Do Frogs Have Hair? (The Truth About Frogs And Hair)

Hairy frog

Since the beginning of time, frogs, with over 500 species worldwide, have been intriguing creatures. The topic “Do frogs have hair?” is fascinating and frequently arises when people discuss the characteristics of these amphibians. The correct response is that frogs do not have hair of any kind.

They have skin that is both smooth and wet, and it is covered in tiny bumps that are known as dermal papillae.

Dermal papillae are not the same thing as hair follicles, and they do not contribute to hair growth.

In this enlightening piece, we will go into the world of frogs and hair, investigating a wide range of questions, debunking myths, and shedding light on realities that are not as widely known.

You may also read about: Can You Get Warts From Frogs?

Let’s get straight to it now!

Do Frogs Have Hair And What Type Of Hair Do They Have?

The answer is no, frogs do not have hair and they can’t have hair because not only are they incapable of growing hair because they do not have follicles and without hair follicles, frogs will not be able to grow hair.

Frogs have skin that is both smooth and wet, and it is covered in small bumps that are known as dermal papillae.

Dermal papillae are not the same as hair follicles, so they cannot produce hair.

Frogs don’t have hair like mammals do. Instead, they have a special kind of skin with structures that resemble hair called cilia.

Why Do Some Frogs Look Like They Have Hair?

There are several explanations for this. One of the reasons for this is that certain species of frogs have a particular form of dermal papilla that is longer and more prominent than others. Because of these dermal papillae, a frog’s skin may have a fuzzy or hairy look.

Breeding males of several frog species acquire ‘dermal papillae’ structures on their sides and thighs. These structures are commonly mistaken for hairs.

The word “dermal papilla” comes from dermatology and refers to skin extensions.

These skin extensions have arteries within them, which aid in absorbing oxygen from the surrounding water.

Frogs do not have hair, but there are a few reasons why they may have because of their appearance.

Do not be deceived if you come across a frog that appears to have hair on its body. They are called dermal papillae.

Why Don’t Frogs Have Hair?

Because they lack follicles, frogs cannot produce hair because there is nowhere for the hair to grow from on their bodies.

Keratin makes up the filament that makes up hair, which emerges from follicles found in the dermis.

Frogs are unable to develop hair because they lack hair follicles.

Frogs don’t have hair because hair would make it hard for them to breathe and swim.

Frogs breathe through their skin, and hair blocks the pores, making it hard for them to take in oxygen. Having hair would practically kill them.

 Frogs would also have difficulty swimming because their hair would drag them down in the water.

Frogs that live in cold places would be hurt by having hair. If frogs had hair, keeping their bodies at the right temperature would be hard.

Frogs are cold-blooded, which means that the environment around them controls their body temperature.

If they had hair, they would get too hot in the summer and probably freeze in the winter.

Frogs rely on their skin’s ability to take in oxygen and water to maintain their health.

The surrounding air and water all provide moisture for frogs. They may become dehydrated if they are to have hair, which would prevent them from taking in enough liquid.

Are There Any Frogs That Have Hair?

There is at least one species of frog that possesses structures that resemble hair all over its body.

The hairy frog, known scientifically as Trichobatrachus robustus, can be found throughout Central Africa.

It is also called the Wolverine frog or the horror frog. It is a small brown frog that lives in Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea’s rainforests.

They often sit on the banks of swift-moving rivers surrounded by lush flora. They can be spotted occasionally in dark caves and woodlands.

During the breeding season, the male hairy frog grows a thick fringe of hair-like structures over its sides and thighs. This hair-like structure extends down to its lower legs. These structures that resemble hair are not true hairs at all but rather dermal papillae that are filled with blood vessels. 

The hair-like structures help the male frog absorb more oxygen while guarding the eggs.

Trichobatrachus robustus also called wolverine frog or the horror frog
Trichobatrachus robustus also called wolverine frog or the horror frog (Image credit: Getty Images)

Debunking the Hair Myth of Frogs

The sight of these dermal papillae is what contributed to the widespread belief that frogs have hair.

At first glance, they may look like strands of hair; however, a closer inspection reveals that they are not true hair.

Dermal papillae are composed of various components, the most prominent of which are collagen and mucopolysaccharides, in contrast to the keratin-based composition of mammalian hair.

Multipurpose Skin Of Frogs

The skin of a frog is an incredible organ which contribute immensely in the animal’s ability to live.

Frogs have been able to thrive in a wide variety of environments owing to the remarkable adaptations that they have developed over time.

The skin on a frog is a complex organ that performs several vital functions for the organism. 


Frogs breathe through their skin, which lets oxygen and carbon dioxide in and out easily. The skin is also covered in a mucus layer that keeps it from drying out and moistening.


Male frogs often use their skin to attract females. Some frogs have sacs on their throats that they can blow up to make loud calls. Some frogs use the patterns on their skin to attract mates.

Defending against predators

Frogs can protect themselves from predators by putting poisons and other chemicals on their skin. Some frogs have poisonous skin that hurts if you touch it. Some frog’s skin makes a secretion that smells or tastes bad.

Absorbing water 

Frogs can take in water through their skin. This is very important for frogs that live in places that don’t get much water.

Maintaining body temperature

Frogs are ectotherms, meaning that the environment around them controls their body temperature.

A frog’s skin helps it absorb heat from the sun or the water around it.

Disease protection

A frog’s skin has many bacteria and other microorganisms that help it stay healthy and fight off disease.

Facts About The Skin Of Frogs
The skin of a frog is always falling off and growing back. This keeps the skin clean and keeps bacteria from growing on it.
A frog’s skin is also very sensitive to being touched. This helps frogs recognize danger and food.
Some frogs can change the color of their skin. This is how frogs hide themselves from predators or communicate to each other.
Chemicals that could be used to treat diseases are found in large amounts in the skin of frogs. For example, some peptides from frog skin have been shown to fight cancer and diabetes.


We have been able to arrive at a conclusion that frogs have no hair. Only the hairy frog has structures that look like hairs but not true hairs. They are called dermal papillae.

In biology, misconceptions can often make it hard to tell what is true and what isn’t.

Even though frogs don’t have hair like mammals do, their skin has structures called dermal papillae that can make it look like they do.

Because of these changes, frogs can live well in many different habitats.

 As we continue to learn about the wonders of nature, the question “Do frogs have hair?” reminds us of how many different kinds of animals there are on Earth.

If you see a frog with what looks like hair, it’s actually dermal papillae.

See also: Can Frogs Feel Happy?

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