You’ve made your decision. You want a pet axolotl. And I can see why; that smile. But can you simply head down to your nearest PetSmart and pick one up? This is what you need to know.
So, does PetSmart sell Axolotls? PetSmart does not sell Axolotls – in any of their 1500 stores. Instead, you will need to visit an exotic pet store or an axolotl breeder specifically to purchase one of these neotenic salamanders.
Perhaps not what you wanted to hear.
It would have been so easy if PetSmart did sell them right!
Nonetheless, just because they don’t doesn’t mean that your dreams of owning this amphibian are gone.
Quite the contrary.
It just means you need to be a bit more imaginative and perhaps do a little bit more research.
But I’m here to help.
We will soon be looking at where to start your search.
Why Does PetSmart Not Sell Axolotls?
PetSmart has never given a concrete reason as to why they do not sell axolotls in their stores. However, we can infer it is for two reasons: their unique needs and for legality reasons.
First up, their needs.
Axolotls actually require a very particular type of care.
They are amphibians with truly unique needs.
For instance, they do best alone, should not be handled, and must spend their lives in carefully managed and controlled water.
You see, for PetSmart to sell these as pets, would require a lot of care, education, and resources to do so.
Economically, it actually makes sense why they would not want to sell them.
And then there are legal issues too.
Did you know that axolotls are actually illegal to own in several states in the United States.
Take California for example.
So some PetSmart stores would not be able to actually sell them.
Which results in a logistical and administrative challenge too.
With all this in mind, it simply makes sense that PetSmart does not sell axolotls.
Instead, they stick to a more defined range of other amphibians (like frogs), reptiles, and other small fish.
Can You Buy Axolotl Supplies At PetSmart?
While PetSmart does not sell axolotls in any of their 1500 stores, they do sell supplies that you can purchase to take care of a, or several, axolotls.
And most of this is inadvertently.
While axolotls have very specific needs, and their habitat must be kept in particular conditions, they do actually require a very similar enclosure to other amphibians and reptiles.
For instance, a tank or aquarium.
PetSmart sells these, and often in sizes big enough to house an axolotl.
Then there is lighting and heating too.
You can buy these supplies directly from PetSmart; even if they are not specifically being advertised or designed with axolotls in mind.
And when it comes to food; you’ll actually find a number of suitable products at your nearest PetSmart.
So, do not be disheartened if you head over to the PetSmart website, plug in ‘axolotl’ to the search, and not find anything come up.
You can find what you need with a few different searches.
Just consider here that the staff may or may not be able to help you with the supplies you need for your axolotl.
They likely will not have the knowledge or will have been trained on this particular pet.
So, you will likely need to do your research ahead of time.
A few simple google searches, or even visiting my other articles and guides on axolotls is advised.
That way you can go down, or contact your nearest PetSmart with some generalized items you know you need and they will be able to support you along the way.
For instance, “I need a 20-gallon aquarium” as opposed to “I need an axolotl tank”
Where Can You Buy An Axolotl?
The best options for buying an axolotl include exotic pet stores or specialized axolotl breeders. Online research and conversations with a vet will help you to find such sellers.
As PetSmart does not sell axolotls, you are going to need to be somewhat creative.
But that does not mean you should just purchase, or source your axolotl from anywhere you can.
In fact, it’s generally not a good idea to purchase an axolotl from a non-registered individual or from a contact found on the internet.
Besides, you will have no real visibility into how the axolotls were bred, cared for, or raised.
It could result in health complications either soon after adoption, or later in their life.
So, only going through exotic breeders and more established channels are recommended.
If the seller has credentials or any other assurances, that’s great too.
Axolotls are one such pet you cannot, and likely will not, ever be able to buy from PetSmart.
So if you have your heart set on these salamanders – you will need to look elsewhere.
Failing this, if this finding has raised doubts – there is still a wide range of other pets to consider from this particular store.
From White Tree Frogs to Geckos, all the way through to Tarantulas.
Or perhaps something different altogether, like a small rodent – perhaps even a Rat?
Just head over to the PetSmart website to find the full list.
You can even use their interactive store finder – that way you know exactly what will be in stock before ever making a visit.
I am a practiced pet owner with decades of experience owning a number of different pets. I am also the main writer and chief editor here at Pet Educate; a site I created to share everything I’ve learned about pet ownership over the years and my extensive research along the way.