food. Besides, they do not need to eat daily. Thus, their low maintenance trait makes them special to beginners.

6. No Risk Of Jumping Out

Keeping frogs without any tank lid is risky for beginners. Some frogs are good jumpers, like African dwarf frogs, tree frogs, etc.

Click here to know 7 more reasons why African dwarf frogs jump out of the water.

But, you need not worry about catching your pet frog in cases of desert rain frogs. These frogs have short legs with webbed feet by which they can only hop or run in the tank. For this reason, these frogs do not jump well.

So, there will be no risk of jumping out of the tank if you keep desert rain frogs as your pets. In addition, you need not worry about adjusting the tank lid for these good pets.

7. Self-sufficient New Borne Desert Rain frogs

Another reason why desert rain frogs are good pets is their no-tadpole phase. Skipping the tadpole phase, the froglets of desert rain frogs emerge from the eggs. So, these newly borne desert rain frogs can eat, burrow, and hop like adults.

Not to mention, taking care of tadpoles is a huge responsibility for any frog owner. If you’re a beginner, you will not need to take the extra hassles of caring for tadpoles. But, it can be possible only in the case of desert rain frogs.

Cons of Keeping Desert Rain Frogs As Pets

Along with the pros, desert rain frogs have some disadvantages for beginners. Before keeping these frogs as pets, you should know about their cons too. Let’s check them out.

1. Special Environmental Conditions

You might wonder about a such unique name for desert rain frogs. These frogs hail from sandy areas near coastal regions. Although they remain burrowed under the sand, they come out of the sand during the rains.

Due to living nearby water bodies, the wild habitation of desert rain frogs remains foggy and humid. So, you must fulfill these environmental conditions in captivity. You must ensure that the humidity level remains within 75%-100% in the tank of desert rain frogs.

For this, you should spray water with a fogger in the tank. Make sure that the substrate remains damp. On the other way, you should keep the temperature range within 17-20 degrees Celsius.

2. Requirement of Large Tank

These potato-shaped cute desert rain frogs can grow up to 2.4 inches. Since these are burrower frogs, they require a good space horizontally.

See also  A Beginner's Guide to Keeping Bushveld Rain Frogs as Pets

When you keep these frogs as pets, you should not compromise on the tank size. You must buy a 10-gallon tank for keeping each desert rain frog. Buying a large tank to keep a single frog can be seemed odd to the owners.

3. Specific Breeding Conditions

The most struggling part of keeping desert rain frogs as pets are ensuring their specific breeding conditions. These frogs require a special mating-friendly environment. To encourage their breeding, you should maintain the highest level of humidity and nutritious feeding.

 Another interesting fact about desert rain frogs is that they do not need any open water sources for breeding. In the wild, the female desert rain frogs make a nest to lay eggs in their burrow. After mating, these female frogs burrow themselves underground. They can lay 12-45 eggs per nest.

So, you must ensure to mimic the same condition in captivity. You should provide such a deep substrate where the female frogs can burrow themselves comfortably to lay their eggs. Make sure that the female frogs do not get disturbed during their reproduction phase.

4. Skittish Nature

Although desert rain frogs are docile, these frogs can get frightened quickly. When these frogs get frightened, they tend to scream by puffing out the air of their lungs. Due to their skittish nature, you will need to provide a calm and noise-free room.

Making sure not to make these frogs threatened can be a difficult job for beginners. Hence, the skittish nature of desert rain frogs is a big con of keeping them as pets.

5. Squeaky Noise: Do Desert Rain Frogs Scream?

You might be used to listening chirping or grunting sound of frogs. In the case of desert rain frogs, they make a loud and high-pitched squeaky sound.

Whenever these desert rain frogs get distressed, they’ll make a loud noise. These frogs scream to show their anger too.

Also, it can be their mating calls to attract their partners. So, this high-pitched croaking may be irritating while you remain asleep or busy.

6. Owning Desert Rain Frogs Illegal In Many Countries

Due to habitat extinction, desert rain frogs are enlisted IUCN Red List of vulnerable and endangered animals. So, owning a desert rain frog is illegal in the U.S., Mexico, and several other countries. These endangered frogs are protected by laws.

Is The Desert Rain Frog A Good Pet?

After reading all pros and cons of keeping desert rain frogs, you can decide whether desert rain frog is a good pet.

These frogs are easy to take care of. Despite being low-maintenance pets, you should ensure a special environment for these frogs in captivity. Once you make a suitable environment for desert rain frogs, these frogs can thrive well at a moderate care level.

Before You Go

If you decide to keep a desert rain frog as a pet, you’ll require a detailed care guide. For your convenience, I’ve penned down all information on how to take care of these unique frogs. So, you can take a look at the following write-up if you are a beginner.

How To Take Care Of Desert Rain Frogs!

Sharing is caring!

Muntaseer Rahman

About Author

Hello, I’m Muntaseer Rahman, the owner of I’m passionate about aquarium pets like shrimps, snails, crabs, and crayfish. I’ve created this website to share my expertise and help you provide better care for these amazing pets.


This site is owned and operated by Muntaseer Rahman. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to This site also participates in other affiliate programs and is compensated for referring traffic and business to these companies.