Can You Pet Your Axolotl? Magical!

4 min read

Axolotls are becoming very popular because of their unique appearance but they also have very different personalities.

Most people will want to pet their axolotl because they are so cute. I wanted to pet my axolotl but was wondering if it was okay?


You can pet some axolotls depending on their personality. Some axolotls won’t let you touch them. Others love to interact and will let you give them very gentle pats or rubs but don’t stroke them. Only pet your axolotl once in a while and don’t touch their gills.

You have to be very careful but it is worth it to enjoy interacting with your pet. After all, that is why bought it. You just want to give your cute axolotl some little belly rubs and pats is all. What harm is there in that?

It can be very harmful, so keep reading to learn why you have to be very gentle and how to properly pet your axolotl.

Here is a great funny video showing the owner giving their axolotl very gentle pats or petting it if you may…

How To Properly Pet Your Axolotl

Expert Tip: Always rinse your hand thoroughly in clean water, not with soap, before you put your hand in your axolotl tank.

You wouldn’t want to drink soapy water, so don’t make your axolotl. Always wash your hands thoroughly with soap after you pull them out of your axolotl tank…

Just like the video shows, you need to slowly approach your axolotl with your finger. Especially when you first bring your axolotl home, they will think your fingers are worms!

They might actually latch on to your finger and try to eat it haha…

Don’t worry, it doesn’t hurt and will probably make anyone laugh after the initial shock.

I’m not saying to make a habit of sticking your finger in your axolotl’s mouth for entertainment but the funniest part is when they spit your finger out or you could say regurgitate it.

Once your finger is close enough to your axolotl, it may nudge your finger or even rub against it. Over time, your axolotl will get used to interacting with you unless it’s one of those strange introverts that just wants to hide in its cave and meditate.

The key is to barely touch your axolotl and only if your axolotl is willing to let you touch them. You should very rarely do this if at all.

The kicker is, it’s your pet. They’re called ‘pets’ for a reason, so you can get away with very gently petting your axolotl but only for seconds at a time, maybe like once a week or less.

Here is a response from about petting an axolotl:

ha i gently pet mine all the time.. my biggin bertha kinda likes to swim up and lay in my hand. thats how i used to feed her. and she loves to try and rip my finger off. it doesnt hurt and its funny as hell. she can be pretty agressive when it comes to food.. hence bertha – 10fenny

Why Axolotls Are So Sensitive To Touch


Axolotls absorb water and oxygen through their skin, so it is very porous, making it very sensitive.

Their skin is also covered in a protective slime that can be removed if you rub them too hard. That is why we recommend a very gentle touch if you want to love on your axolotl with petting.

With all petting aside, an axolotl’s entire body is extremely sensitive because they are designed to float in water. They are just kind of mushy overall like jello.

Just think of them as a piece of jello when you want to touch them.

How To Interact With Your Axolotl Without Petting It.

When You Feed Your Axolotl every day, this is the best time to interact with them.


If you spend enough time with your axolotl you can eventually get them to eat out of your hand. Just keep at it until they trust you and leave them no choice but to grab something like a worm from your hand.

Here is our post: How Do You Handfeed An Axolotl?

You can even use their food to teach them how to do simple tricks like swimming in a circle to get their food.

If you like to watch your axolotl, you can keep putting different decorations like caves in their aquarium for them to explore.

Really just being in the same room as your axolotl is interaction with them because they will come to recognize you over time.

Some axolotls will tap on the glass when they see you and swim to the top of their tank to be fed.

Some will simply swim back and forth, following you as you walk around the room.

Final Thoughts

It really isn’t recommended to pet your axolotl. Almost everything you find online will warn you not to but experience is far more knowledgable than half the yahoos on the internet regurgitating stuff that they read online.

Axolotls live for a very long time and can even regrow entire limbs. Even though they are sensitive to the touch, you can still give them light pats and belly rubs if they will allow it.

Enjoy your axolotl and don’t be too paranoid about petting it. Remember, just be very gentle and don’t do it very often.

There are other ways to interact with your axolotl other than petting.

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Pet Aquariums

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