Acquired: Pet store
Idaho, United States
Posted Feb 14, 2014
As a teenager I kept a Tiger Salamander as a pet. I bought him with my money and took the lead in all his care - his name was Slimy.
My favorite thing about Slimy was feeding him. It was absolutely fascinating watching him catch and eat meal worms and crickets. I was so fascinated by his feeding behaviors I often risked over-feeding just so I could see him catch and kill his prey.
My least favorite thing about Slimy was cleaning. He needed an environment with water and land. I found it terribly difficult to maintain a clean environment for him because of the water portion of his environment - also the smell was terrible if I didn't refresh it often. When I did clean his environment I found it exceptionally difficult to get it all the way clean, I couldn't use any soaps because the residues from soap could kill him, so I was forever rinsing the gravel and rocks to try and get all the algae and other debris out.
As fascinating as Slimy was, I would not own another salamander or other amphibian. I do think animals of this type can be great for kids for the scientific value - however I would choose a small snake or a small lizard in the future, it is much easier to keep a dry environment clean!