Yosmary is an animal fanatic and an unconditional pets lover. She lives in Venezuela together with the trusted Benito, her half-breed dog. Review more


This tiny animal is thought about to it is in a pest animal in many parts the the world, rather can’t aid but find their appearance and demeanor in general cute. Currently to view opossums coming and also going in her backyard is a thing and having them living with you in your house as a pet companion a fully different one. Deserve to you really have actually an opossum as a pet? Is that even legal? right here at pets Comments, we will enlighten you about this subject.

You are watching: Can you keep possums as pets

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Well, an initial thing first. This short article will be about the phibìc American opossum, no the Australian Possum. When plenty of world say possum an interpretation opossum, it’s vital to know these room two very different animals. The said. Let’s begin!

Basic Information

Due to their appearance and also size, the north American Opossum (also referred to as Virginia Opossum) deserve to seriously freak human being out looking like an oversized rat. Breath. They room not rodents! The north American Opossum is the only marsupial life in the north and parts the Center and also South America. Their clinical name is Didelphimorphia.


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Opossum’s lifespan deserve to vary in the wild and in captivity. Castle are well-known to live for three years in the wild and also seven in captivity with the proper care and also appropriate environment.

Appearance

Their size varies relying on their location, north American Opossums room usually bigger than the ones uncovered in the tropics. In general, opossums deserve to be from 13 come 37 inches long and also weight from 11 ounces come 14 lb. V males being heavier 보다 females.

Opossums have actually sharp teeth similar to a cat, hairless ears and a long level nose. Their coat is outlet of a grayish brown color but on the head, their confront is that a white color. However the many notable function without a doubt is your hairless tail providing them a rat-like appearance which it’s additionally prehensile, helpful when it involves climbing and picking little objects!

Behavior

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These space nocturnal animals; because of this they space most energetic during the night. In winter opossums don’t hibernate but are less active during the night 보다 their usual.


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Opossums have an extremely particular behavior that gives birth come the phrase “playing possum” this is faking your death. It appears that this is a fully involuntary action provoked by extreme fear. The opossum will certainly lie under on its side through the mouth open and also the tongue out, emitting a putrid odor from the anus. As soon as they do “play possum” they enter a near coma state that deserve to last for six hours. They don’t constantly “play possum” went they feeling threatened. A fear opossum will certainly hiss, screech and show its teeth aggressively.

Health Issues

Like any kind of other animal, Opossums need committed medical attention. Because that one, they don’t live as long as various other pets and also certainly not as healthy. Opossums the live longer than a year suffers indigenous cataracts often tend to it is in obese and also lack coordination, in essence, the age way to fast.

Other health pertains to include genital and urinary infections, negative immune systems and bacterial illnesses. A major worry because that the caretaker is the opossum’s diet and exercise. An unappropriated diet have the right to provoke grave concerns for opossum health like Metabolic Bone condition (MBD) i beg your pardon is possibly fatal and expensive to treat. Symptoms incorporate bone deformities, delicate bones, and also swollen joints. Thankfully all of this is avoidable with on-point vet access time and good care in ~ home.

Diet

Opossums room omnivorous and also tremendously opportunistic in the wild. Their diet has fruit, insects, grass and also plants, tiny animals choose mice and also rats. Replicate the range of your diet in bondage is a actual challenge, yet the nutritional elements of their diet need to be met or it have the right to terrible impact their health.

Is that legal to own an Opossum in north America?

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The fast answer is NO. Is not legal and also is no recommendable either. In most states, a wildlife rehabilitator patent is needed in order to have actually one. To end up being a license is granted wildlife rehabilitator girlfriend will need to educate yourself in her state department of wildlife. The needs are likely to vary from one state to another. A good way of earning endure is volunteering to a local wildlife rehabilitator foundation or an separation, personal, instance rehabilitator.

Many uncover themselves parenting an injured or taking treatment of one orphaned baby opossum at home. However, if this is your case we encourage girlfriend to discover a local wildlife rehabilitator because they need good care for their very particular needs.

Do they make great Pets?

To begin with, opossums room high maintenance, an extremely high maintenance to have. If your nutritional demands are not fulfill they room prone come dangerous and also expensive come treat diseases. Consequently, if you room absolutely decided to gain wildlife rehabilitators licensed and own one opossum. Have actually in mental you have to be really attentive to your opossum diet.

To discover a vet the knows exactly how to act opossums its significant concern too. The reason is that not numerous know just how to and also opossums are prone to different diseases. Besides them being frankly expensive to keep, they room wild animals, they are meant to it is in in the wild. Over there are situations where opossums are docile enough to take care of and keep together a pet but these room rare cases. Opossums have the right to be aggressive and need many of practice to stay healthy. A good keeper must administer all that this.

Differences in between the phibìc American Opossum and also the Australian Possum

Is usual to hear world call “possum” the phibìc America opossum, a local person may pass it as something normal, but, an Australian indigenous will stare at the name. The reason is that these two fellas are fully different animals. They are both marsupials but of a different order, opossums room didelphimorphia when possums room phalangeridae.

Their figure is also different; for once the Australian possum’s tail is covered in fur. Possums have the right to be gray or silver- gray, likewise, their ears space bigger 보다 those of the phibìc American opossum with a softer coat 보다 the opossum coat.

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Fun Facts

Possums don’t actually “Play Possum”

To “play possum” is a protective system opossum execute while Australian possums don’t have this behavior.

They don’t have Rabies!

Is not uncommon to worry about rabies with animals but, opossums occur to be the exception to the rule. Its thought to be as result of opossum’s low body temperature. Through such a short temperature, the virus cannot survive.

Their Meat is Commercialized in plenty of Places

Especially in Center and also South America. Your meat has a low portion of fat do it very clean meat. It also has a low protein percentage, lower than pig and also bovine meat. So it has to be seasoned through vegetable proteins.

Opossums in her Yard can be a great Thing!

Wild opossums have a really varied diet. They eat snails, slugs, spiders, mice, and small unwanted pests favor those. Opossums roughly your home can mean a sanitized home.

See more: Dungeness Crab Calories In A 1 Lb Dungeness Crab A Healthy Choice?

The Truce between Adult Cats and Opossums

With their cat-sized human body is not so rare to watch opossums playing and also even sharing food v adult cats as they have a truce that sorts. This is both bizarre and also cute!

They don’t build their very own Dens

Numerous pets make their own den to defend themselves, minus the opossum. This opportunistic pet takes sanctuary in different places prefer abandoned pets burrows, brush piles, attics, and other frameworks (natural or man-made) come cover themselves.