Which reptile and amphibian bowl is best?
Reptiles and amphibians require special attention to maintain cleanliness in their environments. Access to fresh water and the removal of any uneaten food from their terrarium are necessary to prevent bacterial growth and potential illness.
A specially designed reptile and amphibian bowl allows you to provide your pet with the water and nutrition it needs in an easily cleanable and refillable dish. The Exo Terra Poly-Resin Granite Rock Water Dish is a low-maintenance, durable bowl that promotes your animal’s natural behavior and looks great in any reptile or amphibian enclosure.
What to know before you buy a reptile or amphibian bowl
Your pet’s natural behavior
It’s important to fully understand your particular pet’s natural behavior and requirements to ensure that you select a bowl that will fully serve their needs. Amphibians, for example, require a constant source of clean water to soak in and hydrate with. Desert-dwelling lizards and snakes, however, spend less time in the water and frequent their bowls less often.
Your pet’s food
Bowls allow you to keep your pet’s food in one spot, clean up after them efficiently and easily determine how much they are eating. Animals that eat live food require a bowl that prevents prey such as crickets or mealworms from escaping into their enclosure. Vegetarian pets also benefit from their food being placed on a surface that will prevent wood chips or other habitat substrates from becoming stuck to their food and swallowed.
Select a bowl that will allow your pet to easily access their food or water. Avoid tall, steep sides that can prevent animals from escaping or result in your pet falling into a deep water supply. Turtles and tortoises are particularly prone to tipping over into especially deep bowls.
For powerful animals such as snakes or turtles, select a bowl that is heavy enough to make it difficult to move or tip over.
While soaking is a requirement for the survival of amphibians, reptiles also enjoy the opportunity for an occasional bath. Snakes in particular often submerge themselves in water to help shed their skin. Select a water bowl that is large enough to accommodate the entirety of your animal’s body.
What to look for in a quality reptile or amphibian bowl
To allow your pet to easily climb into and out of their bowl, select a bowl that has a ramp on at least one side. Avoid any bowls that have sides that are too tall or steep to allow your pet the ability to enter and exit their bowl as they please.
Many owners of reptiles and amphibians take great care to create lush, natural-looking enclosures. To fit your desired aesthetics, many manufacturers provide bowls that mimic the appearance of wood or stone.
While bowls that blend in with natural surroundings look nice, their nooks and crannies might make cleaning a chore. If you are looking for optimum cleanliness and efficient cage cleaning, select a bowl that is made of smooth plastic, steel or ceramic.
Select a food bowl that is deep enough to prevent prey from escaping but shallow enough to permit your pet to reach them. Water bowls should be deep enough to allow your pet reptile or amphibian to submerge their bodies if they wish.
How much you can expect to spend on a reptile or amphibian bowl
Depending on size and material, reptile and amphibian bowls generally cost $10-$20.
Reptile and amphibian bowl FAQ
Why does my snake soak in its water bowl?
A. Snakes often soak when they are preparing to shed their skin. If your pet’s eyes become cloudy and it refuses food, it means it is in the early stages of a molt. Some species of snakes are also at home in wet environments and may choose to coil up in their water dish for their own comfort.
Can your pet reptile drown in its water bowl?
A. Potentially, yes. Water bowls that have slick, tall sides can prevent some animals from escaping them. If the water is deep enough, your pet may become exhausted and drown if it is not given a ramp or other means by which to exit its water bowl.
How often should you clean your reptile or amphibian’s bowl?
A. Bowls used to hold your pet’s water will develop a slimy bacterial residue called biofilm. Not unique to reptiles and amphibians, this is a regular occurrence across all different pet species. Because of this, your pet’s water should be changed daily or whenever it becomes soiled. Scrub the interior sides to remove the biofilm, then refill. Bowls used to hold food should also be emptied daily to remove any uneaten food items or disregarded prey.
What’s the best reptile or amphibian bowl to buy?
Top reptile or amphibian bowl
What you need to know: This beautifully sculpted bowl looks great in any terrarium.
What you’ll love: Heavy resin construction makes this bowl challenging for even burrowing animals to overturn. A smooth interior makes cleanup easy. Side height allows for soaking but is not too tall to allow smaller animals to become trapped.
What you should consider: This bowl will not prevent crickets or other jumping prey from escaping.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top reptile or amphibian bowl for the money
What you need to know: This shallow bowl is great for tortoises and other animals that primarily eat veggies or prepared food.
What you’ll love: Made from unbreakable plastic, this bowl mimics the look of natural stone. Its wide footprint prevents it from being easily tipped over.
What you should consider: This bowl is too shallow to be used as a soaking water dish.
Worth checking out
What you need to know: This natural-looking bowl has a gentle ramp your pet will appreciate.
What you’ll love: Available in various sizes, this bowl is great for both food and water. Easy to clean and aesthetically pleasing, this dish looks like wood or stone.
What you should consider: This bowl is not recommended for tortoises or land-dwelling turtles, as the ramp design may cause them to tip over and become stuck on their back.
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Derek Walborn writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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