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Water Dog Vs Axolotl

Which one is better, water dog vs axolotl? Water Dog and Axolotl are unique and impressive animals and can become beloved pets. They both belong to the salamander family.

Their typical features make them entertaining to watch for your family.

That said, each of them has unique needs and care requirements, and a lack of know-how on how to keep them will make you end up with regrets. 

Keep tuned in the article for more information about these fascinating animals: on their similarities, differences, and nuances in case you are thinking of buying and taking on either as a new pet. 

Water Dog Vs Axolotl

InformationWater DogAxolotl
SpeciesAmbystoma mavortium familyAmbystoma mexicanum family
OriginNorthern AmericaSouth America
Lifespan:25 years15 years.
Habitatin water and into terrestrial adults.Stay aquatic their entire lives.
matureMetamorphoseNon metamorphose
Color:darker in colorDiversity
Dietearthworms, crickets, freshly killed minnows, tadpoles, and glass (grass) shrimpanything else that can fit inside their mouth and swallow whole (worms, insects, small fish, etc.)
Availabilitywidespread throughout the U. Sextinct now, though, in the wild
Comparison of Water Dog vs Axolotl

Despite Water Dog and Axolotl coming from the larval forms of salamanders (where they share some similar characteristics), they have tonic differences in their personality, size, and other features.

For instance: Water Dog is a noisy animal and squeaks a lot and is solitary, while Axolotl is docile and calm animals and independent.  

Moreover, Water Dog is larger than Axolotl in size; its size varies from 8 – 18 inches in length, while Axolotl’s average size is 10 inches (from the nose tip up to the tail end).

Also read: Why Is My Axolotl Not Growing?

Overview: Origin, Appearance, and Color


Water Dog is native to Northern America, where it lives in the United States and Canada.

At the same time, Axolotl is native to Lake Xochimilco and Lake Chalco in the valley of Mexico in South America.

Water Dog has spread throughout the United States while Axolotl is now extinct though it exists in the wild.

Water Dog appears bushy, has flat heads, stubby legs, broad tails, four distinct toes in their feet, red exterior gills, and he is so much darker in color and changes color when it metamorphoses.

While Axolotl, on the other hand, is known as walking Mexican fish. It has distinguishable features like, have short legs, cylindrical bodies, feathery gills, and a pretty long tail.

Also, it has four toes on its front feet, five toes on the back feet, and moveable eyelids. Axolotl is known for its largemouth, blunt snout, and impressive smile. 

In addition, Axolotl has four distinct/common colors, e.g., Albino (golden), Leucistic (pink), and Axanth (gray).


Water Dog Metamorphose
Water Dog Metamorphose | Credit: Olympian Exotics / YouTube.com

What is a metamorphosis? As a new owner, you find the term new. Well, metamorphose simply means to undergo some form of transformation so that there is an entirely different appearance. 

In our case, Water Dog undergoes morphological changes while Axolotl spends all its entire life inside water.

The Water Dog body changes from larva to miniature adult replicate., usually from aquatic habitat to terrestrial habitat for the adult one.

Water Dogs are known to be false salamanders and have a long larval phase; however, they will metamorphose eventually. 

Water Dog starts his life in water and later develops readily into terrestrial adults. The changes usually occur around 12 to 18 months.

His gills to breathe in water will shrink, and his lungs will become wholly functional. As a result, he can move over to land-living and will only return inside water for mating.

On the other hand, Axolotl’s body does not transform and stays in water throughout his entire life. 

Care Requirements

Water Dog Metamorphose dark color
Water Dog Metamorphose dark color | Credit: Olympian Exotics / YouTube.com

Water Dog and Axolotl require special requirements and needs for you to rear them in your household. As a result, keeping and caring for Water Dog will be a very aberrant experience from keeping Axolotl. 

This is evident when Water Dog starts to metamorphose, and as an owner, you must be well equipped and prepared for these changes. Let us look at specific requirements Water Dog and Axolotl will need.

Also read: Full Requirements & Water Conditions for Axolotl in Captivity


To keep a Water Dog, you must have two different homes, starting with an aquarium and ending up with a terrarium immediately it develops into terrestrial salamanders. 

The best tank size should be around 15 – 20 gallons; this will provide sufficient space for him to roam around. During the start of morphological changes, he will gravitate toward the surface to breathe.

You should reduce the water level during this time and provide a platform for him to get access should he desire to do so. After completion of the process, you put him into a waterless terrarium.

On the other hand, Axolotl requires only a suitable and stable aquarium for the rest of his life. Likely, it also requires sufficient space to roam; hence, the tank size of 20 gallons is worthwhile.

You should routinely change the water in the tanks for Water Dog and Axolotl or clean them using a filter.

Do not always handle or touch both of them for whatsoever reasons unless changing waters or taking them to the vet.

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While still in the aquatic habitat, the optimum water temperature for Water Dog should vary from 600 to 700 Fahrenheit. In contrast, Axolotl pets require an optimum temperature of 600 to 650 Fahrenheit.

Also read: Axolotl Temperature (Tips to Maintain an Ideal Temperature)


Buying a Water Dog is relatively cheaper than Axolotl; for instance, the Water Dog price ranges from $30-$60 while Axolotl price range is $35-$70 from your local pet breeder around you. 

To keep and own both of them, you will incur additional costs for delivery fees, setting up tanks, food, and vet, and recurring costs. 

It will cost you around $100 – $300 on average to set up an enclosure for either Water Dog or Axolotl. However, for Water Dog, you will need to set aside additional cash for terrestrial habitat. 

Recurring costs are vet and food, which will cost around $100 since both require a constant check-up to ensure suitable conditions of their surroundings. 

Can You Keep a Water Dog and Axolotl Together?

Water Dog and Axolotl can live together in one tank, but it’s inadvisable to keep them together. That is simply due to an array of reasons since each has its behavior and temperament.

For instance, Water Dog and Axolotl can be aggressive to each other for food, pecking order, and another important reason for keeping them separate is the morphological process in Water Dogs; hence both thrive well when kept in separate tanks.

Even though Water Dogs are solitary animals and the best tank mates are males versus females or young versus adults.

In contrast, for Axolotl, the tank mates are Guppy Fish, Zebra Danios, Apple Snails, and other axolotls, especially adults. 

Also read: Can Axolotls Live Together?

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Final Words

To sum up, Water Dogs and Axolotls are unique and amazing creatures that are fun to watch and keep in your household. As a result, keeping and owning them as pets is a great privilege. 

Before owning a water Dog or axolotl, you need to consider their requirements, care, and needs. This will also depend on your tastes, preferences, space, and pocket worth. 

To be on the safer side, you should have close contact with your vet or pet breeder, who will advise you accordingly and give you the genealogy of each of them. And get guidance on how to maintain them.

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